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The Patriarchal Stavropegic Monastery of St John the Baptist had its beginnings largely in the person of Elder Sophrony. After his departure from Mt Athos and his subsequent move to Paris, he was to live in a Russian old-age home, assisting the priest. Soon, two men would seek out Elder Sophrony, desiring the monastic life. They were allowed to live at the old-age home, using the repetition of the Jesus Prayer in lieu of liturgic books and eating the food that the old-age inhabitants didn't eat. There were also a few nuns living at the old-age home at this time.
In 1958, Elder Sophrony had six people living around him, seeking the monastic life. Realising that such a situation could not continue, he went to Tolleshunt Knights, Maldon, Essex, England to inspect a property; in the spring of 1959, the new Community of St John the Baptist was formed at the same property, under Metropolitan [[Anthony (Bloom) of Sourozh|Anthony]]'s omophorion. The monastery, from its beginnings, had both monks and nuns, due to Elder Sophrony being unable to oversee two seperate separate communities.
The Monastery of St John the Baptist moved under the omophorion of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in 1959, becoming Patriarchal; later, the monastery would also be titled 'Stavropegic'.

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