Metropolitan Panteleimon of Beroia gave a sermon yesterday, the Feast of St Demetrius the Great Martyr.
I liked it, because he did not appeal to governments or supra-national enforcers (like the EU, the UN, or a world bank) to perfect man and society by collectivist regulations.
Instead, he simply urged us to turn our own hearts to St Demetrius, and to “harmonize our lives with his life, our faith with his faith, our love towards God with his love”.
MY brethren, let us too call upon this grace and assistance of the Martyr Saint Demetrios, who loves our city, who loves mankind, your patron and protector, but also and the protector of our pious people, which he has delivered on many occasions from all kinds of hardship.
Today, when all kinds of Lyaeuses* threaten our existence as individuals and as a Nation.
Today, when the clouds of a contemporary crisis, under many guises, darken the sky of our country and our soul.
Let us call with humility and faith upon his mighty assistance and the boldness which he possesses before God, to deliver us from the difficult and painful predicament that oppresses us.
Let us turn to God with unity of heart and let us beg God, through the St. Demetrius, to redeem us and this time from the need in which we find ourselves, as he saved his disciple, St. Nestor, as he saved time and again his native Thessaloniki.
Let us ask Saint Demetrius not to abandon us, but to avert the danger which threatens the country and the world more generally, as a champion of the whole world, but also as a speedy help and deliverer of those to hasten to his favour.
And if, my brethren, we call on him fervently not only today, the day of his memory, but every day, and if we are willing to harmonize our lives with his life, our faith with his faith, our love towards God with his love, then let us be sure that this martyr of the Lord and protector, so very ready to please, will not abandon us, and will be shown on this occasion too to be a champion of us all.
Metropolitan Panteleimon of Beroia, Sermon on the Feast of St Demetrius. This is my amateur translation. Source.
*Lyaeus was the gladiator defeated by St Demetrius’s pupil Nestor. See yesterday’s post.
AMIDST its perils, the whole world hath found a great Champion in thee, O Victor triumphant over the nations. As thou didst humble the conceit of Lyaeus, emboldening Nestor in the arena, so also, O saint Demetrius the great martyr, entreat Christ God, that he grant unto us the Great Mercy.
Apolytikion (Dismissal hymn) on the Feast of St Demetrius the Great Martyr of Thessaloniki.
MY soul, praise the Lord.
While I live will I praise the Lord: I will sing praises to my God as long as I exist.
Trust not in princes, nor in the children of men, in whom there is no safety.
His breath shall go forth, and he shall return to his earth; in that day all his thoughts shall perish.
Blessed is he whose helper is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord his God: who made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all things in them: who keeps truth for ever: who executes judgment for the wronged: who gives food to the hungry.
The Lord looses the fettered ones: the Lord gives wisdom to the blind:
The Lord sets up the broken down: the Lord loves the righteous: the Lord preserves the strangers; he will relieve the orphan and widow: but will utterly remove the way of sinners.
The Lord shall reign for ever, even thy God, O Sion, to all generations.
Psalm 145[146)] (LXX)