St. Silouan the Athonite Mission Parish

Sermons

Ordination Speech - Deacon 7/24/15
by Dn Nicolaie Atitienei

 

Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit!


Christ is among us!
He is and ever shall be!


There is so much joy in the kiss of peace. There is an overwhelming joy when we see and testify that Christ is among us today and He shall ever be.

 

Christ is among us because of the love that God the Father, who sent his beloved Son into the world, so whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For so great is the love that God has for the all people, for so great is the love that God has for us, for each of us.


Christ is among us also because of the work of the Holy Spirit, through the communion of the Holy Spirit. Because, it is for the Holy Spirit that we people gather together in the name of Christ so we can pray, give thanks and glorify the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit. And this is the joy that overwhelms the hearts of people. This is the real joy that every single human heart has been longing for since the time it started to beat. (Today we can actually listen the heart of a child in his mother's womb from a really early stage of his life). We can listen, not to mention that we can see, how the human heart is actually looking to meet Christ. And there is so much joy in this.


And here we are today tasting it. And because the Lord is good, the taste of it is so good. And we can not stop ourselves just by saying, as Holy Ap. Peter said when he saw the transfiguration of Christ: Lord, it is so good for us to be here. Let us make three tabernacles. Yes. And I would add myself, Let us make three tabernacles so we can remain here and not cross the north border back to Toronto because today, we can see and taste how good the Lord is.


But as it is through the Holy Spirit that we are able to behold the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, it is also through the Holy Spirit that we are called to live and to share the goodness of God. We taste so we can confess and live the resurrection of Christ to the world, to all the people, to each and every person whom we come across in our life. I can say today that I've met in my life people who lived the love of Christ in so many, different life situations. I've seen people who confess Christ in joy as well as in deep suffering, I've seen people who confess Christ in special moments in their life as I've seen people confessing Christ in the simplicity of the moment. Either, in the humble prayer of a priest before and after every meal or in a quiet corner in a monastery at 2:00 am in the morning. Either in the joy of a 6 year old child with a mental illness or in the kindness and forgiveness of a person who experienced extreme and violent abuse in his life. Either in the life of a completely lonely young adult or in the beautiful singing of St Silouan's choir during the long services in Great Lent. In the love for my children and in the love of my wife which I deeply share.


I do not know what it means to serve Christ at the altar but I've seen the service of Dn Pawel, Dn Theodore and Fr Roberto and this has been strengthening my faith and gives me courage to try, with the grace of God, to imitate it as much as I'll be able to. I feel, as any clergy serving at the altar, called to testify Christ's Resurrection and to live it among people, both when it comes to joy or when it comes to suffering and to partake with the people the joy that comes from it.


Your Grace, we want to thank you for the kind and warm welcome, for all your prayers and for all your care that you have been showing to us. We would like to express the desire for having you back in Toronto visiting us when Your Grace's program would allow it. We know that we do not have a beautiful place like this, but a small and dusty and noisy mission, with a street car passing by at every 3 minutes. But we do have a sincere love that comes from simple hearts of the people who, as statistics like to say today, live way below under the poverty line. Live way below under poverty line indeed, but do not stop glorifying the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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