-Saint Demetrios and the olives-
"This is the reason, we have the Saints in our house, for the difficult times …”
“Once there was a man without faith who had a faithful wife, nonetheless. His wife was talking to him about faith, but he would not listen. One day they were gathering olives in the fields but the night came and they had not taken them back home yet, so they had to leave them outside. The husband said:
-We should not leave them outside, they will get stolen.
-“God will protect them”. His wife told him
-“What are you talking about… If we do not take care of them…no God will…how can you believe in God…?”
-“God will protect them since we cannot carry them now…”
In the end, they left the olives there and during the night someone went and stole them. His poor wife … how would she confront her husband now, what would she do before this beast? He was a savage and you realize what would happen…
In their home, they had an icon of Theotokos, Saint Demetrios and St. Nikolaos. The husband goes and stands before the icons and he says to Saint Dimitrios who was riding a horse in his holy icon:
“You, what is your purpose inside the house? And why does this woman (his wife) thinks you can protect us?
She has a child in her arms [referring to (the icon of) Theotokos], she cannot go out and find them. He is an old man, (referring to Saint Nikolaos), he cannot outrun them. But you, a young man on horseback, will you let them take our olives? You will go and get them back, otherwise, I am going to burn these…
Before he finished his threatening words to the holy icons, he listens to voices coming from outside the house. Three animals were carrying the olives. With them, the two guys that had stolen them. They arrive and say to him:
“We were wrong, we committed a sin to steal your olives. But did you have to send this young man to beat us up? Why did you send this army officer?
The husband was shocked!”
We have icons of the Saints in our houses and we burn incense to them, we light candles to them but we do not believe that they are ready and willing to help us.
Some people have 200 Saints in their houses and if something bad happens they will run immediately to seek help somewhere else, instead of turning to their Saints and say
“Please, help me!”
This is the reason, we have the Saints in our house, for the difficult times …”
Part of a homily of Demetrios Panagopoulos, (1916 - 1982)