A humbling prayer of St. Paisios (amateur translation)
It was the feast of St. Christodoulos
(October 21st). At the Holy Monastery of Koutloumousiou,
the Elder of the Monastery celebrated his feast day, and because I
also bore the Saint's name, I also celebrated. All the Fathers were
together in the meeting room, and greeted the Abbot of the Monastery.
I was nearby in the kitchen with another monk, preparing the treats.
At that time, my ego was very great. I
was young in the monastic life, and I had thoughts that I would
become greater and more virtuous than my Elder. Naturally, I did not
understand these thoughts of mine, but because I did not say them
anywhere, no one could help me.
Elder Paisios, however, in whom always
worked the Grace of the Holy Spirit, was informed of these thoughts
of mine, and in a manner full of goodness and love, made me come to
my senses a bit and see my plight.
As we were therefore preparing the
treats, from the corridor we heard a commotion. Some brothers rose
hastily to announce that Elder Paisios was coming. I then left the
treats, and exited the door of the small kitchen which led into the
corridor. When the Elder approached, I bent down to make a
prostration and kissed his hand. Then, one of the fathers that
followed him said: “Elder, today Fr. Christodoulos also
Then, the Elder asked me: “You
celebrate today also? What should I pray for you? I pray that the
Abbot of the Monastery becomes like St. Christodoulos of Patmos, and
that you become like the Abbot!”
He smiled, somewhat, took two to three
steps towards the corridor, and paused, turning around again towards
me and told me, smiling: “Is that enough for you?” And he entered
the meeting room.
From that instant, my ego was
expressed! Internally, I began to the struggle with these thoughts,
and I regretted that he wished that the Abbot become like St.
Christodoulos, and to me to be only like the Abbot. In this beautiful
manner, however, the Elder made me sense that I was fighting with my
ego. Without understanding it, at one instant, I saw that the prayer
that the Elder made for the Abbot and that for myself was totally the
same. However, this remained the most discerning and full of love
manner of the Elder for me, even though I did not have the attitude
to humble myself and to struggle with greater philotimo, according to
my strength, to cast out my ego.
"And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth...And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ." John 1: 14, 16-17
Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and forever, and to the ages of ages! Amen!
"As the Prophets saw, as the Apostles taught, as the Church has received, as the Teachers express in dogma, as the inhabited world understands together with them, as grace illumines, as the truth makes clear, as error has been banished, as wisdom makes bold to declare, as Christ has assured, so we think, so we speak, so we preach, honouring Christ our true God, and his Saints, in words, in writings, in thoughts, in sacrifices, in churches, in icons, worshipping and revering the One as God and Lord, and honouring them because of their common Lord as those who are close to him and serve him, and making to them relative veneration.
This is the faith of the Apostles; this is the faith of the Fathers; this is the faith of the Orthodox; this faith makes fast the inhabited world." Excerpt from the Synodikon of the Sunday of Orthodoxy (http://www.anastasis.org.uk/synodikon.htm)
By the Grace of God, here are presented a few true stories of the Saints, sayings of the Holy Fathers, sacred icons, and many other things so that, maybe in a small way, we may remind ourselves that (though we might not be ready to accept it) Jesus Christ is the WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIFE, and that the Holy Orthodox Church is full of Christ's GRACE and TRUTH, and is no less than the Kingdom of God on earth.
I must say that I am not a part of the clergy, so I hope to primarily put forth quotations from the Gospel, Saints and Holy Fathers, and not my own opinions. But if you see my own words or opinions, keep in mind that they are my opinions or comments and they have little weight, as opposed to the quotations from Christ, the Saints and the Fathers which do.
I ask forgiveness if in this site any of my passions are acting, hindering the Grace of the Holy Spirit because of my sins. I apologize for any errors of mine, mistakes, problems with translations, etc. due to my ignorance and conceit. If anyone notices any mistakes or can suggest a better translation, please let me know. I try to post all of my sources. Please also let me know if I am violating any copyrights or other laws, and I will do my best to comply.
Through the prayers of our Holy Fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy on us and save us! Amen!
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