Paterical accents about guiding and helping your neighbour in the process of penance

23 October 2016

The righteous Fathers didn’t want to spiritually enrich themselves solely in the desert, through their ascesis and efforts, but also their kin, be it a monk or a layman. This love of the spiritual father, who claims to bear the sins of his disciples is an outcome/imitation of the fatherly love of God and which can be seen in the entire orthodox spirituality. Indenture in the monastic settlements was the transmission of teachings from fathers to their spiritual followers, in the atmosphere of working together, prayer, ascesis,  perpetual ascent in the knowledge of God and the doing of good, following the model of Christ, the Holy Apostles and the Holy Fathers of the first centuries. In the unseen war, they distinguish ways of embracing other people’s weakness and learn how to be emphatic, just like God. The one who has true love risks his soul for the redemption of his brother. The spiritual athletes of the desert were unsurpassed in bearing the burdens of each other and thus fulfilling the law of Christ. They would refrain from the cursory nourishment and were affable hospitable for all those who, one way or another, would meet them or enter their cells. They are paradigmatic for us all in this respect also.