Proclus_of_ConstantinopleGlorious is our paschal festival, and truly splendid this great assembly of the Christian people. And within this holy mystery are contained things both old and new.

The celebration of this week, or rather its joyfulness, is shared by such a multitude, that not alone does man rejoice on earth, but even the powers of heaven are united with us in joyful celebration of Christ’s Resurrection.

For now the angels, and the hosts of the archangels, also keep holiday this day, and stand waiting for the triumphant return from this earth of Christ our Lord, Who is King of heaven.

And the multitude of the Blessed likewise rejoice, proclaiming the Christ who was begotten before the day star rose (Ps. 109:3).

The earth rejoices, now washed by divine blood. The sea rejoices, honoured as it was by His feet upon its waters.

And ever more let each soul rejoice, who is born again of water and the Holy Ghost, and at last set free from the ancient curse!

With such great joy does Christ fill our hearts this day by His Resurrection, not only because He gives us the gladness of this day, but because He has also given us salvation through His passion, immortality through His Death, healing for our wounds, and resurrection from our fall!

And long ago, beloved, this Paschal Mystery, begun in Egypt, was symbolically pointed out to us in the Old Law, in the sacrifice of the lamb. And now, in the Gospel, let us celebrate the Resurrection of the Lamb: our Pasch.

Then a lamb of the flock was slain, as the Law laid down (Ex. 12); now Christ, the Lamb of God, is offered up.

There a sheep from the sheepfold; here, in the place of the sheep, the Good Shepherd lays down His life for His sheep.

There the sprinkled blood upon the doorposts was a sigh of deliverance for the people of God; here the Precious Blood of Christ was poured out for the deliverance of the whole world, that we might be forgiven our sins.

There the firstborn of Egypt were slain; here the manifold children of sinners are made clean confessing the Lamb.

There Pharaoh and his fearful host were drowned in the sea; here the spiritual Pharaoh with all His children are immersed in the sea of baptism.

There the children of the Hebrews, crossing over the Red Sea, sang their song of victory to their Deliverer, singing: Let us sing a hymn to the Lord, for He is gloriously magnified! (Ex. 15:1); here those found worthy of baptism sing their song of victory, singing: One Holy, one Lord Jesus Christ, in the glory of God the Father!

Proclus of Constantinople (d. 446 or 447): On the Holy Pasch, 1-2, in M.F. Toal: The Sunday Sermons of the Great Fathers: Volume 2 – From the First Sunday in Lent to the Sunday After the Ascension, pp.234.

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