The Parable of the Publican and the Pharisee

Why does our Lord God love and cherish humility? He, Who is Himself the very embodiment of it in the truest sense of the word. What does it mean to love? Is it not an emptying of oneself, of one’s ego, to make room for the beloved? What does it mean to humble oneself? Is it not the forsaking of personal pretension, of that false grandiose image of oneself, to see reality: the presence of God’s majesty and His meekness, attentiveness, and gentleness in the still small voice? Consequently, God loves us to be humble, to be friends with us and we with Him, to be present in our life, to be that communion, fellowship, sharing in love and humility, to be that true life and joy. I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly (John 10:10).

And precisely on this Sunday, when the Church in its liturgical assembly has designated the reading of the parable, or rather, the Parable of the Publican and the Pharisee, uttered by the pure lips of Savior Christ at that time, carries exactly this lesson – the humility, the repentance of the Publican, as opposed to the poor example of the Pharisee.

Our Holy Bigorski Monastery, eagerly anticipating the start of the blessed period of Great Lent, that irreplaceable spiritual spring, enters the preparatory weeks with devotion and care. Our Elder and Abbot, Bishop Mr. Parthenius, presided over today’s service, and the brotherhood and the many present people were undoubtedly touched by the powerful words, soaked in deep humility and love, from the Elder’s sermon, bringing the listeners into deep spiritual contemplation and self-examination.