Humor from the Desert Fathers

A certain sophist of this age came to visit an Elder. Seeing that he had nothing but a Bible, he gave the Elder his own commentary on the Bible.

A year later, he again visited the Elder and asked: “Father, did my book help you better understand the Bible?”

“On the contrary,” answered the Elder, “I had to turn to the Bible in order to understand your book.”

A certain young monk asked an elder, “Father, now do I have to completely renounce the world?”

“Fear not,” answered the elder, “if you live a really Christian life, the world will immediately renounce you.”

A very rich man who lived in Alexandria prayed to God every day that the lives of the indigent be made easier. On hearing about this, Abba Makarios sent him a message: “I would like to own all your estate.”

The man was puzzled, and sent one of his servants to ask what [Abba Makarios] would do with all that wealth.

Abba Makarios said: “Tell your master that I would immediately answer his prayer.”

These were stolen from the parish newsletter of the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of St John the Baptist.

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