+ Archbishop Nikon
At eleven o’clock, Sunday morning (September 1, 2019) His Eminence Nikon, Archbishop of Boston, New England and the Albanian Archdiocese reposed in the Lord. Over the past years, His Eminence contended with throat and lung cancer. On the first day of Great Lent of this year (March 11), he underwent what he thought would be a minor procedure on his lung and was anticipating to return home that Friday. But unable to leave the hospital as planned, he was confined to a hospital bed until his repose. During this time he humbly and with dignity endured great suffering, ever trusting in God’s mercy and love while always maintaining his sense of humor and wit. Beneath his modest demeanor was a faith that carried him through his trials not the least being his inability to swallow for the two months following his surgery. Yet as his strength steadily declined and as he became anxious about not being able to carry out his ministry, those around him nevertheless began to observe and understand what Saint Paul meant about the power and glory of the resurrected Christ being revealed in his crucifixion. In his own weakness and in his death, our bishop teaches us that “just as we have borne the image of the man of dust,” in the resurrected Christ "we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven." (I Corinthians 15: 49) In Christ, death is swallowed up by new and eternal life. Indeed, our Archbishop Nikon’s death affirms and confirms this fundamental reality.
Father Robert M. Arida