The Monk Evphrosyn

Commemorated on March 2

      The Monk Evphrosyn was a student and the successor to the Monk Savvatii in governing the Savvat'ev wilderness monastery. During his time as hegumen there came to the monastery the Monk Joseph of Volotsk, who wrote about his visit as follows: "I beheld in the Savvat'ev wilderness an holy hermit-elder, by the name of Evphrosyn. He was born of the princes of Teprinsk. He dwelt precariously in the wilderness for 60 years. Many monks came to him for advice, as well as princes and boyars / nobles, disrupting his silence. He then fled human conversation to Great Novgorod, to lake Nevo (Ladozhskoe or Ladoga), found an island and dwelt there for several years. The surrounding inhabitants, hearing about the ascetic, began to throng to him with their wives and children, and he was again obliged to hide himself, just as at the Savvat'ev wilderness. The ruler of this land – prince Boris Aleksandrovich – sent his own daughter to him, then betrothed to marry GreatPrince Ivan Vasil'evich. With her came archimandrites, hegumens and boyars, and they began to ask of blessed Evphrosyn that he help the maiden: she was very sickly, and they brought her to blessed Evphrosyn in the wilderness by carrying her. He refused them, calling himself a sinner and unworthy. They entreated the saint with tears, saying: "If she remains alive through thy prayers, then thou wilt bring peace, father, to two principalities".
      Seeing that the maiden had fallen into a serious illness, the monk Evphrosyn gave orders for her to be taken to church, and he himself began to pray with tears and sobbing in front of the icon of the MostHoly Mother of God. Then he commanded to be sung a molieben to the MostHoly Mother of  God and to the great Wonderworker Nicholas. When the molieben was finished, the maiden opened up her eyes and sat; those carrying her raised her up healthy and that very day notified her father, who praised God "for having bestown grace through His servants". The Monk Evphrosyn died peacefully in about the year 1460.

© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.

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