The Patriarchal Cathedral in Bucharest keeps a very important gift of Romanians: the holy relics of Saint Demetrios the New, Protector of Bucharest. Received from General Pyotr Saltykov, the holy relics have been blessing Romanians for over 240 years.
In 1786, the relics of St. Demetrios were placed in a wooden reliquary, clad in silver in some places. The coffin was made by Metropolitan Gregory II of Wallachia.
The reliquary depicts scenes from the life of Saint Demetrios on its sides.
The lid has the depiction of the full-size image of the Saint wearing monastic vestments.
The following inscription is engraved at the feet of St. Demetrios:
For the piety and love of the Holy and Venerable Father Demetrios Basarabov, this silver coffin was made, adorned as can be seen, through the effort and at the expense of the bishop Ghenadie II of Argeş and of some good Christians, to be for the memory of the descendants, who, seeing this, to urge themselves to do other great deeds and useful to the Romanian people. This coffin was made in the days of His Majesty Carol I, the brave lord of the Romanians, the year of salvation 1879, December, with Mr. Vasile Boerescu being the minister of religious affairs, when this coffin was handed over.
Photography courtesy of Basilica.ro / Raluca Ene