Sunday, April 15, 2018

Paschal Epistle

Let us awake in the deep dawn and instead of myrrh, offer a hymn to the Master; and we shall see Christ, the Sun of Righteousness, Who causeth life to dawn for all. (Ode 5, Irmos)

The myrrh-bearing maidens anticipated the dawn, seeking as it were day, the Sun Who was before the sun and Who had set in the tomb, and they cried out to one another: O friends come let us anoint with sweet-smelling spices the life-bringing and buried Body, even that Flesh which raiseth fallen Adam who lieth in the grave. Let us go hence, let us make haste like the Wise Men, and let us adore and offer before Him myrrh as it were a gift to Him, Who is no longer wrapped in swaddling bands, but in a winding sheet. And let us make lamentation and cry aloud in exclamation: Arise O Master, Thou who dost grant resurrection to the fallen. (Ikos)

Dear brothers and sisters,

Christ is Risen!

Our Lord Jesus Christ has opened the door to Eternal Life for us mortal men. The True Sun of Righteousness has enlightened the world with True Light, in the midst of this sinful and fallen existence. This Light is the knowledge of the True God, and the Path of Righteousness - by which we can enter the Eternal Life.

Let us, my dear friends, be vigilant! Let us set out hastily like the myrrh-bearing women, and offer myrrh to God! Let us not allow ourselves to be weak-hearted and afraid, making all sorts of excuses in avoiding Church attendance and prayer. Let us use our God-given time, freedom and energy for attaining eternal life for our eternal souls!

Let us remember the five foolish virgins who were unable to enter the Wedding Feast because they had not sufficient oil in their vessels. They were called, but they did not respond to the call, thinking their calling was sufficient for salvation. They had not used well the time allotted to them.

Do we have sufficient Grace to enter the Kingdom of Heaven and live eternally with God? Are we not excessively distracted by mundane things of this earthly existence, by which one day we are completely engrossed with, and which by the next day we have forgotten about? If we spend most of our time, thoughts and effort for physical things of this world, then we become like spiritual corpses lying in our graves! If we do not adore (pray to) God, and offer myrrh (good deeds, as defined in Gods Law; and living a church-centred life) as it were a gift to God, we will remain as fallen Adams imprisoned in our self-imposed graves. We decompose further in our sins, and become more and more unbearable by the smell of sins, both for ourselves and to all that come near us.

To rise up, pray at home and in the Church, and to do good deeds beyond what is ‘natural’ and a ‘duty’, are actions which are possible and open to us all. There is nothing great or difficult in this – but our fallen nature and the evil one make virtue appear “too hard”, grim and unbearable, so as to dissuade us from seeking God, Who is our actual source of joy, life, strength, and peace…! The earthly pleasures with which we attempt to replace His gifts leave us feeling empty, sad and exhausted.

Dear brothers and sisters, before the door is shut unexpectedly and our physical death confronts us, let us make that effort against our lazy and self-loving will to arise from our sleep of self-righteousness and inaction, and seek God! We must get out of our “comfort zone” and make an effort…. and God WILL reward.

When God sees us rising up to seek Him with effort, He will reward us with His Grace - joy, life, strength, and peace of heart.

Christ is Risen !

Bishop John of Melbourne

Friday, April 13, 2018

Paschal Greeting from Australia

Paschal Greeting from Metropolitan Agafangel

Monday, April 9, 2018

Pascha in Australia 2018

Holy Saturday and Pascha at the St John of Kronstadt parish in Sydney

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Paschal services at the Tabinsk Icon of the Mother of God in Dandenong.

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Sunday, April 8, 2018

Great Saturday and Annunciation feast at the Annunciation Hermitage

This year the feast of the Annunciation fell on Great Saturday, according to the typikon of St Savvas, which is used in the Russian Church.

The festal hymns for the “beginning of our salvation” were combined with the hymns to the very culmination of our Saviour’s great self-emptying Passion for the salvation of us all.

All present stood around the tomb and chanted the moving lamentations together in English.

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The next morning we read the hours, then the Old Testament prophesies of the Resurrection of Christ at the Liturgy of St Basil the Great.

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The Gospel at the Liturgy of St Basil the Great.

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Vladyka blessed wine and bread for our refreshment, but we did not serve a festal meal in the trapeza, keeping the fast until the Resurrection of Christ.

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Metropolitan Agafangel
First Hierarch of the Russian
Orthodox Church Abroad

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Bishop John of Melbourne
Vicar bishop of Australia

Church calendar for today

Divine Services - Archangel Michael Sobor in Odessa

Divine services channel is updated every Church feast day

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Parishes

Melbourne, VIC
Contact: Bishop John
Telephone: 0422556968

Sydney, NSW
Parish of St John of Kronstadt.

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  • Serving priest: Father Nebojsa Mirkovic
  • Address:
  • Service times:
    Sundays and feast days: Matins 730 am
    Divine Liturgy: 9 am.
    Please contact us to confirm what time Liturgy is served.
  • Saturdays and eves of feasts: Vespers 530 pm
    or All-night Vigil 6 pm

Dandenong, VIC
Community of the Tabinsk Mother of God Icon

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  • Services once a month
  • Visits by Bishop John

Western Victoria
Annunciation of the Mother of God Women’s Monastic Community

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  • Spiritual Father: Bishop John.
  • Address: 266 Nowhere Creek Rd, Nowhere Creek, 3469
  • Service times:
  • Sundays and feast days: Divine Liturgy: 9 am
  • All-night Vigils (including Divine Liturgy) on select occasions.
    Please contact us to confirm what time Liturgy is served.

[b]Brisbane, QLD

Canberra, ACT

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