Wednesday, February 12, 2003

Remember Bishop Paphnutius? [He brought St. Thais back to the faith....] Well, here's another story about him

It was said of Abba Paphnutius that he did not readily drink wine. One day he found himself on the road facing a band of robbers who were drinking wine. The captain of the band was acquainted with him and knew that he did not drink wine. Seeing how weary he was, he filled him a cup of wine and holding his sword in his hand he said to him, "If you do not drink this, I will kill you." So the old man, knowing that he was fulfilling the commandment of God in order to win the confidence of the robber, took the cup and drank it. Then the captain asked his forgiveness, saying, "Forgive me, abba, for I have made you unhappy." But the old man said, "I believe that, thanks to his cup, God will have mercy on you now and in the age to come." Then the robber captain said, "Have confidence in God that from now on I shall not harm anyone." So the old man converted the whole band by giving up his own will for the Lord's sake.

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