Deisis (Novogorod)

Metropolitan Stefan's meditation for Palm Sunday

ugcc.org.ua - Deafness and blindness are great personal tragedies, but deafness and blindness of the soul is more tragic. On Palm Sunday, Jerusalem was blind and deaf. Its people did not recognize the true mission of Jesus. Many in the crowds wanted a revolutionary and conqueror who would fulfill their expectations and help them realize their nationalistic hopes. Their souls were unmoved. In a few days, the crowds of people will change its heart and will call out for the crucifixion of Jesus. The disciples will flee and hide. Peter will deny Jesus three times. Imagine the loneliness felt by Jesus.

In each of our lives, there are Palm Sunday moments.  Our Lord visits every soul.  There are moments when we feel close to God.  We feel Him touching our lives.  We can hear Him.  Regretfully, there are times when we are blind and deaf to God’s visits.  We are insensitive to His approaches.  These are missed opportunities, personal tragedies.  We find ourselves hiding within ourselves and within our day-to-day concerns, hesitant to risk ourselves to respond to Jesus Christ’s presence and His inviting love.

On Palm Sunday, we receive blessed pussy willows as a symbol of our commitment to Christ.  Remember that the first commitment was made by Jesus for you and for me with His complete love and sacrifice on the cross.  Let your commitment be expressed through all your words and actions in life, crying out, “Hosanna! Blessed is He Who comes in the Name of the Lord!”  Allow your love for Jesus Christ richly expresses itself in your faithful worship with your parish family in His Church.  May your enthusiastic faith help others to shed their blindness and deafness to the visits of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in their daily life.  Live the peace of Jesus Christ personally and share it with others who desperately need to hear of Christ’s promise of unending joy and peace with Him for all who believe and follow His ways!  Choose to live as an Easter person!


Teachings of Christ

“If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’" (John 7:37-38 ESV)

Transfiguration

You were transfigured on the mountain, O Christ God, * showing Your glory to Your Disciples as far as they were able to bear it. * Through the prayers of the Mother of God, * let Your everlasting Light shine also upon us sinners. * O Giver of Light, glory to You! (Troparion, Tone 7)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Upon the mountain You were transfigured, O Christ God, * and Your Disciples beheld Your glory as far as they could receive it, * so that when they would see You crucified, * they would understand that You suffered willingly; * and they would preach to the world * that You are truly the radiance of the Father. (Kontakion, Tone 7)

Dormition

O Mother of God, in giving birth you preserved virginity; * and in falling asleep you did not forsake the world. * You are the Mother of Life and have been transferred to life, * and through your prayers you deliver our souls from death. (Troparion - Tone 1)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Neither the tomb nor death could detain the Mother of God, * who is unsleeping in her prayers and our unfailing hope in her intercession; * for He Who dwelt in her ever-virgin womb, * transferred to Life the Mother of Life. (Kontakion - Tone 2)

Random Proverb

"My son, do not lose sight of these — keep sound wisdom and discretion, and they will be life for your soul." (Proverbs 3:21,22a ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

“Only one sin is nowadays severely punished: the attentive observance of the traditions of our Fathers. For that reason the good ones are thrown out of their places and brought to the desert.” (ep. 243)