Bishop of Corfu, Mr. Nektarios: “Repentance leads to self-knowledge”.
On Holy Tuesday’s evening, April 3, 2018, his Eminence, the Bishop of Corfu, Paxoi and Diapontian Islands, Mr. Nektarios did the Service of the Bridegroom in the Holy Church of Virgin Mary of the Foreigners.
In his preaching, his Eminence commented on a phrase of the hymn: “How dreadful is slothfulness! How great is repentance!” It is a terrible thing to neglect what is needed for the salvation of the soul and the simultaneous giving up to sin and temptation. Human then becomes brutish and resembles the demons.
On the other hand, our Holy Church precisely to awaken us of the spiritual lethargy, presents this repentant woman, who bought myrrh and with it, she washed the sordid feet of our Lord. Repentance leads to self0knowledge and divine community.
In addition, the Bishop of Corfu analysed the Hymn of Kassiani the Nun, the prominent Byzantine poet, who very accurately portrayed the conversion of the former sinful woman, who turned to the Lord, asking in tears for forgiveness. The Hymn starts in a 3rd singular person and continues in the 1st, the moment when the woman sees her own self and confesses her sins, those who took her away from the community with God.
Then the repentant woman begs the charitable God to accept her with the fountain of her tears and continues promising that she will no longer return to sinful life, since Christ has allowed her to kiss His feet and wipe them with her tears and her hair. Finally, the woman makes a comparison.
On the one hand, Eve who fell to Heaven, when she heard at dusk in Paradise and hid herself in fear, without showing any repentance. On the other hand, the woman comes in repentance. Then, there is another contrast. The multitudes of her sins and the inner abyss of her soul can only be interpreted by the soul Saviour.
In his conclusion, Mr. Nektarios asked the faithful not only to sentimentally approach the high sense of the hymns of the Holy Week, but also to come to the knowledge of the Divine Will and to be led to repentance.
Finally, his Eminence congratulated the Ecclesiastical Music School “Saint Arsenios” of the local Church, which attributed the Hymn of Kassiani the Nun in such a great way.