Glory be to Thy Life-Giving Passion!

O Word who brought me into existence!O footsteps which tread in the Garden! O voice which called out amidst the trees. Seeking me.

O Word who has filled death! O footsteps which tread over the gates of Hades. O voice which rang out throughout the depths of Death. Seeking me.

O Life-giving Word of God, in whose image I was created and was called to live in your image and likeness. May the sound of your voice ring out in the depths of the dead caverns of my heart and fill it with the sweet light of Your life O Illuminating Saviour, fill the dark abyss of my soul with Your radiant light!

Today, the bulwarks of Hades have been shaken, the gates of Death have crumbled.

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The Hand that fashioned Adam now reaches into the darkness of death, gripping his wrist, the familiar touch of the Almighty enlivens him and quickens him once again.

Eve hears the voice of her creator, the one who fashioned her from the side of Adam, the familiar voice that also rang out in the garden, the voice that caused them to flee - Do not flee today O Eve, for the voice is that of the Life-giving Word, who has entered into the death you created to fill is murky depths with the light of His Life.

Isaiah calls out from among the prophets waiting for their liberation - The Lord has left us a seed, the Lord of Sabaoth has not left us to become like Sodom or made us like Gomorrah! (cf. Isaiah 1:9) The Lord has kept the seed, and tended it now it stands before us the glorious Tree of Life, laden with the Fruit of immortality!

O Jerusalem! How did you not see the signs? How could you have rejected he who came to you in a crib! O Jerusalem, you rejected Him while he was in the crib in the cave and even till now you reject Your Master's crib as He lays, the one who gives birth to all. (cf. Isaiah 1:3)

O Master, leave not our souls desolate, as You left Jerusalem, we who worship Your glorious cross and Your Life-giving Death. We bow down before your crib - at Your birth and also Your death!

We stand before Your Cross in awe! We acknowledge You as King! King on the Earth! King under the Earth! King from the Crib! King from the Cross! King from the Tomb! King of all the Ages!

Glory be to thee!

Lord, I dare not approach Your wedding feast without a a worthy garment. Drape me in Your crimson garment O You Who tread the Winepress. Drape me in the Garment of Your cleansing Blood, that my soul may become more radiant than the whitest wool. (cf. Isaiah 63)

Accept me, O Saviour, as Your Bride. Make me whole! Make me truly flesh of Your flesh and bones of Your bones!

Lord, enliven my heart that when invited to the feast, I do not, through the folly of my mind, begin to excuse myself with affairs that do not weigh but a fraction of your eternal glory - excuses which are filled with death and the cares of this fleeting world.

Lord, my wealth, my friends, my calves and my lands are not more worthy than Thee! Expel such folly from my foolish, fallen mind and my heart that it may be filed with the oil of Your Spirit and the light of Your Life.

O You the Arm of the Father, I stand waiting to see Your glory - to see that you are God, yet all I now see is a corpse laying in a tomb. O the foolishness of my fallen intellect. The Almighty shows His might through weakness.

He Who is Life now lays dead He Who is the Word of the Father now lays silent. He Who is ever working now rests - for it is finished!

Behold! He Who holds the universe in His Hands has now been delivered into the hands of sinners, so that He may have our hand in marriage!

Behold! He who created woman from the side of man, is now pierced in His side, and from Him flows His Bride, His Church!

O what sublime wonderment! O absolute perfection of Love! O absolute perfection of Divinity! Glory be to Thee, O King of Glory!

O You, who found us destitute beside the well in the midst of the heat of the day, thirsty for water, thirsty for love, washed us with Your life-giving and creative Hands, recreating us, making us whole, making us new, giving us a part with you!

Wash us! Cleanse us! Give us a part in Your Cross!

Lord, I the unworthy approach Your feast, I see the table laden with Love, the food of life, Your Body - broken, Your blood - shed. The same Body, that you have made me a participant in!

What husband but our Lord ever died for his wife, and what bride ever chose a crucified man as her husband? Who ever gave his blood as a gift to his wife except the one who died on the cross and sealed the marriage bond with his wounds? Who was ever seen lying dead at his own wedding banquet with his wife at his side seeking to console herself by embracing him? At what other celebration, at what other feast is the bridegroom’s body distributed to the guests in the form of bread? Death separates wives from their husbands, but in this case it is death that unites the bride to her beloved. Jacob of Serugh

O You, the offerer and the one offered, the Lamb and the Shepherd, the Bridegroom and the Feast - Glory to Thee!

O Lord, count us, your adulterous bride, worthy to enter and join in with those who unceasingly keep festival and continuously see the beauty of Thy radiance!

In Your banquet of Love, make me a communicant! In Your Life-giving Passion, make me a partaker! In Your Cross of Love, make me a participant! In Your Light - make me revel!