Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, for the sake of the prayers of Thy Most Pure Mother, hearken unto me, Thine unworthy servant N. O Lord, govern in mercy my children, Thy servants N. Have mercy on them and save them, for Thy name’s sake. O Lord, forgive them all their transgressions, voluntary andContinue reading →
Thus did the One ascend to Heaven Who held heaven within Himself. He who carries hell within himself will end up in hell, but he who bears heaven within his soul will ascend to heaven. And truly, no one can ascend to heaven other than those who have heaven within; and no one can end up in hell besides those who have hell within. The familiar is drawn to what is familiar and unites with the familiar; but it rejects what is not familiar. Matter submits to the spirit to the extent that the human soul is filled with the Divine Spirit; and the laws of nature are obedient to moral laws, which govern the world. Because the Lord Jesus Christ is the fullness of the Holy Spirit and the perfection of moral law, to Him is subject all matter—the entire physical world, with all the laws of nature.
This canon, which is to be found the Greek Great Book of Needs, is also chanted at Tuesday Compline in the week of tone six of the Octoechos. Whilst we are having confessions during Saturday Compline, this may be pertinent to be chanted at that time, and would certainly be valuable for parishioners as they prepare for confession and Holy Communion. In the Euchologion (Book of Needs) it is followed by a prayer of absolution by St John of Damascus, making it clear that it is intended for use in this context.
When the faithful confess in church, it is interesting to observe the slightly different ways in which the pentitents approach the Lord in the manner in which they confess. Some speak very personally to the Lord, whilst after the opening of their confession, others address the priest in great detail. Others rhetorically ask whether they have failed in various ways, and confess their shortcomings. I sometimes have to reassure people in saying that there is a very personal diversity here, but that in confessing with sincerity, the ‘style’ of their confession matters little.
Dear brothers and sisters, on this feast of the Lord’s Ascension, I encourage you to pray the canons of the feast in your daily prayers, and to try to do the same whenever we celebrate Great Feasts, and the feasts of our most beloved saints.