Sunday, September 30, 2018

     Priest: “Your own of Your own (Τὰ σὰ ἐκ τῶν σῶν, Твоя от твоих) we offer to You (σοὶ προσφέρομεν, тебе приносяще), in all and for all (κατὰ πάντα καὶ διὰ πάντα, о всех и за вся).“ (Eucharistic Prayer, Byzantine Divine Liturgy)


     What we “offer“ to God in the Eucharist was already His, in the first place. We offer, or re-present to Him, 1. The gifts of bread and wine, and by them “all“ the material world; and 2. Ourselves and “all“ others in the Church, both living and departed. Again and again, at every Eucharist, we surrender to God entirely, “in all and for all,“ lest we forget God’s loving dominion over it all. And then, after we thus hand ourselves and everything over to God, He “re-turns“ us and everything to us, transfigured.


     We are only able to “do this,“ and “re-present“ to our Creator that which is His, because our Lord Jesus Christ, our High Priest, already “presented“ it to the Father, in His Self-offering, in the flesh, for the life of the world. As L. Bouyer writes, “We could offer nothing of ourselves to be re-presented to God, but only what Christ himself has first ’presented’ to him and enjoins us to re-place before him: the ’memory’ of his saving passion.“


     Today, once again, I let myself be relieved of carrying the burdens of the whole world on my own shoulders, at Divine Liturgy. I let my life, and everything and everyone else, be “owned“ by God, Who truly “changes“ everything, by His grace. "Your own of Your own we offer to You, in all and for all.“

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