On the Friday before we start the time of the Triodion and the preparation for Great Lent the Fathers have set us to read the beginning of the second letter of St Peter:
“ His divine power has granted us all that we need to live in godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us by glory and virtue. Through these things, he has granted to us his precious and tremendous promises, so that having escaped from the corruption that is in the world by lust, you may become Partakers of the Divine Nature.
“For this very reason, do your utmost to add to your faith, goodness; and to goodness, knowledge. To knowledge, add self control; and to self control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness add brotherly affection; and to brotherly affection, love. Truly, if these things are yours and overflow, they will prevent you from being idle or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But those who lack of these things are blind; they only see what is near and they have forgotten the cleansing from their old sins. Therefore, brethren, do all you can to make your calling and election assured. Indeed, if you do these things, you will never stumble. Thus you will be richly granted the entrance into the eternal Kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” (II Peter 1:3-11)
So the goal is to become “Partakers of Divine Nature”. And to do this we need to acquire goodness. But this is not enough: we need knowledge, particularly of our Faith, self-control, perseverance, brotherly affection and love.
There are things however that undermine our resolve and perhaps the greatest of these is fear, particularly fear of death. Elsewhere in the New Testament we are told that fear of death is the cause of sin and have we not seen this in our own day with the fear, panic, even terror that has affected so many people through Corona virus?
Now as we set out on the great journey of Great Lent and approach the wonderful and joyous feast of Pascha let us put away these thoughts and practice what St Peter asks of us. For, as the martyrs knew, Christ has overcome death, trampling upon it and giving ETERNAL LIFE to the World.
The schedule of services for this week is available on our calendar. The New Testament readings and sermon for the Sunday of the Prodigal Son are available on the archdiocese website. We will continue to broadcast our services live on mixlr.com when possible.
The church is open for public worship under the guidance issued by our archdiocese.