We honor today a great Father of our Church, St. Gregory Palamas, Archbishop of Thessalonika. St. Gregory, in keeping with the example of the Holy Fathers of the Church, confronted the heresies of his time to defend Orthodox doctrine. This is why the Church has designated the Second Sunday of Great Lent to commemorate his memory, in extension of the previous Sunday of Orthodoxy.

Today, on this first Sunday of Great Lent, our Holy Church celebrates the triumph of Orthodoxy. It is a commemoration of victory of the true faith against heresies, and all other enemies. That is why this day is called the Sunday of Orthodoxy.”

We offer hymns of thanks to the God of love as once again we enter Holy and Great Lent, the arena of ascetic struggle, fasting and abstinence, of vigilance and spiritual awareness, of guarding our senses and prayer, of humility and self-knowledge. We are commencing a new and blessed pilgrimage toward Holy Pascha, which has opened for us the gates of paradise.” In Church and as Church, as we behold the Risen Lord of glory, we all journey together along the way of deification by grace that leads to the heavenly goods prepared by God for those who love Him” (1 Cor. 2:9).

On this day, the Church recalls the horrible tragedy that humanity suffered in the very beginning of history: The expulsion of Adam and Eve from Paradise.

As we heard in the Gospel reading, the Lord describes to us vividly His Second Coming, and the importance of love for others in action that is the key to enter His heavenly kingdom. This great love can be seen in the lives of the saints, such as St. Polycarp, who is also commemorated today.


Schedule of services on May 2021

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