On 8 July 2012, His Beatitude Daniel, Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church delivered a sermon at the summer chapel of the Patriarchal Residence, in which he explained the significance of the evangelical pericope of the 5th Sunday after the Pentecost, Matthew 8:28-34 and 9:1, which refers to the healing of the demonised people in the land of Gadarene.
Estrangement from God dehumanises the human nature just like in the case of the two demonised men in the land of Gadarene, showed His Beatitude, as Trinitas Radio station informs us.
“The demons take hold of the man, use his mental and senses, will and all his physical force, so that the demonised ones are no longer themselves, but estranged, used by demons. Jesus Christ, our Lord, wants to bring man back, through His healing, merciful presence, to his state of free being who uses his own mental, senses, and will in order to achieve the communion with God and his fellow beings. This humble merciful love of Christ tortures, in a way, the wickedness, violence and pride of the demons, because demons are, in general, evil and proud”, also showed the Primate of the Romanian Orthodox Church.
The Patriarch of Romania also emphasised that man has an infinite value for God.
“Why has Jesus allowed these demons to move from the two tortured men into the herd of swine? First of all in order to show that the human being is more precious than all the animal, vegetal and mineral wealth of this world, that a human has an infinite value for God and the greatest damage is not the loss of a herd of swine, but the loss of a human soul because the human soul is created in the image of the always living God. Secondly, we see that Jesus Christ, our Lord, wants to show that this evil violent power of the demons is limited, namely it cannot do anything unless God allows it to, and the very fact that these demons ask Jesus to allow them to get into the herd of swine shows us that they recognize Jesus Christ as the Master of the Universe, the Creator God, the source of life, and the One Who is the Judge of the world”.
Through the wonder made by Jesus Christ, our Lord, the signs of the Kingdom of God coming into the world are already seen, also said His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel.
“The Gospel emphasises the care of Jesus Christ, our Lord, for the humans, namely He knows the sufferance of every man. He knows the limit of sufferance, the power of the demons and He wants to show that the demons do not have more power than God and that they will be judged and punished for all the evil things they do when they grieve and divide people. Thus, the Gospel is both a Gospel of God’s mercy for the humans and a Gospel of the judgement of the evil demons, a judgement before the Last Judgement. Through the wonder made by Jesus Christ, our Lord, healing the demonised in Gadarene the signs of the Kingdom of God coming into the world are already seen as signs of healing the diseases and releasing the humans from under the domination of the devil”.
The Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church has also shown that what matters most in our life is our relationship with God.
“The Holy Fathers urge us to have always in mind the name of Jesus, to pray permanently, and as Saint John Chrysostom said, not to be afraid of demons if we always unite, through prayer, good deeds, the Holy Sacraments, with Christ, the Judge of the living and dead, the vanquisher of the hell, of all evil spirits. The people in Gadarene have been demonised because the spiritual life in the city had been diminished a lot. The people have become completely physical, material, haunted by material gain, so that the lack of their spiritual life made some of them demonised. We see how our relationship with God is the most urgent and important.”