ADVENT FIRE: December 3

From Becoming Fire: Through the Year with the Desert Fathers and Mothers 

Opening the Door

Another time when the archbishop wanted to approach Arsenius, he first sent someone to see if the old man would open his door to him.  Arsenius sent word to him, saying, “If you come, I will open my door to you; and if I open my door to you, I will open it to everyone, and then I will no longer live here.”

When the archbishop heard this, he said, “If I drive him away by going to see him, I will no longer journey to see the saint.”

Stay Away from Arsenius

Blessed Archbishop Theophilus, in the company of a certain provincial governor, once approached Abba Arsenius.  The archbishop asked Arsenius a question, wanting to hear a word from him.

After remaining silent a short while, the old man answered them, “If I speak to you, will you heed what I say?”

They promised to heed what he told them, so the old man said to them, “Do not go near wherever you hear Arsenius is.”

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