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  • Saint Hierarch Dionysius, Bishop of Cetatea Alba – Ismail, celebrated at Suruceni Monastery

     

    “You are a shining star in the heaven of mystery, Hierarch Dionysius, and you are our unwavering guide, through whom we, the faithful, have found the way of salvation, and we are guided to the Sun of glory, the living Christ, so that through you we too may attain eternal happiness in heaven.” (from the Service to St. Hierarch Dionysius)

    On the occasion of the feast of St. Hierarch Dionysius, Bishop of Cetatea Alba-Ismail, the Monastery of “Great-Martyr George ” from Suruceni village, Ialoveni r., was embellished in festive garments on Sunday, September 17, 2023.

    On the morning of the day, the First Hierarch of the Orthodox Church of Moldova, His Eminence Metropolitan Vladimir was welcomed by the abbess of the monastery, the Most Reverend Egumeness Epistemia (Goncearenco), a large assembly of priests, clergimen, and a multitude of faithful. The Liturgy was celebrated in the Church dedicated to St. Nicholas. His Eminence was joined by His Eminence Nicodim, Archbishop of Edinet and Briceni, His Eminence Anatoly, Archbishop of Cahul and Comrat, His Grace Ioan, Bishop of Soroca, Metropolitan Vicar, His Grace Siluan, Bishop of Orhei, Metropolitan Vicar, Protopriest Vadim Cheibaș, Metropolitan Secretary, Archim. Filaret (Cuzmin), abbot of Căpriana Monastery and dean of Strășeni district, Archim. Paisie (Cecan), abbot of Chițcani Monastery, protopriest Nicolae Craveț, dean of Soroca district, and an assembly of priests and deacons.

    The prayerful atmosphere was enhanced by the choir of Suruceni Monastery.

    The incorrupt body of St. Hierarch Dionysius was discovered on July 10, 2018, and on October 25, 2018, the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church listed him among the Saints to be commemorated on September 17. His holy relics are currently placed for worship in the monastery church dedicated to St. Nicholas.

    Without Saints, the Church cannot exist. The Saints represent the Gospel fulfilled throughout the ages. The Saints have in fact shown us that the Gospel virtues are achievable. “There is no Gospel truth that cannot be transformed into life; all these truths were given by Christ for one purpose: that they might become our life, our reality, our possession, our joy. And all the saints, one by one, live these divine truths as the center of their lives and the substance of their existence. It is precisely for this reason that the lives of the Saints constitute a proof and a testimony that our origin is from heaven; that we are not of this world but of another; that man is true man only in God; that we live on earth for heaven; that ‘our life is in heaven’ (Phil. 3:20) and our purpose is to make ourselves heavenly, feeding on the ‘heavenly bread’ that has come down from heaven to earth (In. 6:33),” St. Justin Popovich tells us.

    The presence of the Saints in the life of the Church has a special significance. This is only natural, since its purpose and its entire work is concerned with the sanctification of man, which is why we also call it a “laboratory” of holiness. The Christian’s aim to become holy is not a “luxury”, but the very purpose for which he was built by God and built again by Christ. “Holiness is true balance, true health, the essential relationship with God. Holiness is nothing other than obedience to God’s command to become holy, as He is holy. The fulfilment of God’s will is our sanctification,” says Abbot Moses the Athonite.

    By God’s mercy we too have such a supplicant in Heaven, a tireless intercessor before God. One who from the age of 15 left all that is worldly, dedicating his whole life to Christ. A liturgist par excellence, a great preacher, called a Golden Mouth, a passionate defender of Orthodox values and a role model for monks and clerics, he proved throughout his life that Orthodox theology is a living theology. A theology that does not consist in the sharing of ideas and conceptions of God, that is not human thinking, but the living of the Living God.

    After the Divine Liturgy, the ministering assembly led by His Eminence Metropolitan Vladimir officiated a thanksgiving Te-Deum Laudamus service in honour of Saint Hierarch Dionysius.

    At the end, the Arch-Pastor blessed the faithful present and urged them to bring good fruits of their faith, following the life of St. Hierarch Dionysius, honoured Hierarch, gentle and wise shepherd. His Eminence Metropolitan Vladimir also thanked Egumeness Epistemia and the monastic community for the rich activity carried out in the monastic settlement.

    May we have the blessings and intercessions of St. Hierarch Dionysius, Bishop of Cetatea Alba-Ismail, who is a crown among the Saints who shone in the land of Moldova.

     

    Synodal Sector for Institutional Communication and Media Relations