Thursday, September 4, 2014

Elder Justin Parvu: the faithful are in need of holy men


I came across this rather interesting little gem recently. The Orthodox elder who is speaking says, inter alia:

The faithful have little need for scientists now; the world is full of them! They are in need of holy men, of those who lead the holy life, of those who can attract the Grace of God to them!

This was my first 'encounter' with Fr Justin. A little research revealed him to have been an abbot of an monastery in Romania, the last of the elders of the Orthodox Church to have suffered oppression under the Communist regime. Renowned for his wisdom and piety (see some of his counsels here), he departed this life only last year at the age of 94 (more biographical information here). Forty days after his death, visitors to his cell reported a miraculous flow of myrrh from a picture of him displayed there (here). 

I claim no expertise on Fr Justin's life on the basis of so brief an 'acquaintance' But it is evident that he was a man of great holiness, a true servant of God and his Church, who by the witness of life, by his counsel, and by his teaching helped others grow in holiness also. How true his words seem that what the faithful need more than anything are 'Holy Men.'  To see before them a life that is truly lived for God can only strengthen them in their efforts to lead their life according to the holy way that Christ asked all those who love him to live.

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