Sunday, September 25, 2022 UTC

FEB 27: FORGIVENESS SUNDAY (SUNDAY OF CHEESE-FARE), PARISH MEETING, VESPERS OF FORGIVENESS & PRE-LENTEN READING PREPARATION

FEB 27: CONFESSION – 08:30 AM, DIVINE LITURGY – 09:00 AM (LIVE-STREAMED); PARISH MEETING – 10:15 (AFTER DIVINE LITURGY); VESPERS OF FORGIVENESS – 12:00 PM.

PROPERS: 02-27-22_Cheesefare_Sunday_DL

Vespers of Forgiveness: Forgiveness_Vespers

Streaming via Facebook Live.  https://www.facebook.com/saintscyrilandmethodius/

Parishes live-streaming in the Diocese can be found here: https://www.eparchyofpassaic.com/livestream

Reading from the “Journey Through the Great Fast” – Sunday of Cheese-Fare: SundayofCheeseFare

Reading for Sunday of Cheese-Fare: PRELentenReadingSundayofCheesefare

GOD WITH US ON CATECHETICAL RESOURSES – SUNDAY OF CHEESE-FARE: https://godwithusonline.org/reflections/the-sunday-of-cheese-fare-ruthenian/

The Gospel for this Sunday is Matthew 6: 14-21, which provides excellent instructions for the beginning of the Great Fast. Let us understand what the purpose of the Great Fast is and understand how we can learn to forgive completely. We are put in the right mindset for the fast and the Gospel of the Last judgment presents criteria for judgment. We are to learn to become like Christ. If we know this, the Great Fast is not a somber time, but a time of joy, expectation and change.

The Sunday of Cheesefare or Sunday of Forgiveness is the last Sunday prior to the commencement of the Great Fast.  This Sunday reminds us of our need for God’s forgiveness and guides our hearts, minds, and spiritual efforts on returning to Him in repentance. We recite the Prayer of St. Ephraem daily and during weekly Pre-Sanctified Liturgies.

On the afternoon of the Sunday of Forgiveness the Church conducts the first service of Great Lent, the Vespers of Forgiveness. On the Sunday of Forgiveness focus is placed on the exile of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden, an event that shows us how far we have fallen in sin and separated ourselves from God. The service directs us further on the path of repentance and helps us to acknowledge our need for forgiveness from God and to seek forgiveness from our brothers and sisters in Christ. This is the first time that the Lenten prayer of St. Ephraim accompanied by prostrations is read. At the end of the service all the faithful approach the priest and one another asking for mutual forgiveness. The following is a copy of the vespers from the Metropolitan Cantor Institute:

02-06-05CheesefareSundayAfternoonVespers

PRAYER OF ST. EPHRAEM

O Lord and Master of my life, keep from me the spirit of indifference and discouragement, lust of power, and idle chatter. (Prostration)
Instead, grant to me, your servant, the spirit of wholeness of being, humble-mindedness, patience and love. (Prostration)
O Lord and King, grant me the grace to be aware of my sins and not to judge my brother; for You are blessed, now and ever and forever. Amen. (Prostration)

This is the last day that dairy products can be eaten before the Lenten fast.

The season of the Great Fast is preceded by its own liturgical preparation. The first sign of the approach of the Great Fast comes five Sundays before its beginning, during which the faithful prepare themselves for the abstinence, prayer, and repentance.

“Preparation for the Great Fast

During the final week before the Fast, called Cheesefare Week, the traditional fasting rules continue to allow the eating of eggs and dairy products.

Finally, on Cheesefare Sunday, we have come to the very brink of the fast. At the Divine Liturgy, our Lord’s words in the Gospel speak of forgiveness: “If you forgive men their trespasses, then your heavenly Father will forgive you.” For this reason, the day is also called Forgiveness Sunday. The service of Vespers on this day is especially solemn, and also followed by a ceremony of mutual forgiveness between priest and people.” From the Metropolitan Cantor Institute, Byzantine Eparchy of Pittsburgh – https://mci.archpitt.org/liturgy/Great_Fast.html