May 16 - St. Theodosius of the Kiev Caves

The old and needy always found food and shelter within the walls of his monastery. Everyone sincerely honored, respected, and loved St. Theodosius for his good deeds . . .

The Venerable Theodosius of the Kiev Caves

Today, Orthodox Christians honor the memory of the great God-pleaser, the Venerable Theodosius of the Kiev Caves, one of the founders of Russian monasticism.

He was drawn to the monastic life from his earliest years, and that irresistible attraction to asceticism soon prevailed over everything earthly. Secretly, without his mother's knowledge, he went to the monastery of the Kiev Caves, where he was tonsured as a monk by St. Anthony of the Kiev Caves.

Theodosius performed monastic feats with great fervor. He worked more than anyone else day and night, and he never missed any service, fearing to be late for a single word.

Soon, because of his fervent service, the brothers chose Theodosius to be their abbot. The monastery grew under his direction. Almost every day more monks came, striving to be under the venerable Theodosius' wing.

The saint himself continued his life of asceticism. He prayed at night, ate sparingly, and during Lent he retreated by himself to a place in the cave.

The Russian people loved the venerable Theodosius. The words of the saint were like medicine, like balm for the soul. And everyone, whether a monk or a renowned prince, loved to have spiritual conversations with the elder Theodosius.

The old and needy always found food and shelter within the walls of his monastery. Everyone sincerely honored, respected, and loved St. Theodosius for his good deeds.

A thousand years have passed since the venerable Theodosius lived, but his glory has not faded to this very day. For ten centuries, the monastery has been living according to the rule that he gave them. And that great Russian saint, the venerable Theodosius of the Kiev Caves, will be remembered and honored for many centuries to come.

The sixteenth of May is the feast day of the venerable Theodosius of the Kiev Caves.

MORE:Saints
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