On Sundays and Feast Days

St. Gregory Palamas ca. 1296-1359

One day of the week you should ‘keep holy’ (Exod. 20:8): that which is called the Lord’s day, because it is consecrated to the Lord, who on that day arose from the dead, disclosing and giving prior assurance of the general resurrection, when every earthly activity will come to an end. And you must not engage in any worldly activity that is not essential; and you must allow those who are under your authority and those who live with you to rest, so that together you may all glorify Him who redeemed us through His death and who arose from the dead and resurrected our human nature with Himself. You should bring to mind the age to come and meditate upon all the commandments and statutes of the Lord, and you should examine yourself to see whether you have transgressed or overlooked any of them, and you should correct yourself in all ways. On this day you should go to the temple of God and attend the services held there and with sincere faith and a clean conscience you should receive the holy body and blood of Christ. You should make a beginning of a more perfect life and renew and prepare yourself for the reception of the eternal blessings to come. For the sake of these same blessings you must not misuse material things on the other days of the week either; but on the Lord’s day, so as to be constantly near to God, abstain from all activities except those which are absolutely necessary and which you have to perform in order to live. God thus being your refuge, you will not be distracted, the fire of the passions will not burn you, and you will be free from the burden of sin. In this way you will sanctify the Sabbath, observing it by doing no evil deeds. To the Lord’s day you should join the days dedicated to the great feasts, doing the same things and abstaining from the same things. (New Testament Decalogue 4)

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