UK Ambassador to Romania lays flowers to tomb of St Stephen the Great

Visiting the Putna Monastery together with his family was the Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Romania Paul Brummell who paid his respects to Prince Saint Stephen the Great.

Ambassador Brummell on Wednesday laid flowers to the tomb of Saint Stephen the Great (d. 1504), ruler prince of Moldavia who is renowned in Europe for his long resistance to the Ottoman Turks and for defending Christianity.

The UK Ambassador was received by the abbot of the monastery, the V. Rev. Archimandrite Melchisedec Velnic.

This is not the first time when Ambassador Paul Brummell visits the Putna Monastery.

‘It was a great pleasure to come back to Putna and have the opportunity to lay flowers to the tomb of Saint Stephen the Great. It is a historic, beautiful, and spiritual place, and I wish success to the community that preserves and develops this wonderful place,’ His Excellency wrote in Romanian in the guestbook.

George Brummell writing in the Guestbook of Putna Monastery. © Putna Monastery

The message was signed by the Ambassador, his wife and their son: ‘Paul Brummell, Ambassador of Great Britain to Romania, Adriana Ivama Brummell, George Brummell, April 4, 2018.’

Saint Stephen succeeded his father, Prince Bogdan II, as Prince of Moldavia on April 12, 1457 soon after the latter was murdered. He defended his country against the Turks, and he also built many churches and monasteries.

Saint Stephen the Great was a spiritual son of Saint Daniel the Hesychast (December 18), who told him that if he built a church after every battle he would be victorious in all his wars.

Following Saint Daniel’s counsel, Saint Stephen won forty-seven battles and built forty-eight churches or monasteries. He also built the Putna Dormition Monastery in northern Moldavia in 1466 when Saint Daniel urged him to do so.

In 1476, Saint Stephen lost the battle of Razboieni to the Turks. He went to visit Saint Daniel at the Voronets Monastery to ask whether or not he should surrender the country to the Moslems. Saint Daniel told him not to surrender, because he would soon win a decisive victory.

Saint Daniel also told him that after he had saved the nation, Stephen should build a monastery in honor of Saint George at that place. Having faith in Saint Daniel’s prophecy, Stephen went forth with his army and drove the Turks from the country.

Saint Stephen fell asleep in the Lord on July 2, 1504, and was buried at the Putna Monastery. He was glorified by the Orthodox Church of Romania in 1992.

Photos: Putna Monastery

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