On Sunday, the Feast of the Baptism of Our Lord, we will come to the end of the Christmas Season. This Christmas Season was short and it seems hard to believe that it will be over so soon. In just two months from Sunday we will begin the season of Lent. Sometimes the seasons of Advent/Christmas and the season of Lent/Easter can seem so different and yet they are so closely connected. The reading from the Orthodox Royal Hours is deeply moving to me and makes the deep connection that we cannot celebrate one with the other. I hope that you find it meaningful as well.
“The Winter Pascha”
(Verses from the Orthodox “Royal Hours”
for Christmas Eve and Good Friday)
The One who holds all creation in the hollow of a hand is born today
of a Virgin.
The One who hung the earth upon the waters is hung today upon
The One whose essence none can touch is wrapped in swaddling clothes
as a mortal.
The One who rules the angels is crowned today with thorns.
God, who in the beginning created the heavens, lies now in a manger.
God, who wraps the heavens in clouds is wrapped in mocking purple.
The One who rained manna down on the people in the wilderness is fed on milk from a mother’s breast.
The One who set Eve and Adam free in the Jordan is slapped in the face.
Today the Church’s Spouse calls forth the Magi.
Today the Church’s Spouse is nailed to the cross.
The Virgin’s Child accepts their gifts.
The Virgin’s Child is pierced with a spear.
We worship your nativity, O Christ!
We worship you passion, O Christ!
Show us your glorious Nativity!
Show us, too, your glorious Resurrection!