Newsletter. Themes of 2nd Sunday of Lent, svc schedule, prayer requests, more.
- Saint Nicholas Orthodox Church has posted a new item, 'Newsletter. Themes of 2nd--
Sunday of Lent, svc schedule, prayer requests, more. '
The services for this 2nd Sunday of Great Lent have two major themes: our Lord's parable of the Prodigal Son and the memory of St. Gregory Palamas.
We heard the parable of the Prodigal Son at the Divine Liturgy 2 weeks before Lent began, and the theme is repeated in the texts of the services throughout the fast, especially during this week. This parable is to a very great degree the theme of Great Lent.
Each one of us is the prodigal son. We have been endowed with the greatest of blessings by God our Creator and given the possibility to grow in love and joy merely by trusting in Him and obeying His commandments. No ability, no strength is needed on our part, merely a willing and obedient heart.
St. Gregory's memory is a testimony to the greatness of the blessings that God has promised us. Not only can we have peace, joy and happiness, but all of this comes — amazing Gift! — through intimate fellowship with God our Creator Himself. We can see Him, we can know Him closely, and empowered by His grace we can become like Him. Our hearts can become pure, loving and joyful, with no darkness at all!
But like the prodigal, we have despised — and continue to despise — this amazing gift and have preferred to take our inheritance — our nature created in God's own Image — and squander it on harmful things. We have taken each of the great gifts he has given us — reason, kingship over creation, and the capacity for love, zeal, and anger among many others — and used each one of them against God, causing evil and hatred to increase on the earth rather than love and joy.
And so, like the prodigal we have found ourselves in a faraway country, cut off from God because of our own choices, forced to feed swine — that is, to continually nurture the passions which stand as a wall between us and happiness. Let us, then, use this holy time of the Fast to come to our senses, return to our Father, and call out to Him, "I have sinned against heaven and before Thee," but have mercy on me, Compassionate Father, and call me back again! And He will. (by Deacon Nicholas Park)You may view the latest post at
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