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Σάββατο, 27 Απριλίου 2019

The Great and Holy Sabbath



The Great and Holy Sabbath

During today’s liturgy, instead of the Cherubic Hymn we sing the beautiful lament: “Let all mortal flesh keep silent, and in fear and trembling stand, pondering nothing earthly minded! For the King of kings, and the Lord of lords, comes to be slain, to give Himself as food to the faithful. Before Him go the ranks of Angels: all the Principalities and Powers; the many-eyed Cherubim; and the six-winged Seraphim, covering their faces, singing the hymn: Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!”

This is a very ancient Eucharistic hymn of the Church and was written about 275 AD. It is based upon verse 2:20 from the prophecy of Habakkuk: “Let all the earth keep silence before Him.” The words of this sacred hymn are in direct keeping with the theme of this day: silence. For upon this Great and Holy Sabbath day we honor Christ’s blessed repose in the tomb, finally resting from all His tireless labors, as is described in this stichera verse from vespers: “This is the blessed Sabbath; this is the day of rest, on which the only-begotten Son of God rested from all His works.”

Very Rev. John Memorich

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