In the Name of the Father, of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, amen.
“God has risen, and all of his enemies have been scattered.”
(Book of Hours)
Dearly beloved faithful,
The joy of the Feast of the Holy Resurrection has filled our souls, and the victorious exuberance of the Resurrection is to be found everywhere: in our surroundings, our churches, our families, the entire Christian world, as well as in the budding nature. Christ has triumphantly arisen from the sealed cave, and the angel announces the Good News of His Resurrection from the empty tomb. The chains of sin and death have been shattered by the victory of the Saviour, the doors to the Heavenly Kingdom have been opened, and divine grace is offered to humanity — the priceless gift of inheriting eternal life. “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die” (John 11.25-26).
The path of eternal life and resurrection in Christ begins in this world. It begins with a change in the life of the person, the rejection of sin and evil, and with a movement toward a way of holiness and perfection. Indeed, wherever human souls are exposed to the light of Christ’s resurrection, there also the darkness of God-rejecting evil thoughts, corrupting ideologies, divisions and polarizations, intolerance, enmity and dissensions retreat and are scattered. In their stead, cooperation and agreement, faithfulness, holiness, love and happiness are established. “God has risen, and all of his enemies have been scattered,” proclaims the prayer.
Those paths, which reject renewal in Christ, making life captive to sin and subject to corrosion and destruction, are antithetical to peace in the world, the public welfare, the harmonious coexistence of humanity, the strengthening of families, and all that is good.
The Good News of the resurrection of Christ is an invitation to all — to live in the graces bestowed upon us by the Saviour as a new person, as the Apostle exhorts and says, “put off your old nature which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and put on the new nature, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Eph 4.22-24). To believe in the resurrection of Christ and our resurrection through Christ as well as transformation of our life, means not only to overcome sin, addictions and spiritual error, but also to be filled with love toward all and to reject everything that tramples justice, dignity and all that is human. It also means striving to spread care and general goodwill as did Christ, “who came and saved all creatures” (Sharakan – Hymnal). Greed, theft, violence, hatred, enmity and other manifestations of blindness to God’s commandments have no place in the life of the Christian who has received the grace of the Resurrection. Such deeds reject the grace of freedom in Christ from sin and death, they destroy good and undermine the well-being of the human person, the family unit, and national life. Freedom is given in order to choose good and not as a pretense for evil and unruliness (cf. 1 Peter 2.16). Truly, being an heir of the grace of the Resurrection is made apparent in one’s lifestyle and deeds, not only personal and familial, but in the help rendered and efforts brought in the life of the public, nation and humanity. Faith is made radiant and fruit-bearing, hope increases, love of others is affirmed as we move forward together.