January 3, 2024

When Metropolitan Iakovos of Attica Asked for a Sign from Saint Ephraim of Nea Makri

When on January 3, 1950, the sacred relics of Saint Ephraim were found by the late Abbess Makaria Desypris in the then-ruined Monastery of the Annunciation of the Theotokos in Nea Makri, Metropolitan Iakovos (Vavanatsos) of Attica and Megara, the later Archbishop of Athens, whom the late Eldress informed immediately about finding the sacred relics, advised her to temporarily keep the event a secret, to place the relics in a wooden box and keep them inside the sanctuary of the Monastery where he himself would see them on his first visit to the Monastery.

When the late Metropolitan Iakovos went to the Monastery to officiate, the relics were indeed placed in a wooden box and were inside the sanctuary.

During the liturgy, the High Priest fervently entreated the Lord and the Panagia to show him a sign that would reveal the holiness of the man to whom the relics belonged, since at that time the only evidence that existed were the visions of the Eldress.

As Metropolitan Iakovos himself told us during the Divine Liturgy, while he removed the high priest's miter from his head and placed it on the holy altar, the miter suddenly began to shake as if there was an earthquake while the candles and the rest of the objects of the holy altar remained motionless. Reverently he then took the miter and placed it on the box with the relics of Saint Ephraim, at the same time giving his blessing to Eldress Makaria to proclaim everywhere the miraculous finding of the sacred relics and at the same time to start scientific research to ascertain the identity, the place of origin and the manner of the martyrdom of the newly-appeared Saint in order to subsequently register him in the Hagiologion of the Orthodox Church.

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