Christ is Risen!
Thy Resurrection, O Christ, our Savior, the angels in heaven sing, enable us on earth to glorify Thee in purity of heart!
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THE DESCENT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT upon the Apostles on the day of the Pentecost represents the conclusion of Christ’s salutary task and the birth of His Church in this world. The Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles in the form of fiery tongues and endowed them with the gift of preaching which was understood and accepted by all people, all nations. Thus, the first gift of the Holy Spirit to the newly born Church was the gift of the Word. It was in God’s will for the new and good message of Christ to be understandable and, therefore, reasonable. This represented a complete confirmation of what was the very foundation of the world since the first moment of its creation...
The joy that permeates and enlightens the service of Lazarus Saturday stresses one major theme: the forthcoming victory of Christ over Hades. "Hades" is the Biblical term for Death and its universal power, for inescapable darkness that swallows all life and with its shadow poisons the whole world. But now — with Lazarus’ resurrection — "death begins to tremble." A decisive duel between Life and Death begins giving us the key to the entire liturgical mystery of Pascha. Already in the fourth century Lazarus’ Saturday was called the "announcement of Pascha." For, indeed, it announces and anticipates the wonderful light and peace of the next — The Great — Saturday, the day of life-giving Tomb...