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Greetings and The Easter message of H.H. Pope Shenouda III

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  • Mark Sadek
    PIKHRISTOS AFTONF! KHEN O METHMI AFTONF! PIKHRISTOS ANNESTI! ALITHOS ANNESTI! CHRIST IS RISEN! TRULY HE IS RISEN! My Beloved Spiritual Words Family, It s this
    Message 1 of 4 , Apr 26, 2008
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      PIKHRISTOS AFTONF! KHEN O METHMI AFTONF!
      PIKHRISTOS ANNESTI! ALITHOS ANNESTI!
      CHRIST IS RISEN! TRULY HE IS RISEN!


      My Beloved Spiritual Words Family,

      It's this time of the year again when I get to wish all of you a Happy Easter :)

      May the Lord bless your lives and grant you all that your hearts may desire.

      Please remember me in your prayers.

      God Bless.
      Mark.

      ============================================================

      My children and brethren in the lands of immigration, clergy and laity.

      My sincere greetings to you on the occasion of the Glorious Feast of Resurrection. May God make it a blessing to you all and a continual source of spiritual joy.

      The resurrection of the Lord Christ was a glorious and joyous resurrection. It was with a glorified Body, with which He was able to exit from the tomb while it was shut; and He was able to come out of the grave-cloths while leaving them organized. With this Body, He entered the upper room, where the disciples were, while the doors were shut; and He granted them peace and blessing. With this glorified Body, He ascended to heaven and was not over-powered by the gravitational force.

      We rejoice in the resurrection of the Lord Christ for He abolished death, and gave us the promise to be like Him, having life after death and an eternal life also with a glorified body similar to His resurrection, as St. Paul the Apostle said about the Lord: "...who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body..." (Philippians 3:21) He also said that it is raised in glory ... it is raised in power ... it is raised a spiritual body ... (I Corinthians 15: 43-44).

      Truly, the resurrection of the Lord Christ was a deposit towards our resurrection and the first-fruits of it (I Corinthians 15:20). While we rejoice in the glory of His resurrection, we also rejoice for what will be ours in likeness of this glory, but each one according to his order.

      Let us all then live the life that qualifies us for this glory, knowing that as we get deeper in the spiritual life, the more our glory increases in the eternal life. For all people in eternity will not be of the one rank, but as the Apostle said, "for one star differs from another star in glory." (I Corinthians 15:41)

      Therefore, we must live - as befitting us - in the life of righteousness, and grow in it day after day, making perfection our aim, which can be reached according to the commandment of the Lord "Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect." (Matthew 5:48)

      May the Lord grant you grace so that you walk in the life of righteousness, holiness, perfection and be an example to many.

      Be well in the Lord, absolved by His Holy Spirit, and remember me in your prayers.

      H.H. Pope Shenouda III
      Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark
      April 2008
    • Mark Sadek
      PIKHRISTOS AFTONF! KHEN O METHMI AFTONF! PIKHRISTOS ANNESTI! ALITHOS ANNESTI! CHRIST IS RISEN! TRULY HE IS RISEN! My Beloved Spiritual Words Family, It s this
      Message 2 of 4 , Apr 19, 2009
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        PIKHRISTOS AFTONF! KHEN O METHMI AFTONF!
        PIKHRISTOS ANNESTI! ALITHOS ANNESTI!
        CHRIST IS RISEN! TRULY HE IS RISEN!


        My Beloved Spiritual Words Family,

        It's this time of the year again when I get to wish all of you a Happy Easter :)

        May the Lord bless your lives and grant you all that your hearts may desire.

        Please remember me in your prayers.

        God Bless.
        mark.

        ============================================================
        The Papal Message from HH Pope Shenouda III for The Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

        My beloved children in the lands of immigration, clergy and laity. Peace and grace to you from the Lord. My greetings to you on the Glorious Feast of Resurrection.

        The Resurrection of the Lord offers to us beneficial lessons that we will not forget. The first lesson is that there is no impossible, and everything is possible with God. The second lesson is that the Lord Christ, in His Resurrection, was always working for our sake.

        Firstly, He removed the feelings of fear and doubt that troubled the disciples. He comforted them and planted in them the power of faith. Then He granted them the grace of the priesthood. And He said to these disciples: "As the Father has sent Me, I also send you" (Luke 20:21). He breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained" (Luke 20:21-22). Likewise, He pledged to the disciples mission work and teaching and said to them: "preach the gospel to every creature" (Mark 16:15). He also said: "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them ... teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you..." (Matthew 28:19-20). He also stayed with them for forty days "speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God" (Acts 1:3).

        During this period, He delivered to them what we received through Apostolic Tradition; the most important of this is what pertains to the sacraments and order of the Church. In His Resurrection and appearance to them, He changed them from fear to being bold, so they were able to say to the Jewish leaders at that time: "We ought to obey God rather than men" (Acts 5:29). He explained to them all that related to Him in the Mosaic law, the Prophets and the Psalms. After He left them and ascended to heaven, He sent them the Holy Spirit as tongues of fire that rested upon them, so they were able to preach in His name amongst all the nations. After this, He also granted them many gifts from the Holy Spirit which helped them in the work of mission and pastoral care. He did not suffice with this, but said to them: "lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age..." (Matthew 28:20).

        After a period of time from His ascension, He appeared to Saul of Tarsus who was persecuting the Church; and He was able to change him to an Apostle - one of the greatest apostles who "labored more abundantly than they all..." (I Corinthians 15:10). And the Lord Christ who worked with His disciples after the Resurrection, is still working until now in His Church. This is through His grace and the work of His Holy Spirit. Did He not say: "My Father has been working until now, and I have been working" (John 5:17). We thank Him for all that He has done with us; for He is the One who encourages us by saying: "For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them" (Matthew 18:20).

        From all this, we see in the Resurrection and work of the Lord an encouragement to us to work; and He works with us. How beautiful is the saying about the Disciples of Christ, at the end of the Gospel of St. Mark: "And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs" (Mark 16:20).

        In conclusion, every blessing from the Lord to you all, and be absolved from His Holy Spirit.


        Shenouda
        Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark
        April 2009
      • Mark Sadek
        PIKHRISTOS ANNESTI! ALITHOS ANNESTI! CHRIST IS RISEN! TRULY HE IS RISEN! My Beloved Spiritual Words Family, It s this time of the year again when I get to wish
        Message 3 of 4 , Apr 3, 2010
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          PIKHRISTOS ANNESTI! ALITHOS ANNESTI!
          CHRIST IS RISEN! TRULY HE IS RISEN!

          My Beloved Spiritual Words Family,

          It's this time of the year again when I get to wish all of you a Happy Easter :)

          May the Lord bless your lives and grant you all that your hearts may desire.

          Please remember me in your prayers.

          God Bless.
          mark.

          ============================================================

          The Papal Message from HH Pope Shenouda III for The Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

          My beloved sons in the lands of immigration, priests and congregation.

          Peace and grace from Our Lord, hoping that God may bless your lives and sanctify them and may every work that you do be successful.

          We thank God Who granted us to complete this Holy Pascha in peace and has brought us to the joys of His Resurrection. Our joy is not merely the joy of the Feast after ending the fast. Our joy however, is a spiritual joy, as the apostle said, "Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice" (Philippians 4:4).

          I wish that you meditate well on this phrase and practice rejoicing in the Lord and on how it should be. We rejoice in the presence of the Lord with us during this period, to strengthen our faith and to speak to us about matters pertaining to the Kingdom of God (Acts 1:3). He gives us the feeling that He is with us all the days and to the end of the age (Matthew 28:20).

          These are the feelings of the holy fifty days after the Resurrection. Do we have such joy and contemplate on its reasons as a principle for these fifty days, focusing all our thoughts on matters pertaining to the Kingdom of God? Do we examine what are these matters and how to live by them?

          I hear so often some people, whilst being perplexed asking me, how can we keep our spirituality during these fifty days when we have been deprived from fasting and prostrations during these days and also from the liturgies that begin in the afternoon and end at sunset? Whereas some say more than that, how can we overcome lukewarmness during these days? Here I say to you that every season has its own spiritual nature. Fasting and prostrations were the nature of the Great Lent. However, there are other spiritual means for the holy fifty days. What are they?

          In the period of the fifty days, the focus is on prayer, spiritual reading, contemplation, praising and hymns, deep spiritual meetings, exercises of repentance and spiritual growth.

          This is what each individual as well as those who are responsible for the ministry should be concerned with. It is inevitable to present spiritual nourishment to take place of the fast. Spiritual nourishment was the aim and the means of the fast, "Every word that proceeds from the mouth of God" (Matthew 4:4).

          If fasting includes self control and strong will, we should continue in these two virtues with various and many exercises.

          With respect to food, it is not appropriate to lose control when breaking the fast. We should eat with self-control and not with gluttony. We should not be like those who after breaking the fast cause upset to their stomachs, or those who destroy and lose all of the benefits of the virtues of fasting without wisdom or discernment by the way they eat.

          One of the exercises of self-control during the fifty days after Lent, is lack of eating between meals. It is a useful spiritual exercise, as it is at the same time useful for the health of the body. Whereas this may be difficult for some with respect to the many visits and banquets that they attend and host, this can be minimized by lack of eating as much as we can between meals, except when necessary.

          We do not fast during the fifty days after Lent according to the saying of the Lord, "can the friends of the bridegroom fast while the bridegroom is with them?" (Mark 2:19). The reason therefore, is our feeling of the Lord’s presence with us or our presence with Him. This will take place through the continuity of prayer or through the remembrance of the Lord.

          Through this, the fifty-day period after Lent is a period of prayer, contemplation and our feeling of being in the presence of the Lord, as were the disciples after the Resurrection. "Speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord" (Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16). It is a period in which praising increases. There is no doubt that this also agrees with the saying of Saint James the apostle who said, " Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms" (James 5:13). Some beneficial spiritual exercises are memorizing psalms and parts of praise and using them as an opportunity for contemplation, in order for them to originate from the heart as prayer. That is why the apostle repeats the phrase, "singing in your heart to the Lord" "making melody in your heart to the Lord".

          May the Lord grant it to be a period of spiritual joy for you my beloved, in which you rejoice in the Lord and to make the Lord rejoice by your pure lives that are filled with God’s love. Hence, the period of these fifty days was also a period of repentance, since by repentance heaven and earth rejoice according to the Lord’s saying, "There will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents" (Luke 15:7). How much more so if he also grows in grace.

          Therefore, be a source of joy to God, His angels and to heaven. Be also a source of joy for us when we hear about your righteous life, your growth in grace, ministry and in every good work. The Lord be with you and wishing you a happy Feast of the Resurrection.

          Shenuda
          Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark
          April 2010
        • Mark Sadek
          PIKHRISTOS AFTONF! KHEN O METHMI AFTONF! PIKHRISTOS ANNESTI! ALITHOS ANNESTI! CHRIST IS RISEN! TRULY HE IS RISEN! My Beloved Spiritual Words Family, It s this
          Message 4 of 4 , Apr 23, 2011
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            PIKHRISTOS AFTONF! KHEN O METHMI AFTONF!
            PIKHRISTOS ANNESTI! ALITHOS ANNESTI!
            CHRIST IS RISEN! TRULY HE IS RISEN!


            My Beloved Spiritual Words Family,

            It's this time of the year again when I get to wish all of you a Happy Easter :)

            May the Lord bless your lives and grant you all that your hearts may desire.

            Please remember me in your prayers.

            God Bless.
            mark.

            ============================================================

            The Papal Message for The Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.


            My beloved children in the lands of immigration, both clergy and laity.

            I congratulate you for the Glorious Feast of the Resurrection, wishing you all that the Lord returns it upon you with all goodness and blessing.

            The resurrection of the Lord Christ was distinguished with an amazing power. He is the only One who was victorious over death by Himself. In His resurrection, He crushed death, and arose with the power of His Divinity. Also, by His power, He came out of the closed tomb which had a great stone upon it, without anyone seeing Him. Also with the same power, He entered the upper room where the disciples were, while its doors were shut. After He spent forty days with them speaking to them about matters pertaining to the Kingdom of God, He ascended to the heavens with a great power, which is against all the laws of gravitational force. Of course, it is the power of His Divinity.

            Therefore, St. Paul the Apostle said about Him, in the Epistle to the Philippians 3:10 "that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings..." This is why we also praised Him throughout the Holy Week, confessing His power and saying to Him: "To You is the power ... Thok te tee gom."

            Our Lord Jesus Christ, who arose with power, and ascended with power, also grants us power. The Church started its history with power, when the Holy Spirit descended upon the pure disciples. The Bible says: "And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all."

            This power remained in the life of the Church. With great power, St. George was able to tear the decree of the emperor. Even all the martyrs received death with power, and they did not fear it. Instead, they reiterated the expression "...having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better." (Philippians 1:23)

            Therefore, my beloved children and brethren, always be powerful. I mean, that you have spiritual power by which you defeat Satan, all the power of the enemy, all the wars of the ego, and all evil desires.

            And in your victory, do not attribute this to your own personal power, but to the power of God which works in you, now and always.

            Lastly, be well and absolved from the Holy Spirit; and pray for me.


            Shenouda
            Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark
            April 2011
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