“Thou hast ascended in glory O Christ our God, granting joy to Thy disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit. Through the blessing they were assured that Thou art the Son of God, the Redeemer of the world! “(Troparion).
Dear members of the Body of Christ,
Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory for ever.
We celebrated the Leave of Pascha this past Wednesday, and the Ascension of our Lord into heaven this past Thursday. The Troparia above tells us that when Christ ascended into heaven the promise of the Holy Spirit will be fulfilled. We await the coming of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost.
The Holy Church this Sunday right away call us to celebrate the commemoration of the Holy Fathers of the First Ecumenical Council where the Holy Fathers affirmed the Orthodox Faith and the Divinity of Christ. The Church calls us to be careful in the first reading from Acts of the Apostles by telling us what St. Paul said “Take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you bishops (and Priests), to shepherd the church of the Lord and God, which He purchased with His own blood. For I know that after my departure ravenous wolves will enter among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves will arise men speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore, remain watchful”.
St. Paul right away and the early Church knew that “wolves” are standing by to destroy the Church through new doctrines and “men speaking perverse things” to lead people astray. The call is “remain watchful”. The responsibility of the Bishop and the Priest is to watch over the flock and to protect the flock from the “wolves”.
The Feast of the Ascension gives us that assurance that Christ is with His Church until the end and that the gates of hell will not overcome it. The Kontakion of the feast tells us: “When Thou didst fulfill the dispensation for our sake, and didst unite earth to heaven, Thou didst ascend in glory, O Christ our God, not being parted from those who love Thee, but remaining with them and crying: I am with you and no one will be against you! “(Kontakion).
Next Saturday June 19th is Soul Saturday, we will commemorate all the departed one.
The church is open now for 15% capacity, glory to God.
Wishing you all a blessed week.
In the crucified Christ,