Mt. Athos, December 3, 2018
December 1 marked the 40th day of the repose of the greatly beloved abbot of Dochariou Monastery on Mt. Athos, Archimandrite Gregory (Zumis).
The Church especially prays for the reposed on the fortieth day because it is then that the soul is it appointed its place until the resurrection of the dead at the Lord’s Second Coming.
Four bishops and hundreds of pilgrims from around the world traveled to Mt. Athos specifically for the occasion, to pray for the repose of Fr. Gregory’s soul, reports the International Institute of the Athonite Legacy.
The memorial service was celebrated by His Eminence Metropolitan Seraphim of Kastoria (Greek Orthodox Church), with the concelebration of His Eminence Metropolitan Justin of Nea Krini and Kalamaria (Greek Orthodox Church), His Eminence Metroplitan Kallinikos of Paronaxia, and His Eminence Metropiltan Nikoloz of Akhalkalaki and Kumertau, the administrator for the Georgian Orthodox parishes in South America, and other clergy from the other Athonite monasteries and beyond.
There were also more than 300 pilgrims from Greece, Ukraine, Russia, Georgia, Bulgaria, France, America, and other countries.
As previously reported, Archimandrite Gregory reposed late in the night on October 22, at the age of 76, having endured the torments of a serious, incurable disease in the last years of his life. He was buried the next day by the brethren of his monastery.
The Athonite abbot was known as a staunch and fierce defender of holy Orthodoxy, never afraid to speak out on important issues, such as the atheistic government in Greece and the dangers of ecumenism.
Archimandrite Gregory was born on the island of Paros and was a close relative of the holy Athonite spiritual warrior Elder Joseph the Hesychast.
Elder Gregory spent 65 of his 76 years in monastic labors, his monastic path having begun under the guidance of the two famous ascetics of piety Elder Philotheos (Zervakos) and St. Amphilochios (Makris) of Patmos, the latter of which was glorified as a saint of Christ’s Church in August.
Sometime later, he and several other brothers were invited to Dochariou Monastery on Mt. Athos. He was chosen as the abbot almost immediately after arriving on the Holy Mountain. The monastery, which had already begun to disintegrate, was revived under his leadership, and brethren were gathered.
Elder Gregory was strict but benevolent at the same time. Despite the serious problems with his health, he climbed more than half a mile almost daily to oversee the work being done to restore ancient destroyed churches. Having great authority, the elder wore old, shabby clothes and carried himself simply.
Being an archimandrite, he presented himself as a simple hieromonk. Speaking of himself, the elder would ask for prayers for the “robber Gregory.”
OrthoChristian.com has published several articles bringing the fiery words of Archimandrite Gregory into English:
May his memory be eternal!
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