The Beginning of the Lenten Triodion

 Icon of the Publican and the Pharisee in Saint Michael's Orthodox Church in Louisville, Kentucky. 

Icon of the Publican and the Pharisee in Saint Michael's Orthodox Church in Louisville, Kentucky. 

Throughout the world today Orthodox Christians mark the Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee, known for the Gospel account in Luke 18 read at the divine liturgy that juxtaposes the self-righteousness of the Pharisee with the deep humility and repentance of the Publican.

On this Sunday we also begin singing hymns in preparation for the Great Fast, which itself begins on Monday, February 27. These hymns are taken from the ancient book of lenten hymnography called the Triodion. One is Open to Me the Doors of Repentance, sung in English beautifully below.

The Royal Hours of Christmas

Join us at Saint Elizabeth Friday at 10:00 am to celebrate the majestic service of the Royal Hours of Christmas!

Prepare, O Bethlehem,
For Eden has been opened to all.
Adorn yourself, O Ephratha,
For the Tree of Life blossoms forth from the Virgin in the cave.
Her womb is a spiritual paradise planted with the fruit divine;
If we eat of it, we shall live forever and not die like Adam.
Christ is coming to restore the image which He made in the beginning.

--Hymn of the Prefeast of Christmas

Saint Luke Bible Study Meets This Evening

Come to Saint Elizabeth this evening at 6:30 for daily vespers, and plan to stay afterward for our parish Bible Study class.

Last time we met we introduced the Gospel of Saint Luke, talking about its author and some of the themes it contains. For example, we discussed how this "Gospel for the Gentiles" traces Jesus's human lineage back beyond Abraham to Adam, the father of the human race, whereas Matthew's "Gospel for the Jews" terminates its genealogy with Abraham, the father of the Jews. All the canonical Gospels are for Jews and Gentiles alike, but how interesting it is to see the ways in which Luke brings attention to the universal theme of human salvation in Christ! 

This week we will be discussing the first six chapters of Luke's Gospel. So read those chapters and bring your Orthodox Study Bible (or any Bible you have) for what should be a very interesting discussion!