At choir practice when we did, among other things, the Easter stichera (scroll down to or search for “Paschal stichera”), a discussion ensued about how hard it is to forgive those that hate you, and whether that’s harder than forgiving people you hate.
Then I wanted to blog about it and looked it up. It turns out that we’ve been reading it wrong all the time:
The day of Resurrection; let us be radiant for the festival, and let us embrace one another. Let us say, brethren, even to those that hate us, ‘Let us forgive all things on the Resurrection’, and so let us cry, ‘Christ has risen from the dead: by death he has trampled on death, and to those in the graves given life’.
We’d always assumed that it was “Let us say ‘Brethren’, even to those that hate us; let us forgive all things…”
Now I’m wondering whether it’s harder to say ‘Brethren’ to those that hate you, or to say ‘Let us forgive all things on the Resurrection’ to them. I think the latter: to actually make that move. But in the wrong version, there’s the matter of forgiving all things on the Resurrection rather than just saying ‘let’s do that’, which is much easier at Easter than at other times but still plenty hard enough.
Also, I know who I hate, but I’m not sure who hates me, so I can say ‘Let us forgive all things on the Resurrection’ indiscriminately to everybody.