Epistle of His Grace, Archbishop Hilarion of Sydney,
Australia and New Zealand
Beloved in the Lord, Clergy and Flock of the Australian and New
Christ is Risen!
By God's mercy we are again celebrating Holy Pascha! The Divine
Light of Christ's Resurrection, which knows no bounds, illumines
and fills our hearts with joy. "Now all things are filled with
light: heaven and earth, and the nether regions. So let all creation
then celebrate the Resurrection of Christ, by which it is strengthened"
(Song 3 of the Paschal Canon). The Apostle testifies that the light
of Christ shines even in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome
it (John 1:5).
Truly, beloved, the grace of God, which enlightens and sanctifies
us in our daily life, now visibly comes down in the grace of the
immaterial Fire in Jerusalem at the Lord's Tomb and likewise visibly
fills us all with its joy. May this joy of divine communion abide
in us always, so that we, sharing it with others, may all hold fast
to the Christian virtues and the Orthodox way of life. We may then
exclaim together with the prophet of old: "O death! Where is
your sting? O hades! Where is your victory?" (Hosea 13:14;
1 Cor. 15:55).
Christ is risen, and through His Resurrection we become a nation
of God, a nation forgiven. We arise with Christ from the font unto
a new life. Clothe yourselves, the Apostle Paul beckons to us, in
the new man. Christ is risen and He raises us up for good works
Beloved in the Lord, reverend pastors, monks and nuns, all the God-loving
children of our Australian and New Zealand flock, sharing with you
the joy of the Resurrection of Christ, I greet you all with the
great feast of Holy Pascha! May the Risen Lord come to us through
His grace, may He sanctify our mind and senses and direct us to
good works, kindling our hearts by His love. May peace, a pure faith
and the love of Christ ever abide in us. And may our joy in His
Resurrection be unending.
Christ is Risen! Truly He is Risen!
Sydney, Australia and New Zealand