After spending two weeks in Hamelin, Germany, Isaac had the following dialogue with his son:
“What did you like most in Hamelin?”
“The honesty of the people: if someone promised something he/she would gladly fulfill his/her promise.”
“Do you know why?”
“There’s a famous story about a broken promise in Hamelin, it might have been fiction, but it has some truth in it. People of Hamelin tell the story to their children to teach them the virtue of honesty and of fulfilling promises.”
“Do you know the story Dad?”
“I heard it from one of the hotel employees. It goes like that:
There was an inscription on an old wall that said, “On July 1284 AD, a piper lead 130 children to a place near Koppen Hill and they were all lost.”
“What has this to do with fulfilling of a promise Dad?”
“Several years ago an army of rats attacked the city of Hamelin. The streets were full of so big rats that attacked dogs, and cats ran away from them. The rats made nests in the hats.
The Governor of the City had a meeting with the police and the leaders of the people. In that meeting, no reasonable solution was found to combat the attacks of the rats. While they were in the City Hall, a soldier came running to see the Governor. He told him that a strange looking man was in the city. He carried a pipe and was looking for the Governor. He had a solution for the problem.
“Let him come in.” the governor said.
The piper said to the governor, “How much would you pay me to save the city from all the rats?”
- “I’ll pay $50.” The piper was pleased since this $50 was a big amount of money at that time.
The piper started to play an unusual melody and rats started to follow him. He slowly reached the river. Very gently he took a boat and very slowly the boat moved away from the shore. The rats followed the boat and they all drowned.
The piper came back to the city and the people greeted him with applause. He went to the City Hall to see the Governor. The Governor said to the piper, “This is a small town and we can’t pay you $50 especially after the damage that the rats caused. You should be satisfied with $20.”
“But you promised me $50.”
“You can see the losses that the rats caused. I can not pay you $50.”
The piper refused the $20. He left the Governors office to play a wonderful piece of music, which made the children of the city leave their homes and follow him. The piper went along followed by 130 kids till they reached Koppen Hills and every body was happy. The legend says that the earth was split open and engulfed the children. The whole city went to the piper, who was laughing. They offered him all the gold that the city had so they could get their children back.
He answered, “This is the result of not keeping a promise.”
Lord grant me honesty in my life,
So I would be truly honest in my feelings and in my words.
Let me be honest with You as well as with myself,
Honest with each child and with every one.
May I hear your Divine voice:
“You have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things.”
Who else can grant me honesty?
You are the Honest One.
Death Terminates Everything
©st-takla.org : Saint Takla Haymanout Website: General Portal for the Coptic Orthodox Church Faith, Egypt / Contact us at:
Bible | Daily Readings | Agbeya | Books | Lyrics | Gallery | Media | Links | Contact us