Remarks offered by His Eminence Metropolitan Methodios at the Annunciation Cathedral of Boston on Easter Night
Your Eminence, my dear brother in Christ, Sean Cardinal O’Malley, my brother priests, my brothers and sisters in the household of God,
Momentarily, our pilgrimage to the life-giving tomb of our Lord and Savior will come to an end.
We draw near to celebrate the glorious Resurrection --- to proclaim to all creation the victory of life over death, of love over evil, of light over darkness.
As we approach, night gives way to the dawning of a new day --- a brilliant day that knows no sunset.
The author of this evening’s Pascal hymns encourages us to quench the thirst of our parched souls at the well-spring of Christ’s tomb. He writes, “Let us drink from a new source, the source of incorruption which springs forth from the grave of Christ in whom we are firmly established.”
This year, our Paschal celebration is observed several weeks following that of our brothers and sisters of the Catholic Church and Protestant Communions. Orthodox Christians celebrate Easter after the first full moon of the vernal equinox, and always after Jewish Passover.
Astrological calculations and mandates of Tradition are certainly important. But really, it doesn’t matter so much WHEN we celebrate this greatest of feasts, but HOW we celebrate it, how we LIVE it. How we are, prayerfully, TRANSFIGURED by it.
This is because the Resurrection changed the course of human history and bequeathed to humanity a renewed meaning and value.
It was the victory of God’s love which freed us from the slavery of sin and the dominion of doom and spiritual death.
At this very moment we and men and women of faith throughout the world are resurrected to new life. Enlightened by the unwaning light of the life giving grave, we are enabled to fully comprehend the love of God the Father who, St. John the Evangelist writes, “So loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should have eternal life.”
As we light our Easter candles, may the flame of love, hope and forgiveness radiate within our hearts and in the hearts of brethren in every corner of the earth. May the selfishness, injustice, hatred and violence, those scourges of the human state which fester in the world -- those wounds of sin which torture the souls and bodies of countless brothers and sisters – be healed by the wounds of our Redeemer.
Receiving the Pascal light, let us pray that the joy and the hope of Easter radiate in our personal lives. Only then will we be able to spread the message of salvation where there seems to be no hope.
Let us embrace those whose dignity has been scorned and trampled upon throughout a world which continues to be bloodied by genocide, by war and conflict.
Let each of us in this Cathedral allow the radiant light which emanates from the life giving tomb to glow in our souls.
Let us open our hearts and minds in sincere trust to the Risen Lord so that His victory over evil and death may also triumph in us, in our families, in our communities, in the city of Boston and in every city and town of our nation.
May the Light of the Risen Lord glow in Israel and Palestine, in Darfur and Somalia, in Iraq and Afghanistan, in Tibet and in China, and in every corner of the globe.
May the tortuous wages of hatred and vendetta be abandoned. May the spiral of destruction and death come to an end.
My brothers and sisters in the household of God,
I invite you at this very moment to Receive the Light of the Resurrection. With it, displace the hopelessness and despair, the conflicts and wars, the crime and violence, the faithlessness and the apathy which surround us.
May the glow of our Lord’s Resurrection penetrate our hearts to eradicate our indifference in confronting the moral decay and spiritual sepsis which permeate human society.
“Come, Receive the light from the unwaning light and glorify Christ who rose from the dead.”