Monday, January 19, 2009


Aresenius, of blessed memory, once said to Alexander, "When you've finished your palm leaves, come and have supper with me. But if pilgrims arrive, eat with them."

Alexander worked away gently and unhurriedly. At suppertime, he had not finished his palm leaves. Though he was hungry, he wanted to obey to obey the order of Arsenius and so he went on until he finished the palm leaves. Arsenius noticed he was late and had his own supper for he thought perhaps pilgrims had come, and that Alexander was eating with them. Alexander finally finished his task and in the evening came to see Arsenius.

Arsenius said to him, "Did pilgrims visit you?"

He said, "No."

Arsenius said, "Then why didn't you come?"

Alexander replied, "Because you told me to come when I had finished the palm leaves. I did what you told me and did not come because I have only just finished the work."

Aresnius admired the excellence of his obedience, and said to him, "You should lay aside your work sooner, so as to say your psalms, and fetch water for yourself, otherwise your body will soon grow weak."

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