Grigor Narekatsi as a shepherd: Feeding of orphans


St Grigor went to the region of Harzid. He saw that some villagers were quarreling. He asked the reason for the quarrel and they said: "The shepherd of the village has died, and we are quarreling because there is no other shepherd." The saint asked: "Isn't there anyone in his family to pasture the sheep?" They answered: "No, only his wife and seven orphans." The saint said: "Do you want me to pasture the sheep so that you can give the wages to those orphans?" They agreed gladly. Every day, the saint took the sheep to the upper part of the village to pasture, and the sheep climbed up the mountain and grazed, while he prayed under an apple tree. And wolfs or other beasts, seeing the sheep, would flee away. At the time of milking, the sheep would come under the tree, to St Grigor, without being led by a man.

One day, the villagers saw that light had shone down on the saint.

Gregory pastured the sheep until the autumn, and taking four jars of bread as wages, gave them to the orphans who ate the [bread] of those four jars for seven years.

Source: Mat. Ms. 9861, f. 8v and 9r

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