The Metropolis of Bessarabia has started the procedures for the canonization of Ismail Bishop Dionisie Erhan (1868-1943), who was ordained to the episcopate in Iași in 1918, a short time after Romania’s Great Union took place.
The demarches belong to the South Bessarabia Diocese of the Romanian Patriarchate as a result of the investigations made and the desire of the believers. The process has the blessing of His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel of Romania.
Metropolitan Synod at Chisinau
The Metropolitan Synod (Bishop’s assembly) of the Metropolis of Bessarabia met Monday, September 10, 2018, in a working session at the metropolitan residence in Chisinau to address current themes in the life of the Orthodox Church in Bessarabia.
The session was chaired by His Eminence Metropolitan Petru of Bessarabia, Exarch of the Territories.
Joining the meeting were Bishop Antonie of Balti, and Bishop Veniamin of Southern Bessarabia.
Besides the administrative topics discussed, at the request of the Southern Bessarabia Diocese, the hierarchs analysed the documentation necessary for the canonization of Bishop Dionisie Erhan, whose 75th death anniversary we mark this year.
The Synod of the Metropolis of Bessarabia also studied the service, the akathist hymn, and the icon of the soon to be saint bishop Dionisie.
Arguments for canonization
According to Bishop Veniamin of Southern Bessarabia, the talks focused on the Orthodoxy of the faith, the special work carried out by Bishop Dionisie Erhan as abbot of Suruceni Monastery, but especially as assistant bishop to the Chisinau Archdiocese and then bishop of Ismail and Cetatea Alba (now Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi, Ukraine).
The Romanian hierarchs of Bessarabia noted the special intellectual and moral qualities of Bishop Dionisie, as well as the fact that he had good acquaintance of the Holy Scriptures and the books of worship, he was a respected spiritual director, a supporter of the well-being of Romanians in Bessarabia and a promoter of national values.
Finding of holy relics
During the consolidation works at Suruceni Monastery on July 10, 2018, the body of the worthy of remembrance Bishop Dionisie Erhan was found incorrupt.
The Metropolitan Synod of Bessarabia will submit to the Chancery of the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church the necessary documentation required by the procedure for studying and analysing the canonization proposals of the dioceses of the Romanian Patriarchate.