Tuesday, April 5, 2011


The example of St. Antony, showing how he valued a sinner who repented.

It happened that a certain brother in the community of the Abbot Elias fell into sin. The brethren expelled him from the monastery and he fled to St. Antony who then dwelt on the inner mountain. The saint kept him there some time and then sent him back to the monastery from which he had been cast out. The brethren, when they saw him, immediately drove him forth again. Then, as at first, he fled to St. Antony, and said to him, "My father, they will not receive me." Then the saint was grieved, and sent to the brethren a message, saying, "A certain vessel suffered shipwreck in the sea, and all her cargo was lost. Yet with great labour the sailors brought the ship herself to land. Do you now wish to push forth into the deep and sink the ship that has been rescued?" The brethren meditated upon the message which the saint sent them. When they understood it they were greatly ashamed, and at once received again the brother who had sinned.

Reference: http://www.archive.org/details/wisdomofdesert00birmrich