Scene XI

ANTONY. Thanks be to God! The gospel’s promise is fulfilled in us!

PAPHNUTIUS. What promise, blessed Antony?

ANTONY. Those who unite in prayer can obtain whatever they desire.

PAPHNUTIUS. What miracle has happened? What is it?

ANTONY. My disciple Paul has had a vision.

PAPHNUTIUS. What vision? Oh, call him!

ANTONY. He is here. Paul, my son, tell our brother, Paphnutius, the wonders you have seen.

PAUL. Father, I saw in my vision a splendid bed. It was adorned with white hangings and coverings, and a crown was laid on it, and round it were four radiant virgins. They stood there as if they were guarding the crown. There was a great brightness round the bed, and a multitude of angels. I, seeing this wonderful and joyful sight, cried out, “This glory must be for my master and father Antony!”

ANTONY. Son, did you not know Antony was unworthy of such honour?

PAUL. But a divine voice answered me, saying, “This glory is prepared, not, as you think, for Antony, but for the harlot, Thais!”

PAPHNUTIUS. O sweet Christ! How shall I praise Thee for so lovingly sending comfort to my sad heart?

ANTONY. He is worthy to be praised.

PAPHNUTIUS. Then farewell, Brother Antony. I must go at once to my captive.

ANTONY. You must indeed. It is time her valiant penance ended. You should assure her that her pardon is complete; you should fill her with hope, and speak to her only of the beatitude in store for her.

PAPHNUTIUS. Your blessing.


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