Besides intellectual instruction, young people also need prayer, Patriarch Daniel says as new academic year begins

At the beginning of the new academic year, His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel sent a message to all students, urging them to combine study with prayer.

The patriarchal message focuses on prayer as a way to enlighten the mind, warm the heart and enhance activity.

His Beatitude also recalled that time is “the most precious gift of our life,” recommending to spend it in prayer with repentance and good works.

Patriarch Daniel used his message to bless all students, professors and parents, praying for their good health and joy.

Prayer enlightens the mind, warms the heart and enhances activity: full text

At the beginning of the new academic year 2022-2023, we send a message of blessing to all students, praying to God that through wisdom, good life and right faith, they may be a joy and comfort to parents and professors and a strengthening for our Orthodox Church.

The Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church has declared 2022 as a Solemn Year of Prayer in the Church’s life and the Christian’s life.

Prayer is the foundation of human life and spiritual growth. It is saving and sanctifying because it fills us with the love of the all-merciful God.

The Orthodox Christian prays much, knowing that prayer brings much holy love in the heart, unites us with God, and helps us to see in every person a brother and in every beauty of creation a gift from God.

Prayer helps us face life’s hardships and foresee in this world the joy of the Resurrection and eternal life.

Nothing can replace prayer; no activity is more precious than it, for it gives us inspiration and power for beautiful words and good deeds.

In a hectic world, with our eyes on the clock, the notebook or the computer, shorter and more frequent prayer can become a spiritual breath of the soul, a source of peace and love for God and our neighbours.

Prayer is like a spiritual clock that sets the rhythm of the life and spiritual growth of the believer.

At all times and in all places, we must praise God, thank Him and ask for His help because good is accomplished only with His help, as the Saviour Jesus Christ tells us: “apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5), that is, nothing good.

The Holy Gospel shows us that every moment of a Christian’s life can be a time of salvation. We can instantly earn salvation through repentance, like the thief on the cross who repented (Luke 23:43).

The Holy Fathers understood the time of life as a book we write and correct until the day of our departure from this life when God judges or evaluates the time of man’s life in light of his deeds.

Time is the most precious gift of our life, and we have two ways to use the time for salvation: in prayer united with repentance for mistakes made, as redemption for lost time, and in prayer combined with good works, as fruitfulness and sanctification of time.

Young people need prayer as a source of hope and instruction in their intellectual and spiritual formation. This is why cooperation between Family, Church and School is essential.

At the beginning of the new academic year 2022-2023, we pray to the Merciful God, the Source of Love and Wisdom, to bless all students, professors and parents, giving them good health, happiness and much joy.

With great esteem and paternal blessings,

Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church

Photography courtesy of Files / Mircea Florescu

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