Posted by PATER STEFANOS ANAGNOSTOPOULOS
A story taken from the book “The Adventures of a Pilgrim” about an officer who meets the pilgrim.
When I was young I was serving in the army outside in the countryside, not in the offices. I was good at my job and my senior officers loved me because I was a conscientious lieutenant. I was still young as my friends. Unfortunately, I started to drink and slowly the passion of the drink giggled inside me. When I was not under the influence of alcohol I was a regular and good officer, but when I was drinking I was unable to do anything for many days at a time. They tolerated me for a long time, but once with a lot of drink, I went badly to my commander and I was imprisoned and sentenced to the soldier’s order for three years. I was threatened with even more severe punishment if I continued to surrender to my passion this drunkenness. Despite all the penalties and threats, I could not dominate my soul and be cured of the bloated passion. I was trying but I failed every time. My uppermost disappointed of my situation decided to send me to prison prisons. When I heard this, my glass went to stop. I was absorbed in sad thoughts in the barracks, when a monk who had made money for a church came there. Every one gave him what he could. Then this man came to me and asked me why I was so sad. I told him what was happening to me, and he liked me very much for my misery and he said to me: “The same thing happened to my brother. What do you think, though, that he helped him? His spiritualist gave him a quartet with a strict rule to read a chapter without a moment’s latency whenever he felt the desire to drink. If the desire continued, he had to go into reading another chapter and another until the passion was intercepted. My brother faithfully followed the advice of his intellectual and then some time he managed to get rid of the passion of the drink. It’s been about fifteen years since then, and his lips never touched any drink. Do the same, and you will see that you too will escape from this misery. I have a quadrilateral and I will come again to bring it to you. ”
I listened to him carefully and when I finished, I said, “How can your Gospels help me since all the efforts of mine and doctors have failed to save me from the passion of the drink?” I did this because I did not know what the Gospel was and I had never read it. “Do not say that,” said the monk, “I assure you that he will help you,” and the other day brought me the Tetra’angelo.
I opened it, I took a look in it and said, “I do not take it because I will use it without knowing, like the priests, the Paleo-Slavonic language”? But the monk went on to assure me that these words in the Gospel are filled with divine grace and have divine power because they are written with what God Himself gave and revealed to the people. “It does not matter if you do not understand at first, but only proceed with careful reading. A holy monk once said: “If you do not understand the words of the Gospel of the Word of God, the evil spirits understand what you are reading and trembling.” Your passion for drinking is definitely a satanic energy. I’ll tell you something else. St. John the Chrysostom writes that even in the room where a Gospel is kept, the spirits of darkness are held out of it by his power, and there they tremble and they think much to do evil. ”
I gave a little money to the monk, I do not remember how many, and I bought the Tetrayangelos, I put it in a trunk with other things and I was there. A little bit of anxiety about the passion of the drink began to scare me. An irresistible desire to drink made me, like a crazy rush to open the trunk to get some money and run for the drink. But my eyes fell instantly on the Tetrayangelos, and at one moment, everything that my monk had told me was lurking in my mind. I opened the book and began reading from the first chapter of Evangelist Matthew. I arrived at the end of this chapter without a word, but I remembered that my monk had said: “Do not be disturbed if you do not understand what you are reading, just proceed with diligent reading.” In front, I said to my brother, I will read the second chapter. Now reading I began to somehow understand something.
So I continued the third chapter and then suddenly marked the camp’s silence. Now no one was allowed to go out and everyone had to go to sleep. When I woke up in the morning, I woke up with the unfulfilled desire to drink, but suddenly, I thought to read another chapter, in order to see, in any event, what the gospel’s effectiveness would be. I actually read it, I calmed down for a while and did not go buy a drink. He recovered the desire within me shortly, but I re-read another chapter and I felt relieved. This gave me courage, and since then every time I felt the temptation of the passion of drunkenness to take hold of me, I was reading a chapter from where I had stayed and each time I overcame the passion.
Most of all, as time went by, my situation improved, and when I finished the reading of the four Gospels, I was ending with my passion, which was moving rapidly backwards, almost no longer belonging to the past.
I was a little drunk after a while and it’s about twenty years since I did not put a drop in my mouth.
Everyone was surprised to change that. Three years later I returned to my rank, then I went ahead and finally, I went back to the promotion line that belonged to me but I had lost it because of the drink. Then I married, and I live blessed with my husband, we have all the good and glorify the God who gave us everything abundantly. We help the poor by force and we host when we can pilgrims. I also have a son, a first-class child officer. He noted, however: Since I was healed from the passion of the drink, I made a vow to read in turn, an entire Gospel of the four, every day, every twenty-four hours, until I close my eyes and leave this world .
Nothing in the world can prevent me from keeping my order every day. When I am sometimes tired, I lie down and ask my wife to read so that I will never break the rule I have established. For gratitude and glory to God, I painted this TetraJahnelo with pure silver, and I always have it with me inside my jacket pocket.
I apologize I have lost the source – this is a translation I made through Google.