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Sunday, April 8, 2012

HAPPY EASTER TO ALL OF YOU - PAST REMEMBRANCES - AND FUTURE HOPE.

A blessed and happy Easter to all of you - that read this message - all over the world.


Jesus Christ came to this world to bring a message of hope but also to deliver us human beings - from the bonds that prevented us to be free.


We all remember the words by the sweat of thy brow - thou shalt earn their living.


We also remember the words that God so loved his son - that he sent Him - that we may be free. Not exactly the same words - but words to that meaning.


In the mid 1970s I landed in Athens, Greece - on Easter Day. This day I will never forget - because I attended an early Greek Orthodox Mass that lasted over three hours may be four.


The Patriarch, the Bishops, the priests all with long beards. The most lovely robes I had ever seen - and lots of incense and more hymns and chanting - that one would ever want to hear - that brought tears of joy.


I felt I was in heaven. But, there was more to come.


After this most heavenly celebration - when those gathered around us - knew we had arrived from far off places - Australia, New Zealand, Israel, Switzerland, Germany, India - the parishioners invited us to a heavenly banquet.


The table was spread with all sorts of excellent food, bread, fruits, wine, and deserts. Never, ever had I seen such a banquet laid down. 


And believe me I had been to many weddings - but this celebration of the soul and now the dancing and feasting was something - else.


This feast went on forever after about four hours we had to go - we had things to do - and we had to get ready to go to our camp - thirty miles away from the City, Athens.


I am a Catholic and my comparison the Catholic Mass is simple - even our High Mass.


The memory of this one single Easter Celebration - is what I treasure most - all my life.


Even now I can hear the music and the ambiance of those treasured moments - soothe my senses and bring tears of joy to my eyes.


Jesus Christ came and he taught us to love one another.


Stand up for the truth.


Jesus was a revolutionary - his teachings contradicted the teachings of the times - where emphasis - was put on the mundane. A tooth for a tooth - tit for tat.


If you study Jesus teaching well; actions  and good actions that benefit all - count.


There was this wedding and there was no wine - and he asked that the pitchers be filled with water - and turned water into wine. Thus saving the memorial wedding day for the bride and groom - and those that were lucky to be at that wedding- rejoiced and remembered the occasion - hopefully; for a long time.


It was the same when the multitude gathered and there was no food for everyone. Some loves of bread and some fish - but not enough to spread around.


What little was gathered he multiplied and fed the starving multitude. On both occasions - be rest assured - he enlightened the minds and soothe their souls - of those that witnessed this miracle.


Such good deeds happen all the time - all over the world - not in exactly the same way - but, deed that benefit others ; charity that does not cry for attention - but soothes the heart, the mind, the souls of thousands if not millions.


And so it is written that Jesus was taken from the CROSS after being scourged, his side pierced by a lance, on his head a crown of thorns - placed there by the Jews of the times.


These blind Jews had witnessed all they wanted to witness - but they were waiting for the Messiah - when what they saw who HE.


Like those Jews - who had seen the miracles, they had seen it all - but they were blind and betrayed Jesus the son of Joseph and Mary.


Those of us - who choose to be baptized, confirmed, re-confirm our commitment to Christ - learn it all, see it all - but betray our Faith - because we fall prey to weakness. Human as we are we strive - and again, and again, fall and keep falling - and betraying our commitment to Christianity and its standards.


Where they is pride there is mostly a steep - fall.


After the body of Jesus Christ - was washed; as was customary - his wounds soothe with balm and other scented herbs and medicines - then wrapped with cloth. Those that loved Jesus - those that stood by him - the very few - laid Jesus Christ - our Savior - to rest.


Before Jesus Christ died - he turned to one of the thieves who hung on the cross besides him and forgave him and promised him that he would see light.


He pleaded with his Father in heaven " if it is possible take away this cup" - " but only if it thy will" - Jesus Christ died so that we may be saved. And we are saved - our sins washed away by His suffering and supreme - sacrifice.


On the third day - Jesus arose from the dead. He appeared to his Disciples - and those that witnessed this miracle - testified. Today, all over the world we remember the Resurrection - and many celebrate this memorial day - as the key festive occasion - more in the Orthodox Church.


Not much has changed in all the times we live. Every year this time of the year - people pretend to go to Church and think on a few occasions to be charitable.


Actually, as Christians - we must be on our best behavior - every single day.


It is the standards, the morals, the good actions that count.


We can bluff ourselves but we cannot bluff our commitment to becoming Christians on our own violation. Promising to be a role model - that defied the Romans - where Christians stuck by their standards and practiced charity to each and every one - Christians and non-Christians.


Christians were put to death and had to endure the most horrifying cruelty - cast before wild beasts to be devoured. Torched to death, and so on and so forth. These Saints died - so that we may live.


It is the blood of these early Christians, the love they spread to the Universe - that brought about the conversion of the Roman Emperor Constantine and later Charles the Great - leasing a burst of benevolence - to Christians in Rome and all over the Roman Empire.


Within the larger Christian Church today we have the Roman Catholic and the Greek Orthodox and other Orthodox Churches.


Then some more within the Christian Protestant Churches -  led by Martin Luther's revolution - the Lutherans, the Methodists, the Baptist, the Presbyterians, the Pentecostals, and the hundreds of other denominations so many to mention and describe.


The truer meaning of Easter is to be born again.


As we near the day of our passing from this Earth to a better place - we may be worthy of our deeds, our living, our standards - and follow as closely in the steps of our Lord Jesus Christ - and leave some worthy - legacy.


And Jesus went to the temple and he did not like what he saw. The merchants were selling stuff, and the money changers too - he toppled the tables and said to those that could hear " do not make this temple into a den of thieves".


Each one of us has a temple our body and we must cherish it - the best way we can.


We are not here on this Earth - to judge other religions - be they Jains, Muslims, Buddhist, others - God in His infinite mercy and benevolence will gather all and adjudicate.


It is a shame when Christian nations seek to make war and bring about misery and untold suffering.


God in His infinite mercy sees it all - and in proportion to the love we share He will bestow goodness.


In proportion to the harm we do others - we will reap the rewards of harm done; here on this Earth during our life time - and we are reaping it today.


The churches have diverted their attention from the spiritual goals and become materialistic, the church leaders are embolden to seek glory when they must be humble.


Those priest that harm our children, rape women, and do are callous - must be cautioned and those in charge bear full responsibility for these grave - atrocities. These sins cry to heaven for justice.


Jesus came so that we may be saved - and it is left to us to uphold the standards, help those that need help, lift up those that need our support, speak up to the truth, and follow our conscience; that each of us has - that pendulum that swings and points to the best.


Happy Easter to my dear friends here in the United States and all over the world. 


May Jesus Christ grant you all peace of mind and good health.