Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada

May 3, 1998. Third Sunday of Pascha: The Myrrh-bearing Women

God's Word: Acts 6:1-7; Mark 15:43-16:8.


The Myrrh-bearing Women expressed wonderful devotion to the Saviour by their courage in going to His tomb on the first day of the week without knowing whether they would be safe in doing so or even whether they would gain access to the tomb of their beloved Teacher Who had perished so tragically (so they thought).

They showed the three cardinal virtues: faith, hope and love. And these virtues are all linked. None of them exists without the other. They are true treasures - they transform our daily lives from a sad and graceless existence into a life of victory and joy. They give us strength. They come from the Almighty God Who inspires them in our hearts, our minds and our souls.

Do we have trials in our lives? Are there obstacles, heavy stones which cover the tomb of our despair? We must roll away this stone and see that by God's kindness and grace each despair becomes a step towards heaven as we find that we can continually rely upon God, the true Source of all that is good.

The good news is that we already have this gift of faith which the myrrh-bearers found. This faith will roll away the stone as we exercise the courage that comes from hope and love. But we shall not know this unless we rise up from our bed of despair and direct our steps towards that sad and scary tomb.

When we arrive, we shall find this joy: the stone is already rolled away and the Risen Christ meets us with the victorious greeting: "Rejoice!"

Ihor George Kutash, Priest