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Saint Sophrony (Sacharov), was born in 1896 in Moscow. He studied at the State School of Fine Arts and devoted himself to painting. After a short period when he studied at the St Sergius Theological Institute (Saint Serge) in Paris, he left in 1925 to go to the Holy Mountain, where he settled in the Holy Monastery of Saint Panteleimon. There he met and became closely associated with St Silouan. The relationship between Elder Sophrony and Saint Silouan was fundamental to the course of his spiritual life. He stayed with the saint until the latter’s death and then, with the blessing of the Abbot and Elders of the monastery withdrew into the desert of the Holy Mountain. From there he served as spiritual father to the monasteries of St Paul, Grigoriou, Simonos Petras and Xenofontos, as well as to many cells and sketes. In 1948, he published in France the manuscripts left to him by Saint Silouan, attaching a lengthy analysis of the saint’s teaching and some biographical details. As of 1959 he settled in the Holy Patriarchal and Stavropegic Monastery of the Honorable Forerunner, Essex, of which he was the founder, builder and spiritual father. He fell asleep in the Lord on 11 July 1993. His writings were originally in Russian but have been translated into English, Arabic, French, German, Italian, Serbian, Swedish, Flemish and Spanish, with extracts translated into many other languages.

Background: Saint Panteleimon of Mount Athos

Feast Day: 11th July

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