08 April 2008

From St. Basil, letter 5: Consolation on the loss of a loved one

St. Basil sets the context:

"The heir of an illustrious house, the bulwark of his race, the hope of his fatherland, the offspring of pious parents, a lad nurtured amid countless prayers, in the very flower of youth--he is gone, torn from the very arms of his parents..."

Then he applies the remedy:

"We have not been bereft of the boy, but we have given him back to the lender; nor has his life been destroyed, but merely transformed for the better; earth has not covered our beloved one, but heaven has received him. Let us abide a brief space, and we shall be with him whose loss we mourn. Nor will the period of separation be great, since in this life, as on a journey, we are all hastening to the same inn; and although one has already taken up his lodging there, and another has just arrived, and another is hastening thither, yet the same goal will receive us all. For even though your son has finished his journey first, nevertheless we shall all travel the same path, and the same hospice awaits us all. Only may God grant that we through virtue may become like to him in purity, that by the blamelessness of our character we may obtain the same repose as the children of Christ."

1 comment:

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

Thank you. I hope it consoles you as much as it does me.