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Bishop Gregory’s Paschal Letter

Protocol 14/2016 To the Very Reverend Protopresbyters, Very Reverend and Reverend Fathers, and the Faithful of our God-Protected Diocese:  CHRIST IS RISEN!    INDEED, HE IS RISEN! On this great and glorious Feast of Pascha – the Resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, our hearts are filled with tremendous joy, our souls are transformed and we bask in the Light of the Truth.  This year I want to share with you some Paschal thoughts from St. Gregory the Theologian. THE PASCHAL HOMILY OF ST. GREGORY THE THEOLOGIAN It is the Day of the Resurrection! Let us then keep the Festival with splendor, and let us embrace one another.  Let us say Brethen, even to those who hate us, Let us forgive all offenses for the Resurrection’s sake; let us give one another pardon.  Yesterday, I was crucified with Him; today I am glorified with Him.  Yesterday, I died with Him; today I am made alive in Him.  Yesterday, I was buried with Him, today I am raised with Him. Let us offer ourselves to Him who suffered and rose again for us. Let us become divine for His sake, since for us He became human. He assumed the worst that He might give us the better. He became poor that by His poverty we might become rich.  He accepted the form of a servant that we might win back our freedom. He came down that we might be lifted up.  He was tempted that through Him we might conquer.  He was dishonored that He might glorify us.  He died that He might save us.  He ascended that He might draw to Himself us, who were thrown down through the fall of sin. Let us give all, offer all, to Him who gave Himself as a ransom and reconciliation for us.  We needed an incarnate God, a God put to death, that we might live.  We were put to death together with Him that we might be cleansed. We rose again with Him because we were put to death with Him.  We were glorified with Him because we rose  again with Him. May we all be one in Christ Jesus our Lord, to Whom be the glory and the might forever and ever. Amen. Personal Greetings: May all the Priests and Panis, Deacons, Parishioners, Friends and Supporters of our American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese experience the joy, excitement and wonder of the early followers of Christ when they first saw Him following His Resurrection. Christ is Risen! Working in the Risen Lord’s Vineyard with much love, +His Grace Bishop Gregory of Nyssa To be read as the sermon in all churches of the Diocese at the Paschal Divine Liturgy on the Feast of the Resurrection of our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ Protocol N.14-2016 -Paschal Archpastoral Letter