“Virgin Orans” Order for Yelena Popovic. She asked for guidance from the Mother of God in making St Nectarios film

Father Nicolae Dascălu, Patriarchal Counselor and director of the Lumina publications, handed film director Yelena Popovic the “Virgin Orans” Order on Tuesday, granted by the Patriarch of Romania. The ceremony took place on Tuesday, at the preview of “Man of God” a film she wrote, directed and produced to bring to screen the life of St Nectarios of Aegina.

“I am here today to bring you the blessing of His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel, who, during the Solemn Year of Prayer, has promoted saints from older times, as well as saints from the 20th century,” said Father Nicolae Dascălu.

“For the latest decades, St Nectarios of Aegina has been, at least to us, Romanians, a revelation, a discovery. The relationship between our country and Greece has been blessed by the holy personality of St Nectarios of Aegina.”

Patriarch Daniel of Romania mandated patriarchal Counselor Nicolae Dascălu to participate in the preview screening of “Man of God” on Tuesday, November 29, 2022. Foto: Basilica.ro / Raluca Ene

“On behalf of His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel, Mrs. Yelena Popovic is awarded the “Virgin Orans”, which is the Order of the Solemn Year of Prayer in the Romanian Patriarchate. May the Mother of God protect Yelena Popovic, so that she may continue to produce spiritual films, Orthodox films,” said Father Nicolae Dascălu.

„I was slightly speechless after such an honour. The Mother of God is a mother to all of us, I’m very humbled by this,” affirmed Yelena Popovic.

“We all know that St Nectarios loved the Mother of God. He wrote songs to her. I must say that I prayed to her a lot before I was making the movie, while I was making the movie.”

Director Yelena Popovic received the “Virgin Orans” Order, of the Solemn Year of Prayer (2022), on Tuesday 29 November 2022. Photo: Basilica.ro / Raluca Ene

“Gheronda Ephraim is the one who fought for this film and, thanks to him, the film was made possible. We all know there is a belt of the Holy Mother of God in Vatopaidi and we can get little strips of it. I wore it around my arm every day, because I wanted her to tell me how to make this film,” added Yelena Popovic.

“Thank you very much, I’m extremely honoured. It’s the greatest one I have been given so far, so I am very grateful.”

The author of the film, who is in Romania for the first time, visited the Radu Vodă Monastery in the capital city, where the relics of Saint Nectarios are kept, and she wanted to say that she was very moved by people’s faith.

Father Nicolae Dascălu, Father Vasile Ioana and director Yelena Popvic at the preview of the film “Man of God” on Tuesday, November 29, 2022. The film is a screenplay of the life of St. Nectarios of Aegina. Photo: Basilica.ro / Raluca Ene

“I could feel the presence and peace inside. And the fact that you have a monastery dedicated to St Nectarios inside of your city shows that you really have a lot of love for him,” she said.

The ceremony ended with a short speech by Father Vasile Ioana.

“Christ in our midst! Did we ever think, brothers, that we would be saying this in a cinema? Did we ever think we would come to the cinema to see the life of a saint? What is happening today, my beloved, is history. We are living a historic moment and we thank God that we are here. This is the first big screen presentation of the life of a saint,” said Father Vasile Ioana.

On Tuesday, 29 November 2022, Father Vasile Ioana urged the faithful to fill cinemas with the film about St Nectarios, to give a signal to film distributors that these subjects are important to the Romanian public. Photo: Basilica.ro / Raluca Ene

“And it all started from the love of a man who is related to the saints, Abbot Ephraim.”

The father emphasized that in the film, as in the life of the saint, “the end is not the Cross, but the Resurrection”.

“You will take light from this film. Some miracles have already happened in Cyprus, and in Greece, and everywhere this film has been seen. Already the saint is working in this way too. Tell other Romanians to come to the cinemas,” he added.

“It is the life of a saint. Let’s fill the cinemas! Let us, Christians, show those who organise films that when a film with the life of a saint appears, the theatres will be full!” concluded Father Vasile Ioana.

Director Yelena Popovic said on Tuesday, 29 November 2022, that she prayed a lot to Our Lady during the filming. Photo: Basilica.ro / Raluca Ene

The film “Man of God”, distributed in Romania by Videomix and Papa Pictures SRL, is playing in Bucharest in the Cinema City cinema network. The IMDB rating is 6.9 and the Cinemagia rating is 8.

Alongside Aris Servetalis, who plays the saint, the film also features a brief appearance by Mickey Rourke as the paralyzed man St. Nectarios heals him from his deathbed with his prayers.

The film was released in cinemas last year, on the 100th anniversary of the saint’s repose into Lord.

See also:

Photo credit: Basilica.ro / Raluca Ene

Follow us on Twitter: @basilicanews

Facebook comments

Latest News