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Light of Christianity 2010c

Light of Christianity 2010c

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Published by marius.marcus1457
My account on religious topics
My account on religious topics

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Published by: marius.marcus1457 on Nov 28, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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The article you are reading belongs to the second edition of my magazine and stillprovides you with information on religious topics of general interest. It will be yet re-leased only on the Internet for saving the health of the planet and still feature incor-ruptible articles, high-resolution photo-graphs, and the definitions found in themagazine will come from reliable dictionar-ies and will concern only words or expres-sions that are hardly understood by the com-mon man. The concept of my magazine is thesame as the one from its previous edition,except that an electronic book that someonecan read on a computer screen or on a spe-cial small computer that he can hold in hishands, and that is not printed on paper.Thus, the magazine includes an editorial,which is a piece of writing in a magazinethat gives the editor's opinion about some-thing, rather than reporting facts, featuredarticles and stunning photographs, typical tomagazines, and the notion of volume, typicalto books, but also magazines, which is abook as a part of a series of books and aseries of different issues of the samemagazine, especially all the issues for oneyear. Every issue of the magazine will also feature a cover story, which is the mainstory in a magazine going with the picture shown on the front cover. The magazine willalso have a logo that will be just the calligraphy of the name of the magazine.Someone looking for religious topics will be still able to read featured articles and,thus, be also able to find out something reliable on themes in which they are inter-ested. I must warn you again of being not allowed to print, modify, but only use it onyour computer. The files contained in my magazine are downloadable , so you can lendthem to your friends who are not connected to the Internet, family and anybody youwant, but observe the rules. In the end, I wish you enjor reading my magazine and I amlooking forward for releasing the next issue. I also hope that my magazine will attract avery wide readership.The second issue of my magazine will house a cover story on Great Lent, which, in theChristian Church, is the period of 40 days from Ash Wednesday to the day beforePascha, during which some Christians give up some type of food or activity that theyenjoy in memory of the Passion. The topic of Great Lent was chosen as a result of therelease period of the second edition of my magazine.PS: If you want to contact me for anything as regards my magazine project, please feelfree to contact me a
and a
on Facebook.
The Holy Lent The Holy Lent 
Great Lent is the period that comes before the Feast of Pascha and lasts forty days and begins onthe Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee (the tenth one before Pascha) and concludes withGreat Sunday. Called according to the book where the liturgical services performed at that time aredescribed in detail, the Triodion period is distinguished through the deep spiritual and repentantspecific character of the liturgical content, all of them preparing Christians for the Passions of theSaviour Christ, but especially for His Resurrection. It is also a time for repentance pre-eminentlyand coming back to God, which reminds Christians firstly of the forty days spent by the Saviour inthe desert of Caranthania, immediately after His Baptism. It is the period in which catechumensspent the last forty days of their proper preparation for receiving Baptism on Pascha. Catechumensare adult people prepared for receiving Baptism in early Christianity. The forty-day period of GreatLent relies on a tradition in the Old Testament, documented several times. According to the East-ern tradition, fasting always had a deeply spiritual character, aiming especially at what the HolyFathers would call “metanoia”, namely the deep inner change of man. Therefore, fasting, in gener-al, but especially Great Lent, requests a special skill. The genuine spirit of Great Lent is howeverfound at the time of the repentance established by the Church for all its sons, whatever their spir-itual level, for a forty-day period. A fast is one of the church orders through whose agency theChurch guides the life of its believers to the ways of real experience, virtues and honouring God.Christianity conferred on fasting a special meaning in religious life, especially in monastic life, mak-ing an action of virtue and worship, a mean of progress in spiritual life, fight against passions anddesires of it. However, fasting itself is the most obvious sign of the respect and sacrifice towardsGod. According to the Christian conception, fasting is the effort made pre-eminently by Christiansfor mending their life, through restoring the supremacy of their soul over their body. Their effortrelies on an unchangeable fight, which consists in strengthening their will and sound good sense,disciplining their instincts, restraining their soul, aiming at fulfilling the inner balance in which thespirit, namely the superior and noble part of the human being, must prevail.
The term “Triodion” firstly designates the period during theecclesiastical year when Christians make themselves readyspiritually for entering the Holy Lent and the Feast of the Re-surrection of the Lord. On the other hand, the term is used tocall the liturgical book used at that time, namely “the Triodion”.The origin of the term can be deduced from the fact that dur-ing the Matins canons, only three hymns are sung at that time,in contrast with the other periods of the ecclesiastical year,when nine hymns are sung. The other hymns are replaced withsix biblical hymns. Precise rules related to the duration andforms of practising the fast in early Christianity are not men-tioned. The first Christians did probably fast according to theJewish tradition, although the Christian Church did not anyfast of the Old Law. It seems to explain masterly the influencehad by the Jewish ritual on the Christian one. As concerns theChristian fast, its origin, structure and spiritual meaning, it isentirely the creation of the Christian genius, being cultivatedand improved in the monastic tradition, and then accepted by the entire Church. After Christi-Light of Christianity Volume 2, July 20103
ans practised fasting as an act of personal piety, which relied on the religious freedom and zealof every Christian, in the beginning, in time, the Church authority formulated rules and guid-ances, more or less precise, thus establishing the time, duration and kind of fasting. Thoserules would appear after the 4
century, simultaneously with the regulation of the disciplineof catechumens and repentance, but especially with improving the Church organisation. Great Lent, namely the fast before the Resurrection of the Lord, is the most difficult and long oneamong the four fasts of the Orthodox Church. It is also one of the most intense liturgical timesof the Eastern Church, as well as of other Christian Churches. It is generally called by thepeople “Great Lent”, and the name “Forty Days remembrance” (“Tessarakoste” in Greek and“Quadragesima” in Latin), which was met for the first time in the 5
canon of the First Ecu-menical Council held in Nicaea in 325, would be perfectly justified for the six weeks that rep-resented the Holy Lent in olden times, but it was considered ended on Lazarus' Friday (the Fri-day before Palm Sunday), while Lazarus' Saturday and Palm Sunday were considered different feasts. At the end of the 4
century, the Holy Lent, which began on Sundays (one day) and las-ted five whole weeks, ended on Holy Thursday (other four days). The rule is also met today inthe Ambrosian Rite. The forty days firstly symbolise the forty days spend by the Saviour in thedesert of Caranthania, immediately after His Baptism, namely before He began preaching. Thepractice of “Forty Days remembrance” was adopted by the Christian Church as far back as be-fore the 4
century, and it really represented the preparation time of catechumens for theirBaptism. Since the 4
century, however, the catechumenal character of “Forty Days remem-brance” was increasingly replaced with the penitential one in order then the Church to take“the garment of repentance” under the influence of monasticism. The Holy Fathers and churchwriters consider the Holy Lent as an institution of apostolic origin. In the first three centuries,the duration and kind of fasting were not uniform everywhere. The end of the 3
century rep-resents the moment when the Holy Lent would be divided into two different periods, with twodifferent names, namely “the Lent of Forty Days remembrance”, which lasted until PalmSunday, having a changeable duration, and “Great Lent”, which lasted one week, namelybetween Palm Sunday and Great and Holy Pascha. The Eastern Church would definitively ad-opt the old practice of Antiochian origin of the six-week fast only after standardising the day of Pascha, decided at the First Ecumenical Council held in Nicaea in 325. According to the Ortho-dox rule, the Sunday of the Expulsion of Adam from Paradise is the last meal before the begin-ning of Great Lent and Christians fast until Holy Saturday inclusive.In the Eastern tradition, fasting always had a deep spiritual character, aiming especially at what the Holy Fathers would name “metanoia”, namely the deep inner change of man. Such anunderstand of fasting, especially of the Holy Lent, is masterly represented by beautiful and im-pressive Byzantine iconography. Unfortunately, today, very few people who still makes sensit-ive the deep meaning of fasting in general, and especially Great Lent, reducing it to just somerules more or less essential. The tragedy of misunderstanding the Holy Lent is caused by ig-noring the Triodion because doing not know the Triodion deprives Christians of a true under-standing of the Lent, its purposes and meanings, reducing it to a so-called legal obligation anda set of dietary rules. The true discovery and concern of the Lent is almost lost today and thereis other way of rediscovering it only by carefully listening to the hymns of the Triodion. Thefirst four weeks of the Triodion period prepare Christians both spiritually and bodily for en-tering the Holy Lent. Beginning with the first Sunday of the Triodion, called the Sunday of thePublican and the Pharisee, the hymns specific to the period are sung at Matins. After thesecond Sunday of the Triodion, called the Sunday of the Prodigal Son, another day specific tothe period is the Winter Saturday of remembrance of the souls on the Saturday preceding4The Holy Len

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