Dear Readers: A long time supporter of the Mystagogy Resource Center has informed me that they would like to donate $3000 to help me continue the work of this ministry, but they will only do it as a matching donation, which means that this generous donation will only be made after you help me raise a total of $3000. If you can help make this happen, it will be greatly appreciated and it would be greatly helpful to me, as I have not done a fundraiser this year. If you enjoy the work done here and want to see more of it, please make whatever contribution you can through the DONATE link below. Thank you!
(Total So Far - Day 11: $2740)

February 19, 2011

Elder Paisios, When Sick, Was Attended To By Angels and Saints For A Week


Elder Paisios told a spiritual child of a wondrous event, recorded below, which occurred in his life:

Once, when I was at Holy Cross [Hermitage], I became seriously ill. It was a harsh winter, and snow had fallen so that no tree looked like a tree. Everything was smothered in white, the trails were gone, the birds were quiet, clouds and fog obscured Athos. I had no contact with the Monastery of Stavronikita, and I could not live more than a few days since because of the illness I was completely paralyzed. I was expecting the Lord to take my soul and lead it to the mercy of His compassion. I could not even make one cup of tea, nor light the stove, no did I have water to drink. My life was at the mercy of God. I said: "Behold Lord, in Your mercy I hope. Do not forsake me!"


After a few prayers which I mumbled with great effort, I saw appear in my cell angels and saints, sent by God. The grace of God had visited quickly. I thanked and glorified my Savior. I cried. One of the angels took care of the stove, another was preparing warm food, they were also bringing fragrant breads. I was in Paradise. What else did I want.


The saints began to encourage me with words of consolation and prayers. And only their vision gave me rest, empowering me and giving me hope. They stayed with me until I was well and able to take care of myself. Then they left. They stayed with me for a week. When after a time I arose and went outside my cell I looked around at nature with different eyes. Everything was illumined with the uncreated light of the Holy Spirit. I was not worthy, but the infinite goodness of God and his love manifested in this way.


In all I felt such grace filling me within that I would say: "Enough Lord. I cannot take anymore. I will burst. Either take me with You or dwindle the grace You have given me. If You give me so much grace now, imagine what is given in Paradise."

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos; photos of the Hermitage of the Holy Cross where Elder Paisios and Papa-Tychon lived.