“Do not be afraid.” This is the phrase that the Myrrh-bearing women heard from the angel when they visited the tomb of Christ. This is an important message for the people of the modern age, which dictates not to dare, not to seek, not to have courage and hope said Archbishop Makarios of Australia on the celebration of the Resurrection of the Lord, reports the Orthodox Times.
Read the full message of the Archbishop of Australia:
Venerable Brother fellow Bishops and my beloved children,
The Myrrh-bearing women visited the tomb of Christ “very early in the morning” (Luke 24:1) without fearing the darkness and hatred of the Jews in order to anoint the dead body with myrrh and aloes, as was customary. Despite the practical difficulties that would naturally concern any person, they did not hesitate to set off.
And when they arrived, they began to discover the miracle of their daring and courage: The tomb was open. The huge stone that sealed the entrance had been moved.
The soldiers who were guarding the body of Jesus had disappeared. The corpse was gone and the explanation for all these paradoxical phenomena was given by an angel dressed in shining garments.
The first words they heard from the angel were, “Do not be afraid” (Matt. 28:5). This is a very powerful phrase. Do not be afraid! This phrase is very pertinent in our days, as never before. Do not be afraid; have courage and boldness. Do not be afraid of who you are.
Do not be afraid to confess your faith and your identity. Do not be afraid to witness to your heritage and, above all, do not be afraid to speak the truth.
The highest achievement that a person can attain is not to acquire knowledge or recognition from this world but to dispel every phobia and depression from within; every form of sorrow and pressure. An Orthodox Christian is not afraid of death and does not recoil from whatever trial they face in everyday life.
So, today, as we celebrate the Resurrection of Christ, I appeal to all of you, from one end of Australia to the other, to cast away every fear that you harbour inside you and to acquire the courage and boldness of the Myrrh-bearing women.
Today’s world perhaps teaches us not to dare, not to seek, not to have courage and not to hope. However, Christ teaches us the opposite: to go ahead and to dare, to dream, to have courage, and to hope.
Addressing the entire Orthodox flock of Australia, I urge each and every one of you: Do not be afraid. The cave that you are afraid to enter hides the treasure you are looking for.
Christ is Risen, my brethren and beloved children! Christ is Risen!
Many blessed years, filled with the light and joy of the Resurrection.
In Sydney, on Sunday of Pascha, 2nd May 2021.
† Makarios of Australia