The sufferings of the world seem to be boundless, with a prevailing sense of decay affecting families of all sizes. It seems that everywhere one looks, there is a pervasive breakdown, both among small and large families. Each passing day, my heart feels battered and worn. Most households are burdened with sorrows, restlessness, and stress. Only in those homes that adhere to their faith and live according to God’s teachings do people find solace. In contrast, others experience divorces, financial ruin, illness, accidents, dependency on psychiatric drugs, or even substance abuse. To varying degrees, all these unfortunate souls bear their own share of pain. Especially now, job opportunities are scarce, exacerbating the existing burdens of debt and suffering. Banks relentlessly pursue them, forcing many out of their homes and inflicting a multitude of hardships. These troubles persist far beyond a mere day or two.
What’s more, due to these circumstances, even the healthy children of these families fall ill. Many of these families, if not for the care and support provided by monks, would find solace in celebrating the most meaningful Easter.
The amount of unhappiness that exists in the world is overwhelming. When someone experiences pain and genuinely cares about others, rather than only focusing on themselves, they gain a profound perspective on the world, akin to a spiritual X-ray. Often, when I utter the prayer, “Lord Jesus…”, I witness young, impoverished children pass by, filled with sorrow, earnestly praying to God. Their mothers instruct them to pray because they face problems and difficulties within their families, seeking divine intervention. I tune into the same “frequency,” establishing a means of communication.
Excerpt from With pain and love for contemporary man – Elder Paisios of Mount Athos, Evanghelismos Publishing House.