The work of Mrs. Nina Stanescu is a monograph of a settlement both social and spiritual after the model of the one invented by St. Basil the Great in Caesarea in Cappadocia. The unexplained intention of the author is a hermeneutic one: to research the validation of the prototype of such a settlement over the centuries, at over 1600 years, in a late Romanian one, built at the bend of Buzau, based on the first from and through which they bore fruit. the spiritual toils and martyrdom of another great saint from the East, from the Lower Danube, this time, St. Sava from Buzau.
According to the author, the new settlement was conceived from the archetype of the vassalship of St. Basil the Great and bears a name built according to the same pattern, Savaliada. In the author's hypothesis, such an establishment grows from the pneumatological body, so alive, of a saint because the saints do not die, they remain here when they pass beyond, the martyr's sanctification being a testimony, but also the subsequent and previous miracles of the saint. This is the reason for the author's perseverance on the theological and practical work of St. Basil the Great, in the first section of his monographic book. If you want to understand the transreal springs of such unusual deeds, as are those at the foundation and inside of these settlements, it is absolutely necessary to start from the teaching of St. Basil who tells us that in these settlements find shelter physically, spiritually and the poor, the sick, the oppressed and the oppressed are spiritual, that is, those in whom, as the Great Basil says, and the author repeats, "Christ lives."
The first attribute of an establishment like Savaliada (and therefore its prototype, Vasiliada), is that it mediates the encounter with Christ in the oropsite and humiliation of life, as the unparalleled poet says in a quatrain sprung from the spirit of the same evangelical life, as attested by these establishments: "You can hear far away the cries of the weak / and the oppressed towards us // it is the voice of the gentle Bessarabia / reached in the last century". After presenting the ideas of the Great Basil and the principles of Vasiliade, which St. Gregory the Theologian considered one of the wonders of antiquity (precisely for the unusual spiritual triumph illustrated by such a mixed institution, completely unusual for the times of glorious Greco-Roman antiquity, of the soul), the author makes a presentation of Savaliada, that is, of the “St. Sava Foundation from Buzau”, built under the educational and spiritual guidance of the tireless founding father, Fr. Prof. Dr. Milea Mihail.
This part of the monograph is based on a methodology specific to photographic, epistolary and documentary sociography. The procedures are known. The monumental work of Thomas and Znaniecki (keeping the proportions, of course) is elaborated on the epistolary support of the Polish peasants from America to their families from Poland. Dimitrie Gusti inaugurated the filmed sociology and obviously the photographic material is frequently used in the researches of the crews of the Gustian village monographs.
Mrs. Nina Stanescu's work is also distinguished by the courage of the book-making formula. Dansa dares to compose the living picture of this settlement, reason for which we will find in the corpus of the monograph his spiritual realities led by the most representative: with the Akathist St. Sava from Buzau, continuing with the epistolary of the discovery of holy relics and interviews that are the living mirror of this extraordinary settlement.
The work is not elaborated out of any ostentatious longing, although the settlement is extraordinary. The author opted for a strategy typical of a humble monograph: the author stays in the shadows, in the background, to leave in the foreground the charismatic characters of the two saints, followed by those who worked hard to make this settlement led by the one who it is, however, its most dynamic part, Fr. Prof. Milea himself, together with all the brothers, with the extremely important volunteers for the life of the settlement and, last but not least, with its inhabitants who are also confessors.
The monograph is distinguished, therefore, by the iconographic material (photographic sociology), by the epistolary, spiritual documentary, by the akathist file, by the file of documents, interviews and an exploratory micro-survey based on a questionnaire of spiritual knowledge applied to theological students.
The noological method used to evoke the picture of savaliada deserves a special word. This innovation is completely surprising, extremely interesting, and would deserve independent developments (perhaps in a separate paper).
I consider that the work of Mrs. Nina Stanescu is highly contributory, masterfully made, serving for the knowledge of a highly edifying and enlightening practice for the work of philanthropy and church diakonia within the diocese of which the St. Sava Foundation from Buzau is part.
Academician, Prof. Dr. Ilie Badescu
March 17, 2019, celebration