Thursday, March 12, 2015

Elder Iakovos Tsalikis and the wondrous multiplication of food

In August 1963, 75 people from Livanata came to visit the Monastery. They worked on the cistern of the Monastery, the spring of Holy Water, fervently. Many from Livanata, the homeland of St. David of Evia, had vowed to offer something to the Monastery of their compatriot, either money or work. Thus, these 75 men came to work on the cistern. And in the Monastery there were another 15 people helping them. Fr. Iakovos was coordinating the work, but he was the only one who could prepare the food during the stay of these good people.

He realized that soon there would be nothing in the pantry. After one day the food was finished, and he did not have any money. He looked in all of the cupboards, all of the corners. He was able to only find 2.5 okas [about 3.25 kilograms] of orzo. And he found half a loaf of bread. Elder Euthemios also have him half a loaf. This would have been a comical amount for the roughly one hundred people who were doing manual labor the whole day.

He was worried and didn't know what to do. He was filled with doubt and was on the verge of crying, that he would have to leave all those people hungry. Immediately, however, he was struck with an idea: he picked up a pan and put the orzo in it, along with the bread the way it was, and he went to the church. He stood before the icon of St. David and told him:

"My Saint, these people are working in your Monastery. They will return tired and hungry. I have nothing else to give them to eat, other than these 2.5 okas of orzo with a little oil, and these two half-loaves of bread (as he showed them to the Saint). I entreat you, bless them, that all of them might eat and be filled."

He cooked in that pan, and they served all the food from it, and it was not emptied. All of the people were filled from that half of a pan, and there were leftovers! Many witnessed this, including the current abbot Fr. Kyrillos. Many years later, speaking of the miracles of St. David, Fr. Iakovos said: "My brother, once again there was the miracle of the feeding of the five-thousand!"

Through the prayers of our Holy Fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy on us and save us! Amen!