A few days ago, I posted something about the Orthodox Saint Nectarius, the one known as "Healer" in the Orthodox world. I was saying in my article, pray Saint Nectarius, he heals all diseases. He does, of course, only with the power of God, and only if God allows it.
I didn't expect this post to have so many views. And so many comments.
It shows that, more than ever, we need healing.
It's actually obvious, in Covid Times. So, thank you for all those views and comments.
Speaking of the negative comments, they show one thing: you people didn't quite understand what I was talking about. I didn't explain how saints "work" in the Orthodox belief.
You see, in Orthodox spirituality, people believe in God as a Trinity: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
They are always the ones whom we pray to.
The general belief (as written in the Bible) is that God (The Trinity) is the Mighty Creator of this Universe, of the unseen and the seen (material) world. Also, the creator of Mankind.
As of the Bible and Church tradition of thousands of years, God also created legions of angels.
In this tradition, that goes back thousands of years, there is also the cult and the belief of the Holy Virgin Mary, the Mother of Christ.
I don't know if any of you believe in Her as a Holy part of "deity". I don't know if you pray to the Mother of God if you have churches with Her image, icons, and so on. Do you believe the Virgin Mary is an "idol"?
The Orthodox spirituality is very rich, so to speak. Among God as the Holy Trinity, it also prays to the Mother of God, the Virgin Mary.
Along with Virgin Mary, Orthodox also pray to Saints.
I just want to clear that they are not "idols". We do not go to church and pray only to them, ignoring the existence of God.
In our belief, Saints are the messengers that bring our messages to God. They are people's true and sincere friends, given by God the power to help us.
The Saints (men and women) were human beings just like everyone of us. They lived an earthly life, but they searched and lived only for God's Truth.
Often, they faced a lot of sorrows and sacrificed their lives for God's truth (the Saints or the Martyrs). They faced horrible torture and deaths, but they always looked up to Jesus' Sacrifice on the Cross.
They were the ones who fought, in peaceful unharmful ways, to spread the belief in God. They were the ones who fought to bring light to this world.
Many of them received, as the tradition tells, a lot of gifts from God: predicting the future, travel in time and space, heal any sort of disease, even bring dead people to life.
The Saints gained some high virtues, as Jesus Himself said: you all could do this if you only had some belief.
"Because you have so little faith," He answered. "For truly I tell you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." (Matthew 17:20)
What am I trying to say?
The Saints didn't take God's place and never tried to. We should not address Saints as we address God.
We should consider them, as I said, our friends and good messengers to God.
The Saints are extremely worthy people, in God's Eyes and His mysterious paths. They became worthy of having certain gifts, like for example healing. God gave them these powers, for them to help people. The Saints are our protectors, they have missions given by God.
The Saints take our prayers and bring them to God, asking for forgiveness of our sins, healing, and other things that we need in our lives. They can also ease our way to more spiritual life, to God's Kingdom: the Heaven or the Eternal lIfe.
So, before judging them or considering them idols, please get more information.
We cannot judge something we know nothing about.
Of course, everyone is free to have their opinions. It always depends on the environment we are born into. It depends on all that we were said, during our lifetime.
In the comments to my previous posts, I was asked for evidence that praying the Saints would be "efficient".
Well, I do have that evidence. I myself had diseases and health problems that were cured quickly, after a week or two of prayers to Jesus and Saint Nectarius.
There are lots of books with the testimony of people who prayed God and also chose a certain Saint as a protector. There are lots of books with testimonies of desperate people in sickness, who prayed Saint Nectarius and other saints, along with prayers to God, and they were cured, or resolved life problems, gave birth to healthy children, and so on. Many many unexplainable things.
I myself confess to having exactly these types of experiences when my prayer gets deeper. Law of attraction? Coincidence? God's mercy on us?
You all can interpret as you want, we are all seekers of truth.
None of us detains the absolute truth, but it is good to search for it.
In case you want to try to ask for help if you have a disease or any problem, great or small, there is a sort of a "tradition": pray Saint Nectarius' special prayer (a 15 minutes-long prayer) every day if possible, for 40 days. Of course, ONLY AFTER the usual prayers to God.
Since this prayer is completely free (everyone can find it on the internet, for instance), we just give it a try. It only "costs" 15 minutes a day.
My guess is, miracle or non-miracle, prayer is always a good idea. Have you tried it? Have you tried to pray every day for at least 15 minutes?
Prayer brings a lot of benefits. I am sure that prayer, even if taken into itself, like a "mind technique" or "spiritual technique" if you like, can bring great benefits to the general human condition, and even heal.
It is never recommended to pray Only to the Saint, excluding God. As, as I said, the Saint is only a messenger of our prayers, who brings them to God.
In conclusion, you can believe what you like, of course. I am not here to force anyone. I'm just bringing some cultural acknowledgments, you can take it that way too.
But I do believe that these special "people", the Saints as they are considered to be, deserve some respect. They did have a life full of suffering and sacrifice for the Glory of God.
Many of them were martyrs, killed for testifying God.
They built monasteries and Churches. They wrote books full of teachings and they did bring more light to this world.
Many of them are unknown, lived in caves, in retired and lonely places, in the deserts, etc.
Many of them were fasting for many years, not eating, not sleeping, not having a comfortable home, living their lives in prayer for the good of humanity.
My strong advice is to gather more information about the spiritual people (in our religion: priests, monks, Christians in general, Saints and Martyrs), about their lives, and what they stood for, before judging them and before mocking them. They are the ones who built the spiritual life on this earth.