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Triumph and Transformation

Christianity is peculiar, there’s no doubt about that. We serve the crucified and risen Christ, who revealed Himself as God in the way that He died. Instead of self-fulfillment Christ offers us self-sacrifice; instead of power he offers us a cross. As Holy Week expertly teaches: we must go through the cross to get to…

Holy Thursday: A Feast of Humility

Every year, the services of Holy Week bring before us selections from the Old Testament, of Jacob, of Joseph and his brothers, the great prophets Moses and Job.  We hear the ancient prophecies of Isaiah and Jeremiah with an awareness that everything that has happened before, everything that has been spoken, reaches its fulfillment in…

The Matins of Holy Thursday: A Meditation

“Great are you, O Lord, and marvelous are your works, and there is no word which suffices to hymn your wonders!” These words, which come from the blessing of water at the baptismal service and at the water blessing on Theophany, are probably not the first words that come to mind now, at the midpoint…

Holy Tuesday: a hymn of invitation

Come, O faithful, let us work zealously for the Master; for he distributes wealth to his servants. Let each of us, according to his or her ability increase the talent of grace: let one be adorned in wisdom through good works; let another celebrate a service in splendor. Ihe one distributes his wealth to the…

Palm Sunday: Victory of the Heart

Hosanna!  Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest!  [Mark 11:9–10] Today Jesus enters into Jerusalem, and the cheering crowds greet him like a king entering the city after a military victory—the first-century equivalent of a “ticker tape parade.” The crowds have heard about Jesus, about his powerful…

Pascha: A Feast of Theology

As we approach Pascha, the Feast of Feasts, it is fitting that we consider once again the nature of the banquet to which we are invited.  As we will sing at Matins on Holy Thursday, we are called to ascend, with our minds on high, to enjoy the Master’s hospitality, the banquet of immortality in…