Monday, September 19, 2016

Interview with an Actor Who Possesses the Cap of Saint Paisios the Athonite

September 16, 2016

Petros Xekoukis gave an interview for the magazine Loipon with Renee Sarantinou, and revealed among other things how he acquired the cap of Saint Paisios.

You have in your home the cap worn by Saint Paisios?

Of course, I have the cap of Saint Paisios. I saw him for the first time in 1979, where I met him at Panagouda, at his cell, at the Skete of Saint Panteleimon, at the Holy Mountain.

What did the Saint say to you?

I wanted to visit him because I wanted to be an actor, but I had doubt within me... should I become one or should I not become one. I am very faithful and I was wondering if I would provoke by my work. When I went to see him, he told me the exact phrase: "I'm thinking of the Day of Judgment, when the Lord will judge each of us by our profession." He was speaking to me allegorically, before I had the chance to speak to him and tell him I wanted to become an actor. Then he said: "The Lord will say, what job did you do in life? A Carpenter. Go to Paradise. You? An Actor. Go to Hell." At that moment I became upset, and he told me laughing: "Do my child whatever you want to do, as long as you always glorify God and praise Christ." God has his people everywhere, in all professions. This is what I do and will do as I am able and as long as I exist. I feared the unknown; I never feared death.

How did you acquire the cap of Saint Paisios?

Going one day to visit my sister and to worship at the monastery where she lives, a nun, who has been there for years, and was a spiritual child of Saint Paisios, as soon as she saw me said: "Hold on so I can give you the cap of Saint Paisios." The Saint had told her: "To whoever it fits over the head, you will give it; to him it belongs." She had intermittently tried it on various people. As soon as I wore it, she said to me: "Take it, it's for you." I was shocked, and told her that I could not take such a relic, which was worn by a Saint of our Church. I have worn it many times and have given it to many people who have health problems to wear it for 5 to 10 minutes. I am very careful with it, and do not let the cap out of my hands.

Do you keep it in a special place?

Yes, in a special shrine, like in the monasteries, which is in my home, along with other things I have, such as myrrh from Jerusalem, from pilgrimages I have gone on in the past forty years. These things cannot just go anywhere, such as in the bedroom where I sleep with my wife.

In another recent interview with Me to Kalimera he gave an interview and spoke about his sister who has followed the path of monasticism. He said:

She has never come to see me at the theater. From the day she dedicated herself to her monastery. And I believe that this is the right thing. I miss her. I go and see her often, and I can tell you that I boast and brag about her. I would not be able to do it for anything. I go there for ten minutes and I want to leave. But I envy her for her spiritual serenity. For that spiritual calmness that all monastics have.

Translated by John Sanidopoulos.