04 April 2010

And We're Back ...

Plenty of catching up to do ... but in the meantime:

Saint Proclus of Constantinople (c.390-446), Bishop

Sermon 14 ; PG 65, 796
"Day of gladness and joy" (Ps 118[117],24)

How beautiful is this feast of Easter! And how beautiful our assembly! This day contains so many mysteries, both old and new! During this week of feasting or, rather, of happiness, people are rejoicing all over the world and even the powers of heaven unite themselves with us in joyful celebration of the Lord's resurrection. Angels and Archangels are exultant as they wait for the heavenly King, Christ our God, to return victorious over the earth; the choirs of saints exult as they sing of «he who rose before the dawn», the Christ (cf. Ps 110[109],3). Earth exults, for the blood of a God has washed it. The sea exults, for the footsteps of our Lord have honoured it. May every person born again of water and the Holy Spirit, exult. May Adam, the first of men, now freed from the ancient curse, exult...

Christ's resurrection has not only inaugurated this holy feast but, still more, has won for us salvation instead of suffering, immortality in place of death, healing instead of wounds, resurrection instead of decline. In former times the Passover mystery was carried out in Egypt according to the ritual prescribed by the Law: the sacrifice of the lamb was no more than a sign. But today we celebrate a spiritual Passover according to the Gospel: the day of resurrection. Then it was a lamb taken from the flock that was sacrificed...; now Christ in person offers himself as lamb of God. Then it was an animal from the sheepfold; now, not just a lamb but the shepherd himself lays down his life for his sheep (Jn 10,11)... Then the Hebrews crossed the Red Sea and sang a hymn of victory in honor of their deliverer: «Let us sing to the Lord; he has covered himself in glory» (Ex 15,10). Now, all those accounted worthy of baptism sing this victory song in their hearts: «You alone are holy, you alone are God, Jesus Christ, in the glory of God the Father. Amen».

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