The liturgies were led by the Montenegrin-coastal Metropolitan Amfilohije, the Borispolian and Brovarian Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate Antonije, the Episcopal from Nova Gracanica and Middle-American American Longin, Atanasije from Milesevo, South American and Buenos Aires Kirilo, the newly-elected Dimitrije from Zahumlje-Herzegovina and bishop Joanikije from Budim-Niksic with Priesthood and Monasticism.
The liturgy also presented Serbian Ambassador Zoran Bingulac, the Russian Ambassador Sergey Nikolayevich Bublikov, the President of Matica Srpska in Novi Sad Ivan Negrisorac, the representatives of the Serbian Ministry of Justice Marko Nikolic and Miroljub Radosavljevic and the Director of the Secretariat for Religions in the Republic of Srpska Dragan Davidovic. The queue of believers started their walk at 6 p.m. in front of Saborni Temple, dedicated to St. Vasilije Ostroski, and the liturgy stopped at several town intersections and at the central town’s square, from where blessings and prayers for the health and progress of Niksic, as well as for all the people, were made.
The pillow of St. Vasilije was brought through the streets of Niksic, which is preserved in the Saborni Temple in Niksic. The Bishop of Budim - Niksic Joanikije said that this clerical walk is the walk in the glory of the saint of Ostrog and the resurrection of Christ.
"Today, the Orthodox Christians throughout the entire planet invoke the name of St. Vasilije and glorify the Jesus Almighty who gave him this blessing to represent us before the tomb of God, and to give us charity, grace, health, healing, peace, reconciliation, and cherish the love for God, our beloved ones and the Holy Church in our hearts," said Joanikije at the Liberty Square in Niksic.
The Episcope reminded of the first liturgy in 1996 founded by the Montenegrin-Coastal Metropolitan and Eparchy of Zahumlje-Herzegovina when relics of St. Vasilije were carried and when, after the unforgettable downpour, the town was illuminated by a ray of light, as a "sign, prophecy, through which the great God’s grace poured out”.
Metropolitan Antonije expressed joy for participating in the liturgy on the occasion about which he "heard a lot about in Kiev and from the experience of other people, and today he personally felt the love of the people towards God".
"The Church of Christ is not the walls and the roof, but the faith and the living of people in the truth of Christ. No matter what nationality we are and where we are born, even what century we live in, we are members of the Church and the children of God," said Metropolitan Antonije. According to him, people who do not understand the essence of the church’s life and its existence, think of the Church as a political institution.
"They are trying to make something out of the people that will be useful for them for the purposes they need. For many of the world's powerful people and politicians, man is like an electron who is important only at the moment when it comes to elections. The Church strives to preserve a man in community with God," said Antonije. He pointed out that when someone wants to create their own church and others he has to know that in order to do so, he must die and resurrect.
The ceremonial liturgy is the central event of the traditional spiritual and cultural manifestation "Days of St. Vasilije Ostroski" organized by the Eparchy of Budimlje-Nikšic and the Church municipality of Niksic. The event ended with the solemn liturgy in the Piva Monastery, held by Metropolitan Antonije and Bishop Joanikije.
St. Vasilije Day was first marked with the midnight liturgy, followed by a holy liturgy at the Ostrog Monastery where thousands of believers from many countries paid respect to the Saint’s relics with faith, love and hope.
St. Vasilije Ostroski was born on December 28th in 1610 in the village of Mrkonjići in Herzegovina as Stojan Jovanovic, and became a monk in the Trebinje monastery of Uspenija the Holy Virgin. He came to Ostrog after the destruction of the Tvrdos monastery where he lived and worked as an archpriest and became the metropolitan of Herzegovina in 1639. He died in 1671, and because of his powers to heal, he was proclaimed a saint and a wizard.
Text by Mina Business, on May 12th, 2018, read more at Vijesti