Archive‎ > ‎Pastoral Messages‎ > ‎

Remembering the ‘Little Things’ during Holy Pascha

posted May 12, 2011, 4:17 PM by   [ updated May 12, 2011, 4:22 PM by Yulia Russiyanova ]
Dear students, families, teachers and friends of St. John’s Academy: 

Christ is risen! Христос воскресе!

As we continue to celebrate the joyous and bright feast of Holy Pascha, during which we remember our Lord’s resurrection and the forty days He spent amongst His disciples, appearing to them in gardens, along the road, in upper rooms and in many other places to assure them of the Kingdom of God and the power that had been given to the Son by His Father, I write to encourage us to apply our hearts to the precious inheritance He has given us.

In these days of Holy Pascha, let embrace the inheritance of our faith, and the life to which God calls us. Let us especially look toward the ‘small things’ that form the fabric of our lives as Orthodox Christians, and which shape in us a true, pious, grace-filled love for God and all His creation.

Let us stand solemnly in our prayers, grateful that we are able to stand in the presence of our King!

Let us cross ourselves reverently, at every petition of the litanies and at all other times, grateful that the Precious Cross is always with us, and the Sign that defeats all spiritual enemies is never far from us!

Let us venerate our holy icons with real piety, not rushed or without thinking, grateful that the saints of every age are not lost, but with us, present among us!

Let us show our love and respect for one another, greeting one another with the Paschal proclamation, taking blessings, speaking with respect—grateful that God has preserved for us a community in which the richness of life may be experienced and known!

Let us say our prayers before and after meals, not out of a sense of duty or routine, but with purity of heart, truly grateful that God has provided for our bodily as well as spiritual lives!

Let us listen to the Scriptures attentively, and attend to our instruction with devotion, grateful that God speaks to each of us with His word of truth!

Let us approach the relics of our patron, St. John, and all our sacred things, not flippantly or out of routine, but with real awe and tenderness and love—grateful that here, in the midst of our sinful and fallen world, God has given us signs and the reality of His love and grace!

Let us take this joyous period of the Lord’s bright resurrection, by which every corner of creation was illumined and sanctified, and offer every ‘corner’ of our lives back to Him with true piety and love. Let us focus particularly on the small things, the routine things, which we too often dismiss. For if we do this, then our whole being will belong to Christ and our whole life will be His. Then we will know what it means to say with St. John Chrysostom, ‘Christ is risen, and joy is come into all the world.’

Christ is risen! Truly, He is risen! 

With love and prayers in our Risen Lord,
Hieromonk Irenei