Icons of The Monk Seraphim of Sarov - Baptism Gifts

The Monk Seraphim of Sarov, in the world of Prokhor, was born on July 19, 1759 in the city of Kursk in a pious merchant family. His whole life is marked by signs of the mercy of God. When in childhood the mother took him with him to build the temple, and he fell from the bell tower, the Lord preserved him unscathed. During the illness of the child of God, the Mother in a dream vision promised her mother to heal him. Soon, near their house with the procession of the Cross, the Kursk Root Icon of the "Sign" of the Most-Holy Theotokos was born, the mother brought out the patient, he kissed the icon and after that quickly recovered.


At the age of seventeen, the young man was already determined to leave the world, and his mother blessed him for a monastic feat with her copper cross, with which the monk did not leave until the end of his life. Starets of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra Dosifei (the Monk Dositheus) blessed Prokhor to go to Sarov Dormition deserts on the border of the Nizhny Novgorod and Tambov provinces, known for strict execution of monastic statutes and the ascetic life of the inhabitants. After two years of monastic labors and feats of obedience, Prokhor fell seriously ill and for a long time refused to help doctors. Three years later, the Mother of God appeared with the apostles Peter and John and healed him.


August 18, 1786 novice took a monastic tonsure with the name Seraphim ("Flame") and in December 1787 was ordained a hierodeacon. Already at that time the young ascetic was honored at divine services to contemplate the holy angels and our very Lord Jesus Christ, coming through the air surrounded by the Celestial Powers.


In 1793, St. Seraphim was ordained as a hieromonk and initiated the feat of desert life and solitary prayer in the forest cell on the bank of the river Sarovka. The devil aggravated the war against the ascetics, and the monk laid upon himself the feat of pandemonium. For thousands of days and nights he prayed with the hands raised on the stone: "God, be merciful to me, a sinner." Impotent spiritually deposed ascetics, the devil sent to the venerable robbers who inflicted fatal wounds to him, but the Mother of God appeared and for the third time healed him.


On recovery, the Monk Seraphim for three years fought a feat of silence, and in 1810, after a 15-year stay in the desert, was opened in the monastic cell. For the love of God, humility and heroism, the Monk Seraphim was honored with spiritual gifts of vision and miracles. November 25, 1825 Mother of God with the saints Clement of Rome and Peter of Alexandria appeared to the ascetic and allowed to finish the bolt. The Monk Elder began to receive those coming to him for blessing, advice and spiritual consolation, lovingly calling everyone: "My joy, my treasure."


The word of edification, as his whole life, the Monk Seraphim invariably based on the word of God, the creations of the holy fathers and examples from their life, especially honored the holy champions and zealots of Orthodoxy. He loved to talk about Russian saints. All who turn to him, the monk urged to stand for the unshakable faith, explained what the purity of Orthodoxy is. Many dissenters he persuaded to leave the errors and join the Church. The venerable word was reinforced by the prophetic words, healings and miracles. Many warriors, who received the blessing from the Monk Seraphim, testified that his prayers left unharmed on the battlefield.


The Monk Seraphim took care of and guided the sisters of the Diveevo Convent, and, at the direction of the Mother of God, established for the maidens a separate Serafimo-Diveevskaya mill community. The Queen of Heaven in advance announced to the ascetic about his death, and on January 2, 1833 the Monk Seraphim gave his soul to the Lord, during the kneeling prayer before the icon of the Mother of God.


Through the prayers of the Monk Seraphim, numerous signs and healings were performed on his grave. July 19, 1903, the glorification of the saint of God was accomplished.