Christ is Risen! Truly the Lord is risen!
Χριστὸς ἀνέστη! Ἀληθῶς (ἀνέστη) ο Κύριος! (Greek)
Christós anésti! Alithos (anésti) o Kyrios!
Dear Beloved in Christ,
If you look closely above, you’ll notice that the Paschal greeting is a little longer. Often in Greece a person will respond to “Christos Anesti!” with “Alithos o Kyrios!” which means literally, “Truly the Lord!” This greeting is a shortening of “Alithos anesti o Kyrios!” (“Truly the Lord is risen!”) and it comes from the end of the liturgical services during the 40-day Paschal period, when the priest closes the service by intoning “Christ is risen from the dead, by death trampling down upon death, and to those in the tombs He has granted life” to which the people reply, “Truly the Lord is Risen!”
So in English, this is another way to reply to “Christ is risen!” by saying “Truly the Lord is risen!”
There are many beautiful Paschal traditions within the cultures of Orthodox Christianity. Some of these traditions were shared during the Christ is Risen Coffee Breaks that took place during Bright Week. In case you missed them, you can learn about…
- Serbian Traditions with Dusanka L
- Lebanese Traditions with Nicholas H
- Romanian Traditions with Carmen R
- Ethiopian Traditions with Mamo G
- Traditions at St. Innocent Orphanage in Mexico, with Fr. Nicholas A
As Americans—and especially as converts to Orthodoxy—Pascha traditions are novel. America has many Easter traditions, but often these are not directly related to our Lord’s resurrection (Easter eggs, bunnies, picnics and pastels, etc.).
Our society around us has long forgotten that Easter occurred just a few weeks ago—and was mostly unaware that Pascha took place at all. Meanwhile we Orthodox are in the middle of a 40-day celebration of the “Feast of Feasts.”
Being minority Orthodox in a non-Orthodox country, it is important for us to accentuate Pascha within our lives. Embrace and cultivate the Pascha traditions you are familiar with. And if you are a convert to Orthodoxy, learn the traditions of other Orthodox. As the saying goes, “If the shoe fits, wear it;” if you find Pascha traditions that work with your family, incorporate them into your life—not just on the Sunday of Pascha, but spanning the 40 days of Paschal joy.
Lastly, don’t by shy to say “CHRIST IS RISEN!” with joy and with vigor—in English or another language—when you call, email, or chat with a fellow Orthodox Christian. (You can say it to non-Orthodox as well!)
Christos Anesti! Alithos anesti o Kyrios!