Oct 12View Source
September Sermons on Orthodox Spiritual Life
Gebre Meskel and St. Gregory, Illuminator of Armenia
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1. Gebre Meskel and St. Gregory, Illuminator of Armenia
Gebre Meskel = Ge'ez for Holy Cross - the designation of the festival
of the exaltation of the cross. Fr. John begins this festival sermon
by talking about the history of the "raising up of the cross" from its
buried place in Jerusalem after almost three centuries. St. Helen the
mother of Emporer Constantine secured the location and brought the
cross to Constantinople.
It is a significant festival for Orthodox Christians full of
symbolism, allegory and metaphor. The cross is no longer hidden. The
symbol of torture and death has become the symbol for healing and
The glory of the cross is a major part of the Teaching of St Gregory
the Illuminator, who is considered the father of the Armenian Church.
He uses Psalm 117 where David refers to the "corners of the altar" as
prophecy of the cross and its symbol for Christians.
In the sign of the cross is mercy and gratitude for us and the entire
world. St. Gregory explains this symbol and its power. Fr John Brian
gives and inspiration homiletic on this important writing from one of
the Orthodox fathers and saints.
Please pray for Fr. John Brian who continues to encourage us in the
continuing development of Christian spirituality.
This sermon uses and refers to scripture readings appointed by the
Syrian Malankara calendar and was given on Sunday, September 29, 2013
by Fr. John-Brian Paprock at Holy Transfiguration Orthodox Mission
Chapel, Madison, Wisconsin.
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