The Monk Ephrem of Pechersk, Bishop of Pereslavsk

Commemorated on January 28, September 28 and on the 2nd Sunday of the Great Lent

      The Monk Ephrem of Pechersk, Bishop of Pereslavsk, before his tonsure into monasticism, was treasurer and manager of household affairs at the court of the Kiev Greatprince Izyaslav (Dimitrii) Yaroslavich (1054-1068). Weighed down by his noisy and bustling life and wanting to accept monasticism, he received the blessing of Saint Antonii of Pechersk and was monasticised by the hegumen Nikon. The enraged prince demanded that Ephrem return, threatening to lock him up in prison and to destroy the monastery caves. The Monk Antonii emerged with the brethren from the monastery and decided to go to another place. Izyaslav then however feared the wrath of God, he took the advice of his wife and in disgrace withdrew his forces from the monastery. The holy Monk Ephrem was however compelled to leave. He journeyed to Constantinople and settled there in one of the monasteries. Being at Constantinople, Saint Ephrem made a copy of the Studite monastic-rule (ustav), and dispatched it to Kiev at the request of the Monk Theodosii. Receiving the ustav, the Monk Theodosii implemented it in his monastery. After the year 1072 Ephrem was made bishop in Pereslavl', and had the title of metropolitan. He adorned Pereslavl' with many beautiful churches and public edifices, and in the Greek manner he erected stone walls around the city. He built free hospices for the poor and wanderers, and constructed several public bath-houses. In the year 1091 Saint Ephrem participated in the opening and solemn transfer of the relics of the Monk Theodosii. It is known, that in former times there existed a vita (life) of the Monk Ephrem, which has not survived down to the present. We find an account about him both in the vita of the Monk Theodosii, and in the Russian Chronicles. To Saint Ephrem is ascribed a tale and laudation of Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker. Saint Ephrem died in the year 1098. He was buried in the Antoniev Caves of the Kievo-Pechersk monastery. His memory is celebrated also both on 28 September and on the 2nd Sunday of Great Lent.

1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.

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The Monk Ephrem of
Pechersk, Bishop of Pereslavsk

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