His Grace Bishop Macarie Drăgoi of the Romanian Orthodox Diocese of Northern Europe together concluded the spiritual conferences scheduled by the Romanian Orthodox youth community during this period of the Great Lent in several cities in the country.
Thus, on March 20, 2018, Father Bishop Macarie held a conference at the invitation of the Association of Romanian Orthodox Christian Students (ASCOR) in the amphitheater of Alexandru Ioan Cuza University of Iasi, with the blessing of His Eminence Metropolitan Teofan, in partnership with the Romanian Orthodox Youth Association (ATOR) , on the topic: “Goodness – Forgotten Virtue of Christians“. On March 22, 2018, the Romanian hierarch lectured in the amphitheater of the Faculty of Law in Bucharest on the theme “Love Answers All the Questions” in an event organized by ASCOR, the subsidiary of the capital, with the blessing of His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel. His Grace Bishop Macarie continued the series of spiritual speeches in Sibiu where on 27 March 2018 he spoke to the young and faithful in the Amphitheater of St. Andrew Saguna’s Theology Faculty about “Gentleness – the Spiritual Weapon of the Christian Against the Enemies.” The event was organized by the Youth Organization of Sibiu (OTS), with the blessing of the Metropolitan Laurentiu.
“The Suffering or the Path of Communion with Christ” was the fourth spiritual theme approached by the Most Holy Macarius, who was on March 28, 2018, in Baia Mare, at the invitation of the hierarch of the region, His Grace Bishop Justin. Thus, at the “Holy Trinity” Cathedral in Baia Mare, His Grace Macarie, together with a group of priests and deacons, performed the Divine Liturgy, continue the serving in the semi-basement of the cathedral by speaking about the meaning of suffering in Christ. In his speech, the Romanian hierarch highlighted: “Someone said that Christ did not come to remove the suffering, but to fill it with His presence. Let us show that we are no longer alone in suffering. And the examples of Simon of Cirene, of Saint Veronica and of the good thief Dismas, show us the same thing: that, in the most terrible moments, there is still a shoulder to join you, some warm hands to wipe your sweat and blood, a good word to lift your forehead pierced by thorns.” Also, the Romanian hierarch put in contrast the example given by Simon in Cirene, who led, alongside Christ, His Cross, with the exemple of Saint Veronica, who swept the face of the Saviour on the way of the cross, and of Dismas, the good thief who confessed to Christ on the cross, with that of Job’s friends, who could not understand his suffering or suffer together with him: “My Beloved, I have said that if a close one is crying because he has a hard time, our first impulse is to moralize him, give him life lessons, give him indications, even suggest that it is his fault, when most of the times is our own fault. And even if it is his fault, when man is in a misfortune it is not appropriate and unwise to hold moralizing speeches. You can alert or draw attention to it, but when he is at peace, then you can lay o good word in his heart, a word of encouragement. When the fire of the test passes, the tried one is used by these attempts. Let us therefore have a good heart if the suffering touches the one next to us. Let us be like Simon of Cirene, like Dismas, the good thief and Saint Veronica. ”
The last of the speeches of His Eminence Bishop Macarie took place in Cluj-Napoca on March 29, 2018, with the blessing of the High Priest Metropolitan Andrei at the invitation of ASCOR – the local branch. The Romanian hierarch in the Scandinavian lands served the Great Compline at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Cluj-Napoca, and gave a word of teaching. Subsequently, in the Amphitheater of the Faculty of Chemistry, His Grace Macarie held a lively and warm dialogue with young people on the subject of “Discernment: Saving the Orthodox in the Latter Times“. In his word, the hierarch insisted on the necessity of keeping the good judgement in times when, according to the prophet Isaiah, good is said evil, and good evil (Isaiah 5:20). After the questioning session, the Romanian hierarch remained with the believers, as he did at every event, to bless and guide all those who wanted to be in personal relationship with him.