5 Responses to "The Monk who Paid for a Harlot"
  1. Bishoy says:

    Abouna. This is a wonderful story! I really enjoyed it. I was just wondering, many of these stories are very common across the literature of the desert fathers, why do you think God takes some of these harlots soon after their repentance (as was the case with St Paisia and in this story), and while others live longer and become greatly holy people such as St Mary the Egyptian and live lives of asceticism? How come Thais died here soon after – she could’ve become as great as St Mary the Egyptian?

    • Fr. Moses Samaan says:

      Dear Bishoy, this would be a wonderful question to ask our Lord in prayer! It seems to my weakness, however, that, in His mercy and compassion, God gives us examples of the many paths towards holiness. Some saints were married, others were ascetic. Some were martyred, some lived long lives. Some were saved through a lifetime of struggle whereas others struggled intensely for a short time and departed. In the garden of the saints, there is surely a great deal of variety so that we can all be reassured that, despite our unique lives, we can all struggle to be holy.

      • Bishoy says:

        Ok thank you abouna. That’s a good response. Just a curiosity I had. I am sure it’s according to God’s wise providence suitable to the way that each individual obtains salvation. God bless.

  2. Baher says:

    Great story! I had one question though: part of the story goes as following “And having gone in, the blessed man Bessarion saw the couch which was laid out, now it was a very high one, and the woman said unto the old man, “Come, get up on this bed”; and he said unto her, “Hast thou not inside this chamber another room?” and she said unto him, “Yea.” Then he said unto her, “Let us then go in there.” And Thais answered and said unto him, “If it be that thou art ashamed of men seeing thee, know that no man can see us in this chamber; but if it be God of Whom thou art afraid He can see us in whatsoever place we enter.” And the blessed man Bessarion hearing these words, said unto her, “My daughter, dost thou know that God existeth?””

    The language here confuses me. Would you mind explaining briefly the events of this part in regular english? 🙂

  3. MR says:

    Thank you for posting this Abuna. The part that struck me the most was her response to the call for repentance by the monk. It is almost as if she was just waiting for someone to show her the path. Even if we are born within the Church sometimes we deviate very far away, but I think God allows that to happen in a way that is actually good for us, because only then we are able to taste that longing that only God and the Church can fulfill. We end up in the situation of Thais, where we know about God and about His judgement but we are afraid to step forward because of our sins and regrets. When our hearts are then broken by the emptiness of the world, we enter a place of longing and readiness towards repentance, but someone has to guide us to show us how. I find it amazing how God allows our lives to move in a certain way where we become ready to accept His love and forgiveness in addition to setting up the Church in a way where we can find the guidance and support we need on our path. Very rich story.

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