As a sign of deep faith in the Risen Christ and love and respect for the heavenly protector and patron of the city at the foot of Trebjesa, on 12 May 2022, on the day of Saint Vasilije of Ostrog, the Saint Vasilije’s procession – which has been traditionally held since 1996 in memory of the day when the relics of the Saint visited the city – passed through the streets of Nikšić, reports the website of the Serbian Orthodox Church. (photo gallery).
The all-encompassing people’s procession, which got underway in front of the Cathedral Church of Saint Vasilije of Ostrog, was led by His Holiness Patriarch Porfirije of Serbia, who was accompanied by His Grace Bishop of Budimlje-Nikšić kyr Metodije.
Together with numerous clerics and monastics, there were tens of thousands of believers, as well as the president of the Municipality of Nikšić, Mr. Marko Kovačević and the President of the Municipal Assembly, Mr. Nemanja Vuković, representatives of the public, social and cultural life, in the sacred procession to the glory of Living God. The procession stopped in the central city square, where the participants offered prayers for the health and progress of those gathered and their relatives, residents of the city, and also the whole world.
In a sermon delivered on this occasion, Bishop Methodius addressed words of cordial welcome to the Primate of the Serbian Orthodox Church, wishing him many years on the throne of Saint Sava.
Addressing the gathered Hierarchs, the clerics and the pious faithful, His Holiness said, among other things:
“Dear Bishop Metodije, Our brother and concelebrant in Christ, brethren Hierarchs, brothers and sisters, Montenegro, Christ is risen! Christ is risen, brethren Orthodox Serbs! Christ is risen, brothers and sisters from Nikšić! Let us all rejoice in the Resurrection of Christ! Rejoice, all nations! Rejoice, all people, because the Living God resurrected for us humans, for our salvation, He resurrected for all people, for every man, regardless of which nation he belongs to, regardless of even the way he prays to God. Christ resurrected for the sake of all people, for the sake of all creation, to turn everything into the Church, to turn everything into a space of the presence of God’s grace.
“For four full days, I have been following the footsteps Saint Sava left behind in our people, and I am following in the footsteps of the roots that Saint Sava planted so deep in our people. He planted the root, but many saints of God who decorate the Calendar of our Church, and who are sons of the Serbian Orthodox kin, arose from that Saint Sava’s root. I served the Liturgy in Mileševa, I was in Pljevlja, and then I was in Saint Sava’s Herzegovina, and finally, I served yesterday and today in the monastery of Saint Vasilije of Ostrog, I served close to his relics. Here today, in the settlements of Saint Sava and Saint Vasilije, in his city of Nikšić, I have the opportunity to experience the crown of this spiritual joy… Saint Vasilije of Ostrog is the man of Christ and therefore he intercedes before Christ for everyone who asks him with faith, hope and love to pray to the Lord for him.”
Patriarch Porfirije encouraged those present to gather in churches to bring their sorrows to the Lord, to tell Him about their failures and sins and to receive consolation and the grace of God. According to the Primate, the Church “enlightens and sanctifies us, brings peace to our souls, so that holiness becomes the goal of our life.”
“So that we know that there is no peace without peace with God. That there is no peace without diligence and the desire to live according to the Gospel commandments. That there is no peace if we do not forgive each other, that there is no peace if we do not pray for each other, if we do not ask forgiveness from each other. When we are reconciled with God, observing the Gospel law, the Gospel commandments, then we will be reconciled with each other, and we will be at peace with all creation,” His Holiness Patriarch Porfirije emphasized.
“May the Lord bring peace among us, among all the people of the world, and particularly to the places where people are suffering from weapons in our time, for the usage of weapons to stop, giving place to the language of love, the language of the heart, the language of peace, the language of Christ. May God bless you all through the prayers of Saint Vasilije of Ostrog. Christ is risen!” the Serbian Patriarch concluded.