Our Holy Father Or.

Commemorated August 7 in the Orthodox Christian Menaion

From the Prologue

A solitary of the Thebaid, he achieved great perfection through very great asceticism. When he had become established in stability and dedicated to solitude, he founded several monasteries one after the other, and was an outstanding spiritual guide and the instructor of many monks. Rufinus, who visited him, writes thus of him: 'In appearance, he is like an angel of God; an old man of ninety with a long, snow-white beard. The impression left by his presence is delightful. His gaze is imbued with a more than human radiance.' He strove never to tell a lie, saw angels of God many times and also underwent great temptations from demons, but soberly and courageously overcame them all. He received Communion every day. Once, one of his disciples reminded him that Easter had come, and that he must celebrate it. Hearing this, he went outside, raised his hands to heaven and spent three days in unbroken prayer. Then he explained to his disciples: 'This is the monk's celebration of Easter: the lifting up of the mind to unity with God.' He entered into rest in great old age in about 390.

From The Prologue From Ochrid by Bishop Nikolai Velimirovich
©1985 Lazarica Press, Birmingham UK

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