Tuesday, January 22, 2019

St. Iakovos of Evia: "For married people, your prayer ropes and prostrations are your children..."

Christ blessing the children (Source)
There was once a pious couple with nine children. The husband was very pious and a little overly-zealous as regards spiritual things.

By letter he said that he wanted to do everything like a monk. His wife complained to St. Iakovos of Evia that she was exhausted and that she wanted help. When they came to the Monastery of St. David, at night, while the children were crying and screaming, the wife also was crying because she was so tired...

The husband went to a chapel at the Monastery of the Holy Unmercenaries and was doing prostrations, praying the prayer rope and serving vigil.

The wife complained to St. Iakovos and she was right.

The next day, the Saint, as soon as he saw them in the courtyard of the Monastery, understood what was going on and that they were starting to fight amongst themselves.

The Saint spoke with sweet words and with discernment in order to comfort the pained and exhausted mother, and with discernment and a smile he said to the father: "I was proud of you last night. You chanted all night and prayed. Good job! But you would have had an even greater blessing and reward if you sat a half hour instead of three, near your wife helping her to feed the children and put them to bed, because for married people, your prayer ropes and prostrations are your children. When they grow up you will have time to do them, but "a brother is helped by a brother". Let everything be done by mutual consent."
St. Iakovos of Evia surrounded by children (source)
Through the prayers of our Holy Fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy on us and save us! Amen!

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