Commemoration: Romania’s former patriarchs Justin, Teoctist “were animated by the same holy desire to serve the Church”

The former Patriarchs of the Romanian Orthodox Church, Justin and Teoctist, “were animated by the same holy desire to serve the Church,” said the Assistant Bishop Timotei of Prahova during a memorial service officiated on Saturday at the Patriarchal Cathedral, in memory of the two Patriarchs.

The end of July marked thirty-five years since the repose of Patriarch Justin, and fourteen years since the repose of Patriarch Teoctist of blessed memory.

Assistant Bishop Timotei pointed out that both Patriarchs “faced the difficult times in which they pastored.”

“They have faced particularly serious challenges. Both of them, for a long time, preached only as much as they were allowed, but they knew how to do their apostleship fully in a different way.”

The assistant bishop to the Archdiocese of Bucharest explained that both patriarchs, despite the difficulties they encountered, “made the Church move forward like a ship that must reach the harbor.”

“Therefore, the Church is grateful for their ministry and for all those who in times of storm, trial, served the Church, including Patriarchs Justin and Teoctist of blessed memory, whom we remember with gratitude,” His Grace Bishop Timotei said July 31.

“Gratitude for their forerunners was another aspect that the two Patriarchs had in common,” Bishop Timotei added. The hierarch urged everyone to have the two Patriarchs as models.

“The example that the two Patriarchs of Romania, Justin and Teoctist, leave us is to honour our forefathers, to remember the hierarchs, monks, priests we met, our parents and teachers, those who can be examples even if they are not among the ministers of the Church. We always have something to learn from people who love the Church.”

At the end, the clergy sang “Eternal Memory” at the tombs of Patriarchs Justin and Teoctist, located in the narthex of the Patriarchal Cathedral.

Patriarch Teoctist reposed in the Lord on July 30, 2007, at the age of 92, after leading the Romanian Orthodox Church for 21 years. Patriarch Justin reposed on July 31, 1986.

Photography courtesy of Lumina Newspaper / Luigi Ivanciu

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