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Pathway: Main page arrow Articles arrow Referats and texts collection arrow THE LIFE, ACTS, AND MIRACLES OF OUR REVERED AND HOLY FATHER ABBOT SERGIUS
Russian History: XX century

Russian History: XIX сentury



Now Bishop Stephen, a god-fearing and devout man, had for St. Sergius a deep spiritual affection. One day he was travelling from his episcopacy of Perm to the capital, Moscow. The road along which the bishop journeyed lay about seven miles from St. Sergius' monastery. When the godly bishop came opposite the saint's monastery, he stopped and said, bowing low toward the direction of the saint, "Peace be with thee, brother in God!" The saint, at this hour, was seated at table with his brethren. Perceiving in spirit what Bishop Stephen was doing, he rose from the supper table, stood for an instant in prayer, then bowing said aloud, "Be joyful, thou shepherd of Christ's flock; the peace of God be always with thee." At the end of supper his disciples inquired of him what he meant. He openly told them, "At that hour Bishop Stephen, going on his way to Moscow, did reverence to the Holy Trinity, and blessed us humble folk." He pointed out to them, also, where this had taken place. One time, when Theodore, son of Stephen, was with Blessed Sergius in the monastery, he was taking part in the divine liturgy which was being sung by the saint, and with the aforenamed Stephen, the saint's brother. Of a sudden Isaac, who had taken the vow of silence, saw a fourth person serving at the altar with them, of a bright, shining appearance, and in dazzling apparel. Isaac inquired of Father Makarii, who was standing by his side, "What miraculous apparition is this?" Makarii replied: "I do not know, brother; 1 see a fearful and ineffable vision. But 1 think, brother, that someone came with the prince." (Prince Vladimir was at this time in the monastery.) One of the prince's attendants was asked whether a priest had come with him; but, no, they knew of no one. When the divine Mass was at an end, seizing a favourable moment, one of the brethren approached St. Sergius and questioned him. But he, anxious not to disclose the secret, asked, "What wonder did you see, brother? My brother, Stephen, was saying the Mass; also his son, Theodore and I, unworthy as 1 am. No other priest whatever was serving with us." His disciples insisted, entreating the saint to reveal the mystery to them, whereupon he said, "Beloved brethren, what the Lord God has revealed can 1 keep secret? He whom you beheld was an angel of the Lord, and not only this time but every time 1. unworthy as 1 am, serve with this messenger of the Lord. That which you have seen tell no one, so long as 1 am on this earth." And his disciples were astonished beyond measure.

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