St. Demetrius, the Myrrflowing and Great Martytr
Troparion to St. Demetrius - The world has in you, O Martyr, a mighty champion in dangers and the conqueror of infidels. Wherefore, as you have put to shame the arrogance of Lyaisos and inspired Nestor with courage to combat him, thus, also, O Holy Demetrius, beseech Christ our God to bestow on us His great mercy.
Today throughout the world, Orthodox Christians assemble as they do each November 8 to celebrate the Divine Liturgy and to commemorate St. Demetrius the Myrrhflowing, and Great Marytr of Thessalonica.
St. Demtriusís relics rest in the St. Demetrius Church in Thessalonica. Pilgrims come from far distances to the St. Demetrius Church daily to venerate the relics, to hear the accounts of miracles attributed to St. Demetrius and to pray.
Believers coming to the St. Demetrius Church seek to obtain the holy water associated with the site. They come to view the beautiful church that has been erected and is well-maintained.
This writer was blessed to visit the St. Demetrius Church in July 1997 and went almost daily over a two-week period of time. In July 1997 there was a cantor at the church named John who spoke with authority and conviction about St. Demetrius. The cantor John spoke about St. Demetrius with great reverence.
In 1997 when venerating the relics of St. Demetrius, a fragrance emanated from them. The fragrance was similar to fragrances coming from weeping icons.
Centuries and centuries have elapsed and the Christian witness of St. Demetrius remains. The love of Christ alive in the heart of St. Demetrius has inspired others. "Demetrius" is a name given to churches and to people in remembrance and honor of the saint.
In March 2002, it was a joy to return to the St. Demetrius Church, a return as if coming once again to see a friend. The St. Demetrius Church is more than a friend... rather it is a witness to the world of the power of faith, of the power of a single witness and martyr for Christ who has provided a vision and served to educate others century after century.
St. Demetrius was known to be alive in the year 290 It is marvelous that present day Orthodox Christians come to St. Demetrius in faith and beseech him as a contemporary, alive in Christ and before Christ, to intercede for the salvation of their souls.
The pilgrims making the journey to the St. Demetrius Church know they are coming to a holy place. The people who pray to St. Demetrius do so with confidence.
The light of Jesus Christ shining forth in the heart of St. Demetrius continues to light the way for the faithful. The light of Christ does not dim through time. The light of Christ cannot be hidden. The light of Christ does not lose intensity.
Death and darkness do not quell the light of Christ. Believers come to Orthodox Church each year on November 8. The life and works of St. Demetrius are remembered. The Holy Gospel is proclaimed. Believers partake of the Precious Body and Blood of Jesus Christ.
Each prayer to St. Demetrius is a seed for the future. Each pilgrimage to the St. Demetrius Church is declaration of faith. Each Divine Liturgy on November 8 is a celebration of the life and victory of Jesus Christ.