Science of the Saints, 31-VII-2018, St Pambo

The Monk Pambo asceticised in the Nitreian wilderness in Egypt. The Monk Anthony the Great said that the Monk Pambo by the fear of God inspired within himself the Holy Spirit. And the Monk Pimen the Great said: “We beheld three things in Father Pambo: hunger every day, silence, and handcrafts.” The Monk Theodore the Studite termed Saint Pambo “exalted in deed and in word.”

At the beginning of his monasticism, Saint Pambo heard the verses from the 38th Psalm of David: “preserve mine path, that I sin not by my tongue.” These words sank deep into his soul, and he attempted to follow them always. Thus, when they asked him about something, he answered only after a long pondering and a prayer, risking to say something that he afterwards might regret. Saint Pambo was a model of a lover of work for his disciples. Each day he worked until exhausted, and by the bread acquired by his own toil.

The disciples of the Monk Pambo became great ascetics: Dioscorus, afterwards Bishop of Hermopolis, and also Ammonius, Eusebius, and Eythymius – mentioned in the life of Saint John Chrysostom. One time the Nun Melania the Roman brought Saint Pambo a large amount of silver for the needs of the monastery, but he did not leave off from his work nor even glance at the money that was brought. Only after the incessant requests of Saint Melania did he permit her to give the alms to a certain monastic brother for distribution to the needs of the monastery. Saint Pambo was distinguished by his humility, but together with this he highly esteemed the vocation of monk and he taught the laypeople to be respectful of monastics, who often converse with God. 

The monk died at age seventy. Telling the brethren that stood about his deathbed concerning the virtues he strove for during his life, Saint Pambo said: “For I do expire to the Lord such, as that I am but begun to live a God-pleasing monastic.”

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