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Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Sayings of the Holy Fathers:

"But let no one imagine that humility can be achieved easily and without labour. On the contrary, it needs more effort than the practice of any other virtue. Why? Though man had received good seeds, the chief of the opposite seeds - the tares of pride - sown by the enemy of our life, took root while he was asleep. For the same thing by which the devil had caused his own downfall to earth, caused the miserable human race to fling itself down with him into the common ruin; and there is no other evil so harmful to our nature as that which is caused by pride."

St. Gregory of Nyssa


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"Let no one think that he endures suffering and achieves holiness through his own powers. For God is the cause of all the good that comes to us, just as the demon that deceives our souls is the cause of all the evils. Therefore, give thanks to their Cause for whatever good acts you perform; and attribute to their instigator the evils that trouble you."

St. Theodoros the Great Ascetic


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"Those who do not have a conscience assured of purity of heart cannot pray with the words of the Prophet `Give reward unto Thy servant.' If, indeed, the reward is according to the measure of our works, we remain within the chastisement of our sins and our faults. It is already good if one has the means of assurance that permit thanks to God thus: `Not according to our iniquities hath He dealt with us, neither according to our sins hath He rewarded us. For according to the height of heaven from the earth, the Lord hath made His mercy to prevail over them that fear Him' (Ps. 102:9-10). It is important to recognize such mercy on the part of God for us, to know that we are insulated by the accustomed practice of our faults, and for us to begin to be worthy of the mercy of God."

St. Hilary of Poitiers