Christ is Risen! Indeed, He is Risen!
This year, due to the unusual and exceptional circumstances surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, the Churches of our God-protected Archdiocese were compelled to celebrate Holy Week and Pascha without the attendance and physical presence of their respective parishioners.
Despite this, the Archdiocese, Parishes and Priests continued to celebrate all prayer services, praying on behalf of the people. The Archdiocese did its best to live-stream most, if not all, of its services, helping parishioners to live the spirit of Holy Week and experience the joy of the Resurrection.
It is very sad and unfortunate that this was how we were compelled to spend the most significant week of the Church year, but the Archdiocese is very impressed with, and grateful for, the understanding and co-operation of its people, who responded so well to these difficult circumstances. We had whole families praying with us from home, following the online services, participating by reading, lighting candles and chanting – thus turning their homes into sanctuaries.
It is true that the Churches were closed to the public, but we were able to open thousands of churches in our homes, with all our families chanting in unison, the triumphant hymn: ‘Christ is Risen!’
We pray that God bestows His mercy and compassion on His people, and that next year our Churches will be filled with parishioners celebrating the joy of Pascha with one another physically, as well as spiritually.
Glory to Your Holy Resurrection, O Lord!