Påskebudskab 2010 fra Bartholomæos, ved Guds nåde ærkebiskop af Konstantinopel, det nye Rom, og økumenisk patriark (engelsk)

2010 Patriarchal Proclamation for Pascha

B A R T H O L O M E W
By the Gra­ce of God,
Arch­bis­hop of Con­stan­ti­nop­le-New Rome
and Ecu­me­ni­cal Patri­arch,
To all the Fait­h­ful of the Church:
Gra­ce, mer­cy, and pea­ce from Christ the Savi­or Risen in Glory

* * *

Belo­ved bro­t­hers and sisters, dear chil­dren in the Lord,

Christ is Risen!

Once again, the sacred day of Pas­cha has daw­ned in full delight and splen­dor, dis­per­sing joy, com­fort, glad­ness and assu­ran­ce of life to all fait­h­ful, despi­te the heavy atmosp­he­re that pre­vails in our wor­ld on acco­unt of the mul­ti­di­men­sio­nal cri­sis with all its fami­li­ar pain­ful con­sequen­ces for our daily life.

Christ has risen from the tomb as divi­ne­ly human; and huma­ni­ty has risen with Him! The tyran­ny of death belongs to the past. The hope­les­sness of hades’ cap­ti­vi­ty has irre­vo­cably gone. The only power­ful Giver of life, having through His Incar­na­tion volun­ta­rily assu­med all of the mis­fortu­ne of our natu­re and all that it entails, name­ly death, has alre­a­dy “brought death to hades by the ligh­t­ning of divinity,”[1] gran­ting us life – and “life in abun­dan­ce.” (John 10.10)

This abun­dan­ce of life, which was gran­ted to us by the Risen Lord, is cea­se­les­s­ly slan­de­red and assaul­ted by the devil – inde­ed, the­se actions are the sour­ce of his very name – alt­hough he is now wea­ke­ned, com­ple­te­ly power­less, and enti­re­ly ridi­culous. The devil slan­ders Life by means of the hubris that still pre­vails in the wor­ld against God, huma­ni­ty and the cre­a­tion. The devil assaults Life by means of the sin­ful ten­den­cy that exists wit­hin us like “old rust,” using this to entrap us eit­her into tan­gib­le sin or delu­sio­nal belief. Hubris is the off­spring of that “rust”, whi­le both com­pri­se the sini­ster coup­le respon­sib­le for dis­rup­ting rela­tions­hips wit­hin our­sel­ves, with others, as well as with God and the who­le cre­a­tion. Accor­ding­ly, it is impe­ra­ti­ve that we puri­fy our­sel­ves of this rust with gre­at atten­ti­ve­ness and care­ful­ness in order that the pro­fu­se life-giving light of the Risen Christ may shine in our mind, soul and body, so that it may in turn dis­pel the dark­ness of hubris and pour the “abun­dan­ce” of life to all the wor­ld.

This can­not be achie­ved by phi­los­op­hy, sci­en­ce, tech­no­lo­gy, art, or any ide­o­lo­gy; it can only be achie­ved through faith in what God has con­des­cen­ded for us human beings through His Pas­sion, Cruci­fixion and Buri­al, des­cen­ding to the dep­t­hs of hades and rising from the dead as the divi­ne-human Jesus Christ. It is also expres­sed in the sacra­men­tal life of the Church as well as through labo­rious and syste­ma­tic spi­ri­tu­al strug­g­le. The Church, as the Body of Christ, uncea­sing­ly and to the ages expe­ri­en­ces the mira­c­le of the Resur­rection; through its sacred Myste­ri­es, its The­o­lo­gy and its pra­cti­cal tea­chin­gs, it offers us the pos­si­bi­li­ty of par­ti­ci­pat­ing in that mira­c­le, of sha­ring in the victory over death, of beco­m­ing chil­dren sha­ped by the light of the Resur­rection and tru­ly “parta­kers of divi­ne natu­re.” (2 Peter 1.4), just as in the life of eve­ry Saint in the past and pre­sent. The thor­ny weeds of pas­sions growing wit­hin the dep­t­hs of our heart, pol­lu­ted by the rust of “the old self” (Eph. 4.22) must defi­ni­te­ly be trans­for­med as soon as pos­sib­le in Christ, through Christ and for the sake of Christ and His living ima­ges that sur­ro­und us – name­ly, our fel­low human beings – into a bou­quet of vir­tu­es, holi­ness, and righ­teo­us­ness. Hen­ce, the sacred hym­no­grap­her chants in time­ly man­ner: “Let us put on the robe of righ­teo­us­ness, which is whi­ter than snow, and let us rejoi­ce today in the day of the Pas­cha; for Christ, the sun of righ­teo­us­ness that rises from the dead, has showe­red upon us the light of incorruption.”[2] The whi­te gar­ment of righ­teo­us­ness was given to us sym­bo­li­cal­ly on the day of our Bap­tism; and we are invi­ted to cle­an­se it con­ti­nu­al­ly through con­stant repen­tan­ce, con­trol of desi­res, patien­ce in life’s pain, and relent­less effort to ful­fill the com­mand­ments of God, and espe­ci­al­ly the supre­me com­mand­ment of love. In this way, we are able to par­ti­ci­pa­te in the cross-bea­ring self-emp­tying of Christ, in order that the Pas­chal glad­ness, radi­ant light, and joy­ful salva­tion may enter our life and wor­ld.

We address this from the Pha­nar, whe­re we expe­ri­en­ce the suf­fe­ring of Holy Fri­day and the light of the Resur­rection, as we express to you the affection of the Mot­her Church, who­le­hear­ted­ly wis­hing for all the saving gift and Pas­chal bles­sing of the Lord of Life, who rose from the dead.

Holy Pas­cha 2010
Fer­vent sup­pli­cant for all befo­re the Lord
+ Bart­ho­lo­mew of Con­stan­ti­nop­le