On his 70th birthday, Patriarch Daniel turned his thoughts of gratitude to God, his parents, and all those who support the activities of the Romanian Orthodox Church.
His Beatitude delivered the anniversary speech on Thursday, July 22, 2021, after the Te Deum service officiated at the outdoor altar of the Patriarchal Cathedral.
Thanks to God
“We thank God for this day when we turn 70 years old. We thank God that He is the giver of life on this earth and the giver of eternal life at the Universal Resurrection.”
“The life of the Christian on earth is directed towards the Resurrection and eternal life. And the period of this life is a preparation for eternal life. That is why Saint John Chrysostom says: What is the use of this transient, earthly life if in its time we do not prepare for the heavenly, eternal life?”, the Patriarch of Romania highlighted.
Parents and professors
His Beatitude also thanked “those through whom God gave life, first of all to our parents who gave birth to us and raised us.”
“We thank the spiritual fathers who contributed to our spiritual formation. We thank all the professors from the country and abroad who contributed to our intellectual and theological formation in general,” Patriarch Daniel added.
Members of the Holy Synod
The Patriarch thanked the members of the Holy Synod for the joy of service and communion.
“We thank all the people with whom we served the Church together in the Church and we responded to God’s call in the years of assistant bishop in Timisoara, in the years of Metropolitan in Iasi, and now in the ministry of Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church. I have always felt that God works in communion, through people, for His Church.”
“Therefore, we are especially grateful to the members of the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church who together with us have contributed to the intensification of liturgical, pastoral, missionary, and social-philanthropic activities in the last 30 years, but particularly in the years since we had this hard labour of serving the Romanian Orthodox Church.”
“Yesterday we had a working meeting of the Holy Synod and I found that the greatest joy is communion in prayer and communion in action. Therefore, we thank all the hierarchs of the Romanian Orthodox Church in the country and abroad, around the country’s borders, and in the Western diaspora, especially since this year is a Solemn Year of the pastoral care of Romanians outside Romania.”
State and local authorities
His Beatitude had the same thoughts of gratitude towards the representatives of the state authorities. “We also thank all the state, central and local authorities that support the social, missionary, pastoral, and cultural activities of the Romanian Orthodox Church.”
“We have great joy when we can help those who are waiting for our help to complete the sermon in the Church and other liturgical activities with social-philanthropic work, by serving our fellow people who need our help.”
Religious denominations representatives
“We thank the representatives of the religious denominations in our country.”
His Beatitude reiterated that “in the Patriarchate Palace we sometimes met in practical cooperation in the Consultative Council of Religious Denominations in Romania.”
The Patriarch pointed out that the Romanian diaspora has reached a record number and considers that this is a unique challenge.
“We are aware that for the first time in history we have such a large Romanian diaspora, 10 million Romanians, of whom 5 million live around the country’s borders and over 5 million in Western Europe, the United States, Canada, Australia, and other parts of the world.”
“This challenge, unique in its kind, requires special activity and creativity, but also cooperation with other Christian communities.”
“And here we think first of all of the Churches in the communities in Italy, Spain, France where the Romanian parishes received for a time, either rented or offered fraternally free of charge, places of worship until we build our own churches.”
Patriarch Daniel thanked all those who took part in the prayer service, but also Metropolitan Teofan for the words spoken on Wednesday at the meeting of the Holy Synod and on Thursday at the Te Deum service on behalf of the Holy Synod.
He then referred to the icon of the Holy Trinity, which he received as a gift from the Holy Synod members.
“I received this beautiful icon of the Holy Trinity, which is the symbol of communion in the Church, in the family, and in society.”
“Whenever we want more communion, in fact, we seek the love of the Holy Trinity both in family life and in social life, but especially this is offered in the Holy Mysteries, the holy services and feasts of the Church. So help us God! Amen,” Patriarch Daniel concluded his speech.