The professors and students of the Patriarch Justinian Faculty of Orthodox Theology in Bucharest on Tuesday prayerfully celebrated the feast of the Three Holy Hierarchs, the patrons of theological education. Celebrating the Divine Liturgy at the Faculty’s St Catherine Chapel was His Grace Bishop Varlaam of Ploiesti, who conveyed the blessings and congratulations of Patriarch Daniel of Romania.
‘The Patriarch wishes you much success in the exam session, and also urges you to use the conditions that the generations before you did not have to use the rich theological literature that you have at hand to prepare yourselves for the high expectations of today’s society and the complexity of the challenges that the Church faces in our time,’ Bishop Varlaam said January 30.
According to the Faculty’s tradition, the day’s homily was delivered by a Theology student, being congratulated by Bishop Varlaam who appreciated the references to the Three Holy Hierarchs and the Solemn Year 2018 made in the sermon.
His Grace noted that ‘although they lived for a short time,’ the Three Holy Hierarchs ‘marked the life of the Church and our eastern theology once and for always.’
Referring to the solemn and commemorative year 2018, Bishop Varlaam recalled that ‘every one of us, especially the ministrants of the Church and those who prepare to serve the Church’ ought to bring their contribution to ‘a continuous cultivation of the unity of nation, faith and national consciousness.’
Concelebrating with His Grace Bishop Varlaam of Ploiesti were the reverent professors of the Bucharest Faculty of Theology. At the end of the Divine Liturgy, all theology professors and students that have passed away were commemorated during a memorial service.
Following a decision adopted in 1936 at the first Congress of Theology in Athens Saint Basil the Great, St Gregory the Theologian and St John Chrysostom were declared patrons of theological education.
The celebrations dedicated to the Three Holy Hierarchs continued with a religious music concert and the launch of the Faculty’s Yearbook.
Photos courtesy of Robert Nicolae/Basilica.ro