Gleanings from Orthodox Christian Authors and the Holy Fathers


2 Entries

One day a man possessed with a devil came to Scetis, and they prayed over him, but the devil did not leave him, for it was obstinate. The priests said, "What can we do against this devil? No one can drive him away, except Abba Bessarion, but if we call him, he will not come, even to the church. Therefore let us do this: since he comes to church early, before anyone else, let us make the possessed sleep here, and when he comes, let us keep to our prayer, and say to him, 'Abba, awaken the brother.'" This is what they did. When the old man came early, they kept to their prayer and said to him, "Awaken the brother." The old man said to him, "Arise and go." Immediately the devil departed from him and from that hour he was healed. Venerable Bessarion of Egypt, commemorated 6 June

Some visitors came to the Thebaid one day to visit an old man, bringing one possessed with a devil that he might heal him. When they persistently asked him, the old man said to the devil, "Come out of God's creature." And the devil said to the old man, "I am going to come out, but I am going to ask you a question. Tell me, who are the goats and who are the sheep?" The old man said, "I am one of the goats, but as for the sheep, God alone knows who they are." When he heard this, the devil began to cry out with a loud voice, "Because of your humility, I am driven away!" and he departed at the same hour. The Desert Fathers

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St Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church, McKinney, Texas