Iași, Romania, October 13, 2017
Approximately 25,000 faithful Orthodox Christians and over 100 priests prayerfully processed through the downtown streets of Iași yesterday, bearing the relics of their greatly-beloved St. Paraskeva, as well as relics of the holy Martyr Thekla, as part of the “Way of the Saints” pilgrimage, reports the Basilica News Agency.
St. Paraskeva is celebrated on October 14 in Romania. Her relics have resided in Bulgaria, Serbia, and Constantinople, and she is greatly loved throughout the Balkans and the entire Orthodox world, but they have remained in the cathedral in Iași, working countless miracles, since 1641.
The procession was headed by three hierarchs: His Eminence Metropolitan Teofan of Moldavia and Bucovina, His Eminence Qais Sadiq of Erzurum, Turkey, and His Grace Bishop Damaschin, the vicar of Suceava and Rădăuţi, along with a host of priests from the Archdiocese of Iaşi, and believers from several counties throughout the country. The procession was opened by a group of young people in Romanian folk clothing, bearing the Romanian flag and an icon, followed by soldiers with lit torches.
Prayers were read along the way for the employees and patients of the city hospital. The procession also stopped and prayed at several churches and monasteries.
The prayer march ended at the metropolitan cathedral, where the relics of St. Paraskeva were again placed in the canopy near the cathedral. The procession was followed by the Vigil in honor of the bringing of the relics of the apostle St. Andrew to Iaşi.