Monday, May 5, 2008

Christ is Risen! Truly He is Risen!

One of the marvelous joys of Orthodoxy is its emphasis on Paschal joy and victory.

I keep throwing my daughter (still Lutheran) off a bit by greeting her with "Christos Anestei!" whenever I talk to her. Keep in mind that the west already celebrated Easter. That's part of it. But the other part of it lies in the fact that the triumphant Paschal greeting that echoes in greetings and in "Christ is risen" sung over and over throughout this season doesn't really predominate in the west.

Certainly, the greeting "Christ is Risen! Truly He is risen" is spoken … I did it in all my years as a Lutheran pastor … but it doesn't predominate and "rule" to the extent that it does in Holy Orthodoxy.

Think of it for a moment.

Yesterday (Thomas Sunday) in our parish, "Christ is Risen" was sung in Greek, English, and Romanian a number of times during the Divine Liturgy. And Father on numerous occasions proclaimed "Christ is risen! " In Greek. In English. In Romanian. In Russian. In Spanish And the response was joyously given. At the point in the Liturgy where we greet one another, the same greeting echoed over and over, as it did as people entered the church and as they met in the hall and as they greeted one another at lunch.

Yesterday afternoon, a couple was united in Holy Matrimony, and they hymn was sung at least twice, beginning and end of the service – again that greeting resounded. And as we gathered in the hall for the reception, the greeting and the hymn were again proclaimed, in numerous languages!

Even more than that, the resurrection theme is maintained throughout the year in the hymnody of Holy Mother Church.

What a marvelous joy!

Christ is risen! Truly He is risen!

Christ is risen from the dead!
Through death He has trampled upon death!
And to those in the tombs, he has bestowed eternal life!

1 comment:

Dixie said...

Christos anesti! Alithos anesti!

I couldn't agree with you more. About 12 of us (some OCFers, some of the women from the parish and father) met at a local steakhouse for dinner this past week and one of the OCFers suggested with sing the hymn prior to the there we were belting "Christos anesti ek nekron" out at Logans. So much joy!!!