Thursday, March 11, 2010

mission work

Thirdly, our services must be as solemn and beautiful as possible. Beauty and Truth, in our Tradition, are intimately linked. I realize that we can be rightfully criticized for perhaps exaggerating, for over-emphasizing this dimension to the exclusion of other Christian duties, but the necessity of beauty cannot be neglected. If our goal, our mission, is to witness to the Kingdom of God which has come upon us, to testify to our encounter with the Risen Christ, iconography, architecture, music and even landscaping are essential components of our witnesss to the world. We need art, as well as words, that is “adequate to God.” And if a parish, no matter how humble, celebrates its services in an intelligible language, with regular and meaningfull preaching, in an environment of artistic beauty and solemnity, it will, at least liturgically, be adequate to the mission of the Church--to offer Paschal Joy to all who enter and, with attention, participate in its worship. The rest, the encounter, the experience of the Risen and Triumphant Lord, is up to God. -- Fr. Michael Oleksa, Chancellor of the Diocese of Alaska (OCA)

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