After my death our beloved Church abroad will break three ways ... first the Greeks will leave us as they were never a part of us ... then those who live for this world and its glory will go to Moscow ... what will remain will be those souls faithful to Christ and His Church. ~St. Philaret of NY


St. John of Kronstadt: Healer and Intercessor

St. John of Kronstadt: Healer and Intercessor
Living Orthodoxy Spring 1980 Vol II No. 3 p. 14

The story has been told before, but it needs to be retold in an issue of Living Orthodoxy especially dedicated to St. John.  It has been only a few years since we learned of St. John, of his life and works and miracles, which made him even during his lifetime in the last years of imperial Russia on of the best-loved and best-known men of his tome.  Shortlu after we came to know fo him, the feast day of his canonization came aboutm and for the first time a Molebeb (a short intercessory prayer-service) was celebrated at Agape Community at that time.  I was uncertain whether I would even be able to celebrate the service, because of a severly threatening resurgence of a long-standing back injury which had more than once completely incapacitated me.

Despite the threat and the pain, the service was celebrated as planned.  At one point during it, I felt a minor "pop' in my spine, and felt an awareness that, had the back problem been the matter of concern in the service, healing would have been available.  I thought no more about the matter that evening, although at some time Matushka had remarked that my spine was visibly out of line, that I was 'standing crooked'.

During the night following, I half-awakened, with a terrible sensation which I later described as feeling as if a dozen chiropracters had suddenly and simultaneously set upon me, brunching every bone in my back.  I also had the vague sense that I had cried out.  Waking up the next morning, I asked Matushka whether I ahd cried out in my slee; she replied that indeed I had, frightebingly so.  I told her of the sensation I had experienced, and with a certain degree of awe and apprehension got out of bed, with a prayer that what I felt had happened might really have have happened.  As I stool up and took a few tentative steps, she exclaimed 'You're straight', and I was aware that while there was still muscular soreness from the days of stress, the terrible pain was gone.  Scarcely daring to believe, I went about my business.  To this day, although there have been acccasional episodes of soreness in that same part of my back, I have never again suffered the disabling apin I had so many times undergone.

Shortly thereafter, visitin at St. Hermans' Monastery, I related this story to Fr. SEraphim.  His respinse, characteristic in its simplicity and matter-of-factness of those who have come to know the profound provision made for our healing by Our Lord: 'Father John is a powerful intercessor.' 

Fr. Gregory Williams

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