Sunday, October 5, 2008

Kontakion of St. Romanos the Melodist on the Passion

Christ Resurrected, and greeting the Myrrh-bearing women (it's a fresco from a church in Serbia)

I just stumbled upon this beautiful Kontakion, written by St. Romanos the Melodist (and translated by Fr. Ephraim Lash: http://www.anastasis.org.uk/ ). The focus on the Kontakion is Christ's Passion, but this second part also touches on His Resurrection. As Fr. Ephraim mentions, the refrain "So that Adam may dance" is a very bold statement, and is very moving. I include the second stanza below (for many other texts (along with footnotes from this Kontakion) translated by Fr. Ephraim, see the above link):

You took what is mine, my Saviour, that I might acquire what is yours.
You accepted to suffer the passion, that I now
Might despise the passions. By your death I lived again.
You were placed in a tomb, and granted me Paradise for my dwelling.
By descending to the depths, you raised me up.
By destroying Hell’s gates, you opened for me the gates of Heaven.
Truly you bore all for the sake of the one who fell. You endured all,
So that Adam may dance.


Icon of Christ raising the dead - fresco by the Pachomaioi Fathers
(Text from http://www.anastasis.org.uk/ROMK20.pdf , and Icons courtesy of www.eikonografos.com used with permission)

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