May 1, 2016 - Pascha Archpastoral Letter

Pascha Archpastoral Letter

Office of the Bishop

312 Garfield Street
Johnstown, PA 15906

Protocol No. 14/2016

To the Very Reverend Protopresbyters, Very Reverend and Reverend Fathers, and Faithful of our God-Protected Diocese:

Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen!

On this great and glorious Feast of Pascha—the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, our hearts are filled with tremendous joy, our souls are transformed and we bask in the Light of Truth. This year I want to share with you some Paschal thoughts from St. Gregory the Theologian.

It is the Day of the Resurrection! Let us then keep the Festival with splendor, and let us embrace one another. Let us say Brethren, even to those who hate us. Let us forgive all offenses for the Resurrection’s sake; let us give one another pardon. Yesterday, I was crucified with Him; today I am glorified with Him. Yesterday, I died with Him; today I am made alive in Him. Yesterday, I was buried with Him, today I am raised with Him!

Let us offer ourselves to Him who suffered and rose again for us. Let us become divine for His sake, since for us He became human.

He assumed the worst that He might give us the better. He became poor that by His poverty we might become rich. He accepted the form of a servant that we might win back our freedom. He came down that we might be lifted up. He was tempted that through Him we might conquer. He was dis-honored that He might glorify us. He died that He might save us. He ascended that He might draw to Himself us, who were thrown down through the fall of sin.

Let us give all, to Him who gave Himself as a ransom and reconciliation for us. We needed an incarnate God, a God put to death, that we might live. We were put to death together with Him that we might be cleansed.

We rose again with Him because we were put to death with Him. We were glorified with Him because we rose again with Him.

May we all be one in Christ Jesus our Lord, to Whom be the glory and the might forever and ever. Amen.

May the Clergy and Laity, Friends and Sup-porters of our American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese experience the love, joy, and excitement of the early followers of Christ when they first saw Him after His Resurrection. Christ is Risen!

Working in the Risen Lord’s Vineyard with much love,

+Bishop Gregory of Nyssa