Home Death and Dying (DD) The moment of death | Orthodox Elders | Fr. Arsenie Papacioc

The moment of death | Orthodox Elders | Fr. Arsenie Papacioc

In this video recording, Fr. Arsenie Papacioc (+July 19, 2011) talks about the moment of death and invites us to cherish the value of time. The Romanian communists sentenced Fr. Arsenie to forced labor and kept him in prisons for 10 years for his Christian faith.

Video source: 2001 

Fr. Arsenie:

Young people, give me your young age if you don’t know what to do with it! I cannot but be preoccupied with this problem of the time of the last breath. There will be a great wail. I am telling you this as a father and as an older brother. The world does not realize what will happen at that moment. You have nowhere to run, you have no one to ask, you “no longer” have God, the only One who could give you wings, not just legs, and a heart, not just a head. You only have your deeds. Death does not delay to come, my dears, not even with the most insignificant fraction of a second. When she comes, she comes… and she takes us… Where? Depending on our deeds, of course… What are your deeds? You had no interest, no attention [to others], or was it just a simple inertia? “I did this today, I’ll do it tomorrow…” You say: “Of course, I won’t die until tomorrow”. But please allow my old age to speak: “But maybe you will die… And if you won’t die, why can’t you just earn new gifts of grace?” Every moment is a time, and a sigh can be a prayer. And if a moment is [rightly] lived, based on the principle of inertia, you commit to live the next one as well, and your life becomes thus a permanent [state of] presence.

Well, “a moment”… Someone might laugh at it… A young man might think that by seeing himself today with muscles, he will live longer than he thinks, and that is a big mistake. A moment, my dears, if it is lived, it is a connection with your eternity… and this is the great mystery, to know how to have a relationship with your eternity in each moment. You say a moment is insignificant, yes, looking at a whole chain, a link is very insignificant, but if a [single] link is missing… the chain breaks… Do you, brothers and sisters, think that it will be just some wailing [at the time of judgment]? It’s not like that, my dears, it will be a great pain, like you have lost everything.

This life is not given to us for anything other than to gain the other [life]. God did not create us for something else, but only for Him. He didn’t create us to live a chaotic life… He made us rejoice forever and ever with Him because God is not some kind of craftsman, who creates us and then ignores us. Or one that did it just to brag about what he had done. He very much wants us to be with Him…




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