This year again, shining with a triumphant blaze, the peace-promoting procession of St. Martyr George traditionally sent from the streets Struga the Evangelical and forever true messages of Christ’s all-uniting love.
Shining with a victorious glow, the peace-bringing procession of the Great Martyr Saint George once again sent forth the evangelical and eternally true messages of Christ’s unifying love from the streets of Struga. Initially, the devoted inhabitants of the village of Vranishta warmly welcomed the Victorious Saint, followed by thousands of Struga residents and visitors from all over our homeland and abroad, who gathered in the beautiful church of St. George in the center of Struga to be part of the traditional litany. United with one thought – to honor the great Warrior of Christ and protector of Orthodox communities, they joyfully and prayerfully followed behind the floral canopy with his holy and fragrant relics from the Rajcica Monastery, carried by Struga’s Nenad Nikolovski and Bogoljub Dishlioski, Ohrid’s Ljupco Najdevski, and Bitola’s Kire Bozinovski, and behind the well-known miraculous image of the Victorious Saint. This year, generous Struga, specifically the organizers of the Struga litany, and by the will of the faithful citizens, introduced a new tradition – two of the relic bearers to be from other cities, this time from Ohrid and Bitola. In this way, Struga will express its gratitude to all cities participating in the litany, for their significant support, which turned it into a comprehensive spiritual and cultural event. A novelty this year was also that, alongside the icon of Saint George, the litany was adorned with another miraculous image – the icon of Our Most Holy Lady Theotokos of Krninski from her Prechista Monastery near Kichevo, carried by four individuals from Kichevo. As always, this nationwide event was blessed with the archpastoral presence of our competent Metropolitan Mr. Timotej, who was accompanied by Metropolitan of Europe, Mr. Pimen, and Metropolitan of Tetovo-Gostivar, Mr. Josif, as well as by numerous clergy from the sacred Debar-Kichevo diocese. Naturally, our monastic brotherhood and sisterhood, led by Elder Archimandrite Partenij, were part of the organization and participation in today’s beautiful celebration. Amid the many thousands of people who walked dignifiedly in the prayer procession, was also the Mayor of Ohrid, Mr. Jovan Stojanoski, with his wife Nadica. Again, faithful guardians of the great relic – the relics of the Saint, were the young captains from the Bigorska ceremonial guard, dressed in traditional Miyak costumes. In all this focus of spiritual beauty, prayer, and joy, the Struga children dressed in folk costumes, who triumphantly welcomed the relics of Saint George and the Most Holy Theotokos with showers of flower petals, added a special ornament.
The magnificent litany concluded where it started – in the courtyard of the church of Saint George, where the many thousands of pilgrims and guests had the opportunity to enjoy the wonderful performance of the renowned Ensemble “Macedonia,” which performed several beautiful Orthodox songs and old Macedonian dances.
May our joint modest prayer offering to the Great Martyr Saint George be for the blessing of our entire homeland and all Orthodox people!