The Apostle of love, St John, wrote a new history for the world. Not the history of vices and death, but rather the one of real life, saying: For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. God because of love for us, people, incarnated and came to Earth, because of love suffered humiliation, crucifixion and shameful death, just so that he could open for us the path towards our Heavenly Homeland, the Kingdom of eternal joy. The Evangelical readings on Holy Friday elevate our mind to a sacred contemplation, in order to see the horrific redemptive deeds of the Son of God, as if happening right before our yes. The Divine grace whispers to every Christian heart that these are not some past events, but rather a living and eternally happening deed for salvation of every human soul. What is being chanted here slowly introduces us in the drama of the Passion Week, not as spectators, but as participants in the Divine events which changed the world.
Thou have provided salvation on the Earth, Christ our Lord, spreading Thy most pure hands on the Cross, thus gathering all the nations who call to you: Our Lord glory to Thee
The entire creation trembles, looking at its Creator being crucified. It’s numb before the mystery of the Divine love, demonstrated through this greatest voluntary redemptive sacrifice of His. It’s terrifying to watch the Creator of Heaven and Earth hanging on a Cross, the sun darkened and the day turned into a night. We are standing as well, in a sacred silence before the inconceivable humbleness of Christ, the God Made Man, which He fulfills to the very end, accepting death, a death on a Cross. In disbelief we cry out together with Josef of Arimathea: We glorify Thy passions, we celebrate also the Thy burial…
Behold, says the Most Holy Mother, my sweet light, my hope and meek life of mine, my Lord perished on the Cross, and my womb hurts… my sweet child, my sweet spring, where did Thy beauty vanish?
Joseph and Nikodemos are taking the Divine Body off the Cross and placing it on a clean linen cloth. The Mother washes with her tears the wounds from which forgiveness poured forth to the world, and the Myrrhbearers anoint Him with precious scents. The Angelic orders, on the other hand, inspired with awe by the most glorious deed, begin to chant a hymn and incite the entire nature to a praise and lament. We, people, who have made peace with Heaven and Earth through this fit of the Redeemer, overwhelmed by an unusual joyous sadness, join their chanting, unanimously exclaiming:
All the nations My Lord Christ celebrate Thy funeral with chants!
How could Christ, how could He, carried by the hands of priests, be placed in a narrow tomb? But shines brightly his peacefully sleeping face, as if saying: I will rise and from this dark tomb I will bestow life upon you all.