Sunday, April 20, 2014

Paschal Thoughts: Two videos: Pascha in Ghana, They really look happy!

Comment: I think, but am not sure, that these two African missions are either
 under the Alexandrian or Jerusalem Patriarchates.
And of course, the Greek GOC also has substantial missions in parts of Africa.
Of course, we westerners [ living in our worldly post-Christian materialistic culture], are not used to seeing such physically joyful worship, as normal to our vision of Orthodoxy, however, this is their native African cultural expression.
When they rejoice, they...dance, and they express, body and soul,  their genuine happiness. 
They show that they recognize the importance of the Resurrection of THEIR/Our Saviour, The Saviour of All Mankind. 
Are we 'more cultured, superior, educated, intellectual/'modern'  western-civilized/often lukewarm... Orthodox',...as truly joyful in Our Lord's Victory over death?....or is our annual participation in the Pascha services, just routine, just our cultural traditions??...only mere external/and thus, EMPTY rituals? [what the Pharisees of Jesus day, practiced?].
DO WE... TRULY.... BELIEVE ... THAT HE REALLY!...AROSE FROM DEATH??? [many Protestants and Catholics, these days, do NOT believe it, in both America and Europe]. 
These simple African believers DO believe, and they show it, through their own cultural expressions.
And yes, I know that musical instruments, inside the church,  [ as drums] are forbidden by old canons, but....it is their cultural way of rejoicing, and the drums could be outside of the church. Our bells are technically, 'outside' yet they are musical instruments, are they not? [ and we hear them, while we are inside the church].
For myself, I am inspired by these people's simple MOVING faith. It is real, not pretend, nor phony, it is from their hearts.
Just my perspective......as I meditate upon this glorious Feast of Feasts, the Defeat of Death.
Rd. Daniel .......But, no, I am not advocating that we here go to using drums and dancing in church..
but that we all do deep soul searching, and pray to God, for a stronger faith in Him, and a purer life with Christ. Because, THAT is being genuine Orthodox Christians, not merely observing external rituals and taboos and looking good, looking Orthodox, in the view of others.
Jesus said, "But my kingdom is not of this world!", for those Orthodox who too tightly link their religion to any one national identity or earthly land, (any or all of them).
WE are all..... pilgrims/wayfaring strangers on this earth. Our true Homeland, is not here.
CHRIST IS RISEN INDEED!

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