Seraphim, Monk of Sarov, Spiritual Guide

2 January -- Commemoration
If celebrated as a Lesser Festival, Common of Religious, page 494

Born in 1759 at Kursk in Russia, Seraphim entered the Monastery of our Lady at Sarov near Moscow when he was twenty years old. He lived as a Solitary for over thirty years but his gifts as a staretz, or spiritual guide, became more widely-known until he found himself sharing his gift of healing spirit, soul and body with the thousands who made the pilgrimage to his monastery. The 'Jesus Prayer' formed the heart of his own devotional life and he stressed the need for all Christians to have an unceasing communion with the person of Jesus. He died on this day in 1833 and is revered in the Russian Orthodox Church as 'an ikon of Orthodox Spirituality.'