Monday, June 5, 2017

Short life: Sts. Cyril and Methodius

For their feast: : Short life: Sts. Cyril and Methodius, Evangelizers of the Slavs

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Dan Everiss

Wed, May 24, 2017 at 2:02 PM
Brief comment: The great missionary work of these two noble evangelists, established forever in the Orthodox Church, that local native people of various ethnicities,
had both the legitimate need and the right, to worship God in their own UNDERSTANDABLE languages, even as, over time,  local missionary self-governing churches came
into existence and flourished, and to be able to read the Holy Scriptures & other sacred Orthodox Christian writings ...the Lives of the Saints and Patristics, etc., also in a language understandable to them.
The Russian Church, most notably, in its vast eastward missionary efforts, put into practice this principal, IN ORDER TO SAVE SOULS! -WHICH IS WHY OUR SAVIOUR CAME TO EARTH! ...spreading the Orthodox faith to many new far-flung and scattered pagan tribes and peoples, in their own tongues & alphabets, even as to far away Russian-Alaska....and later too, to all of English speaking  North America.
Regrettably, however, in the Christian west, those who pushed for 'Latin-only'... set in immovable concrete,  for centuries, that  inflexible sole-sacred-language rule in their worship,
 with an excuse:  for Latin, as  creating  'unity' among all believers, as all would worship God  'in the same language', ...regardless.... if they understood what they heard or sang?  (which greatly encouraged the Protestant revolt later) as a large majority of average western Christian believers, many illiterate, could not understand what was said nor sung in their churches, and as they could not read or understand the Latin-Vulgate bible either.. hand-made copies of which anyway, were not normally available to them.
IF in our modern times, MUCH OF Church Slavonic or old Liturgical Greek, have become hard to fully comprehend for many Orthodox, that is a problem with its own difficult dimensions.
In our western countries, FOR ORTHODOXY TO SURVIVE OR PROSPER HERE, not only for the benefit of the children and grandchildren of Orthodox immigrants, but also to missionize the other local populations,
Orthodox worship MUST be [ by in large] in the language of the people, of that nation, but in its highest most noble form, not in vulgar undignified street language.
Of course, this reality does not preclude the continued co-use of the original immigrant's traditional worship languages in addition.
Surely, when we pray to God, IN HIS PRESENCE, we need to know, so that we are not merely babbling vain useless empty IMPIOUS words,  what we are attempting to say to Him!
 He ....reads our hearts.
Rd. Daniel Everiss in Oregon


"O Holy Equals-to-the-Apostles, and Evangelizers of the Slavs, Our Fathers, Sts. Cyril and Methodius, Pray unto God for Us!"


Here is the entry in the Prologue from Ochrid:

Saints Cyril and Methodius were brothers from Thessalonica of distinguished and wealthy parents, Leo and Maria. The older brother Methodius spent ten years as an officer among the Macedonian Slavs and thus learned the Slavic language. After that Methodius withdrew to Mount Olympus and dedicated himself to the monastic life of asceticism. It was here that Cyril (Constantine) later joined him. When the Khazarite king, Kagan, requested preachers of the Faith of Christ from Emperor Michael III then, by command of the emperor, these two brothers were found and sent among the Khazars. Convincing King Kagan of the Faith of Christ, they baptized him along with a great number of his chief assistants and even a greater number of the people. After a period of time, they returned to Constantinople where they compiled the Slavonic alphabet consisting of thirty-eight letters and proceeded to translate ecclesiastical books from Greek into Slavonic. At the request of Prince Rastislav, they traveled to Moravia where they spread and established the devout Faith and multiplied books and distributed them to the priests to teach the youth. At the request of the pope, Cyril traveled to Rome where he became ill and died on February 14, 867 A.D. Then Methodius returned to Moravia and labored to strengthen the Faith of Christ among the Slavs until his death. Following his death - he died in the Lord on April 6, 885 A.D. - his disciples, THE FIVE FOLLOWERS, with St. Clement, the bishop at the head, crossed the Danube River and descended to the south into Macedonia, where from Ohrid they continued their labor among the Slavs begun by Cyril and Methodius in the north



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