Thursday, February 20, 2014

Our Prayers help the departed (part 1)- St. Paul the Simple

Saint Paul the Simple, who is commemorated
on March 7th, relates the following event:

I had a disciple who was very negligent, and who would commit different sins secretly. After he passed away, I began to beseech our Lord and the Most-Holy Theotokos to reveal to me where my disciple was. After praying for several days, I saw my disciple in a vision: He was being held by two other people, and he looked petrified. When I saw this, I was deeply grieved.

I became very worried. I began to give alms on his behalf, I had Liturgies performed in his name, and I continued pleading day and night to the almighty Queen of Heaven and our compassionate God for his soul.

After very many days, I saw our Panagia, and she said to me, “What is wrong grandpa? Why are you so sad?” “It is because of my disciple, my Lady.
For I saw that he is suffering.”
The Panagia responded, “Didn’t you ask me to show him to you? Behold, I fulfilled your request.”

“Yes, my Lady; however, I was not expecting to see him in this dreadful state.” Then the Virgin Mary said, “On account of your labors, your humility, and your love, I will show him to you again so you can rejoice.”

The following day, I saw my disciple. This time he was walking joyful and he said to me, “Your prayers, Father, moved the Most-Holy Theotokos
(because she loves you very much) to entreat the Savior, and He freed me from bondage.”

Just as he finished saying these words, I saw the Panagia, and she said to me, “Have you learned
how your disciple is now, O Elder?”
“Yes, my Lady,” I replied, “and I thank you.”
“Go, then,” she said, “and always remember the brother in your prayers, give alms, and perform Liturgies for him, because the deceased received great benefit from the Divine Liturgy and alms that are given with faith.”
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