Gleanings from Orthodox Christian Authors and the Holy Fathers

hospitality

11 Entries

...Even if you have only bread or water, with these you can still meet the dues of hospitality. Even if you do not have these, but simply make the stranger welcome and offer him a word of encouragement, you will not be failing in hospitality. Think of the widow mentioned in the Gospel by our Lord: with two mites she surpassed the generous gifts of the wealthy. St. Theodoros, the Great Ascetic



Accepting the task of hospitality, the patriarch [Abraham] used to sit at the entrance to his tent (cf. Gen. 18:1), inviting all who passed by, and his table was laden for all comers including the impious and barbarians, without distinction. Hence he was found worthy of that wonderful banquet when he received angels and the Master of all as guests. We too, then, should actively and eagerly cultivate hospitality, so that we may receive not only angels, but also God Himself. "For inasmuch," says the Lord, "as you have done it to one of the least of these My brethren, you have done it unto Me" (Matt. 25:40). It is good to be generous to all, especially to those who cannot repay you. St. Theodoros, the Great Ascetic

If your heart has been softened either by repentance before God or by learning the boundless love of God towards you, do not be proud with those whose hearts are still hard. Remember how long your heart was hard and incorrigible.

Seven brothers were ill in one hospital. One recovered from his illness and got up and rushed to serve his other brothers with brotherly love, to speed their recovery. Be like this brother. Consider all men to be your brothers, and sick brothers at that. And if you come to feel that God has given you better health than others, know that it is given through mercy, so in health you may serve your frailer brothers. Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic. Prolog, 31.march



Lift up and stretch out your hands, not to heaven but to the poor; for if you stretch out your hands to the poor, you have reached the summit of heaven. But if you lift up your hands in prayer without sharing with the poor, it is worth nothing ... Every family should have a room where Christ is welcomed in the person of the hungry and thirsty stranger. The poor are a greater temple than the sanctuary; this altar the poor, you can raise up anywhere, on any street, and offer the liturgy at any hour." St John Chrysostom

Lift up and stretch out your hands, not to heaven but to the poor; for if you stretch out your hands to the poor, you have reached the summit of heaven. But if you lift up your hands in prayer without sharing with the poor, it is worth nothing ... Every family should have a room where Christ is welcomed in the person of the hungry and thirsty stranger. The poor are a greater temple than the sanctuary; this alter the poor, you can raise up anywhere, on any street, and offer the liturgy at any hour." St John Chrysostom

Look at all the earth supplies in summer and in autumn! Every Christian, especially the priest, ought to imitate God's bountifulness. Let your table be open to everybody, like the table of the Lord. The avaricious is God's enemy." St. John of Kronstadt

On a cold night two, two under the same blanket gain warmth from each other. Ecclesiastes 4:11

The Martyrs won Paradise through their blood; the Ascetics, through their ascetic life. Now you, my brethren, who have children, how will you win Paradise? By means of hospitality, by giving to your brothers who are poor, blind, or lame Modern Orthodox Saints I, St. Cosmas Aitolos).Dr. Constantine Cavarnos., INSTITUTE FOR BYZANTINE AND MODERN GREEK STUDIES., Belmont, Massachusetts., pp.81-94

When Abba Agathon went down to the city to sell some of his baskets and to procure a little bread, he found near the market place an old, poor cripple.

"For the love of God, Abba," the cripple began to plead on seeing the Saint, "don't you, too, leave this poor wretch unaided. Bring me near to you."

Abba Agathon picked the man up and sat him next to him in the place where he had set up his baskets to sell them.

'How much money did you make, Abba?' the cripple would ask each time that the Elder sold a basket.

"Such and such," the Elder would tell him.

"That's good enough," the cripple finally said. "Won't you buy me a little pie, Abba? That would be good of you, since I have not eaten since last evening."

"With pleasure," the Saint told him, immediately fulfilling the cripple's request.

Shortly thereafter, the cripple requested some fruit. And then some sweet. Thus, for each basket that was sold, the Saint spent the proceeds, until, thanks to his patronage, all of the baskets and money were gone, without his having kept even two pennies for himself. More importantly, he did this all with great eagerness, even though he knew that he would thus go perhaps two weeks without any bread for himself.

Since he had sold his last basket, the Saint got ready to leave the marketplace.

"So you're going?" the cripple asked him.

"Yes, I have completed all of my work."

"Uh, do me the favor of taking me as far as the crossroads, and you can leave for the desert from there," the strange old man again pleadingly said.

The good Agathon took the cripple on his back and carried him to the place where he wanted to go, though with great difficulty, since he was exhausted from his day's work.

As soon as he reached the crossroads and started to put down his living burden, he heard a sweet voice say to him:

"May you be blessed, Agathon, by God, both on earth and in Heaven."

The Saint raised up his eyes to see who it was who had spoken with him. The would-be old man had completely disappeared, since he was an Angel sent by God to test the Saint's love. The Desert Fathers



Love giving hospitality, my child, for it opens the gates of Paradise. In this you also offer hospitality to angels. "Entertain strangers so that you won't be a stranger to God." Elder Amphilochios Makris - http://agrino.org/cyberdesert/makris.htm

Hospitality... the greatest of virtues. It draws the grace of the Holy Spirit towards us. In every stranger's face, my child, I see Christ himself. Elder Amphilochios Makris - http://agrino.org/cyberdesert/makris.htm





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