HYMN OF PRAISE from the Prologue
commemorated October 4th
The Venerable Ammon:
Someone once begged Ammon:
“Show me, the wretched one, the path to salvation.”
To him, the saint said: “Through your entire life
You must be as a prisoner who awaits judgment,
As the prisoner who fears the judge,
And counts the hours to his trial,
Listening carefully for the voice that will say:
`The judge is calling for you!’
He does not value food and shelter,
Cares not whether he stands or sits:
He simply listens and listens
For the call of the judge.
My dear brother, we are like that-
It is true for me, and it is true for you.”
And another asked him: “The narrow path, what is it?
And the sorrowful path, how long does it last?”
Ammon said to him: “The narrow path is
Constraining your thoughts, so that they do not stray.
The sorrowful path is the binding of your desires,
So that your desire is naught but seeking salvation in Christ.”
O all-wise Ammon, knight of asceticism;
Patient bearer of the yoke of Christ
Who pleased God, and tamed men-
God has rewarded your labors with Paradise!