July 14, 2009

The First Time I Heard of Elder Paisios

By John Sanidopoulos

A few days ago marked the 15 year memorial of the renowned Elder Paisios the Athonite since his falling asleep (+ July 12, 1994). I never had the blessing to meet the Elder, but I have known many over the years that did know him very well. So much has been written on the Elder, that I could hardly think of anything unique to add to the existing corpus. I will therefore relate the first time I ever heard of the Elder, concerning a miracle he performed for one of my friends.

A friend of mine named Nicholas told me how he visited Mount Athos in the early 1990's. While there he desired to visit Elder Paisios at his cell because of his reputation as a miracle-worker. One thing that was on his mind was his sister Christina who suffered from epilepsy. When he arrived he was told the Elder was away and would have to wait, so he waited until the Elder arrived and he was recieved into his cell. When they sat down Nicholas brought up his sister for the Elder to pray for her, but he never mentioned her epilepsy. The Elder then pointed to a particular region on his head in the brain area and said something like: "She has something here". Then flicking away his hand he said: "It's gone." From that moment, as far as I know, she never had a seizure again, and this is regarded by the family to be a miracle of the Elder.

May the holy and blessed Geronda Paisios pray for us!