The end of October brought to Romanian Orthodox faithful in the North-East of the United States an opportunity for spiritual joy: the feast of the protector of the Romanian monastic community in Middletown, NY, St. Dimitrios the New of Basarabi.
On the evening of October 26, His Eminence Nicolae, the Metropolitan of the Romanian Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas, was greeted by a group of monks and priests from the nearby parishes for the service of the Great Vespers and the Litya.
The morning of October 27 came with heavy rain and wind, but the cold outside was compensated by the warmth from the souls of the faithful who, despite long distances and unfriendly weather, filled the monastery church.
A delegation of the Romanian Consulate in New York headed by His Excellency, Consul General Cătălin Radu Dancu, was also among the faithful.
The Divine Liturgy was celebrated by His Eminence Nicolae, surrounded by a group of eight priests. At the appointed moment, after the song of the Axion, took place the ordination to the rank of hierodeacon of the monk Serafim Paduraru, one of the members of the monastic community.
Those present had the opportunity to witness the Sacrament of Ordination, one of the seven Holy Mysteries of the Orthodox Church, whereby, by laying down the hands and prayers of the Hierarch, those who are prepared receive the power to preach the Word of God, to perform the Holy Mysteries, and to teach the people of God.
The answers at the Divine Liturgy were given by the choir of St. Nicholas parish in New York and by the Romanian students from St. Vladimir Orthodox Seminary.
In the word of teaching at the end of the service, His Eminence Metropolitan Nicolae spoke of the simple and pure life of Saint Dimitrios the New, whose relics protect Bucharest, recalling the importance this saint has for the Romanians:
“It is a short life that he spent unknown by men, but being known by God. His holy relics, which for more than 700 years are a source of blessing and healing, prove that his life was holy, that in his life the Holy Spirit worked, and this work of the Holy Spirit is still fulfilled. By participating in services, by confession, Holy Communion, by prayer, by fasting, the Holy Spirit descends into our lives, those who want to show ourselves the dwelling of the Spirit.”
Furthermore, His Eminence explained the diaconal ministry to which Father Seraphim was now called, its liturgical and spiritual importance, congratulating him and offering him a Holy Scripture.
After the Divine Liturgy, the memorial service was performed for the founders and benefactors of the monastery who have passed to the Lord. Then followed the agape meal, where all those present enjoyed offering thanks to God for this special day.
Foto credit: Romanian Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas