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Dear Brothers and Sisters,
About two thousand years ago, Christianity conquered the world with the joy of Easter, the resurrection. This joy was above all an answer to humanity’s perpetual question and grief about life‘s duality, joy, and mortality. It is only when we understand this that we can appreciate the great importance the first Christians attached to what might otherwise appear to be an inconsequential detail in the gospel account of the resurrection: Christ arose on the first day of the week, the day after the Sabbath. The first day became “the day of resurrection.” Sunday became the first day of that new time and of that new life which shone from the tomb. And over that life, as St. Paul wrote, “death no longer has dominion” (Rom. 6:9).
Christianity introduced a concept of life in which life ceases to be the victim of death. “O death, where is thy sting? O hell, where is thy victory?” (1 Cor. 15:55). This new experience is the very heart of Christianity and its fire. Death is overthrown; no longer is death a hopeless divorce from life. A new day has arrived, the first day of a new creation which overcomes the limits of time and brings eternal joy and eternal life. That experience is the Christian basis for the celebration of Easter. May this new experience of life through Christ’s resurrection become our experience in this Millennium and always!
For all of you who celebrate our Lord’s Resurrection in the name of the Crucified and Risen Christ, I pray from my heart for God’s blessings to be upon you and your family that you may continually strive for spiritual fulfillment in your words, your actions and your thoughts. With such hopes, I greet you all humbly and sincerely with the victorious Easter greeting:
Christ Is Risen!
With love in the Risen Lord,
Fr. Blasko Paraklis