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Saint Paul’s Experience of Living Christ through his Epistles

After this walk with Paul along the Damascus road, the Via Recta, the streets of Damascus, the Hauran and Syria, we would like to put ourselves under the tutelage of Saint Paul, who himself learnt from the first Christians of Damascus. We are going to open his letters, one after the other, to ascertain and understand through them the reality and truthfulness of what he said: – (Saint Paul’s motto, so to speak, and the subject of our Christmas Letter) “For to me to live is Christ.” So we too will be able, through Paul, to learn how to experience the mystery of Christ, in such a way that for us, as for Paul, to live is Christ and to have the mind of Christ, as Paul had, and to understand, with Paul, the mystery of Christ’s economy of salvation for us, through the events of Paul’s life, the spiritual experiences outlined in his letters and his spiritual teachings to the first Christians, to whom he addressed his magnificent epistles.
In explaining Saint Paul’s Epistles, we should like to follow their order in the New Testament and not their chronology according to academic biblical research.


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)