Thursday, February 4, 2016
St. Seraphim Sobolev, the Wonderworker of Sofia
"In 1910, during Christmas vacation, Fr. Seraphim decided to go to his mother in the town of Permyshl. His mother was overjoyed by this but worried how she would feed her favorite son. She worried about his weak health and wanted very much to fatten him up, but he did not eat meat and it was impossible to find fish in town in winter. After praying fervently before an icon of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, she put on a sheepskin jacket and went out into the street. Soon a man came walking on the other side and she called to him, "Are you a fisherman?" "That I am. What of it?" "Well, in a few days my son, a monk, is coming to visit. He doesn't eat meat, only fish. So, go to the river and catch some fish for him, and I'll pay you as much as you want." "You think you can catch fish now, my dear woman? Why it's minus 25o C. The fish have all gone to the bottom." But Vladika's mother persisted. "My son will pray for you." The man finally consented. He went to the Oka River, where he spent about an hour breaking through the meter-thick ice. Then, crossing himself and praying as the woman had instructed him, he let down the net into the hole, saying, "O Lord, for the sake of Thy servant Fr. Seraphim, send a fish." No sooner had the net been lowered than something got caught in it, and the man pulled out an enormous silver bream which he took at once to Vladika's mother. Overjoyed, his mother offered him money, but he was adament in his refusal. "Come, come, my dear woman. I don't need anything. Why, this was a miraculous catch. Tell your son to pray for the servant of God, Peter." And he left."