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Abba Shenouda Marvels at the Works of the Monks of Scetis

Abba Shenouda Marvels at the Works of the Monks of Scetis - St Shenouda Monastery Pimonakhos Articles

At the time when the wise Cyril summoned Saint Abba Shenouda to the holy synod that met in Ephesus concerning the impious human worshipper Nestorius, our Lord Jesus Christ gave them friendly assistance until they subscribed to the deposition of that despicable person. After this battle waged by Saint Cyril and the holy synod of bishops, they wished to return to their Episcopal sees as commanded by the godly emperor Theodosius, and Saint Abba Shenouda was taken up into a cloud. When it carried him over the holy place of our father, the righteous Abba Macarius the Great of Scetis (he to whom the voice of the Lord had come, saying, “You have become a god upon the earth,” and who saw in a vision the holy prayers of his children becoming like the sweet smoke of incense going to the throne of the Almighty), the old man, the archimandrite Abba Shenouda, marvelled to himself, saying, “When my Lord Jesus Christ sets me down in my monastery, I will come to this place to see its work and those who live in it in order to see what sort of people they are.”

After he greeted the brothers in his monastery, he took with him some of the elders and went to Scetis to the holy place of Abba Macarius and the superior at that time received him with joy and with open and loving encouragement. Saint Abba St Shenouda thought to himself, “According to the vision I saw when I was mounted on the cloud, works like this are not attainable.”

While Saint Abba Shenouda was pondering thoughts like this within himself, God revealed his thoughts to the holy superior of the monastery, and since he wanted the monastery to profit from Abba Shenouda’s visit, he walked through the monastery with him. Therefore, with the superior accompanying him, the old men of the monastery received a blessing from Abba Shenouda. Then the superior took Abba Shenouda to where the brothers cooked their meals. A small feast was taking place that day for one of the faithful. In his impatience, the brother who tended the fire under the kettle allowed it to boil over, and the superior said to him, “Thrust your forearm into the kettle, my child, and turn the meat.” In obedience he thrust his forearm into the kettle and turned the food.

When Saint Shenouda saw this great wonder (the brother was not harmed at all), he publicly said, “Truly, the name `without work’ will not be able to divide a people, for works raised up Tabitha; in the same way, because of the pure works of Abba Macarius, faith has raised the dead. And what shall I say about my children? Indeed, their eyes have flowed with tears and they have constricted their stomachs on account of their severe diet, and up to now they have demonstrated no power like this: And so he went to his monastery, giving profit to the place, and giving glory to our Lord Jesus Christ and his servant, Abba Macarius the righteous.

From: The Life of St Macarius