In this video, Archbishop Christophoros from Jordan tells us two stories from 1970s when an earthquake happened in Greece and Mount Athos. How did Saint Paisios react to this earthquake? What did the Romanian monk Enoch do?
Disclaimer: this does not suggest to ignore the sanitary precautions, but it invites us to acquire the peace of our Lord, where there is no fear.
English translation by Waad Rabahie
Video source: Jordanian Orthodox Television, November 2020 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZxhWZ7TMtE)
Archbishop Christophoros Atallah, Greek Orthodox Archbishop of Amman, Jordan:
An earthquake occurred in the 1970s (if I recall correctly from the Fathers). They were on the Holy Mountain (Mount Athos) and suddenly, as they were in a night vigil (Saint Paisios attended this vigil too)… One the fathers spoke about a fascinating scene that I would like to tell you about… Suddenly, while being in the church in a night vigil, an earthquake occurs, the chandeliers started shaking and falling down to the floor. People who were in the church went outside. Everyone was screaming in fear. The elder monks in the monastery were siting like this, like you brothers and sisters are siting now in those seats, they were holding their candles and were praying. None of them moved… nothing.
Saint Paisios was outside, he was about to enter the church, as one of the deacons was running to the outside.
So he found Saint Paisios on his way and said to him: Paisios, don’t you see?! Everything is shaking, where are you going inside the church?!
What did Saint Paisios answer? He replied: “Didn’t your mother use to swing you? At that time you weren’t afraid… Now that Jesus is swinging us back and forth a little… you become afraid! Let me go on my way…”
And he entered the church. Earthquake is like a swing… Do you see the peace in the person’s heart where Jesus is present? Where peace is present… where Jesus is…
Jesus is peace.
Jesus is joy.
Jesus is safety.
Jesus is hope.
The scene of the elders as they kept in their places not moving, while everyone else was afraid.
I recall another event during the same earthquake. There was a monk in Thessaloniki. All the people in the city of Thessaloniki went out to the streets, but he went up and sat on the balcony. They came ringing on his door. He was staying in one of the student dormitory.
They knocked on his door and said to him:
“Monk Enoch (this was his name, Enoch), come out… things are breaking down, houses are collapsing”.
He replied quietly:
“If our Lord wants Enoch to die, Enoch will die”.
He was Romanian and didn’t speak Greek so good
“If our Lord wants Enoch to die, Enoch will die. If our Lord doesn’t want Enoch to die, Enoch will not die.”
He closed the door of his room and went back to the balcony.
I’ve told you these stories so that we don’t fear, so that we keep Jesus inside us, Who is the source of peace.