Saint Nilus is a saint who left a rich legacy in the history of the Eastern church. A brilliantly educated man, and a disciple of Saint John Chrysostom, he acquired perfection of the spirit and gave guidance and reassurance to many on their spiritual journey to Christ. He was one of the founders of the Hesychast tradition in Christian asceticism and left many soul-profiting writings to his successors. Readers of his works are impressed by their clarity, eloquence and brevity. Many are included in the first volume of the English Philokalia, a collection of Christian writings on the practice of spiritual life.
He made a brilliant career in civil service. While still a young man, he became Prefect of the capital of Byzantine. While in civil service, he married and had two children. Eventually, however, the couple found that their life at the imperial court distracted them from the path of service to God. They agreed to separate and retire to the monasteries in Egypt. His wife and daughter joined a women's monastery, and he and his son went to Mount Sinai. There, they dug out by hand a cave, where the saint ascetised for the next forty years.
As an ascetic, Saint Nilus suffered many misfortunes. Invariably, he found strength and reassurance in prayer. In the early fifth century, the Saracens invaded Mount Sinai and captured his son, intending to sacrifice him to the idols. The saint prayed to the Lord vehemently, and the Lord came to the rescue. The bishop of Edessa paid a ransom for his son. Saint Nylos found him after many years, both were ordained as presbyters and ascetised together on Mount Sinai until Nilus's departure to God.
Commenting on the importance of prayer in his life, Saint Nylos wrote, "The state of prayer is a passionless, settled disposition of the soul which, by supreme love, transports the wisdom-loving mind to spiritual heights."
The Greek Philokalia has a quote from Saint Neilos beneath his icon: "The state of prayer is a passionless, settled disposition of the soul which, by supreme love, transports the wisdom-loving mind to spiritual heights."
Saint Luke was one of the most modest disciples of Christ. He was not one of the chosen twelve who were constantly beside the Son of God catching His every word and witnessing His blessed deeds.
Saint Elisabeth Convent invites you to celebrate the feast of Saint Seraphim of Sarov - a very important figure in the Orthodox Church on the 1st August. Venerable Seraphim of Sarov (Prokhor Moshnin) was born on July 30, 1754, in Kursk.
December 19, the memorial day of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra, is a patronal feast in our convent. St. Nicholas (Velimirović) of Serbia has left us an instructive message dedicated to this great saint.
On the 21st of November, we celebrate the Synaxis of the Archangel Michael and the Other Bodiless Powers. On this day, we commemorate the Chief of the Heavenly Hosts, Archangel Michael, as well as the Other Heavenly Bodiless Powers.
The Belarusian Orthodox Church is glorified by the names of many local saints. February 6 is the Feast day of not only the Blessed Xenia of St Petersburg, but also of another prominent saint, almost her contemporary, Blessed Eldress Valentina…
Every soul is a mystery. Today we can only guess what really happened… According to the locals, the priest Simeon Kaminsky knew that he was going to be killed. But he preferred to stay and accepted martyrdom for his faith.
St. Paisios of the Holy Mountain is known to many believers. The Orthodox Church canonised him as a saint on January 13, 2015. We dwell on the life of St. Paisios and the miraculous help that people receive through his holy prayers.