His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine celebrated the festal Divine Liturgy at the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple Monastery in Kiev on Sunday, December 1.
The beloved primate was concelebrated by a number of his fellow Ukrainian hierarchs and His Eminence Archbishop Michael of the Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia.
In his primatial homily, Met. Onuphry spoke of the good Christian attitude towards material goods, urging his flock to walk the path of God’s commandments, paved with love for God and man, contrary to the fashionable modern rules, reports the Information-Education Department of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
Expounding upon the Parable of the Rich Fool (Lk. 12:16-21), Met. Onuphry stressed that earthly treasures and riches were given to us by God not so we would become their slaves, but so we might be spiritually enriched.
“If someone begins to worships wealth, if it becomes mammon for, that is, an idol, then it is harmful to him and will not help in eternal life. If someone shares his wealth, then God gives everything to him… If someone uses this wealth as much as necessary for himself, gives the rest to the poor, the needy, then he correctly relates to wealth and it will help him become the heir of eternal salvation,” the primate noted.
His Beatitude also drew attention to the Gospel words that he who gathers riches only for himself is a fool, and not rich toward God (Lk. 12:21).
“There is one path where a man finds God—the path of the holy commandments of Christ, the path of the law of God,” His Beatitude explained. “This law is not given to us to mock us, to force us to fast, to pray, but precisely because it is that path on which we meet God. And when someone finds God, the Lord fills him with His Divine power, His grace. In other words, in Church language, it means to be filled with the grace of God, which helps us properly and worthily conduct our earthly life and which leads man into the Heavenly life after his earthly life.”
According to Met. Onuphry, among the many commandments, the most important are love for God and love for neighbor. “If we spend our lives this way, then, as bearers of the image of God, we will walk God’s path, and we will meet God on this path and open our hearts, and He will fill it with His Grace; we will be rich in God,” His Beatitude commented.
Everyone should follow this Divine path, Met. Onuphry said, contrary to modern human laws and rules, which “consider God’s to be weak, harmful, and unnecessary.”
“Even if modernity seems beautiful and noble to us today, in the end it will turn out to be weak and harmful. But that which is of God, whatever it is, is always strong, useful, and necessary for man. May the Lord help us follow the path of Christ’s commandments, that path that is paved with love for God and love for neighbor, so we would be spiritually enriched on this path. And if He sends us earthly goods on this path, it is so we can relate to them prudently,” the archpastor concluded.