Holy and Religious Works
When the holy Paphnutius was already living the angelic life he once prayed God to show him if there were any other holy people he could be compared with. An angel appeared and told him that there was a musician (symphoniacus) like him in a certain village, who made a living by practicing his art. Astonished by this strange reply he made his way with all haste to the village and sought the man out. When he had found him he tried to lay bare everything that the man did and earnestly inquired of him why in the world he was performing holy and religious works. He replied that the fact of the matter was that he was a sinner, a man of a shameful kind of life. Not long since he had been a robber, but had turned from that disgraceful trade to what he was now seen to be doing. Paphnutius pressed him further to tell him whether if by chance he had done any good deeds in the course of his robberies. "I'm not in the least bit conscious of having done anything good," he said. "But I do know this - that when I was among the robbers we once captured a virgin consecrated to God. My fellow robbers wanted to rape her, but I stood up and objected. I rescued her from that degradation, and took her back to her village and her own home unharmed.