From 4 – 5 October 2014, His Beatitude Daniel, Patriarch of Romania paid a canonical visit to the Archdiocese of Sibiu.
- I.Feast at Brancoveanu Monastery at Sambata de Sus
Sunday, 5 October 2014, Brancoveanu Monastery of Sambata de Sus dressed festive vestments. The Divine Liturgy was celebrated in the summer altar of the monastery by His Beatitude Daniel, Patriarch of Romania, together with several hierarchs of the Romanian Orthodox Church. The celebrating group of hierarchs consisted of: His Eminence Laurentiu, Metropolitan of Transylvania, His Eminence Irineu, Archbishop of Alba Iulia, His Eminence Varsanufie, Archbishop of Ramnic, His Eminence Archbishop Ioan of the Diocese of Covasna and Harghita, His Grace Sofronie, Bishop of Oradea, His Grace Visarion, Bishop of Tulcea, His Grace Gurie, Bishop of Deva and Hunedoara, His Grace Varlaam Ploiesteanul, Assistant Bishop to the Patriarch, His Grace Andrei Fagarasanul, Assistant Bishop to the Archdiocese of Sibiu, priests and deacons.
The love for enemies makes us merciful like God
In the sermon delivered, His Beatitude explained the meaning of the pericope of the Gospel according to Luke, scheduled to be read this Sunday, which speaks about the love for enemies.
The Patriarch of Romania has also shown in his speech that the commandment of the Lord to love our enemies asks us to get rid of the sinful attitude we have in our souls, no other than healing our way of thinking and acting.
The merciful love makes us like God
The Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church has also shown the relationship between holiness and devoted kindness: “The last words of today’s Gospel are very significant. They say: “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful”. Therefore, we see that holiness is not first of all intelligence, not strong will, but devoted kindness. Mercy is devoted, generous love which raises the fallen one, feeds the hungry, and contributes to raising the humiliated one, so that this merciful love makes us like God. This merciful love which makes us the hands of the merciful love of Christ is not calculated by image, but the love got through prayer, it is the Christ’s devoted love in the man’s soul and when it is in the man’s soul Christ works through the hands of the man who bears merciful love in his heart”, His Beatitude said.
Saint Constantine Brancoveanu – a missionary ruling prince
To end with the Divine Liturgy, the Primate of our Church has also spoken about the history of Brancoveanu Monastery from Sambata de Sus showing both the significance of bringing the relics of Saint Constantine Brancoveanu here, and the main achievements of the prince, during his reign from 1688 – 1714.
The Primate of the Romanian Orthodox Church has also emphasised the fact that the entire work of Saint Constantine Brancoveanu in the world was crowned by his martyr’s death.
“Through everything he did he showed love for Christ and for His Church, as well as for the entire Orthodoxy. Constantine Brancoveanu is a continuator of the conscience of the unity of the Romanian nation.
It should be mentioned the fact that his martyr’s sacrifice together with his four sons and counsellor Ianache crowned everything he did, so that his monasteries, cultural and philanthropic work were deified, enlightened and glorified through the sacrifice of his life. This is the strongest faith confirmed through sufferance with the price of one’s life; such a faith is not a simple voluntary attitude because it exceeds the instinct of conservation. A faith that defeats the fear of death is a faith which reflects the grace of Christ. This martyr faith comes from a deep permanent relationship with God and His saints”, His Beatitude has also said.
Gifts and distinctions
To end with, His Beatitude offered an icon of Saint Constantine Brancoveanu with particles of the prince’s relics embedded for the monastery, a blessing cross, and several liturgical books published by the Romanian Patriarchate. He has also awarded the Order of the “Brancovean Saints Martyrs” for clergy and laics to the following persons: Archimandrite Ilarion Urs, abbot of the Monastery, Rev Archpriest Danut Gheorghe Benga, archpriest of Brasov deanery, Rev Archpriest Gheorghe Coltea, archpriest of Bran-Zarnesti deanery, Mr Aristotel Cancescu, president of Brasov County Council, and Mr Sorin Manduc, mayor of Fagaras city.
To end with the events, His Eminence Laurentiu, Metropolitan of Transylvania thanked the Patriarch of Romania for the blessing given to the faithful from Fagaras land.
Sambata de Sus Monastery founded by Saint Martyr Prince Constantine Brancoveanu is one of the best known monastic settlements of our country. Situated in the picturesque scenery of the Fagaras Mountains, the monastery gathers pilgrims from all parts of the country every day.