"One of the cornerstone messages of the Gospel is the preaching of joy. Having met the myrrh-bearing women after the resurrection, the Lord says to them: Rejoice! And now, on the path toward His suffering on the Cross, He gives His disciples a foretaste of the future of the time of the resurrection."
A short exhortation by the abbot of Holy Trinity Monastery, Archimandrite Luke, on the eve of Great Lent (Feb. 5/18, 2018) on the constant struggle necessary to change our life in conformity to the Gospel commandments.
"This notion of a feast of the cross may seem paradoxical to our mind: the cross in the ancient world was an instrument and symbol of inhumane torture and death ... Yet we, Christians, celebrate the Cross of the Lord in a festival and we praise it as the 'preserver of the whole universe … the glory of angels, and the wound of demons.'"
We begin the Great Fast with the command of our Saviour to forgive one another in order to receive from our Lord complete forgiveness of our sins. But this is only the beginning.