“Let us joyfully begin the all-hallowed season of abstinence; and let us shine with the bright radiance of the holy commandments of Christ our God, with the brightness of love and the splendor of prayer, with the purity of holiness and the strength of good courage. So, clothed in raiment of light, let us hasten to the Holy Resurrection on the third day, that shines upon the world with the glory of eternal life” (Matins, Monday of the First Week of Great Lent—The Lenten Triodion).
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ: Christ is Born! Glorify Him!
This is the traditional greeting we Orthodox exchange during this most holy season of time. We will use this greeting up until the Circumcision of our Lord (Jan. 1). I am so grateful for the language of our Holy Orthodox Church, which in so many ways clearly states truth. It teaches us how we are to live as Christians in this world and how we are to be in it but not of it.
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Christ is in our midst! He is and ever shall be!
Let us take great joy in this most beautiful season set before us, given to us by our Lord Himself. This time is an abundant feast for our eyes–with the change of seasons, our appetites–with the harvest of produce and the celebration of Thanksgiving, and our souls–with anticipation of the celebration our Lord’s Nativity. Truly we have much for which to thank our God! (I Thess. 5:16-18)