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Coptic Orthodox

The Strong

By Kyrillos Rezkalla

The Church has provided her children with numerous stories of heroes who have overcome the world through their love for Christ.  The Church has offered an abundance of martyrs to the Lord as an expression of this great love.  St. Moses the Strong, also known as St. Moses the Black, exemplifies the transforming power of the Gospel; his story of victory over the evil that once was ascribed to his name, inspires listeners and readers over many generations to pursue the life of repentance.

St. Moses was born from a Berber tribe in the year 332 A.D. and little is known of his youth and early years.  He excelled in the life of evil, and contrary to the stories of his virtue that were to spread concerning him later in his life, he earned a reputation as a murderer, fornicator and thief among the many examples of his

Read more: St. Moses

How many of us ever stand up and tell other people what we believe about Jesus Christ? How many of us are really convinced that our faith is so completely a part of what we are that is worth proclaiming happily to those who question us? Being one of Jesus' disciples can not be easy, for as Jesus once said:

"Beware of men, for they will deliver you up to councils... You will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, and bear testimony before them and the Gentiles... Do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you will say... It will be given to you in that hour... You will be hated by all for my name's sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved." (Matthew 10:16ff)

Toward the end of the third century, there lived a

As Fr. Pishoy sat beside the man he said to him, "I hope all your problems have been solved. You seem happy."

"No, " he responded, "everything is the same, but I realize that Jesus is dwelling in me when I go through some tribulation and struggle. I will tell you of a dream, or perhaps a vision, that filled me with joy.

"I went to sleep very broken hearted, so broken hearted that I was at the point of committing suicide. I decided that I was going to throw myself from a very high mountain. On my way to the mountain, I encountered many of my friends. They all gave me comforting words of consolation, but I didn't feel that I could share my agony with any of them.

As I continued on my way towards the mountain,

The young monk knocked gently on the door of the cell of the solitary monk saying, "Agapy 1. "But the solitary monk didn't answer. He repeated himself a second and third time, but there was still no response. The monk had no choice but to enter as he knew that the solitary was very sick. The monk was surprised when he found, sitting next to the solitary, a very distinguished man.

The solitary asked the monk, "Why did you enter without permission?" But the visitor interfered saying, "Let him in, for God wants him to take the blessing!"

The visitor then

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