Archpriest of the Russian Orthodox Church: How to survive lent and celebrate Easter at home

Father Michael, as far as the Russian Church today is involved in recognizing and resolving the alarming situation in which we find ourselves?

Archpriest Mikhail Dudko: the Church, of course, greatly affected the modern agenda associated with the coronavirus. Especially when you consider that many of our parishioners are elderly and not very healthy people. In the Church in General often people come with adversity, awareness of which is exacerbated with age or disease. And that these people are now primarily raised issues related to the coronavirus. The Church is trying to calm them, and the parish to create an environment that eliminates the potential of infection with coronavirus.

We are a day before the Patriarch asked parishioners over 65 years of age to stay at home. I’m in Friday after the service (it was a very touching and compassionate picture) bless our dear grandparents, as the ancient ascetics, to go to the gate. And after the sermon Patriarch last Sunday and other members followed them. “Bolt”, of course, the spirit is very appropriate for lent. I hope to God it lasted only until the end of the Post, and we like the ancient ascetics who went into the desert for lent, could return to the temple and to meet at Easter. We are accustomed to thinking of Easter as the feast of the meeting and hugs.

Photo: Egor of Provornikov the Patriarch will announce the format of the services during Holy week

All good heard the words of the Patriarch: I am 51 years call you to come to Church, imagine as it is difficult for me to encourage you to stay home, but I am asking you to special blessings to remain. And pointed to the feat of St. Mthe Aryans of Egypt, which in modern Russian Church’s love for the drama of fate, tenacity of heroism and loyalty felt it after years of dirt of Holy purity. But what modern shutter? It can be filled?

Archpriest Mikhail Dudko: the Shutter, a feat of privacy, of course, a feat primarily monastic. We are living in the world, usually do not have the opportunity to retire and focus. And then suddenly life is absolutely rasplanirovke and leaving behind all worldly care. And all the fullness of the ability for concentration, focus, full of prayer, reading all the pent us. All believers have the opportunity to do the right thing.

Although, of course, people are in different situations. One thing pastime of older people, more families with children. Parents forced quarantine to spend more time with children, I think, are experiencing a great shock, especially if a lot of children and they all need attention. And Yes, this “shutter” begins acutely up many questions that have lied somewhere to the side. Who we are in his family? What our relationship and responsibilities? What connects us and what divides us? How should we resolve conflicts? How do we teach children and reconcile with the generation of parents? How to turn to God to make it all right? We like to say that the family is a domestic Church, but what is our understanding of this home Church? Who is the head of this “Church”? What kind of relationship should be inside it? “Shutter” is a good reason to resolve these issues. Or, well realizing to leave at a later time, when we again disperse from their homes.

the Patriarch spoke about the temporary nature of the prayers at home. All the question remains, when we leave the shutter and how to celebrate Easter?

Photo: Sergey Bobylev/TASS ROC: Panic worse coronavirus

Archpriest Mikhail Dudko: This Easter we will meet in Heaven, and there shall be none to glory in “Neoceram the bottom of the” Kingdom of God. Here we see may be only the reflection of the real Easter, this Resurrection, this celebration, and everything will be for real. It is difficult to guess how we will celebrate Easter on earth, no one yet knows whether the holiday is as complete as we have become accustomed. I think probably not, but it should not confuse us. When Christ rose again with him because there was nobody at all, except angels.

So if the feast of the Resurrection of Christ will happen like 2000 years ago when to see it will be only the angels and maybe even the clergy, he will not become less. So you don’t need to be afraid – Easter will still be. And whether we in the churches or are we going to see an Easter celebration on TV or the Internet – it is not so important compared to the Passover and how we will treat and internally prepared. Easter is not to eat the cake and blessed Easter, even though it makes us happy and pleased us. Easter is a transformation of our souls, and this transformation can be completely not related to the material circumstances of our lives.

For the believers is very important Sacrament. Now are blessed to make the Sacrament at home. Is it true that patients with coronavirus, the priests are to come in special costumes? Risks died a lot of Catholic priests in Italy and already one Orthodox in Serbia.

Archpriest Mikhail Dudko: In the Church there is a very reasonable and detailed regulations on this matter. The priest, who goes to the sacrament, or to soborovanie the sick person needs to know what is the status of the patient and whether there was any suspicion of coronavirus. In the case of the EUif it is and especially if there is evidence that the person carries the disease in a mild form, but it is diagnosed with the coronavirus, the priest comes. But calls to the service, which was created in the Moscow Patriarchate, and to the sick coming special priests who in normal times are the hospital service. They have experience, and they are given full and detailed instructions on how exactly to contact with infected people. Communion will be given to such person.

Photo: Vitaly ANEC/RIA Novosti Russian Orthodox Church organizes for members of the online broadcasts of the divine services

We, the ordinary parish priests, prigashaem at home only parishioners who are not sick coronavirus. This also has some risk – you have to walk down the street to go to the staircase – but this is different than going to an infected person.

for Us ordinary and nevolnym, the Mystery is almost unreachable?

Archpriest Mikhail Dudko: of Course, it will be less available. We in recent times from the standpoint of Church history, lived in very hothouse conditions – all the temples were open, secular government nothing prevented – but older people and those of my generation remember what a great happiness was at least a rare communion in the Church.

I am the grandmother of 12 km was carried on the hands to give communion to.

Archpriest Mikhail Dudko: And many have overcome hundreds of kilometers separating them from the nearest temple, drove cars, flew on airplanes. But the spiritual life did not stop, continued. So nothing really new in this situation infrequent communion is not seen. So lived our parents ‘ generation, I’m not talking about the pre-revolutionary practice, when the faithful received communion less often than now. Most of the believers Rossiiscoe Empire communed during Great lent, or maybe a little more often but not every Sunday. However, spiritual life does not stand still, and we are seeing many saints who shone forth at that time.

worship in the temples has not stopped. How it goes? Liturgy, after all, can not make a priest, we need the members.

Photo: Vyacheslav Prokofyev / TASS Patriarch Kirill delivered a sermon about the coronavirus

Archpriest Mikhail Dudko: Yes, the rule is that a priest cannot serve Liturgy alone. “Liturgy” means “common cause”, and two people is the minimum at which it is possible. But even if the parishioners at the Church there, there is always an altar boy and choir, and the Liturgy can be served. Today my service was standing 5-6 people, but no one received communion. I took communion one. It was not usual so it was not the last 15 years. But it’s still a temporary situation, it will be held.

All the social services of the parishes, farms and monasteries required to provide assistance to vulnerable elderly members in the home delivery of products and commodities. As you have in the Church help the elderly?

Archpriest Mikhail Dudko:, We immediately we put an ad on the site of the temple and on the wall, and we gathered a group of about 10 people (we have a small Church and parish, and that’s enough). One of them has a van, and we are willing to provide to elderly people any help possible.