ST. ABBA PISHOY
Coptic Date: 8 Epep
On this day, St. Pishoy, whose memorial is honorable, the star of the desert, departed. He was born in a town called Shansa in Egypt, and he had six brothers. His mother saw an angel in a vision saying to her, 'The Lord says to you, give Me one of your children to serve Me.' She answered, 'Lord, take whoever you want.' The angel took the hand of Anba Pishoy, who was thin and his body was frail. His mother told the angel, 'My Lord, take one who is strong to serve the Lord.' 'This is whom the Lord has chosen,' answered the Angel. Later on, St. Pishoy went to the wilderness of Shiheet and became a monk by the hand of Anba Bemwah (Bamouyah), who also ordained St. John 'Yehness' the Short a monk. St. Pishoy struggled in much asceticism and many worships that made him worthy to see the Lord Christ. Emperor Constantine appeared to him in a vision, saying, 'Had I known how great is the honor of monks, I would have abandoned my kingdom and became a monk.' St. Pishoy told him, 'You have banished the heathen worship and exalted Christianity, and has not Christ given you anything?' Emperor Constantine answered him, 'The Lord has given me many gifts, but none of them is like the honor of the monks.' During his days, an ascetic old man appeared in the mountain of Ansena, who was reputed for his righteousness and to whom many people gathered. But he deviated from the true faith and the devil led him astray. He taught that there is no Holy Spirit, and many were deceived by his sayings. Anba Pishoy heard about him, and he went to him and he had with him a weaved basket with three ears. When he visited the old man and his followers, they asked him about the reason for making three ears for the basket. He answered, 'I have a Trinity, and everything I do, is like the Trinity.' They said to him, 'Then, Is there a thing called the Holy Spirit?' Then he started to explain to them from the Holy Scriptures, from the Old and New Testaments. He indicated to them that the Holy Spirit is One of the three Persons of the Trinity. He convinced them, and they returned to the true faith. Then he returned to his monastery in the wilderness of Scete (Shiheet). When the barbarians invaded the wilderness, he left it and dwelt on Mount Ansena, where he departed. After the time of persecution had ended, they brought his body with the body of St. Paul of Tamouh to his monastery in the wilderness of Shiheet.
May his prayers be with us. Amen.