Sunday, 6 December 2009

A crossroads of the Orthodox World (5) [O răscruce a Lumii Ortodoxe]

As Christians worldwide are remembering St. Nicholas today, Romanians are going to the polls again to choose – as I have already anticipated – the lesser of two evils.

Both candidates swore on the Holy Bible some 72 hours ago, stating that they are not guilty of one serious (from quite a long list, actually) accusation raised against them. Supporters from both camps have serious reasons to believe they are liars.

It may not be as exactly as bad as picking between Hitler and Stalin, as our great-grandfathers had to choose 65-70 years ago, but the choice is not too far from that either.

Irrespective of who wins, we’re either on the brink of civil war of economical collapse. Or both :-(

More than it needs a President and a new (properly working, not interimary) Cabinet, this country (already a storm-tossed ship!) would need a wonder-worker like St. Nicholas…

… as he is pictured here, taming a tempest, on a wall a the Stavropegic Monastery of St. John the Baptist, in Tolleshunt Knights (Maldon, the ‘irreligious’ Essex, SE of England).

This Orthodox monastery on British soil has some great icons and pictures (here’s another episode on this issue), and I find myself constantly amazed with the significations these images can reveal to one’s heart.

It seems to me that St. Nicholas only comes to the rescue when those awaiting a miracle are – although tense, maybe even frightened (click here or on the first picture for a cleared view!) holding their hands firmly on the oars.

I can’t see anyhting else but extremely hard times ahead for all Romanians, but any storms (albeit drawn upon us by our own sins) can be sailed through by those who will hold on to their faith.

Maybe such times are allowed by the Lord to see how much faith is left in Romania...

[For all the episodes of this series, and all the posts on this blog go to/Pentru toate episoadele din această serie şi toate postările de pe acest blog mergi la: Contents/Cuprins]


matuşka Eufemia said...

gind la gind, cu bucurie si cu dragoste pentru Sfintul Ierarh Nicolae :)

Mihai Gociu said...


In my last comment I was telling you about my trip to Tolleshunt Knights.
It was a long journey from Birmingham to the monastery, partly because I went by bus instead of going by train.

I will list the details again over here, in case there is someone interested:
Birmingham - London: bus ~3.5 hours
London - Colchester: bus ~2.5 hours
(there was heavy traffic in London)
Colchester - Tiptree: bus ~0.5hours
Tiptree - Monastery: 30 minutes walk (walking slowly).

As you point it out, there was also the option of taking the train from Birmingham to Colchester. That would have shortened the road. But I already had a bus ticket to London (the initial plan was to visit London that day) and didn't wanted to waste it.

Total cost was of around 35£.
Had I taken the train, it would have costed me around 65£.

This happened on the 26th of February, 2011.

MunteanUK said...

@ Eufemia

It's truly a nice coincidence that we both posted the same icon (fresco) from the monastery on our blogs :-)


@ Mihai Gociu

Thank you very much for your detailed account about how one can get from Birmingham to this amazing monastery in Tolleshunt Knights.


I also thak you for having given another little piece of evidence that train travel is not so cheap in the UK: