May his memory remain, filled with the light of Christ’s Resurrection
The death of the bishop of Szczecin and Wrocław at the very beginning of Bright Week was a surprise, though at the same time not wholly unexpected, for we were aware of his serious illness.
Archbishop Jeremiah was an outstanding hierarch of the Polish Orthodox church, and in some ways of the Russian church, insofar as the Polish church is an “outpost” of the Russian church and impossible to understand in isolation from her, not only because of its national make-up, which contains many Belorussians and other ethnicities traditionally fed by the Russian Orthodox Church. Archbishop Jeremiah was an outstanding hierarch and an amazingly wise man. He participated in various church projects and, in particular, he represented the Polish church and Orthodoxy in an ecumenical context, before believers from other Christian confessions. He was an enlightened man and in no way a fundamentalist – he was a thinking man, open, bold and brave.
My personal impression from association with Archbishop Jeremiah is very bright. He was, of course, a great organizer. But most importantly, he wasn’t afraid to take new steps, think new thoughts or walk uncharted paths. The Lord opens doors and creates everything anew and the majority of Christians are a little bit afraid of this. They’re afraid that the new will contradict the old and that everything will fall apart. Archbishop Jeremiah understood that this isn’t the case – that life is entirely different: the man who doesn’t accept and create things anew is on a path away from God.
Archbishop Jeremiah always greeted pilgrims from our brotherhood with joy – even our young people, who were not entirely spiritually mature. In the photograph of the most recent meeting between our pilgrims and Archbishop Jeremiah it seemed to me that he was full of joy and very open. It isn’t every day that we see this sort of attitude from archbishops.
Therefore, I can only say Memory Eternal! May his memory remain, filled with the light of Christ’s Resurrection.