Broomall, PA – His Eminence, Metropolitan Evangelos of New Jersey performed 1st Resurrection Services at St. Luke Greek Orthodox church on Saturday. Parishioners filled the pews and looked on as the somber service transitioned to joy and pots and pans were struck.

Strew laurel leaves and white flower petals were cast into the crowd and throughout the church. This symbolized the shattered gates and broken chains of hell and Jesus’ victory over death. St. Luke parishioners gazed on as clergy members led by Metropolitan Evangelos marched through the church announcing the historic moment.

The Paschal greeting, “Christ is risen!” is not exchanged until after the Paschal Vigil Later that night, and the faithful continue to fast. The reason for this is that the Divine Liturgy on Holy and Great Saturday represents the proclamation of Jesus’ victory over death to those in Hades, but the Resurrection has not yet been announced to those on earth (this will take place during the Paschal Vigil).