SUNDAY OF THE EXPULSION
As of Monday we entered the period of Great Lent (Medz Bahk), and the Church has taken on a somber, mournful, and penitential manifestation. Beginning last Sunday, which was Poon Paregentan, the altar is closed with a dark curtain, symbolic of the expulsion of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden (See Geneses, Chapters 2 and 3).
Holy Communion is not offered during the Liturgy. It is a period of repentance and reflection on our spiritual journey toward Easter. We are reminded that through prayers and fasting we strive to please God and regain mankind’s original sinless formation.
Each of the Sundays during Lent has a theme. This Sunday is the Sunday of the Expulsion (Ardaksman Giragi). The message of this day is a continuation of last Sunday’s Paregentan theme, namely, Adam and Eve’s fall from grace and banishment from Paradise. The hymns sung on the first two Sundays of Lent remind us of the expulsion and give sinners the good tidings that they may render themselves worthy through repentance.
O Lord, you first gave the holy observance of the law in paradise. But the first creatures disobeyed you by eating the forbidden fruit and thus tasted the bitterness of sin and death. Therefore, enable us to taste the sweetness of your commandments.
(From the hymn sung on the Sunday of the Expulsion)