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:: Wednesday, November 27, 2002 ::

The Akathist of Thanksgiving:

Tonight (11/27) my wife and I will be participating in the Akathist of Thanksgiving at our church here in Portland (St. Nicholas Orthodox Church).

This particular Akathist has become quite popular within Orthodoxy in recent years and more parishes every year are making an effort to present this beautiful service to the faithful. It has become one of our favorite services throughout the year (however, it still not in my top ten, as many of the Lenten and Paschal services still dominate my "favorite" list!)

This Akathist, also called the "Akathist of Thanksgiving," was composed by Protopresbyter Gregory Petrov shortly before his death in a prison camp in 1940. The title is from the words of Saint John Chrysostom as he was dying in exile.

I was reviewing the text this afternoon and was blown away by the sheer JOY that exudes from the service....Just meditate on these words:

Kontakion 10: "No one can put together what has crumbled into dust, but Thou canst restore a conscience turned to ashes. Thou canst restore to its former beauty a soul lost and without hope. With Thee, there is nothing that cannot be redeemed. Thou art love; Thou art Creator and Redeemer. We praise Thee, singing: Alleluia!"

"A conscience turned to ashes"....I love that image!

How often it is I feel this is true of my soul! How often I let the passions burn and rage within until I am in ashes! It reminds me of Ps 51:8--"Fill me with joy and gladness;
let the bones which thou hast broken rejoice."

It is better to let God "break" us, than to let the bones of our soul be turned to ashes by negligence!

So in the spirit of this Akathist, let us remember this Thanksgiving weekend to not only give thanks FOR SOMETHING, but to give thanks TO SOMEONE....Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

:: Karl :: 3:44:00 PM [Link] ::

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