The “swine flu” craze

For any Orthodox communicants out there preparing to go the way of the some.

The Divine Communion is an almighty medicine.  Whole volumes ought to have been written about Divine Communion.  Where now are those faithless ones who have a difficult time communing so they don’t get germs?  ‘The Body and Blood of Christ is a consuming fire, which burns everything,’ a Philosophy professor used to say. …
The priests who celebrate for years in the Tuberculosis Hospitals are very healthy.  The Metropolitan of Chios, Panteleimon Fostinis, when he was a Priest-preacher of Attica, went to liturgize at the Tuberculosis Hospital of Salvation.  They brought him a large plate with many little spoons.
‘What do you want these for?’ he asked the nurses.
‘The doctors told us, you should commune the sick with these spoons, first the less sick ones and then the graver ones.’
‘I have the holy spoon.  These spoons are not necessary.’  Then he said, ‘I communed them and was about to consume the Holy Cup I went to the Royal Gate and consumed showingly in front of everyone, so that the doctors could learn, that the Divine Communion is a consuming fire.’ …
One gravely ill TB patient, as soon as he communed, spat up blood onto the bed sheet.  The Priest-Preacher then took the spat up blood with the Holy Spoon and ate it and told them to burn the bed sheet.  As soon as the doctors saw that, they said, ‘What is that crazy person doing here?  In a short while you will see him with a galloping illness (TB).’
But not in a short time nor in a long time did he suffer anything.  Whoever fears communion, should not commune because he does not have faith.

Archimandrite Haralambos Vasilopoulos


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