What human tongue could number and recount all the miracles of the most glorious among the Prophets, the bridge between the Old and New Testaments, the greatest among men, the Forerunner and Baptist of the Lord Saint John?! His miracles surpass the power of human speech and writing because he himself is an ineffable miracle of God. Everything in St. John’s life was a continuous manifestation of the miracles of God. His holy Conception by the Holy Righteous Zacharias and Elizabeth was also a miracle as they were both advanced in years and barren. But after Holy Archangel Gabriel was sent by God and appeared to them, they conceived their glorious child. The feast commemorating this event, the Conception of Saint John the Baptist, is celebrated today by our holy Orthodox Church. In honor of the feast, we present two miracles of St. John that took place recently through his miraculous icon in Bigorski and through his holy relics that are kept in the reliquary of the main Bigorski church.
Saint John casts the demon out of a possessed woman
In the spring of 2006, a young successful woman originally from Skopje named E.H. came to Bigorski monastery. She worked in Western Europe, and as she herself recounted, she did not live in accord with our Orthodox Faith, but rather according to the spirit of a neoliberal, perverse society. With such a way of life, she had allowed an unclean spirit to enter her, meaning she became possessed by a demon. Often during work meetings and conferences, the demon would attack her and make her utter obscene, blasphemous things, so much so that her reputation was damaged and her life became hell. Because of her great pain and terrible suffering, the woman came asking for help from St. John the Baptist in his renowned Monastery near Radika. She was welcomed by the Monastery guest master, and when he saw that it was something very serious, he immediately called the Monastery Elder, and together they took the woman to church. The Elder brought the possessed woman before the miracle-working icon of Saint John and with the Holy Cross in hand, in which a piece of the True Cross is kept, on which our Savior Lord Jesus Christ was crucified, he read St. Basil’s prayers for exorcism. During the recitation of the prayers, the demon-possessed woman’s face completely changed and became nightmarish, horrible screams came out of her mouth, and terrifying winds blew. The men who were working on the Lower Palace at the time, not knowing what was happening, thought that some wild beast was growling in the nearby forest, and were so shocked they stopped work for a moment. After reading the prayers, the demoniac regained consciousness and wished to confess. After sacramental confession, the Elder communed the woman with the Holy Mysteries of Christ, and then she completely calmed down, and the evil spirit, through the intercession of Saint John and the power of the Holy Cross, was expelled.
Saint John gives a child to barren parents
One September day in 2010, moved by our desire to visit churches dedicated to the Holy Great Martyr George (whom we celebrate as the protector of our home), we decided to visit his Monastery in Rajčica. There we were greeted by the warm face of a nun (who was still a novice at the time), who kindly told us about the Monastery, the Church, and the relics of Saint George. Her gentleness and love that she shared with us that day were so strong, that to this day, this nun is particularly close to us and we feel like she is part of our family.
At her suggestion, we spent the night in the monastery that same evening. To our great joy, at vespers that same day, we felt a powerful connection with God, which strongly strengthened our previously shaken faith. A year earlier, our second child, Christian, had died of leukemia. That parting was very, very difficult for us, and during our visit to Rajčica, the sister noticed it immediately and tried hard to show us the right path of our beautiful Orthodox faith. The sister sent us to the Abbot of Bigorski, Father Partenij, who received us with fatherly love and led us on the right path through many conversations, confession, and prayer.
Since then, our relationship with Bigorski Monastery continued on. In addition to our first child, our daughter Theodora, and our deceased son Christian, we really wanted to have another child. We often went to the Monastery and prayed in front of the wonder-working icon of Saint John the Baptist. I got pregnant several times, but I couldn’t deliver the child. Tests showed that there were problems with the fetus and it couldn’t survive. After several attempts, all the doctors gave up and advised me not to get pregnant again, saying I wouldn’t give birth to a healthy child because of everything so far, and that also I had gotten too old. Only Father Partenij and our will would not give up. The Elder told us: “Just pray a lot and you will have a beautiful child.” We often went to Bigorski monastery and prayed a lot in front of the icon of Saint John the Baptist.
And indeed, glory to God, our prayers were answered! On May 16, 2015, our son Luka was born.
We thank God, Saint John the Baptist, Elder Partenij, the sister from Rajčica, and all the monks and nuns from Bigorski and Rajčica for their support and immense love!
The Dimitrievski Family from Skopje
(Letter received at the Monastery e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org on September 11, 2011)
Finally, we ask everyone who has experienced the miraculous power of the icon and relics of Saint John the Baptist, or any other saints in Bigorski Monastery, to share their experiences at our email address: email@example.com. We also ask those who have previously given us their testimonies about St. John’s miracles to send them to us again at the address above, because some of them have been lost, and in the fire of 2009 the notebook in which the miracles were recorded was also burned. At the same time, we would like to emphasize that the testimonials will not be published without the consent of the sender, and also, if someone does not want to write their full name, they can send us just their initials.
For the witness and glory of our great Intercessor before the Throne of God, may his blessing be with you! Thank you!