Dear readers of the magazine, we send you the joyful greeting of our Lord from distant Aotearoa (the name of New Zealand in the Maori language).
Christ can give each one of us so much joy and so many opportunities to share the beauty of the Mission!
Demetrius, a 15-year-old Maori boy (mentioned in the previous issue for his newly baptized family) wants to become a lawyer. Two years ago he lived far from the city in a house without running water. Attending a good high school would be difficult. However, God Almighty has His way. Thanks to his exceptional school performance, Demetrius was admitted to the famous Hamilton Boys High School. However, in order to study there, he would have to be a boarding pupil with a living cost of 2,000 euro. His parents were unable to respond. The school fees had to be paid by Friday and it was Tuesday! They asked for the help of their priest, Fr. George. At the time, he was in Australia and urged them to pray together to Saint Demetrius to intercede.
The dinner at a family home of Mission friends in the presence of the good and very blessed priest Fr. Elias and 2-3 friends had surprises in store.
The discussion focused on the living conditions and efforts of the Mission in the Pacific islands of Fiji, Tonga and Samoa, as well as in the Maori community in Raglan, New Zealand. Among other things, the priest referred to the request for financial assistance for the school of little Demetrius, since it had just been received and their prayer was asked for God to show them how to act.
The old lady sitting on the next chair asked to speak privately to our priest, to whom she said, «My husband died last year. His name was Demetrius. Since he passed away, I have been praying to Saint Demetrius to give me the opportunity to do something in his name, for the soul of my late husband. Tonight, when I heard the story of little Demetrius, I realized that this was the opportunity. I will help the child to study».
She would not accept thanks, since in their parish Fr. Elias has made his flock realize that when people give and offer out of their wealth or out of their scarcity, they should not accept back thanks as payment. Instead, they should feel thankful and express their gratitude for the opportunities God presents to them to serve Him and His children and to store up an invaluable spiritual treasure in Heaven.
Demetrius excelled in classes as the top-ranking student in the whole school and was awarded the praise for outstanding performance. In this way, he honored in the best way the great benefit that God brought to his life! His benefactor on earth has fallen asleep in the Lord, but in Demetrius’ memory and prayers she will always be alive. With a single act of kindness, she changed a young child’s life radically. God gave her the opportunity, and she was able to identify it! She served an unknown fellow human being, offered a prayer for the repose of her deceased husband’s soul, honored Saint Demetrius, and praised and glorified the holy name of the Triune God.
How much joy our Lord can give us! And how many ways He can find! He generously gives each one of us opportunities to experience the beauty and joy of offering to our fellow human beings.
May you have a Good Advent Season, and by the Grace of God, let us all walk towards His Holy Nativity.
† Myron of New Zealand