St. Pishoy

St. Pishoy was born in the town of Shesna to a family of six children. One day, his mother saw an angel in a dream, asking her to give one of her children to the Lord. She was very pleased and left the choice to the Lord to pick one of her children, and the Lord picked St. Bishoy. His mother was very worried because St. Pishoy was physically very weak, and she asked the Lord to pick a stronger child to serve Him; but the angel insisted that St. Pishoy was the one the Lord had chosen.

 

Later in his life St. Pishoy went to the desert of Shehet where he took his vows to monastisism and studied under St. Bemwa. He devoted his life to God and prayer.

 

Pishoy is a Coptic name that means "elevated". He was known by his wisdom, strength, modesty, courage, simplicity in appearance, deep thoughts, calmness and generosity to strangers. These were the highlights of his character.

 

King Constantine appeared to him in a dream one day and told him "If I had known all the honor bestowed on the monks, I would have left my kingdom to become a monk" St. Pishoy answered by saying: "But you were the one that removed the worship of idols and Christianity was very prosperous during your reign, didn't Jesus give you anything?"; Constantine answered "Yes a lot, but not the honor of the monks.

 

In his days, an old preacher appeared in the mountain of Ansina. He became so famous for his preaching that a lot of people gathered around him. It came to be that he lost his way and the devil misled him until the point when he denied the Holy Spirit. All this news reached St. Pishoy who went to see him taking with him sacks each having three handles, something that amazed the old preacher, and he asked Anba Bishoy the reason for that and he answered "I have the Trinity, and I do everything accordingly", and he started to explain to the people the words of the Bible until he convinced them all.

 

The saint fulfilled his life of flesh and wished he could see Jesus, and one day he received a promise from God that He will appear to him on the mountain of Shehet. So, he gathered the monks and told them the good news. Everyone was filled with joy and they were waiting for that big event to happen. On the appointed day, everybody was in a great hurry rushing to see Jesus. On their way, they passed by a man who was trying to join them but had great difficulty because of his age; so he stretched out his hand asking for help, but nobody stopped or even paid him any attention. When St. Pishoy passed by him, he stopped and carried him on his shoulders, gradually he started to feel that his load was becoming lighter and lighter, then he realized that the old man was Jesus the Lord, the one that everybody ignored. Finally, he died in peace giving his soul the freedom to go and live with the one he always wanted to be with, and that is Jesus Christ.

 

May we learn from St. Pishoy's example of love and humility and may his prayers be for us, and glory be to God forever amen.