July 26, 2023

Homilies on the Litany of Completion of the Divine Liturgy - Grant This, O Lord (Metr. Hierotheos of Nafpaktos)

The Litany of Completion of the Divine Liturgy 
Grant This, O Lord
By Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou
The "completions", namely the entreaties we address to God during the Divine Liturgy and other services, are said by the Priest or the Deacon. And the people each time respond with the phrase: "Grant this, O Lord", that is, Lord, we beg you to give us what we beseech.

The people at the Divine Liturgy and in every service, to the entreaties of the Priest, sometimes respond with "Lord have mercy", that is, have mercy on us, Lord, and sometimes with "Grant this, O Lord", that is, Lord, we beg you to give this to us. We ask for God's mercy, His compassion and His gift. We are like beggars, who understand our poverty on the one hand, and God's love and philanthropy on the other. We feel that we are very poor and small, but we have a rich and great God, we are sick, but we have near us the true Physician. Thus, we ask for His help.

Of course, supplication should not be limited to words, we cannot ask only out of necessity or plead on a theoretical level, but we must pray with our whole being, and do it completely. This means that we must adapt our lives to God's will and keep His commandments. Christ Himself told us that if you love me you must keep the commandments I gave you.

Also, entreaty is not the only kind of prayer to God. Of greater value and importance are thanksgiving and glorification to God. When one learns more to glorify God, then one proves to be a real child of God, has absolute trust in Him and feels His glory. The prayer of the Angels in heaven is a constant praise and the prayer of the righteous in the heavenly altar is a perpetual praise, but also the endless prayer of the saints in Heaven will be an unceasing praise to the Triune God. We see this strongly in the Book of Revelation of John the Evangelist.

At the end of the "completions" we justify why we addressed these supplications/entreaties to God. The Priest says: "Through the compassion of Your only-begotten Son, with Whom You are blessed, together with Your all-holy, good, and life-creating Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages."

This means that we beseech and glorify the Triune God, "through the compassion of Your only-begotten Son." The compassions of Christ poured out abundantly upon us with His incarnation. He richly showed His love to us and this gives us strength, consolation, hope. After all, through Christ in the Holy Spirit we know the Father. Thus, we glorify and celebrate the entire Holy Trinity, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, because they are the givers of all good things.

Our participation in the Divine Liturgy is life, it gives us hope, offers us love and beautifies our whole life. May we never be absent from her.

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.

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