Sermon on the 18th Sunday after Pentecost [2011]

Beloved brothers and sisters in the Lord,

the Divine Priesthood is a vocation. It is our calling by God for to serve Him, with divine happiness and great suffering. Because this great divine gift comes at package with sorrow, suffering, worry, pain…

And who is not called by God can not resist as a priest. Because it’s a huge pain all day doing things, that you do not wholeheartedly.

And when it’s not a vocation installs into priest routine, nausea, indifference…because he do not enjoy, does not increase, not sanctifying in every day.

But vocation means continuous illumination, help, guidance of the priest. For who that is called by God at priesthood is called to serve, to teach, enlighten them, to save his people through his ministration and his life.

Where is vocation, there is love for God and piety and the priesthood is not only a job of which earns his money. Because where the priesthood is only a social prestige and a source of money, the secularization is at home, for that the source of the secularization of the world is centering of the priest on the material in the detriment of the spiritual.

The Church’s services are the eternal life of people but these must served with holiness and explained. For that only in a pious frame, the more inner peace, a lot of depth, we can be changed and filled with grace through the Sacraments of God.

At Opera House we must listen in silence. Like the Theater…You must know what is sung or what is put in scene for to understand the message of the artistic work. We need by the initiates in art for to know the depths of art.

This is the motive for that the priest must be an initiate into the mysteries of God and not a provider of the religious services. For that the priest-functionary makes the Baptism, the Religious Wedding, the Funeral, cuts a quittance at every services in part, he smiles beautifully or sadly as the context…but he is not interested to offer an introduction into the mystical life of the Church. This is because the priest does not want…but also he can not.

And if the priest did not explain what is happening in the Church therefore each understands what he wants and can. And from the understanding after ear comes all superstitions, which secularize the orthodox life.

And secularization of Romania is in full development for that in the Ortodox Church the pastoral examples are few. Are few the actual pastoral examples.

Because the priesthood begins not with the Theological Seminary or the Faculty of Theology but with the change of life, from childhood, when you feel that God calls you to Him.

You must have a complete training and on many levels for you to be more or less proper for priesthood. And if one who is preparing for the priesthood 30 years, in constant mode, he does not feel worthy of it, how someone would feel able to do this with only four years of theological studies?

The priest must be a theologian, officiant, orator, organizer, educator, philosopher, artist, psychologist…But the one that, through everything he does, makes people to feel the glory of God, who sanctifies us all.

All words and his life must be a passage to encounter with God.

But the postmodern society sees in priest something revolute, from other times, which not sees the purpose. The priest’s salary in Romania is a mockery. Between your life and your family, with little money, you can think and to your spiritual flock?

And the desperation includes you, when you see that you  do not have with whom or with what to do the priesthood. And this desperation, holy and profound, arises in the heart of the vocation priest, as in the heart of Saint Peter, which not caught anything all night [Luke 5, 5].

But for the grace of God in us is stronger than this holy desperation, we turn our pain into obedience to God and we continue our vocation, waiting His voice in our conscience.

And without this voice of God in our lives, without His help permanently, no priest could carry the cross of his priesthood to the end.

Therefore, the orthodox priest with vocation does not look in the first place at much fish of evangelization [Luke 5, 6] but to the quality of it.

For that the quality fish of the Church are the real believers, which attend it and support it in authentic mode. For those the priest struggles in continual. And his daily work for the Church is seen in the quality of believers, who see it and hear it continuously.

But not only they are watching us, but also those who not come to Church…but and those who do not belong to the Church.

For all the priest must be a light, a breeze of air, a comfort. Yes, the priest who is struggling in poverty, which is regarded with indifference, which is observed only by few!

 But many young people in the future, more will want a priesthood of dying of hunger? Why not look for a lucrative profession than the one where you have many headaches?

And the future of the priesthood, from very practical reasons, is placed under the sign of question. Because only men of vocation can make on future, in the proximal future, the orthodox priesthood.

And God always chooses His priests! For even if He allows us all, we should not lay with the fact that He enjoys all of us.

God tries on the devoted priest and allows one who came at the altar of the Lord only for the personal pocket. For the Lord looks at the human heart and sees the efforts of His faithful priest and these efforts make him: „a fisher of men” [Luke 5, 10, acc. BBE].

For the truly catching is not through a sermon but throughout your life and work. Therefore the priesthood is vocational, is His calling, and a continuous gospel.

And if the priest is not a living gospel, a continuous annunciation, then the world will cover more with the quilt of any ideology, believing that it is good. But the good stays in the holy life, in the ecclesial life and not in an extremist ideology.

For all that is not right, clean and holy is something extreme. And the Church’s life in the world means sanctification, both, of ours and of the entire cosmos. And this sanctification starts from the work of the priest in the Church and in the world, because this descends the grace of God in our lives.

And if the orthodox priest does this, how can we neglect just the one, which helps the whole life basically? The answer is simple: because the postmodern ideology taught us, that matter has no spiritual support and that the life means joy of supermarket.

The orthodox priest can not give us in the Church sausages, computers, porn movies, rock concerts and free holiday but the divine grace, that stands on base of the world. But without the God’s grace, which comes through a priest in this world, nothing can be seen clean and deep.

And we can not enjoy in real mode without the Gods grace which comes in the Church through the prayer and the ministry of priests.

That is why we must honor the priests of God and pray for them, because together with them we save us with all. Amen!

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