St. Panteleimon Monastery Fathers (Athos)
The Monastery of St. Panteleimon is one of the twenty monasteries on Mount Athos, and is also known as Old Rossikon because it is a monastery made up of Russians with services in Slavonic. This article is a listing of some of the elders and righteous monks that struggled in this monastery.
Hieromonk Anthimos the Fool for Christ
- Born: Sofia, Bulgaria. Became a married parish priest.
- 1941: Wife reposed, after which he went to Mount Athos.
- Tonsured at Simonopetra Monastery.
- Began to act like a fool for Christ to hide his spirituality and closeness to God. He travelled in the desert, sometimes staying in caves, others in trees. He would wear an old habit for five years.
- Every two or three months, Fr Anthimos would visit St. Panteleimon Monastery for a few days because he could understand the services. He would usually hide in the narthex, but when he saw one of the fathers watching him, he would start behaving stupidly. Afterwards he would again
- After some time in monasticism, he would wear patched up garments. Later, he wore an old sack with three holes in it for his head and arms. Because he wore this around people, people would call him 'Sacky'. However, as a precaution against tearing it, he would remove the sack.
- Many called Fr Anthimos dotty, but this stopped when they realised that Fr Anthimos was clairvoyant.
- When he stayed at St. Panteleimon's, he would stay and eat with the monastery workers. When the abbot heard, he asked the monk on duty to take care of Fr Anthimos.
- Fr Anthimos was able to fast for many days. He once went to St. Panteleimon, exhausted. The monk received him and prepared him something to eat, which he ate with gusto. The monk marvelled that such an ascetic-looking person could eat so much, but Fr Anthimos taught him not to judge by revealing that he had not eaten for about seven weeks.
- Fr Anthimos had the ability of foresight. Another monk judged how much he ate, and Fr Anthimos told him that he would leave the monastery, return to his homeland and then come back to Mt Athos and become a monk, which happened.
- In the last years of Fr Anthimos' life, he lived close to Zographou Monastery and helped with the building work (which finished in 1865).
- In August 1867, Fr Anthimos visited St. Panteleimon's for the last time, and told the monk in charge of the lay-worker's refectory - whom he confided in - that he was going to die.
- Around November 27, Fr Anthimos went to Zographou Monastery and fell ill. Twelve days later, on December 9, he reposed.
- Elder Sophrony (Sakharov)