His Beatitude Metropolitan of Kyiv and all Ukraine Onufry
Christ was born to bring us together in Truth and to give us eternal Kingdom, said the Primate of the UOC.
Information-enlightenment Department of the UOC has published the Christmas Epistle of the Primate of the UOC. Below is the full text of the message of his Beatitude Metropolitan Onufry.
The Primate Of The Ukrainian Orthodox Church
Metropolitan of Kiev and all Ukraine Onuphrius
To the archpastors, pastors, monastics and all faithful children
The Ukrainian Orthodox Church
Christ is born, glorify him!
I congratulate all of You God-loving Hierarchs and pastors, all-honourable monks and nuns, dear brothers and sisters, with the great and joyful Feast of the Nativity according to the flesh of our Savior God, the Lord Jesus Christ.
On these sacred days all the fullness of our Holy Ukrainian Orthodox Church elevates humble prayers, remembering and glorifying the unfathomable divine love and thanking God for what He came to earth, took on our human nature to save us. Saint Gregory of Neocaesarea, says that the ancient of days is God became an Infant to make us children of God; Seated in glory in Heaven for us lies in a manger of dumb beasts; a Dispassionate, Disembodied, Immense polivaetsya them to break the bonds of sin that was due mankind.
In these holidays we love and reverent surprise commemorated blessed Bethlehem night, under the mysterious veil which happened “great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh” (1 Tim. 3, 16). The son of God was born at night, to dispel the spiritual night of sin came upon mankind, and to remind us that He, our Savior and Lord, is “the True Light, Which enlightens every man coming into the world” (Jn. 1, 9), to remind that He is the Sun of Righteousness, with Which night becomes day and without Whom the day becomes night.
How happy was the shepherdess of Bethlehem, who heard angels singing: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men!” (LK. 2, 14). With trepidation they stepped into the Bethlehem cave and saw the Wondrous infant, povit and lying in a manger (LK. 2, 16). Their minds could not comprehend, but by faith hearts are enlightened, what before them lies One Who once out of the virgin earth made Adam and Who is now of blessed virgin wove Himself flesh and came to earth as the New Adam.
The cowherd boys faith of the heart enlightened, what before them lies the eternal God Who came to earth to save mankind, which He created, and to destroy death, which He did not create (cf. 1, 13). The cowherd boys faith of the heart enlightened, what before them lies the Great Shepherd, Who “believes His soul for the sheep” (Jn. 10, 11), Which left many sheep which have not gone astray to find the one lost (Matt. 18, 12).
Came to the newborn Christ child and the wise Magi, the three kings from the East who brought Him gifts of frankincense, gold and myrrh. The Magi was revealed that it was a “high Priest of good things” (Heb. 9, 11) and “King of kings” (Rev. 19, 16). The news that the world came to the King (Matt. 2, 2), alarmed by the power-hungry king Herod, and then, throughout history, this message disturbed those who, like Herod, was obsessed with the passion of ambition. Seekers after power do not want to have a King over it, because in their pride they consider themselves the best of all. Seekers after power do not perceive the power of the Cross, which must leave them with God, they believe that power is something that you need to achieve, using all possible measures and tools, regardless of their moral content. Seekers after power, even if you believe in Christ, they do not obey Christ, but rather trying to force Christ to make them the kings of the earth. It demanded of the Savior, as from the Messiah, the Jewish elders; and when they heard the Savior’s words that His Kingdom is not of this world, they hated Christ and crucified Him.
Ambition – the medal on the reverse side which is a theomachy. The lust for power destroys all who possessed them, regardless of the worldly man, or the man clothed in the high priesthood; it destroys everyone and everything.
It is necessary to remember, dear brothers and sisters. It must be remembered that the Son of God came to earth to give us eternal Kingdom, a Kingdom not of this world. The son of God created the Church, which leads a person to the eternal Kingdom and eternal life. The Church is the mystical Body of Christ, and He, the Son of God, our Savior, is its chief, and Great Helmsman. All people, without exception, must obey the Church, not to lead it, and to live by the laws of the Church. Who makes the laws of lust for power and violence in the life of the Church, the Church becomes a foreign body, which sooner or later God’s grace will throw out the Church threshold.
Do not be stingy with us, for Christ is born to merge in the Truth, Which is He Himself that we are in Christ, learned knowledge that is the will of God, and tried to do it, for in the will of God is our life.
Once again I congratulate You, dear brothers and sisters, merry Christmas, happy New Church year with the feast of the Holy Theophany. Let the Son of God, born into the world and became the Son of man, bless us all, our entire Ukrainian people and the earth. Let the star of Bethlehem shines upon our earthly way, that we in peace, humility and mutual love to spend their days of their earthly pilgrimage, and in eternity worthy to live in joy, where reigns eternal King, Lord and our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
Metropolitan of Kiev and all Ukraine