MOSCOW, March 14 – RIA Novosti. Before the beginning of Great Lent, the rite of forgiveness is performed in Orthodox churches, during which, according to tradition, believers ask each other for forgiveness. Cathedral of Christ the Savior, “- the press service of the Patriarch.
It is a tradition to ask for forgiveness in the church in the evening before the beginning of Lent (in 2021 it will take place from March 15 to May 1). During the service, both the clergy and the laity ask for forgiveness from each other. Usually they say “forgive me”, and in response – “God will forgive, and you forgive me.” This tradition has spread and became popular, people ask for forgiveness throughout this day. However, it is customary to ask for forgiveness more than once a year. Often, before a regular confession, believers are asked whether they have reconciled with those whom they have offended, and whether they have forgiven those from whom they have suffered.
Reconciliation with people is a necessary step in repentance, the priests say. Great Lent, which comes the day after the forgiven resurrection, is exactly the time of repentance, “revision” of one's spiritual life and correction. As Jesus Christ said in the Sermon on the Mount, “if you will not forgive people their sins, then your Father will not forgive you your sins” (Gospel of Matthew 6:15).