The Vision of St Seraphim…

“One day it so happened,” said the Saint, “that I was serving Vespers on Holy and Great Thursday. Divine Liturgy began at 2:00, as usual, with Vespers. After the lesser entrance and reading, I, the lowly one, pronounced at the royal doors: ‘Lord save the pious and harken unto us!’ Entering the royal doors and lifting my stole to the people, I finished: ‘And to the ages of ages.’ Suddenly I saw a ray of light as from the sun. Looking at this radiance, I saw Our Lord and God Jesus Christ in the image of the Son of Man, in glory and unspeakable light and brilliance, surrounded by the heavenly powers, angels and archangels, cherubim and seraphim, like a swarm of bees, coming from the west church doors as from the air.

“Approaching with such a countenance to the ambo and raising His Most Holy hands, the Lord blessed those who served and those who stood in church. He had stepped up, transfigured, to His holy icon, which was to the right of the royal doors. The surrounding angelic beings radiated unspeakable light throughout the entire church. I, earth and ashes, meeting the Lord Jesus Who stood upon the air, was deemed worthy to receive from Him a special blessing. My heart was filled with pure, holy and sweetest love for the Lord.”

St. Seraphim’s appearance changed, and stricken completely by the divine vision, he could not even move from his spot by the royal doors. Fr. Pachomius noticed, and sent two other hieromonks, who, taking him under the arms, led him to the altar. But he continued to stand there for nearly three more hours without moving, in total astonishment. Only his face changed the whole time, becoming white as snow, then flushing red.

After the divine services were over, Elder Pachomius asked him what had happened. Fr. Seraphim, who never hid anything from his spiritual fathers, related it all to them. They bid him to cloak himself in silence and to delve ever deeper into humility, to save himself from conceit that could arise from such an extraordinary vision. The Saint accepted this instruction with all meekness, and remained silent until the necessary time.

What the God-pleaser experienced during Holy Communion is known to him alone….

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