Saint Joseph the Merciful stood out through self-sacrifice, Bishop of Southern Bessarabia says

“He distinguished himself through self-sacrifice, but especially through mercy and the care he had for the Church and its servants,” Bishop Veniamin of Southern Bessarabia said Tuesday about Saint Joseph the Merciful at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Iasi.

„He was one of the worthy hierarchs who pastored this metropolis,” Bishop Veniamin said about St Joseph who was born in Bessarabia (Republic of Moldova) and became a Metropolitan of Moldavia. He received the surname of “the Merciful” because of his care for youth, clergy and poor people.

“He trained generations of servants. During the 27 years he served in the City of Moldavia, he showed himself to be a true father, a devoted missionary and a true servant of Christ, who becomes everything to all to win them for eternity.”

Although the context was not favourable, being a period with social unrest, St. Joseph the Merciful “showed himself a man of prayer, who with much love and devotion guided his pastors, asking God to protect the country and the Romanian nation.”

The festive Divine Liturgy for the feast of Saint Joseph the Merciful was presided over by Metropolitan Teofan of Moldavia and Bukovina. Concelebrants included Bishop Veniamin of Southern Bessarabia and Assistant Bishop Damaschin of Dorna. Photo: Tudorel Rusu / Doxologia.

The Bishop of Southern Bessarabia recalled that Saint Joseph obtained future things through his care for the poor and urged us to follow his example.

“Let us entreat the Holy Hierarch Joseph to be with us in this life, to forward our prayers before the throne of the Most Holy Trinity and to teach us to be merciful, to be generous and kind to those around us, to teach us to be obedient to God’s commandments,” Bishop Veniamin urged January 26, 2021.

At the end of the Divine Liturgy, Metropolitan Teofan of Moldavia and Bukovina underlined the fact that the Holy Hierarch Joseph the Merciful represents a gift offered by God to the Church and the faithful in the area of Moldova and beyond.

The Men’s Choir “Saint Joseph Naniescu” of the Faculty of Orthodox Theology “Dumitru Stăniloae” in Iași offered the liturgical responses at the chant stand.

Saint Joseph the Merciful was canonized by the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church in 2017. The official proclamation of the canonization took place on March 25, 2018 at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Iasi.

Foto credit: Tudorel Rusu/Doxologia

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