Father Demetrios Serfes - Spiritual Nourishment for the Soul - July 2000
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Lord & Savior Jesus Christ
A Saint In Our Midst
Excerpts from Father Michael Pappas

Compiled by Father Demetrios Serfes
July 1, 2000

Last Updated On

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High atop a monastery on Holy Mt. Athos there lived an abbot whose monastery suffered from constant gossiping an quarreling among the brother monks.

A good and faithful servant of the Lord, the abbot was greatly troubled by this dilemma and sought to bring an end to this strife. To bring resolution to this increasingly divisive situation, he entrusted his spiritually ailing community to the care of one of elders, bid farewell to the monks and ventured off on a journey to a thriving monastery, the health of which was attributed to the leadership of its wise and discerning abbot.

Upon approaching the humble cell the brotherhood's luminary abbot, the troubled abbot prayed fervently that the meeting would render some sign of answer to bring back to his distraught community. Sitting for some time, the distraught abbot explained to the spiritual father, in great detail, the nature of the discord plaguing his flock.

Listening patiently and intently the latter responded thus, "Your situation sounds grave, but with much sadness I am afraid that I must confess to you that I have no advice or guidance to give to you. However, there is one thing that I think you should know. At your monastery there lives a saint among the monks."

Astonished by this revelation, the abbot returned immediately to his flock and reported these words. In no time a strange thing happened. No knowing who among them might be a saint, the brothers began to look at one another in a new and more loving manner. They began to be kind to one another in a way the abbot never thought possible and, although the saint in question was never revealed, a miracle did happen, harmony and love were restored to the life that Christian community.

Be it in our marriages, families, work places of the Church, one of the greatest challenges each of us faces is the challenge of living in community. It is in those very places where fellowship is being fostered and cultivated that the devil is trying to increasingly to bring discord and strife. Yet like the distraught abbot who received the strange news from the wise spiritual father, let us not despair. Rather, let our crises become transfigured into opportunities, for truly there is always a saint in our midst!

Christ calls each and every one of us to realize our potential, that of holiness of His Name. Just as we show reverence and respect to the images of the saints depicted in the holy icons, so too let us treat one another as God's holy ones, potential saints. For only in this way can we begin to transfigure, through the grace of God, the brokenness of the world in which we live!"

With all the saints let us commit one another, and all our lives unto Christ our Lord!

Humbly In Christ Our Lord,
+ Reverend Presbyter Demetrios Serfes
Who prays for you and with you!

July 1, 2000

Content written/compiled by Father Demetrios Serfes.
Posted on June 10, 2000
(c)1999 Father Demetrios Serfes