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The Paradise Of The Holy Fathers Volumes 1 and 2 by Saint Athanasius Of Alexandria

AND we also saw another blessed man, who lived at some distance from the city, at a place which faced the open desert, and his name was Theon; he was a holy man who had shut himself up in a small house by himself, and he had kept silence for thirty years, and because he had performed many mighty deeds he was held to be a prophet among the people. For every day a multitude of sick folk went forth to him, and he would stretch out his hand through the window and lay it upon them, and would send them away healed. Now the countenance of the blessed man appeared to be like that of an angel, and his eyes sparkled, and he was filled with all the grace of God. A short time ago certain thieves came by night against the blessed man from a great distance, thinking that they would find a large quantity of gold with him, and they were prepared to kill him, but when he had said a prayer they found themselves fast bound with ropes before the door, [and they had to stay there] until the morning. And when the crowds of people came to him in the morning, they had it in their minds to commit the thieves to the flames, but the blessed man felt himself urged to speak a word unto the men, and he said, “Let these thieves depart in peace, for if ye do not let them, the gracious gift of healing which I possess will depart from me.” Then the multitudes hearkened unto his words, for they did not dare to treat them lightly, and straightway the thieves went and took up their abode with the brethren [and] monks, and changed their former manner of life, because they truly repented of that which they had done in the past.

Now this man, through the gift which God had bestowed upon him, knew three languages, and he was able to read Greek, Latin, and Egyptian, a fact concerning the blessed man which we have learned from many folk; and when he knew that we were strangers he wrote down [the fact] in a book, and thanked God on our behalf. His food consisted of garden herbs, and they said that he used to go forth from his cell by night and mingle with the wild animals of the desert, and he gave them to drink of the water which he found. The footmarks which appeared by the side of his abode were those of buffaloes, and goats, and gazelle, in the sight of which he took great pleasure.

Here end the Triumphs of Abba Theon








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