THE FOURTH MONTH
IN THE NAME
OF THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT,
On this day died Abba Daniel of Dabra Sihat (monastery of Scete?),
the monastery of Abba Macarius. This
holy man buried the Empress Patricia, who called herself ‘Anteyos, and
it was not known that she was woman until after her death.
One day he was going with his disciple to Alexandria, and when the
turn of the evening had come, he found a fool (or madman) whose name was
Marka, and many idiots (?) were following him; now the men of the city
thought they were madmen. And
Abba Daniel took his hand and brought him to the archbishop, and described
to him his virtues, and when they had made him take an oath he told them
that he had fled from the war of fornication, and that he had feigned to
be a madman; and when they heard this they glorified God. One day he came into a certain city and he found an old man
whose name was Eulogius, and who was a worker in stone; and he bought
bread and welcomed the poor. And he brought Abba Daniel into his house,
and welcomed him with joy, and when Daniel saw his goodness, he asked God
to give money to Eulogius, so that he might be able to welcome the poor.
And our Lord appeared unto Daniel in the form of a child, and said
unto him, “Wilt thou undertake his duties, and let him change his mode
of life, or shall I undertake them?”
And then Eulogius found a pot of gold, and he went to the emperor
and was appointed a governor, and he abandoned his old habit of life.
And Abba Daniel heard in the city of the emperor that he (i.e. the
emperor) had rebuked him, and that his soldiers had beaten Eulogius and
brought him nigh unto death; [and the emperor ordered them to crucify
him]. And whilst he was
sorrowing over this matter that child appeared unto him in a dream, and
said unto him, “Why hast thou entered into the affair of another?”
Then our Lady Mary came and kissed the feet of the child and
delivered Eulogius. As for Eulogius, when another emperor reigned he wished to
kill him, and Eulogius took to flight, and having arrived in the city, he
returned to his former work. And
one day when they were journeying along the road by the light of the moon,
he found a woman on a hill, and her hair covered her whole body, and she
had dwelt there for eight and thirty years, carrying on the spiritual
fight, and she told him all her secret history and died.
And one day they brought the Book of the Letters of Leo and read it
before all the people, and Abba Daniel leaped up and rent the book and
cursed the Faith of Chalcedon; and when the soldiers heard of this they
beat him severely, and drove him away from his monastery.
One day he was going to visit some virgins, and he knocked at the
door, and they knew that he was Abba Daniel, and they opened the door to
him and welcomed him with joy; and among them was one who made herself out
to be mad, and she lay by the door [and moved not].
And Abba Daniel asked about her, and the abbess said, “She is
mad”; and Abba Daniel told her that she was a holy woman and a spiritual
fighter. And during the night
she wrote a letter, saying, “Forgive me because I made you angry”; and
having said this she disappeared; and when the [other] virgins heard of
this they were exceeding sorry and repented.
And there was a nunnery wherein very many virgins dwelt, and its
gates were strong, and Satan raised up against them certain thieves to
plunder their goods. And the
captain of the thieves said, “I will disguise myself as Abba Daniel, and
they will open the door to me forthwith”; and he did even as he had
thought. And he said unto the
virgins, “I am Abba Daniel,” and when the nuns heard him they welcomed
him with joy, and uncovered their faces. And as soon as one of the nuns, who was blind, washed her
face in water her eyes were opened; and when the nuns saw this they said,
“Blessed art thou, O Abba Daniel!”
When the captain of the thieves saw this he repented, and became a
monk with Abba Daniel. And
Abba Daniel continued to fight strenuously, and when the time for his
departure drew nigh the angel of the Lord told him, and he fell sick a
little; and he prayed to Christ and died in peace.
Salutation to Daniel, the head of the blessed priesthood of Dabra
Sihat (monastery of Scete ?).
And on this day also is commemorated the blessed woman Diyonteres
(Diontyras). Salutation to
And on this day also died the holy and glorious father and
fighter Abba Matewos (Matthew) of ‘Asfoni, Archimandrite of Dabra
‘Aswan. And this holy man
was reared from his youth up in the fear of God, and he became a monk in a
certain monastery, and he fought with fasting and with prayer.
And he built himself an abode in the desert, and he worked with his
hands and made good nets, and the price he received for the same he gave
in alms to the poor, according to what his disciples have said about his
work, and his fighting, and his miracles.
Now these disciples Abba Serapion, and Abba Khadra relate as
follows: One day when we were
sitting outside his abode in the desert, we heard a voice like that of a
man who is speaking to his friend inside the abode; and when we went
inside we found no one there except our father, who was alone.
And we said, “O our father, we outside heard someone talking with
thee, but having come inside we find no one but thee.”
And he said unto us with very great humility and exceedingly great
sweetness, “O my children, I remember my sins, and I talk to myself, and
remind my soul of the punishments which are not transient, and the pain of
the death which shall find me. Woe
be unto poor Matewos (Matthew) when they strip off the apparel which is on
him, and set him before the throne of the Living God, in the midst of the
ladder of the heavenly angels, and all the company of the righteous, who
keep purity, which they put on as if it were a garment.”
With words such as these did he exhort his children and he reminded
them of the punishment of sinners and the reward of the righteous.
And Saint Abuna Abba Matewos (Matthew) made his prayers, and
carried on his fight, and his service in the monastery which he had built
and dedicated to our father Abba Pachomius, and the monastery of Dabra
Bakalt. And Satans and unclean spirits used to [try to] terrify him
by day and by night, and he saw them face to face, and they would run in
front of him and follow behind him everywhere, and each one of them would
change his appearance, but our father was not afraid of them. And when he stretched out his hands, and made the sign of the
Cross with them, at that very moment the devils would melt away and be
dispersed like smoke before the wind.
One day he commanded Serapion his disciple to take from the
monastery to his cell a skin of water and a little bread and to wait there
until the following day whilst he went on a certain business into the
desert. When his disciple
came to the cell and opened the door to go in he saw two wild beasts that
were larger than hyenas, and very terrifying, lying in the middle of the
dwelling, and being afraid he shut the door of brass.
And behold our father came walking through the desert, and when he
saw his disciple he laughed and he said unto him, “O Serapion, why didst
thou not go into the dwelling [and wait there] until I came to thee?”
And Serapion said unto him, “O my father, I found inside the
dwelling two [wild beasts] lying, and I was afraid of them, and I did not
go in.” And the old man who
was gentle and pure in deed and soul, answered and said unto him,
“Believe me, O my son, for twelve years I have lived with them, and I
myself have served them, and this bread and water which I commanded thee
to bring here is for them.” And
when he opened the door the two wild beasts came to him, and they licked
the soles of the feet of the holy man, and they treated him with the
greatest friendliness and were in submission to him; and the saint poured
out some water for them from the skin, and they lapped it up and went out
through the door and departed into the desert.
And this Abba Matewos (Matthew) continued to work miracles until
the report of him was in every place.
And the people used to bring unto him sick folk who were suffering
from divers kinds of sicknesses, and he healed them by means of the great
power of God, which was with him. Here is the First Miracle.
One day they brought unto him a dumb man who was possessed of a
devil, and as soon as he saw the saint, the devil cried out with a loud
voice and cast the man upon the ground.
And the saint prayed over some oil, and made the sign of the Holy
Cross over him, in the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy
Ghost, One God; and straightway the man was delivered from this Satan, and
his heart returned to him, and he heard the words of the saint, and he
departed rejoicing. And when certain of the laity came to Abba Matewos (Matthew)
and offered him a table (i.e. a meal), he sent them away in peace.
And having taken a little of that “blessing” into their houses,
when they laid it upon those who were sick, they were healed immediately,
and they glorified God. The
Second Miracle. One day they
brought unto him a very beautiful maiden who was possessed of the devil,
and very often she rent her garments, and no man could approach her, and
her parents were in sore trouble about her.
And Abba Matewos (Matthew) cried out and prayed over the oil of the
lamp, and he anointed the maiden therewith in the Name of Christ, and she
was healed. Third Miracle.
One day they brought unto him a sinful woman who had fallen into
great sin, and who was very wicked, and being with child, and the day of
her delivery having arrived, her labor was hard, and she suffered
tribulation by day and by night. And
the saint said unto her, “My daughter, confess thy sin unto me, and lie
not before God.” And she
said unto him, “I was in the habit of lying with two brothers without
knowing which of them was with me; and having conceived, by means of my
drugs I made myself to abort the child, and I gave him to the dogs.”
When the saint heard this he prayed to God, and the earth opened
her mouth and swallowed her up, and she became an example to other women.
This saint worked very many miracles, but if one tried to recount
them he would never come to an end. One
day as he was walking in the desert, a hyena tugged at his garment with
her teeth, and she showed him her cub, which had fallen into a hole; and
when the saint had drawn it out for her she crouched and licked the soles
of his feet and departed. And
when the time of his death drew nigh he saw a vision on the second day of
the month of Takhshash, and it seemed that they invited him to the
assembly at the feast of the Holy Fathers, Abba Anthony, and Abba Macarius,
and Abba Pachomius, and Abba Theodore, and Abba Moses the Black, and Saint
Abba Sinoda, and they said unto him, “Good is thy coming unto us to
dwell with us in the Jerusalem of the heavens.”
And they brought him to the door of the Great Hall wherein are
gardens and seats, and he heard a voice, saying, “Open the door so that
Matewos (Matthew) may come in.” And then he died and received three crowns.
Salutation to Matewos (Matthew).
be to God Who is glorified in His Saints.