May 13 - St. Ignatius Brianchaninov

He was respected in high society circles, and he knew Pushkin, but all of society's vanity tired him . . .

St. Ignatius Brianchaninov

St. Ignatius Brianchaninov lived in the nineteenth century. He was a prominent church leader and theologian.

Coming from a noble family, brilliant and talented, he was the pride of his father and mother. He was respected in high society circles, and he knew Pushkin, I.A. Krylov, and Dobrolyubov.

But all of society's vanity tired him. He knew many sciences deeply, and was well-versed in philosophical teachings, but he still couldn't answer the most important questions he had, about truth and the meaning of life.

He finally found the answers in the Holy Scriptures. He began to attend services, and he felt as if his soul belonged there. His meeting with the holy elder Leonid completely transformed his life.

Renouncing the world, he was tonsured with the name Ignatius, in the solitary monastery of Dionysius. He served just as brilliantly in his new vocation. He restored the Lopotov Monastery and became its abbot.

For twenty-four years he was the Superior of the Sergiev hermitage, and he made it bloom with holiness. Later he became the bishop of the Caucasus and the Black Sea.

But a difficult illness weakened the bishop, and he left for retirement, where he worked on spiritual writings until his death. Both then and now, his writings assist those who wish to follow the thorny path of learning to know God. 

The thirteenth of May is the feast day of St. Ignatius Brianchaninov.

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