August 20, 2022

Saint Gabriel the Fool for Christ and the Two Cigarettes


One day two women came to Elder Gabriel from Tbilisi. They talked for a long time and Father Gabriel called them to his cell. After he had sat for a while, the women asked him for permission to smoke. He, without hesitation, allowed them to smoke. The women calmly began to light cigarettes, when suddenly a nun came up to the cell, read a prayer and asked for permission to enter. The women were startled, felt ashamed, and immediately the lit cigarettes fell into the hands of Elder Gabriel. This left Elder Gabriel sitting with two lit cigarettes in his hands in his cell, with two women.

When the nun saw Elder Gabriel with two women and lit cigarettes, she stammered in surprise and asked: “What? How? You? How come? Father Gabriel, do you smoke or what?"

The women blushed, unable to utter a word, and the Elder looked at the nun raising his eyebrows and said, “Yes, so what? When I want, I light a cigarette from my right hand, and when I want, I light a cigarette from the left. Why is it such a big deal?"

The nun apologized and ran out of the cell. Realizing what happened, these women stopped smoking.