My experience with Elder Paisios (by Metropolitan of Lemesos Mr. Athanasios), (Part 1)

παισιοσHomily by the Metropolitan of Lemesos Mr. Athanasios at a symposium on blessed Elder Paisios the Hayiorite at Konitsa, 2011, published in ‘Paraklisis’ magazine, May 2012.

Elder Paisios ranks amongst the great saints of our Church; he was a great ascetic and a man of prayer, nurturing great love towards the Lord.

Let us dare speak about the many things we have seen and heard next to him, being obliged to bear witness just like the Apostles who spoke about Jesus, His life and His miracles, in order to help us believe that He is indeed the Christ, the Savior of the world, and by believing in Him to acquire eternal life.

Numerous people have met Elder Paisios and were associated with him. Each one, according to the measure of his ability, has received his blessing and his prayers. Certainly each one of them has to say a lot about him. This blessing of communication is endless, just as endless was the ocean of Divine Grace which Elder Paisios was always flooded with.

I first met Elder Paisios in 1976 when I was 18 years old. I had just graduated from school and gone to the Theological School of Thessaloniki University to study. I used to hear about the Holy Mountain from other students and I became very keen to pay a visit. Thus I tried to go there for the first time in 1976. This trip had a tragic ending. I didn’t like it at all and I left the very first morning. I said to myself: “I am never going to come back to such a place!” It felt nasty, awful and depressing. This was clearly a temptation from the devil, since the place is none of the above.  It was my fault, and it had nothing to do with the place. But this was how my mind worked at the time. Bear in mind that I came from a family which had no great experience about monastic life and the Holy Mountain. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »