Great Lent Kalpana from the Diocesan Metropolitan
DSWA/C/03/2017 Feb 22, 2017
Blessings to our Cor- Episcopoi, priests, deacons, office bearers and all the faithful of our Diocese,
We have been given yet another opportunity to introspect our lives through the Great and Holy Lent that dawns upon us. Great Lent should be utilized as a time of intensified spiritual focus. Lent is a time to transform ourselves by the grace of God found in the spiritual weapons of prayer and fasting.
St. Basil the Great exhorts us that fasting is not abstaining from food alone; it is first of all, abstaining from sin. Almost all of the great and holy Fathers and Mothers of our Church whom we call as saints, describe fasting as the mother of chastity and prudence. Fasting and prayer act as the accusers of sin and as the advocate of repentance. A life founded upon fasting and prayer reflects the life of the holy angels and draws us closer to our salvation.
We live in a time and age where God is hardly a part of our priorities any more. At the very sight of an earthly priority, we decide to put away our spiritual priorities. This Lent should become an opportunity for all of us to draw closer to God and life in the Church. Let us make good use of this God-given opportunity to bring about some substantial change in our lives, our perspectives and behavior. Let prayer, reading of the scriptures and learning the faith of our Holy Orthodox Church along with extending our hands for charity be virtues that we acquire through this great and holy lent.
As your spiritual father, I encourage and exhort our parishes to have a cycle of daily prayers or at least evening prayers at the Church during this Lent. In spite of your work schedules and burdens of this world, my beloved children in Christ, I exhort each and every one of you to have a personal routine of prayer and prostrations every day during this great lent. Please teach your children this beautiful tradition of the Church as well. Prayer with fasting and prostrations become a powerful spiritual weapon to uproot all forms of darkness from our inner lives.
Please make sure that you make Holy Confession a very important priority during these days. Confession is something that needs to happen not only during the great lent, or once a year, but confession should happen on a continuous basis in our lives.
We extend our prayers and blessings for the Lenten journey, and may it lead us to a real transformation that is marked by a true confession and cleansing from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The participation in the Holy Pesaha should lead us to the great experience of the Resurrection, that is, putting to death those sins and habits that entangle us to the world.
May the prayers of the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, departed clergy and all the faithful departed be a strong hold for us throughout this spiritual journey.
Your Shepherd in Christ,
Metropolitan Alexios Mar Eusebius