November 25, 2016

Abouna Antonious El Souriani

500 metres away from the famous monastery of St. Pishoy (Deir el Anba Bishoy), is the less known, but still known, monastery of the Syrians, “Deir El Sourian”. The monastery itself has had its recent greats. Bishop Theophilus will go down in history as one of the most charismatic abbots of that monastery. He was … Continue reading Abouna Antonious El Souriani →

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April 19, 2016

Remembering Abouna Fanous…

The recent passing of several giants has grieved me. There were the passings of Fathers Feltaous  and Mettaous  of the Syrian Monastery, then the passing of Anba Mikhail of Assiut. These and others, to me, symobolise the ending of a great era, a loss of giants. Hearing the news of Abouna Fanous el Anba Bola today, only added to this feeling. With every passing generation, I fear, humanly, that there’s a rich tradition that dies with them. I feel that there – …

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April 9, 2009

Asceticism

Asceticism is to live with satisfaction on your minimal needs without experiencing delight and getting away from materialism,. St. Paul the Apostle reminded his disciple Timothy in his first epistle, “But godliness with contentment is great gain.” ; “And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.” and “But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction – …

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April 9, 2009

Egyptian Monasticism

Transcript of a Speech Delivered at the Opening of the Exhibit, “A Still, Small Voice: Sixteen Centuries of Egyptian Monasticism,” at the Washington National Cathedral, March 15, 1992. I want to tell you now about Coptic monasticism. Egypt is considered the motherland of monasticism. The first monk in the whole world was St. Anthony, a Copt from Upper Egypt. He was born in the year 251 and departed in the year 356; he lived 105 – …

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April 9, 2009

The Life of Saint Antony the Great (Part I)

From Athanasius of Alexandria, “The Life of St. Anthony,” in A Select Library of Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers of the Christian Church. Second Series. P. Schaff and H. Wace, eds., vol. 4(New York: Scribners, 1890), pp. 195-221. ++++ You have entered upon a noble rivalry with the monks of Egypt by your determination either to equal or surpass them in your training in the way of virtue. For by this time there are monasteries among – …

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April 9, 2009

A Letter to the Disciples of Saint Antony

At the end of his life, St. Antony gave two sheepskin coats to his two closest disciples—‎both were bishops and became ‎saints: St. Serapion, the bishop of Thmuis; and St. ‎Athanasius, the Archbishop of ‎Alexandria. This letter is addressed to ‎the disciples of St. Antony and was ‎written immediately after St. Antony’s departure in 356 AD.‎ St. Serapion wrote also four or five other letters to St. Athanasius. ‎1. After the departure of the blessed – …

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Tagged: Monasticism
April 9, 2009

The Monastery of Saint Antony the Great

Born in the Upper Egypt town of Coma near Heracleopolis in the year 251 A.D, St. Antony the Great, when orphaned at the age of 18, became a hermit and thus lived to 105 years old. He lived as an Anchorite, as still exists in Egypt, and it is said that he was tormented his entire life by flatteries and temptations of the devil. He, along with St. Pachomius, were two of the first exponents – …

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Tagged: Monasticism
April 9, 2009

The Famous 38 Sayings

1. When the holy Abba Anthony lived in the desert he was beset by ‘accidie’ – lethargy – , and attacked by many sinful thoughts. He said to God, ‘Lord, I want to be saved, but these thoughts will not leave me alone. What shall I do in my affliction? How can I be saved?’ A short while afterwards, when he got up to go out, Anthony saw a man like himself sitting at his – …

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April 9, 2009

The Story of Abba Moses the Strong

Chapter Ten: The Triumph of the Disciple of an Old Man in the Desert Now there was a certain man whose name was Moses, who was by race an Indian (i.e., an Ethiopian), and his flesh was black, and he was the slave of a man in high authority, and because of his evil deeds and thefts his master drove him out of his house; now it is said that he even went so far – …

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April 9, 2009

Sayings of the Strong Saint Abba Moses

The Gates of Heaven ‎ ‎+ Abba Poemen said: Abba Moses asked Abba Zechariah a question when he was about to die, saying, "Fr. is it ‎good that we should hold our peace?" And Zechariah said to him, "Yes, my son, hold your peace." And at the time ‎of his death, while Abba Isodore was sitting with him, Abba Moses looked up to heaven and said, "Rejoice and be ‎glad, O my son Zechariah, for – …

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