Patriarch Daniel on Wednesday announced the establishment of a new parish for Romanians in the diaspora. The parish will be in Ljubljana, Slovenia, and will be pastored by Father Pavel Goreanu, a former parish priest in Turin. “It is a right and a moral duty of us to take care of Romanians everywhere,” the Patriarch said.
His Beatitude indicated that the members of the Holy Synod are responsible not only for the dioceses they shepherd in the country, but also “all together, especially the Romanian Patriarchate, for the Romanian diaspora.”
Patriarch Daniel welcomed Father Pavel Goreanu at the Patriarchal Residence and presented the priest with a priestly vestment and liturgical objects for the new parish and all the liturgical books published by the Romanian Patriarchate.
“We pray to the Most Holy Trinity and all the saints to enlighten, guard, protect this parish and be considered a work of love of the Holy Trinity, which is the source of holiness and communion in the life of the Church,” His Beatitude said.
The Patriarch of Romania expressed his gratitude to the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Ljubljana, which provided the Romanian community with a space for liturgical services, namely the Church of “St. Peter” in the Slovenian capital.
The Romanian Patriarch advised the priest of the new parish to develop good relations with the other Christian communities in Slovenia “because the big problem today in Europe is secularization.”
“We must work together to uphold Christian values based on true and holy faith,” His Beatitude said.
Patriarch Daniel noted that the establishment of the parish is “an initiative of the Romanian Orthodox laity.”
“We were glad that these Romanian believers, quite numerous at present in Slovenia, realized that in four or five cemeteries in Slovenia, there are many Romanian heroes who died during the First World War. Therefore, they decided that the main patronal feast of this parish should be the Ascension of the Lord,” the Patriarch underlined.
“Those who initiated the correspondence were very insistent and enthusiastic so that they became aware of the importance of the year we are in, which is the Year of the pastoral care of Romanians outside Romania,” he continued.
“They considered it an opportune moment to show that they wanted to intensify the connection with the Mother Church, the connection with the country.”
Parish priest Pavel Goreanu thanked the Patriarch for his trust.
“It’s an experience I had years ago. In 2012, I was sent to set up a parish, a community in Turin for the Romanian Bessarabian believers in the Piedmont area,” he said.
The parish strengthened the Romanian community in the area, “thus learning to remain Romanian, to remain Romanian speakers, to remain people of the Church and of Christ,” he added.
Father Pavel Goreanu studied Theology in Belgrade and, after returning from Turin, served at the Church of Prophet Elijah in Bucharest’s Titan neighbourhood.
The second patronal feast of the Romanian Orthodox Parish of Ljubljana is St Agnes of Rome (January 21). The Romanian Embassy in Ljubljana supported the initiative to establish the parish.
Photography courtesy of Basilica.ro / Mircea Florescu.