Proglas - Herba - page 14

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P
R O G L A S
After SS Cyril and Methodius had finished their translation of the New Testament, especially
of the Gospels, it was probably St Cyril, then called Constantine the Philosopher, who then
introduced this spiritual masterpiece in a very special way-with the so-called “Proglas”.
It is a “Foreword to the Holy Scriptures”-a wonderful poem, a literary jewel that stands
at the very beginning of our culture.
...“for as it was promised by the prophets
Christ comes to gather the nations
for He is the Light of this world...
......Verily I say unto you, Slovienes
this gift is indeed a gift from God
...a gift to souls, a gift that never perishes
a gift to all the souls that accept it.
...Matthew and Mark, Luke and John
teach all the nations saying:
...Hear! Listen to the voice of your reason
hear you, the whole Slovien nation
hear the Word, sent by the Lord
Word that feeds hungry human souls...“
The arrival of Constantine and Methodius in Great Moravia must have been a true spiritual
revolution. They came to Nitra and to Devín with books translated in our language, they
gathered the best of our youth at their academy and gave them education in philosophy,
mathematics and music. They taught them how to study the Bible and how to understand
its mysteries – all in a language they understood. And at the end, they celebrated the
“service-mass” in Old Slavonic, together! The script they brought became the basis of
Slovak and other Slavonic cultures. It was a treasure more precious then gold and silver.
This script made a reality the hope that the Emperor Michael III expressed in a letter
to Prince Rastislav, in which he spoke of “a new script for your language ...
so that you too are counted among the great nations”.
The words from the Scriptures and liturgical books became in the Old Slavonic a living
and functional language of literature. SS Cyril and Methodius achieved a success that was
unheard of – Old Slavonic became the fourth liturgical language just like Greek, Latin,
and Hebrew. Later it also became the language of a flourishing literature. In “The Life of
Methodius” we read what happened in Rome in 867 after Pope Hadrian II received the
Holy Brothers together with their disciples: ”Hadrian blessed their teachings, put the
Gospels in Slavonic at the altar of St Peter the Apostle. ’In‘ The Life of Constantine“
it is said: ”The Pope accepted Slavonic books, blessed them, laid them in the church ...
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