Photograph of St. Nektarios the Wonderworker of Aegina, Archbishop of Pentapolis (taken from: http://www.rel.gr/photo/displayimage.php?album=18&pos=8; see: http://www.rel.gr/photo/thumbnails.php?album=18 for more pictures of the Saint)
Fr. Nektarios Vitalis, well-known in Lavrio [Attika, Greece] for his deeds and his sympathy to the poor and those written-off by the world in these difficult times, retells the following incident from when he was dying from cancer. What is said below has been told elsewhere, repeatedly, including in the book "I talked to Agios Nektarios" - Athens 1997, by the renowned writer Mr. Manolis Melinos.
Fr. Nektarios Vitalis' words: "I was suffering from a serious form of cancer. My chest was an open wound that was continuously running blood and pus. I would tear my undershirts from the pain. It was a tragic situation, and I was headed directly to death. So you understand, I had even prepared my grave clothes...On the 26th of March 1980, in the morning, I was talking in my office in the basement of the Church with Sofia Bourdoy (the church care-taker [woman who cleans the church]) and the icon painter Helen Kitraki, when the door suddenly opened and an old, unknown man entered. He had a snow-white beard, was short and was slighty bald. He looked exactly the same as St. Nektarios appears in photographs. He took three candles without paying lit only two. He venerated all the icons of the church, but passed over the icon of St. Nektarios without the venerating. He did not see me where I was. I had terrible pains when they pulled aside the curtain of the office and went to see the old man. He faced the Beautiful Gate [the Royal Doors in the Holy Iconostasion], crossed his palms and without looking around he asked,
"Is the Gerona [Elder] here?"
"No, no...he is at home with the flu..."
He turned and looked at me smiling. I asked him, "Where are you staying Geronta? He showed me the ceiling, where we were building the new church [dedicated to St. Nektarios], saying,
Then, tears rolled from his eyes...He crossed me and embraced [hugged] me with his hands... Taking courage I opened my hands to hug him. But when I spread out my hands, and while I was watching I could see him before my face, my arms closed back to my chest!
I shivered and crossed myself [Ανατρίχιασα και σταυροκοπήθηκα].
I said again, "O my Geronta, I beg you, I want to live to do my first Liturgy. Help me to live..."
"Oh, my child Nektarios, don't worry. It is a passing trial, and you will be well! The miracle which you are asking for will happen, and it will be told to the whole world. Don't be afraid..."