Today in the Orthodox Church we read the Gospel for the third Sunday of Luke, the story of the raising from the dead of the only son of the widow of Nain. As we recall, Jesus was entering the town of Nain and coming out of the town was a funeral procession with mourners including the mother of this boy to which Jesus said, “Don’t Cry”. He then approached the bier carrying the body and touched it saying “Young man I say to thee, arise”, and the young man rose and began talking, and Jesus gave him back to his mother, and they all praised Him.
You see this gospel tells us that the resurrection power of Jesus was already at work in His earthly ministry. This is the story of Jesus’ first resurrection miracle. There are two other accounts of resurrection miracles by Jesus in Luke 8:40-56 and John 11:1-44
Jesus said, “I am the Resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me will live, though he dies, and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. (John 11:25-26).
Yet many Christian believers today who have not fully experienced Jesus’ resurrection power still fear death and are deeply anxious at funerals. Our society especially tries to hide the reality of death, but it is our sincere belief in our Christian faith that helps us deal with the dying, death and funerals in the courageous and peaceful manner of Our Lord Jesus Christ as evidenced in this Gospel lesson. The same Resurrection power of the risen Saviour is available today to those who confess Him as Lord. The Resurrection power of the living Christ touches our lives, renews it from day to day and enables us to grow in the likeness of Christ!
This past week in our Church calendar two very important saints of our Church in America are commemorated St. Innocent of America and St. Patriarch Tikhon, two missionaries who lived and worked among both the native people of Alaska as well as our ancestors who emigrated from Europe and their descendants from the towns and hamlets across the Northeast, Midwest and the Western parts of our great country. It is through their dedication and love for the children of God that our faith was shared and nurtured throughout the land. O Holy Hierarchs Innocent and Tikhon pray unto God for us!
Let me conclude with the joyful news that our installation of our iconostas is nearing completion with a larger altar area and beautiful icons including St. Innocent of America and St. Herman of Alaska our heavenly patron. Much work and effort as well as materials etc., have been put into erecting this treasure, so I appeal to all of you if you could help defray the cost of the materials that we had to procure to ensure its proper installation as well as new carpeting for the enlarged solea it would be greatly appreciated by all.
Thank you for your generosity and love of our Church!