Κυριακή, 14 Φεβρουαρίου 2010

Λόγος Κατηχητήριος ἐπὶ τῇ ἐνάρξει τῆς Ἁγίας καί Μεγάλης Τεσσαρακοστῆς - Catechetical Homily on the Commencement of Holy and Great Lent 2010


Ἀριθμ. Πρωτ. 139

+ Β Α Ρ Θ Ο Λ Ο Μ Α Ι Ο Σ

ΕΛΕῼ ΘΕΟΥ
ΑΡΧΙΕΠΙΣΚΟΠΟΣ ΚΩΝΣΤΑΝΤΙΝΟΥΠΟΛΕΩΣ - ΝΕΑΣ ΡΩΜΗΣ
ΚΑΙ ΟΙΚΟΥΜΕΝΙΚΟΣ ΠΑΤΡΙΑΡΧΗΣ
ΠΑΝΤΙ Τῼ ΠΛΗΡΩΜΑΤΙ ΤΗΣ ΕΚΚΛΗΣΙΑΣ, ΧΑΡΙΣ ΕΙΗ ΚΑΙ ΕΙΡΗΝΗ
ΠΑΡΑ ΤΟΥ ΣΩΤΗΡΟΣ ΚΑΙ ΚΥΡΙΟΥ ΗΜΩΝ ΙΗΣΟΥ ΧΡΙΣΤΟΥ,
ΠΑΡ’ HΜΩΝ ΔΕ ΕΥΧΗ, ΕΥΛΟΓΙΑ ΚΑΙ ΣΥΓΧΩΡΗΣΙΣ


Ἀδελφοὶ καὶ τέκνα ἐν Κυρίῳ ἀγαπητά,

Ἀπὸ αὔριον εἰσερχόμεθα εἰς τὸ στάδιον τῆς Ἁγίας καὶ Μεγάλης Τεσσαρακοστῆς. Εἰς τὸν Κατανυκτικὸν Ἑσπερινὸν τῆς Συγγνώμης ποὺ θὰ ψαλῇ ἀπόψε, θὰ ἀκούσωμεν τὸν ἱερὸν ὑμνογράφον νὰ μᾶς προτρέπῃ: «Τὸν τῆς νηστείας καιρὸν φαιδρῶς ἀπαρξώμεθα, πρὸς ἀγῶνας πνευματικοὺς ἑαυτοὺς ὑποβάλλοντες», προετοιμαζόμενοι διὰ τὴν ὑποδοχὴν τοῦ Ἀχράντου Πάθους καὶ τῆς ἁγίας Ἀναστάσεως τοῦ Θεανθρώπου Κυρίου μας.

Ζητεῖται, λοιπόν, κατ’ ἀρχὴν διάθεσις χαρούμενη, διὰ νὰ ἀποδυθῶμεν ἐπιτυχῶς εἰς τοὺς πνευματικοὺς ἀγῶνας τῆς κατανυκτικῆς περιόδου τῶν καθαρμῶν καὶ τῶν ἀναβάσεων. Ἡ νηστεία, ἡ ἐγκράτεια, ἡ λιτότης, ὁ περιορισμὸς τῶν ἐπιθυμιῶν, ἡ πυκνὴ προσευχή, ἡ ἐξομολόγησις καὶ τὰ λοιπὰ στοιχεῖα ποὺ χαρακτηρίζουν τὴν περίοδον τῆς Μεγάλης Τεσσαρακοστῆς, εἰς οὐδεμίαν περίπτωσιν πρέπει νὰ ἐκλαμβάνωνται ὡς ἐπαχθῆ καθήκοντα, ὡς βάρη ἀσήκωτα ἤ ὡς ἔργα καταναγκαστικὰ ποὺ φέρουν ἀθυμίαν καὶ κατήφειαν! Οἱ ἰατροὶ ὅταν συνιστοῦν δίαιταν ἤ γυμναστικὴν ἤ ἄλλας ἀσκήσεις, ἀναγκαίας διὰ τὴν ψυχοσωματικὴν ὑγιείαν καὶ εὐρωστίαν, τὸ πρῶτον ποὺ ζητοῦν, ὡς ἀπαραίτητον προϋπόθεσιν ἐπιτυχίας, εἶναι ἡ εὐχάριστος ψυχικὴ διάθεσις τοῦ ἐνδιαφερομένου, τὸ χαμόγελον, καὶ ἡ ἐλπιδοφόρος θετικὴ σκέψις! Ἀνάλογα ἰσχύουν καὶ διὰ τὸ ἅγιον στάδιον τῶν Νηστειῶν ποὺ ἀνοίγεται ἐνώπιόν μας. Τὴν Μεγάλην Τεσσαρακοστὴν πρέπει νὰ τὴν βλέπωμεν ὡς πολύτιμον θεῖον χάρισμα! Ὡς τὴν μεγάλην ὥραν τῆς χάριτος τοῦ Θεοῦ, ποὺ θέλει νὰ μᾶς ἀποτραβήξῃ ἀπὸ τὰ ὑλώδη, χαμαίζηλα καὶ ἀποπνέοντα θάνατον, καὶ νὰ μᾶς ἀνεβάσῃ ὑψηλότερα, εἰς τὴν πλήρη ὑγείας καὶ ζωῆς σφαῖραν τοῦ πνεύματος! Ὡς τὴν μεγάλην εὐκαιρίαν ποὺ μᾶς δίδεται διὰ νὰ ἀποτοξινώσωμεν τὴν ψυχὴν ἀπὸ κάθε πάθος καὶ νὰ ἀπαλλάξωμεν τὸ σῶμα ἀπὸ ὅ,τι περιττόν, ἐπιζήμιον καὶ θανάσιμον! Ἑπομένως, ὡς μίαν πολὺ μεγάλην ἀγαλλίασιν καὶ χαράν μας. Ἀληθινὴν ἑορτὴν καὶ εὐφροσύνην!

Ἀλλὰ ἡ νηστεία, ἀγαπητοί, τὴν ὁποίαν ζητεῖ ἀπὸ τὰ τέκνα της ἡ Ἐκκλησία, ἡ ἐγκράτεια, ἡ λιτότης, ὁ περιορισμὸς τῶν ἐπιθυμιῶν καὶ τῶν ἀπολαύσεων καὶ τῶν συναφῶν περιττῶν ἐξόδων, ἀποτελοῦν, κυριολεκτικῶς, σωτήριον συνταγὴν εἰδικῶς ἐφέτος, ποὺ ἔχει ἐκσπάσει ἡ μεγάλη παγκόσμιος οἰκονομικὴ κρίσις, ἡ ὁποία ἐγκυμονεῖ ἄμεσον κίνδυνον χρεωκοπίας ὄχι μόνον «νοικοκυριῶν» καὶ ἐπιχειρήσεων, ἀλλὰ καὶ χωρῶν ὁλοκλήρων ἀνὰ πᾶσαν τὴν ὑφήλιον, μὲ συνακόλουθον ὀλέθριον ἀποτέλεσμα τὴν κατακόρυφον αὔξησιν τῆς ἀνεργίας, τὴν δημιουργίαν ὁλοκλήρων στρατιῶν νεοπτώχων, τὴν ἀπόγνωσιν, τὴν ἔκρηξιν κοινωνικῶν ἀναστατώσεων, τὴν αὔξησιν τῆς ἐγκληματικότητος καὶ ἄλλα χειρότερα τούτων. Ἡ Μεγάλη Τεσσαρακοστὴ μᾶς διδάσκει νὰ πορευώμεθα καθημερινῶς μὲ ὀλιγώτερα, χωρὶς τὴν ὕβριν τῆς ὑπερβολῆς, τῆς σπατάλης καὶ τῆς ἐπιδείξεως! Νὰ ἀπεμπολοῦμεν τὴν πλεονεξίαν, νὰ ἀγνοοῦμεν τὰς προκλήσεις τῆς διαφημίσεως, ἡ ὁποία προβάλλει διαρκῶς νέας ψευδεῖς ἀνάγκας, καὶ νὰ περιοριζώμεθα εἰς τὰ ἀπολύτως ἀπαραίτητα καὶ ἀναγκαῖα, μὲ ἀξιοπρεπῆ ἠθελημένην λιτότητα! Νὰ μὴ εἴμεθα καταναλωτικὴ ἀγέλη βουλιμικῶν, ἀπερισκέπτων καὶ ἀκάρδων ἀτόμων, ἀλλὰ κοινωνία εὐαισθήτων προσώπων, δίδοντες ἐν ἀγάπῃ τόπον καὶ χεῖρα βοηθείας εἰς τὸν ἄλλον, τὸν «πλησίον» μας, ποὺ ὑστερεῖται καὶ δυσπραγεῖ! Μᾶς διδάσκει ἀκόμη τὴν ὑπομονὴν καὶ τὴν ἐγκαρτέρησιν εἰς τὴν μικρὰν ἤ μεγαλυτέραν στέρησιν, ἀλλὰ καὶ τὴν ταυτόχρονον ἐκζήτησιν τῆς βοηθείας καὶ τοῦ ἐλέους τοῦ Θεοῦ, μὲ πολλὴν ἐμπιστοσύνην εἰς τὴν φιλόστοργον πρόνοιάν Του! Ἔτσι θέλει τὴν Τεσσαρακοστὴν ὁ Χριστός! Ἔτσι τὴν ἐβίωσαν ὅλοι οἱ Ἅγιοι! Ἔτσι ἠγωνίσθησαν τὸν ἀγῶνα της οἱ εὐσεβεῖς πατέρες μας! Ἔτσι τὴν ἐγνώρισε παλαιόθεν τὸ Γένος μας! Ἔτσι τὴν προβάλλει καὶ τὴν κηρύσσει πάντοτε, καὶ ὅλως ἰδιαιτέρως εἰς τὴν παροῦσαν δύσκολον διεθνῆ συγκυρίαν, ἡ ἐν Κωνσταντινουπόλει πολύπειρος καὶ ἀδιαλείπτως νήφουσα Μήτηρ Ἐκκλησία!

Ταῦτα ἀπὸ τοῦ ἱεροῦ Φαναρίου ἐν ἀγάπῃ Χριστοῦ καὶ αἰσθήματι εὐθύνης λέγοντες καὶ κηρύσσοντες, εὐχόμεθα πατρικῶς ἐν πάσῃ εὐλογίᾳ πνευματικῇ καὶ καλῇ καρποφορίᾳ τὸ ἀρχόμενον ἅγιον στάδιον!

Ἁγία καὶ Μεγάλη Τεσσαρακοστή ,βι´
+ Ὁ Κωνσταντινουπόλεως Βαρθολομαῖος
διάπυρος πρὸς Θεὸν εὐχέτης πάντων ὑμῶν



+BARTHOLOMEW

By God’s Mercy
Archbishop of Constantinople the New Rome, and Ecumenical Patriarch
To the Plenitude of the Church
Grace and Peace be to you from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
Together with our Prayer, Blessing, and Forgiveness

Beloved brothers and sisters, children in the Lord,

Tomorrow, we enter the period of Holy and Great Lent. In the Lenten vespers of Forgiveness chanted this evening, we shall hear the sacred hymnographer urging us to “begin the time of fasting with joy, submitting ourselves to spiritual struggle” in preparing to welcome the great Passion and joyful Resurrection of our divine-human Lord.

Therefore, what is demanded is a joyful disposition in order to embrace fervently the spiritual struggle of this period of contrition in purification and prayerfulness. Fasting, abstinence, frugality, restriction of personal desires, intense prayer, confession, and similar ascetic elements are essential to the period of Great Lent and should not be considered burdensome obligations or unbearable duties that result in despondency or dejection. When doctors recommend diet or exercise as necessary prerequisites for psychosomatic health and vigor, the first advice they offer by way of a mandatory condition of success is a pleasant mental disposition, which includes smiling and positive thinking. The same also applies to the spiritual period of fasting that opens before us. Great Lent should be regarded as an invaluable divine gift. It is a sacred time of divine grace, which seeks to detach us from things material, lowly and corrupt in order to attract us toward things superior, wholesome and spiritual. It is a unique opportunity to remove from the soul every passion, to rid the body of everything superfluous, harmful and mortal. Accordingly, then, it is a time of immense rejoicing and gladness. A genuine feast and exhilaration!

Nevertheless, my beloved children, the fasting expected of us by the Church, as well as the abstinence, frugality, restriction of personal desires and unnecessary pleasures or expenses, literally constitute a prescription for salvation. This is especially true this year, when our world has experienced a global economic crisis, filled with imminent danger of bankruptcy not only for individuals and companies, but also for entire nations throughout the planet, with destructive consequences in skyrocketing unemployment, the creation of entire hosts of people plagued by poverty, depression, social turmoil, increase in crime, and other such tragedies. Great Lent instructs us to journey daily with a little less, without the arrogance of extravagance, waste and display. It encourages us to surrender all forms of greed and ignore the challenges of commercial advertising, which constantly promotes new and false necessities. It incites us to limit ourselves to what is absolutely essential and necessary in an attitude of dignified, deliberate simplicity. We are not to be a consuming or compulsive herd of thoughtless and heartless individuals, but a society of sensitive and caring persons, sharing with and supporting our “neighbor” that is in poverty or recession. Finally, Great Lent informs us about patience and tolerance in moments of smaller or larger deprivation, while simultaneously emphasizing the need to seek God’s assistance and mercy, placing our complete trust in His affectionate providence. That is how Christ envisions Great Lent. That is how the Saints lived Great Lent. That is how the Church Fathers undertook the struggle of Great Lent. That is how our faith has traditionally understood Great Lent. That is how the Church of Constantinople, in its wide experience and unceasing vigilance, has always projected and proclaimed Great Lent, and particularly in the current global circumstances.

In sharing these pastoral thoughts and words from the historical and holy Phanar, we extend to all of you our paternal prayer and spiritual blessing for a fruitful journey through the period of Great Lent.

Holy and Great Lent 2010

+ Bartholomew

Fervent supplicant before God

ΟΡΘΟΔΟΞΗ ΙΕΡΑΠΟΣΤΟΛΗ - ORTHODOX MISSION

Loading...

METROPOLITAN ANTHONY BLOOM

Loading...

ΑΓΙΟΝ ΟΡΟΣ - MOUNT ATHOS

Loading...

Mt. KALLISTOS WARE

Loading...