HOLY PRIESTHOOD & SPIRITUAL THERAPY
By Bishop Hierotheos Vlachos, Metropolitan of Nafpaktos and St. Vlassios; excerpt from his highly esteemed book "Orthodox Psychotherapy. ”
The priest has a double task. One is to perform the sacraments and the other is to heal people so that they can worthily approach and receive Holy Communion. We have further pointed out that there are many priests who are priests outwardly and perform their function unhindered but in essence have defiled the priesthood, and that this is apparent from the fact that they are not able to heal. They perform the sacraments, and the gifts are sanctified through them, but they cannot cure others or save their own souls.
On the other hand, there are laymen and monks who do not have the sacra-mental priesthood but can heal people because they have spiritual priesthood. We should like to dwell briefly on this point.