St. John Of Kronstadt’s Power Of Healing - Poem by Liza Sud
Your Magnificent look
heals already by light!
you cost millions of friends.
Such a power to fight!
Friendship - an empty sound,
friends just hurt all the time
by their weaknesses, foul,
But Saint John can arise!
http: //www.holy-transfiguration.org/library_en/saints_ kronst1.html
St. John of Kronstadt’s power of healing
All of St. John of Kronstadt’s earthly suffering was also tied in with the fact that he dared to selflessly help people with his power of healing, expelling demons from them or the malignant illnesses that the latter sent upon them. St. John, who possessed the power of forbidding demons to dwell in people, acquired unique experience in the following: (1) testing the power of God and the grace of priestly resources and the Holy Fathers’ prayers of exorcism against the demons; (2) identifying the presence of demons in a person on the sole basis of external appearance, behavior, and in private conversation with him; (3) cleansing people of demons, thus voluntarily drawing upon himself the inevitable physical and mental suffering resulting from the demons’ revenge; (4) becoming convinced, as he gained practice, that in actuality the Lord helped people to combat demons through him not when he himself wished it, but only when he was called upon by God through the sick person’s faith in him as a healer, for such faith also came from God.
Varied and instructive were the methods practiced by St. John for the expulsion of demons and the comprehensive healing of all attendant illnesses and sorrows. But a common factor in them was the healing prayer composed by the saint: “O Lord, Thou said that whatever we asked for in Thy name, Thou would do it for us Thyself, and Thou also said that the heavens and earth would pass, but Thy words would not pass, and that not a single stroke or iota of the law would pass. Therefore, I entreat Thee in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, forgive Thy servant (name) all his sins, both voluntary and involuntary, and heal him.”
St. John always read this prayer so fervently, as though he did not even ask, but demanded from God forgiveness of the sick person’s sins. St. John traveled all over Russia in response to summons from the sick, but most frequently he read the healing prayer from afar, as soon as he received their telegrams. In such cases, the turning point in the illness usually occurred at the time of the reading of the healing prayer.
In 1904, at a meeting with the clergy of the city of Sarapul, St. John described to them how he arrived at the daring to pray for the healing of all the sick people of Russia (and later – of the whole world) . One time in Kronstadt batyushka was asked to pray for an ailing man. St. John prayerfully gave the man over into God’s hands and asked that His holy will for the sick person be fulfilled. When the sick man got well as a result, this became widely known, and the faithful insistently began to ask batyushka to pray for the health of various sick people. At first he refused out of a humble realization of his unworthiness and sinfulness, but the faithful forced their pastor to once again pray for another sick man. This was also successful, and afterwards St. John no longer refused his help in such cases.
As to what the blessed pastor of Kronstadt experienced in all of this, and how difficult it was to earn from God forgiveness of sins and healing, – St. John himself described it thus: “The Lord, as an artful physician, subjects us to various trials, sorrows, illnesses, and misfortunes, in order to purify us like gold in the furnace. A soul that is hardened in various sins does not easily undergo cleansing and healing, but has to be forced to a great extent, and only through lengthy experience in patience and suffering does it become accustomed to virtue and begins to love God, from Whom it was alienated after becoming attached to all kinds of mortal sins. Such is the purpose of the trials and tribulations sent to us by God in this life.”
During personal contact with various sick people in difficult and hopeless cases, St. John was often drenched in sweat during prayer, or was subjected to attacks from those possessed by demons. In the majority of cases, quick and complete healing usually occurred right away. For Orthodox people St. John was accustomed to pray for help solely by himself, while in the case of other believers or non-believers, he forced the sick person’s relatives who had appealed to him to pray jointly with him. For complete healing of those possessed by demons, he forced the unfortunates to look him straight in the eye and to make the sign of the cross independently several times. To the healing prayer St. John frequently added a special moleben, took out particles for the sick during the liturgy, gave them communion, and also sent them items that belonged to him or food blessed by him.
There were times when he could not help people for whom he was asked to pray (due to the latter’s unbelief) , but he readily helped those who asked him themselves, if he saw God’s will in that. In such cases he simply made them the recipients of divine mercy without providing any explanation.
In several confirmed cases St. John was even able to resurrect the dead, and on one particular occasion he returned to life a corpse that had already begun to decompose, just as did our Lord Jesus Christ in resurrecting Lazarus who had been dead for four days. After the saint’s repose, his miraculous healings of people did not cease, but continued as a result of praying to him, prayerfully touching objects that had belonged to him, and also during his appearance to sick people in dream visions. The saint saved not only those who were dying from grave illnesses, but also those who found themselves in difficult circumstances of life; he helped establish successful family life, delivered people from ruinous passions, and also saved many Russian people during the time of the brutal Red terror, turning many of the persecutors, moreover, onto a path of repentance and atonement for their godlessness.
In healing some of the illnesses, the saint used symbolic actions – embraced and drew the sick person to himself, struck the place of illness from the outside, etc. The possessed ones he healed by sprinkling them with holy water, pressing a cross to their forehead, giving them holy water to drink and prosfory sanctified in their name to eat, and finally giving them the Holy Mysteries. The possessed ones who were brought to him spewed out blasphemies and curses at the saint, spit upon him and the cross he presented to them, tried to beat him up, but his humble prayer for them before the altar inevitably succeeded in the end.
However, there were cases where instead of his usual help the saint either foretold the sick person’s unavoidable death or refused help completely. The most prominent of such cases was the repose of Tsar Alexander III, which the saint at first tried to put off by laying his hands on the Sovereign’s head. Prior to his death the Tsar was tormented by the most severe headaches. The laying of St. John’s hands caused the headaches to disappear, and thus the saint spent many hours near the dying anointed Sovereign, but could not prevent his repose. Such was the will of God.
It was noted that the saint could not prevent the death of sick people in cases where it was ordained by God not so much for the sins of these individuals, who were known for their righteousness, but for the sins of all the people, as in the case of the Tsar’s repose, or for the mortal sins of parents when their children died. The saint also could not prevent death in cases where the sick person lived among sinful surroundings and did not have enough willpower to combat them. In such a case the grave illness with its attendant suffering served as a purifying factor for the salvation of the soul, while a continued sinful life was displeasing to God. In these cases the saint even refused to pray for healing.
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