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Remind Priest of Sacrifice During Lent: An Urgent Plea

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Moscow, March 18 – The cross, which was carried out in the churches of the Russian Orthodox Church this Saturday, reminds believers of the goals of Great Lent, the sufferings of Jesus Christ and the sacrifice that believers make. Priest Alexander Volkov, Chairman of the Information Committee of the Church. Moscow diocese, in an interview with the News Agency.
During the evening service on Saturday of the third week of Lent, a solemn crucifixion is carried out from the altar. The Cross of the Lord is located in the center of the temple for worship, and it will be in this place for a week (worship of the week of the Cross), reminding of the sufferings and death of the Savior, inspiring and strengthening believers to continue fasting.
Chairman of the Pedagogical Committee of the Russian Orthodox Church, Rector of the Church of St. Seraphim of Sarov on Krasnopresnenskaya Embankment in Moscow, Archpriest Maxim Kozlov - 1920, 02/28/2023

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Father Alexander drew attention to the fact that during this week the believers observe a stricter fast, “because the memories of Christ’s sufferings are always associated with fasting and great ascetic, spiritual and bodily labors.” According to him, the cross is also removed in order to “rethink again the goals that a person sets during fasting, because fasting is long, and a person can lose his spiritual goal.”
“The cross is taken out to remind us of the coming Holy Week and to strengthen our spiritual efforts, which Christians can weaken in three weeks. Fasting is not only a system of dietary restrictions, we do it in order to sacrifice for Christ and try in some way to deal with our sins and passions. Therefore, memories The Passion of Christ strengthens believers, ”said Volkov.
He added that the veneration of the Cross is the middle week of Lent, after which “intense preparations for Easter” begin. “The approach of Holy Week and Easter will appear more and more in liturgical texts. The events of the second part of Great Lent – the resurrection of Mary of Egypt, in the fifth week we hear about the approaching sufferings of Christ, about which He prophetically addresses His disciples, and all this gradually prepares believers for Easter.
Lent in 2023 runs from February 27 to April 15 – if you count with Holy Week (the week). During this period, with the exception of some days, the Church prescribes a refusal from meat and dairy products, alcohol, fish and a number of other products. In the church, special prayers of repentance are read, the liturgy is performed less frequently, and the vestments of the clergy are changed. This is the time for repentance, correction and spiritual preparation for the feast of the Resurrection of Christ, which will be celebrated this year on April 16th.
Detail of the ensemble of Smolny Cathedral at sunset in St. Petersburg - 1920, 03/15/2023

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