Despite the changes that have taken place in the world, the memory of St. Seraphim not only does not fade, but it remains a lamp that shines ever brighter to humanity.
It was the same during his earthly life. Cities were being destroyed, kingdoms were being established, Napoleon advanced upon Russia with twelve nations and then left in disgrace, Moscow burned and was again raised from the ashes, Decembrists organized revolts and were then sentenced; but was as if these events did not touch St. Seraphim.
He was wholly occupied with the acquisition of “the one thing needful,” worked on his “spiritual growth”. An “egoist, introverted,” “ignorant, not interested in anything other than what concerned him personally”—that is what many thinkers who do not wish to see even the slightest benefit in the podvig of self-perfection would say about him.So, monk Seraphim dies. It would seem that the image of this elder who so stubbornly fled the world should be erased from people’s memory. But an entire pilgrimage begins to his grave, people who come to him from all ends of Russia receive help, consolation, and edification; and the veneration of him begins to spread even among people of other nations.
In what lies the power of St. Seraphim? What is his podvig? He strove to realize the commandment of Christ: Be ye perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect (Mt. 5:48). He labored to restore in himself the first-created image of man, corrupted as a consequence of sin.
St. Seraphim calls all by his example to follow the path shown by Christ….St. Seraphim calls all to repentance and correction of life, both personal and societal. Although this path is hard, the God-pleaser will help us to walk it. St. Seraphim is a beacon and lamp on this path; he is also our aid. By the prayers of Thy saint, our father Seraphim, Lord grant repentance and victory over sin to us sinners, and lead us to Thy Heavenly Kingdom. Amen.
St. John (Maximovich) of Shanghai and San Francisc – Serbia, 1928
When he was asked one day, in what does a perishing sinner differ from a righteous man who is saving his soul, a saint, St. Seraphim answered: Only in his resolve… Our salvation is in our will, in our firmness, in the steadfastness of our resolve to be godly to the end. The Lord does not give His Spirit by measure, nor does He give His grace by measure; He gives everything, and He gives Himself….This would be enough for us to build our whole lives upon the example and words of St. Seraphim.
Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh
Troparion of St. Seraphim of Sarov, Tone 4
Thou didst love Christ from thy youth, O blessed one, and longing to work for Him alone thou didst struggle in the wilderness with constant prayer and labor. With penitent heart and great love for Christ thou wast favored by the Mother of God. Wherefore we cry to thee: Save us by thy prayers, O Seraphim our righteous Father.