Archpastoral Greeting on Pascha | Russian Oldbeliever Church

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Archpastoral Greeting on Pascha

To the Right Reverend bishops, to the devout clergy, and to all the faithful and devout children of the Holy Church.

Most Reverend Bishops, Revernd fathers, and all beloved brothers and sisters in Christ!

Christ is risen!

This day of the bright Resurrection of Christ is a day of triumph, a day of great joy, a day of light and sun. Just as the sun awakens the earth from its winter sleep in the spring, warming it with life-giving rays, so on the days of Christ’s Pascha, eternal life awakens in people with new powerful force, banishing cold and longing from our souls.

Christ is risen – that means evil and death are defeated, that means enmity and hatred are defeated, that means there are no disputes and sorrows. Truly joy is boundless. All creation rejoices: the sky and forests, valleys and mountains – everything is full of light and joy. The Saints knew how to preserve this Paschal joy for a whole year, sharing it with others.

But can we keep this joy? If we knew how to take care of it, then there would be no strife, resentment, pride, illness and sorrow on earth, but only a peaceful life of joyful and bright people, the kingdom of goodness and truth!

Christ came into the world and sacrificed Himself in order to return people to that blissful state in which our forefathers were before, in order to soften morals, to elevate people spiritually. He came to change earthly life into heavenly life, to make people a “holy people”, a “royal ordination” and thereby establish His Kingdom on earth.

But this kingdom is “not of this world”, the laws of this Kingdom are the laws of the Spirit, “the words of eternal life”: love your enemies, bless those who hate and curse you, pray for those who offend you. And as you want people to do to you, so do to them, and you will have a great reward, and you will be sons of the Most High (Luke 6:27-35). But are we Christians subject to these laws? Are we running “to a country far away”, wandering along the crooked roads of our own lusts and sinful desires, evil and lies.

How far we are from the commandments of Christ! How can we justify? Only by changing your life, holy and steadily fulfilling the will of Christ, always be ready for every good deed. Then we will be true sons of the Kingdom of Christ here on earth, and heirs of eternal bliss in heaven in the Kingdom of God!

On this joyful celebration of the victory of life over death, of good over evil, let’s look into our soul, try to evaluate our beliefs and affections. Let us cleanse our souls of idols, let us place all our prayers and hopes on the One God who has risen from the dead, and He will resurrect us for a new life on the “new earth”, in the “New Jerusalem”.

Brothers and sisters! Let us love our Savior, who first loved us and suffered for our salvation. Let us love His Holy Church, outside of which the salvation of the soul is impossible. Let us abide in peace and love as children of God, having unanimity among ourselves, desiring in all our affairs to please Christ and glorify Him, who suffered for us and rose again!

Let us rejoice in the triumph of the Resurrection, embrace each other, forgive those who hate us, and with our lips and hearts we will sing with the angels the Resurrection of Christ: “And make us on earth with pure hearts glorify Thee!”

The grace and mercy of the risen Christ, the prayers of His Most Pure Mother and all the saints, and my archpastoral blessing be with you all! Amen.

Christ is risen!

By the grace of God, Kornily, the Humble Metropolitan of Moscow and All Russia,

City of Moscow, Pascha of Christ, 2022.