Art and Faith

Sunday, 16 March 2008

Isaak Levitan. A Church in Plyos. 1888


A Church in Plyos [Isaak Levitan, 1888]

I find this an appropriate Lenten image. It is stark, minimalistic, and stripped of all extraneous detail. It is the same with our attitude to the Lent. There are those who memorise long lists of forbidden foods, and are quick to jump on those not following their particular fancy in holding the Lent. They also enjoy openly criticsing those who are not imitating their Calvinistic and Jansenist interpretation of Orthodox life.

Such sorts are PHARISEES. We should not be doing such. If one does this, you throw away all the benefits of your fasting, and, besides that, you invite Lucifer into your parlour, and, believe me, he shall come in and make himself at home! There is nothing that pleases Satan more than to have someone keep every last regulation with a joyless and constipated intensity.

The Lent was made for us, to strengthen us, and to prepare us for the joy of Easter. I do not care if someone is “not keeping the fast”. That is their affair. I shall pray for them, certainly, but, to say something openly… why, that is a breach of good manners, let alone Christianity. My task is to see that the Lent benefits me and those around me. Scolding others for “deviations” certainly does NOT help that, does it?

Something to think about…

Blessing of the Koliva on the Feastday of St Theodore

Filed under: Christian,church chant,iconography,Orthodox,Russian — 01varvara @ 00.00
This is a short little vignette from one of our Lenten services. It certainly does convey things much better than a boring lecture, does it not? Thanks to Sasha Ressetar for this. Z bogom, Sasha!

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