On Monday, February 19, we begin the holy season of Great Lent. It is a very valuable season of the Church Year and the appointed time for our spiritual renewal. In truth, it is a Gift from God.
Great Lent is an excellent time to put aside all those things that make us displeasing to ourselves, to others and to God. Someone once suggested an item called a spiritual wastebasket.
The wastebasket is a very valuable piece of equipment. A generous use of this item is important for efficiency in an office or a home or wherever needed. Possibly, a wise and generous use of a spiritual wastebasket could also be the secret for spiritual efficiency & blessedness. Many of our lives are encumbered with things that should go into this type of wastebasket.
The Epistle to the Hebrews enjoins in this advice when it says, “We too, then, should throw off everything that hinders us, especially the sin that clings so easily, and keep running steadily in the race we have started.” (Hebrews 12:1)
Past sins and errors belong in the wastebasket. We all sin and make mistakes. Because we are human we have erasers on pencils, correcting tapes and fluids for typewriters, and deletes on computers. Old grudges, festering anger, old resentments, are only a few of the items we should discard.
St. Paul’s life is an example of past sins, errors and omissions. We know his past and how he persecuted the early Christians and how it took the drastic action of God knocking him off his horse, and blinding him to convince him to change his life. Because of his experience, he gives us sound advice: “All I can say is that I forget the past and I strain ahead for what is still to come. I am racing for the finish, for the prize to which God calls us upwards to receive in Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 3:13)
Great Lent is a call to repentance. “Repentance is a second regeneration from God,” says St. Isaac the Syrian, and also an incomparably great gift and grace from God Who restores that which is fallen. So, let us repent and forgive one another. Let us take a deep breath and pray: Lord, help us to forgive, give us repentance that is worthy of Thy forgiveness.
The Sacrament of Confession
As a Parish Family, we gather again to prepare ourselves for the celebration of the great and glorious Feast of Pascha. One of the primary ways we prepare ourselves is by receiving the Sacrament of Confession. The Sacrament of Confession recognizes the Presence of Christ in the celebration of the wondrous mystery of God forgiving us, His people.
Confessions are held each Saturday evening following Vespers, or, by request to Fr. Don.