My Sins Pour Out Behind Me

MonkAbba Moses [one of the desert fathers] hesitated to accept a summons to be part of a council that would pass judgment on a brother who had committed a sin. A delegation approached him insisting that all the others were waiting for him. Reluctantly, he got up and went with them. He took a jug of water that leaked all along the path.

The council came outside to greet him. Puzzled by the water jug, they asked for an explanation. Moses said, “My sins pour out behind me, and I have the audacity to come here today to judge someone else’s errors.”

Hearing this, they forgave the sinful brother and sent him on his way.


  1. Thank you for this Father. I was told of this story of a bag of full of sand and a hole in it. I love St. Moses and his illuminating works.

    It is Meskerem, Father.

  2. A lovely metaphor Father. I have come across this before. My interpretation back then, was that the pot was purposefully designed with a small crack in it, and for two reasons. Firstly, to allow the water within to give life to the earth; and secondly so the pot could say to the Potter, “please show me the source of all waters.”

  3. beautiful,

    Fr. Stephen, our priest is Fr. Michael Gillis from Langley, B.C. He just posted on his blog, If you have time, could you read the latest post. I found it helpful for me and perhaps other readers would as well, especially those who find that Orthodoxy looks a little work-based or rule-based…


  4. fr.john our priest at the protection of the virgin mary,gave a beautiful sermon last sunday on forgiveness.we like the Lord should forgive our brothers and sisters sins70x7 also.which means to always forgive. just this week,i was tested on this. mother teresa(this week is the 12 year of her entering the kingdom of God)said this when living on this earth:God will never give me more than i can bear,i just wish He wouldn’t trust me so much! i feel the same way at times. mary

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