Thursday, October 15, 2020

When Saint Paisios the Athonite Spoke With the Rotten Corpse of a Tormented Old Woman


Saint Paisios related the following experience:

"I  knew  an  old  woman  who  was  very  stingy.  Her daughter was very good,  and  whatever  she  wanted  to  give  as  alms  she  would  throw  out  the window  so  she  could  leave  the  house  with  empty  hands,  because  her mother  would  always  check  to  see  if  she  was  taking  anything.  Then  she would  go  pick  up  whatever  it  was  and  give  it  away.  But  if  she  told  her mother  that  'the  monk'  (that  is,  me)  had  asked for something, then her mother would be willing to give it up.

After her death, I saw a young man (her guardian angel), and he said to me, 'Come, so-and-so wants you.'  I couldn’t understand what happened to me, but we were  standing in front of a grave in Konitsa. He moved his hand, like this, and the grave opened. Inside,  I  saw  a  grimy mess and the old woman, who had started to decay. She was calling out, 'Monk, save me.' My heart went out to her.

Feeling sorry for her, I climbed down inside and without being repulsed I embraced her and asked, 'What’s wrong?' She  said, 'Tell  me, didn’t I  always  give  you  anything  you  asked, willingly?' 'Yes,' I said, 'that’s true.' 'All right,' the young man reassured her. He  moved  his  hand  like  this  again  and  closed  the  grave  like  a curtain, and I was back in my cell. The sisters from the Monastery of Souroti asked me, 'What happened to you on the feast of Saint Andrew?' I answered, 'Pray for so-and-so’s soul.'

Two months later, I saw her again. High above an abyss, there was a plateau with palaces, a lot of houses, and many people. The old woman was up there. She was  very  happy  with  the  face  of  a  small  child  that  had just a tiny spot that her angel was also scrubbing to clean off. In the abyss, in  the  distance,  I  saw people  being  beaten  and  harassed,  and  trying  to climb up. I  embraced  her  out  of  joy.  I  took  her  aside  a  little,  so  the  people  in the abyss wouldn’t see us and be hurt. She said to me, 'Come on, let me show you the place where the Lord has put me.'"
From the book Saint Paisios of Mount Athos