Sunday, November 25, 2012
St. Paraskevi appearing to a young Elder Iakovos
St. Paraskevi (Phaneromene) depicted as a nun (http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-D5ODBnntO_s/TfzoRpIyIuI/AAAAAAAAHzg/W0Nxpcemtkk/s1600/%25CF%2583%25CE%25AC%25CF%2581%25CF%2589%25CF%2583%25CE%25B70011.jpg)
St. Paraskevi appearing to a young Elder Iakovos (Tsalikis) (amateur translation)
Outside the village there was, on a small hill, a chapel of St. Paraskevi.
Elder Iakovos would go there regularly when he was young, to pray to the Saint.
The Elder himself relates:
“With my hands I dug the soul and created a make-shift staircase, so pilgrims could go without difficulty to the chapel. I cut a fluffy bush, swept the church, lit the vigil lamps, and sat and gazed at the icons, in the total silence of the night on the deserted hill.
I was neither afraid on my own, nor did I ever have cowardly thoughts.
I then saw the Saint as nun coming out of the Holy Altar, crossing through her church and out into the yard, and to bend and clean her vigil lamps. With my childish mind I said that the Saint was cleaning her plates, just like my mother did every evening, no matter how tired she was (for she thought what if she died during the night, and in the morning the women find dirty dishes, and be scandalized for the absent homemaker).
Having this thought in my mind, I thought that the Saint cleaned her plates at night, too.
One night, as I was going to the chapel as usual, I saw the Saint dressed like a nun a few meters outside the church. She told me:
“Come here, Iakovos, I want to talk to you!”
I was afraid, and my legs buckled. I told her:
“I am afraid to come near you. Tell me from were I am standing what you wanted to say. I am afraid to come near you.”
Then the Saint said to me:
“Why are you afraid of me? You have come here for so long and helped keep my church tidy and lit my vigil lamps! I have much to tell you. Ask me what gift you want from me, what gift should I give you?”
Then I told her:
“Let me go ask my mother.” And immediately I turned around and fled running for my home.
I told my mother that I saw St. Paraskevi and she asked me to tell her what gift I want from her.
“You saw St. Paraskevi, my child? How did you see her? What happened exactly?” my mother asked.
And having related all the details, she told me: “My child, ask the Saint to give you her favor.”
The next night I went to the chapel, and again I see the Saint like a nun waiting for me outside of her church. I waited far away a bit then told her:
“I want you to give me your favor.”
The Saint told me: “My favor? During your life you will see many glories and honors, and you will take gold in your hands (and she made a motion, indicating a great amount), but it will not touch you.”
And in reality, as the Elder said, “Countless money passed through my hands, but all of it went towards its goal, to those suffering, to the poor, to those in need. And St. Paraskevi told me many other things, and again I returned to my home.”
Through the prayers of our Holy Fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy on us and save us! Amen!