Thursday, December 3, 2009

More on Humility

Another lesson on Humility from Elder Ieronymos.

It was the feast of saint Nicholas and after the Divine Liturgy he was going into town for his accustomed ministry... Passing by outside of a store he saw the proprietor.. He stopped for a moment and greeted him, "Good morning!  Many Years!

The shopkeeper, for some reason, instead of rejoicing at  his blessings, answered with rudeness and in a exceedingly insulting way, "Get out of here, Priest, as fast as you can.  Thats right! Get going–bravo!–before I make some nasty remark to you."

Father Ieronymos went away in sorrow, not so much for the insult, but because he did not wish to grieve any man. Even if he was not at fault... He prayed all day and night on the morrow he took the same path again.  As soon as he came near the shop of the reviler, he saw him sweeping his courtyard.  He approached him and with a great deal of sweetness and humility said to him, "forgive me, my brother, if in any way I have grieved you.  But won't you allow me even to bid you Good Morning?

The shopkeeper was dumbstruck; he would never have expected such kindness and humility.  He ran and fell on his bosom saying, "Forgive me, Elder.  I don't know what satan put me up to speaking to you like that.  I have repented over it bitterly and ask your forgiveness."

from The Elder Ieronymos of Aegina by Peter Botsis, pp.155-156

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