Monday, July 19, 2010

Saint of the Day - St. Arsenius

St. Arsenius was born in 350 A.D. in Rome. His family was very wealthy being that his father was a judge.

Arsenius was brought up in the Church and was eventually ordained a deacon. Upon the death of his parents, Arsenius and his sister gave all their wealth to the poor and lived as hermits.

St. Damascus recommended Arsenius when he heard that Emperor Theodosius was looking for a tutor for his children. Arsenius got the job and moved to Constantinople in 383 A.D.

Arsenius served in the court for over ten years before feeling the call to leave Constantinople in order to join the monks of Alexandria. He lived here a life of prayer and abstinence. He learned Aramaic - the language of Christ - and imposed poverty on himself. When a wealthy relative of his passed away, leaving Arsenius his heir, the monk refused to accept it. While living in Alexandria Arsenius became a student of St. John the Short.

In his old age Arsenius retired to the rock of Troe where he passed away in 450.

Fun Fact: If the pictures are correct, he had a very impressive beard.

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