Featured Saint 9/2

Abba Paul the first hermit

Claim to fame: When his brother took the lion’s share of his father’s inheritance, St Paul decided to go with his brother to the governor to judge their dispute. On their way to the governor, they saw a funeral procession. Paul asked one of the mourners about the deceased man. Paul was told that he was one of the noble and rich people of the city, and that he left his riches and his wealth behind, and that they were taking him to bury him with only his garment. St. Paul sighed in his heart and said to himself, ‘What do I have to do then with all the money of this temporal world which I shall leave naked?’ He looked to his brother and said to him, ‘My brother, let us return, for I shall not ask you for anything, not even for what is mine.’ St Paul left his brother and was guided to the eastern inner wilderness where he stayed for seventy years, during which he saw no one. God revealed the holiness of St Paul to St Anthony the Great who came and visited him in his cave. From the time he went to the wilderness, God used to sent St Paul a raven with half a loaf of bread to eat, however, when St Anthony came the raven brought a whole loaf. On his next visit, St Anthony found St Paul’s soul being taken up to heaven. He took the palm tunic of St Paul and buried him in the expensive tunic of St Athanasius the Apostolic.

Quote (by the angel about St Paul): “There is a man who lives in the inner wilderness; the world is not worthy of his footsteps. By his prayers, the Lord brings rain and dew to fall on the earth, and bring the flood of the Nile in its due season.”

Fun Fact: Pope Athanasius used to put the palm fibre tunic of St Paul on three times a year during the Divine Liturgy. One time, he wanted to let the people know about the holiness of the owner of that tunic. He put it over a dead man, and the dead man rose up instantly. The news of this miracle spread all around the land of Egypt.


Saint Paul the first hermit - Go to Mary Blog