Russia___Kirill_Easter_Pasqua celebration

Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill, the celebration of Easter

The Resurrection of Christ

“Having beheld the Resurrection of Christ, let us worship the holy Lord Jesus, the only sinless one. We venerate Thy cross, O Christ, and Thy holy Resurrection we praise and glorify. For Thou art our God, and we know none other than Thee. We call on Thy name. O come, all ye faithful, let us venerate Christ’s holy Resurrection. For behold, through the cross joy hath come into all the world. Ever blessing the Lord, we praise his Resur­rection: for by enduring the cross, he hath slain death by death.”

— Having Beheld the Resurrection of Christ, sung after the Gospel Reading of Sunday Matins in the Orthodox liturgy

St. Nikolai Velimirovic

St. Nikolai Velimirovich

And they said among themselves: “Who shall roll away the stone from the door of the sepulcher?” This was the subject of the myrrh-bearing women’s conversation as they climbed up to Golgotha, looking for nothing unexpected. The women’s weak hands where not strong enough to roll the stone away from the tomb’s entrance, for it was very great. Those poor women! They did not remember that the labor to perform which they were hastening so zealously to the tomb had already been performed during the Lord’s earthly life. At Bethany, at supper in the house of Simon the Leper, a woman had poured precious spikenard over Christ’s head. The omniscient Lord said at the time about this woman: “In that she hath poured this ointment on My body, she did it for My burial” (Matthew 26:12). He had a clear foreknowledge that His body would, in death, receive no other anointing. You may ask: then why did Providence allow these devout women to be so bitterly disappointed? To buy precious myrrh, to come fearfully through the dark and sleepless night to the tomb and not to perform that loving act for which they had sacrificed so much? But did Providence not reward their efforts in an incomparably richer way, in giving – in place of the dead body – the living Lord?


+ St. Nikolai Velimirovich, Bishop of Ohrid and of Žiča in the Serbian Orthodox Church, a highly gifted orator, therefore also known as “The New Chrysostom” (1881-1956), Homilies, Volume 1, 22, “The Gospel on the Myrhh-Bearing Women”

“Yesterday I was crucified with Him; today I am glorified with Him; yesterday I died with Him; today I am quickened with Him; yesterday I was buried with Him; today I rise with Him. But let us offer to Him Who suffered and rose again for us — you will think perhaps that I am going to say gold, or silver, or woven work or transparent and costly stones, the mere passing material of earth, that remains here below, and is for the most part always possessed by bad men, slaves of the world and of the Prince of the world. Let us offer ourselves, the possession most precious to God, and most fitting; let us give back to the Image what is made after the Image. Let us recognize our Dignity; let us honor our Archetype; let us know the power of the Mystery, and for what Christ died.”

+ St. Gregory the Theologian, Homily on Easter


St. Ambrose of Milan (from the Palatine Chapel in the Norman Palace in Palermo, Sicily)

“…Now since you are celebrating the holy Pascha, you should know, brethren, what the Pascha is. ‘Pascha’ means the crossing-over, and so the Festival is called by this name. For it was on this day that the Children of Israel crossed over out of Egypt, and the Son of God crossed over from this world to His Father. What gain is it to celebrate unless you imitate Him Whom you worship; that is, unless you cross over from Egypt, that is, from the darkness of evil-doing to the light of virtue, from the love of this world to the love of your heavenly home?”

+ St. Ambrose of Milan, The Sunday of the Resurrection

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