Blessed New Year! Synod of Bishops releases “An Encyclical of Hope”

2 Jan

The Holy Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America has just released a joint statement titled, We Rejoice Even in Tribulation: An Encyclical of Hope, as a fitting end to the year 2020 and as a promising beginning to the year 2021. The encyclical acknowledges the tribulations endured by the Church worldwide and people globally due to the devastating Corona Virus pandemic.

In the encyclical the bishops appropriately quote a passage from the Letter of St. Paul to the Romans:

“We also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation
produces perseverance; and perseverance, character;
and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint,
because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts
by the Holy Spirit who was given to us” (Rom 5:3-5).

The bishops further encourage the faithful: “Let us not be downcast by our tribulations, but take courage and find in them our hope of the Resurrection.”

Other topics addressed by the hierarchs in the encyclical include: the temptation to fear; the unshakable nature of the Church; the acceptance of God’s Providence; and the ongoing journey of the faithful toward the Kingdom of God.

Read the entire encyclical here.

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