Fridays in Lent: Quote of the Day

“I shall never forget the tormenting feeling that I experienced on the day I received communion for the first time in many years. The service, the priest, the rules of prayer, were all something I could understand, and created in me a joyful realization that the meaning of life was being revealed. The communion itself I interpreted as an act performed in memory of Christ, signifying the purification of sin and the full acceptance of Christ’s teachings. If this explanation was artificial, I failed to notice its falsity. As I bowed down and humbled myself before the confessor, a simple, timid priest, I felt so happy to be shaking loose all the dirt from my soul, repenting all my sins, so happy to be united in thought with the aspirations of the Fathers who had written the prayers of the office….I had come to faith because apart from it I had found nothing, absolutely nothing, other than destruction; it was therefore impossible to give up the faith, and so I submitted. I discovered in my soul a feeling that helped me to endure it. It was a sense of self-abasement and humility.”

~ Leo Tolstoy, A Confession