How Can We Bear Witness, Today?

Father, how can we witness Christ nowadays?

– It’s very simple. Especially today, when Christ has so many adversaries. My dear ones, what we lack today is love for our neighbour – and THAT is our “homework”: “Do you say you love Me? Then give to the poor…” You know, it’s like Christ is telling us: “We will meet again, and it is I Who will ask you questions, and it will be more difficult for you then”.

And there’s no need for the world to know that I’m giving this shirt, for example, to someone; or a penny; or that I’m feeding a dog.

Let me tell you what happened to me once. A man was smoking on a sidewalk one day and there was this stray dog that was looking at his hand; he was following the movements of his hand – he thought the man was eating. Poor animal! – what I would have given him, since I could see the real problem! But I’m saying this about a man – as little as you have, give him something. Even if you don’t have much yourself, either. At least live in that state of mind, in that willigness to live the moment as you should do.

How would anyone dare to say that he did not know that he should have given to his neighbour – that he should have fed the hungry one?

You hurt someone? Let me tell you this: you hurt Christ. It doesn’t matter if that person is full of scab! or sins – you should know this: he is not there, near you, for nothing! There is a reason for everything. So you either avoid the situation, or you put it to good use. Therefore, life is worth living it right [every minute of it].

I once met someone – he had 56 suits. He would not have had time to wear them all!… For [the Scripture says] “You, fool, tonight your soul will be required of you”. If everything you have, you have FROM ME – since no hair on your head will move without my will -, well, I have also given you this command: take care of the poor.

Fr. Arsenie Papacioc in a televised programme on Romanian Orthodox TV channel, “Trinitas”, today, December 31, 2010

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