Wednesday, March 16, 2016

The First Week: 'No one crowned is despondent...'

Exchanging Forgiveness - Beginning the Fast

Dear Parish Faithful,

"So let us acquire the disposition that we have been taught, not looking gloomy on the days of fasting we are currently observing but cheerfully disposed toward them, as is fitting for the saints.  No one crowned is despondent; no one glumly holds up a trophy.  Do not be gloomy while you are  being healed.   It is absurd not to rejoice in the soul's health, and rather to sorrow over the change in food and to appear to favor the pleasure of the stomach over the care of the soul.  After all, while self-indulgence gratifies the stomach, fasting brings gain to the soul.

- St. Basil the Great, "First Homily on Fasting"

The link below will lead you to a meditation that I shared with the parish in 2013. That was three years at this point in time. It is a reflection on the Great Canon of Repentance that we always chant on the first four evenings of Great Lent.  However, since neither the service nor the text of the Canon has changed in these last three years (!); and since our human nature has most probably not undergone any major changes either (!), I believe that it may remain "relevant" to us today.

So, just in case anyone may be interested...

The Great Canon: The Bible Alive and Speaking to Us

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