Sunday, October 21, 2018

Met Ephrem (Kyriakos): The Monk's Mission

Arabic original here.

The Monk's Mission

The monk flees the world not out of hatred for the world, but out of love for it. He will help the world more with his prayer. We are in dire need today of divine intervention. The monk's basic work is prayer.

God wants us to beseech Him to intervene. The faithful people always go to church and offer a candle with their prayer, while the monk makes himself into a candle that keeps watch through the night and melts into prayer love for Christ and all people.

Preparation in the World

Alongside a spiritual father who loves monasticism, you must repeat the Jesus Prayer and avoid places of entertainment in order to preserve chastity of body and soul.

Constantly read the Synaxarion, the Paterikon and Saint Ephrem. First reform yourself through the path of repentance.

The monk flees far from parties, he always seeks counsel from a spiritual father and pursues prayer. The important thing is for the monk to love devotion (philotimia) and not having possessions.

Leaving the World and Renouncing of Worldly Things

By giving our family over to God, the monk's narrow love for his small family is transferred the large family, which is the Church and the entire world. The greatest love comes to be for Christ.

The choice of a spiritual father is important for the monk. The spiritual father must be harsh only on himself and very loving with others, just as he must love silence and prayer.

The monk avoids worldly luxuries. He must abandon many human comforts in order to receive divine consolation.

He takes off the old, worldly man and puts on the new, godly man and so he says, "today is the day of resurrection."

The monk has died to the world. He rejoices because he lives close by Christ.

The angelic life is in repeating:

"Glory to God for I live close by Christ." At that point, the joy of God's grace carries him on. The monk opens his heart to his spiritual father. He discloses to him everything that is in his heart. He does everything that is asked of him. That is, he obeys him.

The monk is attentive to the issue of visitors. He avoids having guests inasmuch as it involves worldly things. He holds fast to divine longing, especially if he is a novice. The monk loves his cell and sees in it, through prayer and solitude with God, his true consolation. It must be decorated with icons. If he goes out into the world, his chotki never leaves his hand. With it, he uses with others the expression "bless" and "may it be blessed."

In his prayer, the monk seeks repentance before all else. Repentance brings humility. And humility brings the grace of God. Prayer does not tire, but rather brings rest.

Metropolitan of Tripoli, al-Koura and their Dependencies

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