April 22, 2023

1954 Paschal Message of St. John Maximovitch

“Having seen the Resurrection of Christ, let us bow down to the holy Lord Jesus, the Only Sinless One.”

Come, believers, let us venerate the holy Resurrection!

Today is the salvation of the world, let us sing to the Risen One from the grave and the Head of our life!

This day, which the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it. Today all creation rejoices and is glad, for Christ is risen and hades is taken captive.

Where does this joy come from? The myrrhbearing women, who heard this joyful news from the angel, announce this.

That is what the apostles preach, having seen the Risen Lord Himself.

The power of the Resurrected Christ appears in countless signs and wonders that have been and are being manifested in the world.

Wisdom and fearlessness were received from the Resurrection by ignorant and formerly fearful fishermen who became apostles.

The martyrs showed unshakable patience and strength in their hope in the Risen Christ.

Saints, confessors, fathers and teachers of the Church drew strength of faith and wisdom from the Resurrection of Christ.

The joy of the resurrection filled the souls of the saints, who averted their eyes from worldly vanity and conquered passions.

The light of Christ's Resurrection illumined the paths of all who strive and endure for the Name of Christ, all who trust in Him.

The Resurrection of Christ opened the way for us to eternal life. It opened the gates of heaven for us.

Christ's Resurrection grants us endless joy in His Kingdom. It is partaken by the already deceased righteous.

The Risen Christ, the conqueror of hades and death, the Source of life, endows with invincible power those who believe in Him and those who do His will.

The saints of God are plentifully drunk with that power and pour it out on those who resort to them.

From the Resurrection of Christ, come all the blessings in the life to come. From it comes true joy and gladness in the present life. Today is a bright celebration of the whole world!

Now only demons are crying, their henchmen are angry.

Come, enjoy the feast of faith! If anyone is pious and God-loving, let him enjoy this good and bright celebration!

What prevents anyone from rejoicing with all his heart, and the light of the resurrection illuminating his soul?

Is it the sorrows of life? Let us leave, let us now forget short-term sorrows, let us foretaste the eternal joy that has shone today.

Is there separation from loved ones who have gone to the other world? They now rejoice and are glad in the bright halls!

Is it lack of faith, sinful temptations? Let us cleanse our senses and see the shining light of the Resurrection of Christ with the unapproachable light.

Let us see not with bodily eyes, rather we will see with the eyes of the heart, and "rejoicing" our heart will clearly hear Christ speaking.

Now all is filled with light, heaven and earth and the underworld!

May our souls be filled with that light!

Christ is Risen! Christ is Risen! Christ is Risen!

Western European and East Asian flock, Pascha, 1954, Brussels-Versailles
Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.

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