Δευτέρα, 14 Μαρτίου 2016

Orthodox Spiritual Legacy: A Guide to the Triodion and Lent, on the Road to Easter

oodegr.co, omhksea.org
 
A journey, a pilgrimage! Yet, as we begin it, as we make the first step into the "bright sadness" of Lent, we see- far, far away - the destination. It is the joy of Easter, it is the entrance into glory of the Kingdom. And it is this vision, the foretaste of Easter, that makes Lent's sadness bright and our lenten effort a "spiritual spring." The night may be dark and long, but all along the way a mysterious and radiant dawn seems to shine on the horizon. "Do not deprive us of our expectation, O Lover of man! [ Fr. Alexander Schmemann (†) ] 
 
 There is more to Lent than Fasting, and there is more to fasting than food. This principle lies at the heart of the Lenten Triodion, the main hymnbook of Orthodox Lent. For the Orthodox Church, Lent is without doubt the richest and most distinctive season of the ecclesiastical year. The Lenten services, the spiritual lessons of the Triodion, and the biblical readings for the season invite us to simplify our lives and to immerse ourselves in the “bright sadness” of repentance. 

Orthodox Lent begins on Clean Monday, seven weeks before Pascha, when Orthodox Christians celebrate the Lord’s Resurrection. But before Lent begins, it is announced in advance. This preparation for Lent is made above all through the Lenten Triodion, which makes its appearance in the liturgical life of the Church three weeks prior to Lent, on the Sunday of the Tax-Collector (or Publican) and the Pharisee. The Triodion remains a regular feature of the Church’s liturgical life until the end of Holy Week. 

Written for the devout Christian, the Triodion is full of warnings against pride and hypocrisy - the ultimate spiritual sins to which religious folk are so susceptible. Its hymns teach us the true nature and purpose of fasting and of Lent itself.
 
CONTENTS
   
General Rules of the Lenten Fast 
 
1. First Sunday of Triodion - Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee 
 
2. Second Sunday of Triodion - Sunday of the Prodigal Son 
 
3. The Saturday of Souls 
 
4. Third Sunday of Triodion - Sunday of the Last Judgment 
 
5. Fourth Sunday of Triodion - Forgiveness Sunday 
 
6. Clean Monday 
 
7. First Sunday of Great Lent - Sunday of Orthodoxy 
 
8. Second Sunday of Great Lent - Sunday of Saint Gregory Palamas 
 
9. Third Sunday of Great Lent - Sunday of the Holy Cross 
 
10. Fourth Sunday of Great Lent - Sunday of Saint John Climacus 
 
11. Fifth Sunday of Great Lent - Saint Mary of Egypt 
 
12. The Great Canon of Saint Andrew of Crete 
 
13. The Akathist Hymn 
 
14. The Liturgy of the Pre-sanctified Gifts
 
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