MARCH 22, 2020 - "OUR LENTEN JOURNEY REACHES ITS MIDWAY POINT"
Those involved with athletics are fully aware of the importance of "halftime"
in any sporting event. It is an opportunity to pause before continuing with the vigor
of the game. More importantly, it is a time to correct mistakes or deficiencies in one's "game plan" and to become
recommitted to the ultimate goal of victory.
This morning, our Holy Church has reached the midway point of Great Lent. For three weeks, the spiritual disciplines
of prayer and fasting have been emphasized. The theme of repentance has been placed before us repeatedly. Those
who are "weak in spirit" may be faltering in this 40-day journey to Pascha.
In her wisdom, the Church places before us the greatest of symbols today: The precious and life-giving Cross. We are encouraged to focus
our attention on this instrument of Christ's passion. At the same time, we are reminded of the necessity of being willing to deny
ourselves, take up our own cross, and follow Christ. These thoughts should serve to strengthen us as we continue along the road that
will take us to Golgotha and, ultimately, to the empty tomb!
On the third Sunday of Lent, the following hymn from Matins clearly expresses the essence of today's spiritual message: "On
this day, when we look at the precious Cross of Christ, let us adore it in faith, let us embrace it, fervently asking our Lord, Who is His
own choice, gave Himself to be crucified upon it, to make us worthy of adoring His most precious Cross, so that, free from all defilement, we
may attain the day of Resurrection."