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May 6, 2015 + Reflections on Mid-Pentecost

The feast of Mid-Pentecost, and indeed the whole season of the Pentecostarion, is a period of joy and brightness, and yet the Pentecostarion is not without hymns of compunction. Just as the period of Great Lent is not void of the light of the Resurrection, so too the period of Pascha is not void of the theme of repentance. The light of Pascha and Pentecost compels us to recognize the darkness within us and to seek purity and renewal that we may be able to fully share in the joy and holiness of the Spirit:

As we come together on the mid-feast between Your Resurrection and the divine descent of Your Holy Spirit, O Christ, we praise the mysteries of Your wonders. Wherefore, on this day send down upon us Your great mercy.
(Vespers for the Wednesday of Mid-Pentecost, doxastikon of the stichera)

Mid-Pentecost strengthens our preparation for Pentecost— a preparation which requires a renewal of faith and an intensified effort to ascend the heights of righteousness and purity to which we were called when we became members of Christ's Body. The joy of Pascha lies in a vigorous response to the Resurrection and the presence of the Holy Spirit within us and around us. The more sensitive to His presence we become, the more aware we become of our own sins. And our response to this sinfulness is not a paralyzing despair, but a renewed hope and desire to be filled with the Holy Spirit:

Since we have learned from Christ a new and unprecedented way of life, let us all be especially diligent to preserve it until the end, that we may enjoy the presence of the Holy Spirit.
(Canon of Matins for the Wednesday of Mid-Pentecost, first troparion of the ninth ode)

by Papavassiliou, Vassilios (2015-02-22). Meditations for Pascha: Reflections on the Pentecostarion (Kindle Locations 301-309). Ancient Faith Publishing. Kindle Edition.

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Midfeast of Pentecost

Troparion, Tone 8

In the middle of the Feast, O Savior, fill my thirsting soul with the waters of godliness, as You did cry to all: If anyone thirst let him come to me and drink! O Christ God, Fountain of our life, glory to You!

Kontakion, Tone 4

Christ God, the Creator and Master of all cried to all in the midst of the Feast of the law: Come and draw the water of immortality! We fall before You and faithfully cry: Grant us Your bounties, for You are the Fountain of our life!