Vladyka John, was about to begin a vigil. He saw that very few people were in church, and was agitated. Upon inquiring, he discovered that there was a gala ball that evening, and people were "keeping their vigil" there. He left the church (fully vested), and walked several blocks to the hall, walked out in the middle of the floor, and bean the vigil right then and there! I am sure that nobody asked him to dance!
There is his tail!
In Paris, a man was contemplating becoming a subdeacon. He asked Vladyka, who replied that he would ordain him in two weeks. During this time, he should pray, and be sure that he was willing to take on this obedience. The man's resolve began to weaken during the two weeks, and he had many doubts. He was a professional, and this may compromise his business, and many other thoughts. He finally decided, on the appointed day, to tell Vladyka that he had changed his mind. He walked in the altar. Vladyka (whose back was turned), suddenly shouted "He's here! he's here!. Do you see him! There's his tail! Step on him! Step on him!". Then he turned to the erstwhile subdeacon to be. The man was confused. Vladyka explained to him that the devil was tempting him, then asked him what he wished to say to him. "Vladyka .... I want to be a subdeacon!" He is now a priest.
Valdyka was estranged from a man in his parish for some reason. This vexed him, and he grieved terribly. One day, during the liturgy, he left the altar (fully vested), sought out the man, and prostrated before him, asking forgiveness. The man was shocked and embarrassed. This was some spectacle! He begged Vladyka to get up, but he would not, until the man said that he forgave him. The man later repented, and admitted that the reason for the estrangment was all his fault. Vladyka's humility (and temeritous creativity!) melted the man's heart.
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