Incessantly and Altogether Beautiful

Tonight marks the end of Lent in the Orthodox Church. We enter Holy Week with Lazarus Saturday, and of course we do fast until Pascha, but it’s not technically Lent anymore for us. We now stop thinking about whether we succeeded or failed at Lent, because we need to focus on what God has done and be fully present for these last days of the remembering of the death and resurrection of the Lord.

In our parish we had Matins of Lazarus Saturday, a time to remember the whole story of how Lazarus had been dead four days when Jesus came into town and his friends said, “If only you had been here, he wouldn’t have died.” And Jesus wept. Then He showed his power over death, and raised Lazarus. And then followed the events that sent Him to His own death, which He also overcame for our sakes. His powerful beauty is still filling this world.

Despite the effects of the Fall and despite our deep sinfulness, the world continues to be God’s creation. It has not ceased to be “altogether beautiful.” Despite human alienation and suffering, the Divine Beauty is still present in our midst and still remains ever active, incessantly performing its work of healing and transfiguration. Even now beauty is saving the world, and it will always continue to do so. But it is the beauty of a God who is totally involved in the pain of the world that He has made, of a God who died on the Cross and on the third day rose victorious from the dead.

–Metropolitan Kallistos

christ passion

3 thoughts on “Incessantly and Altogether Beautiful

  1. I always learn so much from you. I like how you explain things. I was looking at your new blog and saw your tab that is called, ” Why I am Eastern Orthodox.” Very interesting. I liked that. I was also reading through your list of books so how did you like “Peace Like a River?”
    I thought it beautifully written but extremely odd.
    I was excited for this Sunday as it is Palm Sunday. But more excited that Passover starts on Monday. I think going through passion week with the Jewish feast is very exciting for me.
    Not to mention all of the ” Signs in the Sun, Moon and Stars” this next week.
    Anyway, I always love reading your thoughts. Have a lovely weekend.

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  2. I’m always intrigued to learn more about how the Orthodox celebrate the Easter season. You quote from so many people I’m not familiar with, but I enjoy all of it!

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  3. I’m late on commenting because Holy Week was so full that I couldn’t get to reading blog posts. I love your quote here. It reminds me of Psalm 19: “The heavens declare the Glory of God and the earth shows forth His handiwork…” all of creation continually proclaims God’s glory!

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