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Last August I had to go to Athens for twenty days for a serious family matter. So, I left my two little orphaned kittens, ash-white Saki and gray Laki, to the fathers of the Patriarchate, who gladly undertook their care with a lot of love. Returning to Alexandria, in the early morning of August 30th, arriving at the Patriarchate from the airport, an invisible knife pierced my heart: the gray-haired Laki, trembling in agony, dragging his two paralyzed hind legs, tried to approach me, meowing incessantly, his eyes looking at me with pain. I took him in my arms, not holding back my tears.

The next morning, the fathers explained to me the inexplicable rapid decline in his health. I immediately sought veterinary intervention. The condition of my little Laki, who never left my arms, was irreversible. Euthanasia became the only way for him… With sobs I consented and with a broken heart I buried him in the embrace of the big poplar tree, opposite the entrance of the Church of the Annunciation.

Not two days had passed, when I noticed that Saki had also started not eating, wanting to be permanently next to me, while his little body was starting to tremble. I immediately rushed to the
Animal Planet clinic, the animal clinic that from the beginning had undertaken their regular vaccinations and general follow-up since birth, begging God not to allow the loss of one more of His creatures. Because, I humbly believe, when you love every form of life around you, you love its very Maker and
Creator.

The brilliant vet Dr. Dina asked that we proceed with blood tests. The answer was incredible: Both Laki and now Saki inexplicably carried neurotoxins in their bodies. I had to save Saki at all costs! And then I thought about something, which under other circumstances I would never have thought about: Could it be the pesticides that our good gardener uses in the garden of the Patriarchate?

In the end, that was the right answer. The only solution was to find the antidote. I vowed that I would not let this defenseless creature also perish. After a marathon between the major pharmacies and hospitals of Alexandria, the antidote was found! Blessed be the name of the All-Merciful God, whose creation we thoughtlessly or even unknowingly destroy.

Now, twice a day I take the distressed Saki to the veterinary clinic. For two hours I hold his little hand so that he can first receive a drip, so that through urination the neurotoxins will leave his body and immediately after that he receives the antidote intravenously. Also, three times a day I put eye drops in his eyes, which also showed slight inflammation, while I wash his inflamed little mouth, slowly feeding him.

Saki will be saved. And once he is completely well, I will look for a kind soul who would like to adopt him. I personally intend to continue to bear the responsibility of the costs required. But, he can no longer live in the garden of our Patriarchate. After all, I cannot stop the works of the Patriarchal See. But my heart will ache deeply for the beautiful Laki, whom I didnt manage to save…

My friends, dont ever say that animals don't hurt, feel, notice or recognize beneficence. Look in the photo at Sakis little eyes, as he looks at me while receiving the drip. He wants to rest his little head on my hand, as this comforts him, and together we will continue until his recovery. He will succeed, I believe! And God will bless, for after all, it is the first time in my life that I have prayed for one of His creations, for a defenseless animal. Up until now I have prayed only for man, the living image of the Creator God, I have served only him.

My babies, thank you for the precious gift you gave me in just 6 months of your life. Because of you, I realized the sacredness and harmony of creation. I perceived its beauty, the beauty that reflects Divine beauty and perfection. Now I understand that any interference with nature is blasphemy against its Maker. After all, birth and death, as they unexpectedly appeared one day in my life in the form of two little kittens, perhaps allowed me to mature a little more!

My sweet Laki, my little creature, wherever you are, with tears in my eyes I will always love you with tears!

With gratitude
your adopted father, Panteleimon