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Sabbas the Sanctified

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[[Image:Sava_the_Sanctified.jpg|thumb|frame|240px|St. Sabbas the Sanctified]]
The [[Venerable]] '''Sabbas the Sanctified''' was a Palestinian monastic who is credited with composing the first [[monasticism|monastic]] rule of church services, the so-called "Jerusalem Typikon". He was a staunch opponent of the heretical [[Monophysitism|Monophysites]] and [[Origen|Origenist]] movements. His [[feast day ]] is on [[December 5]].
He was born in Mutalaska, near [[Caesarea]] in Cappadocia of pious Christian parents, John and Sophia, during the year 439. His father was a military commander. Traveling to Alexandria on military matters, his wife went with him, but they left their five-year-old son in the care of an uncle. When the boy reached eight years of age, he entered the [[monastery]] of St. Flavian located nearby. The gifted child quickly learned to read and became an expert on the [[Bible|Holy Scripture]]s. In vain did his parents urge St. Sabbas to return to the world and enter into marriage.
When he was seventeen years old he received [[monastic]] [[ tonsure]], and attained such perfection in [[fast]]ing and [[prayer]] that he was given the gift of wonderworking. In 456, after spending ten years at the monastery of St. Flavian, he traveled to[[ Jerusalem]], and from there to the monastery of [[Euthymius the Great|St. Euthymius the Great]] ([[January 20]]). But St. Euthymius sent St. Sabbas to Abba Theoctistus, the head of a nearby monastery that practiced a strict [[cenobitic]] rule. St. Sabbas lived in obedience at this monastery until the age of thirty.
After the death of the Elder Theoctistus, his successor blessed St. Sabbas to seclude himself in a cave. On Saturdays, however, he left his [[hermitage]] and came to the [[monastery]], where he participated in divine services and ate with the brethren. After a certain time St. Sabbas received permission not to leave his hermitage at all, and he struggled in the cave for five years.
St. Euthymius attentively directed the life of the young [[monk]], and seeing his spiritual maturity, he began to take him to the Rouba wilderness with him. They set out on [[January 14]], and remained there until [[Palm Sunday]]. St. Euthymius called St. Sabbas a child-elder, and encouraged him to grow in the monastic virtues.
When St. Euthymius fell asleep in the Lord (+473), St. Sabbas withdrew from the [[Lavra]] and moved to a cave near the monastery of [[Gerasimus Gerasimos of the Jordan|St. Gerasimus of Jordan]] ([[March 4]]). In 478, he moved to a cave on the cliffs of the Kedron Gorge southeast of Jerusalem. His hermitage formed the foundation of the monastery later named after him ([[Holy Lavra of St. Savas (Jerusalem)|Lavra Mar Saba]]) and known in ancient sources as the ''Great Lavra''. After several years, disciples [[disciple]]s began to gather around St. Sabbas, seeking the monastic life. As the number of [[monk]]s monks increased, the lavra came into being. When a pillar of fire appeared before St. Sabbas as he was walking, he found a spacious cave in the form of a [[church]].
In 491, Patriarch Salustius of Jerusalem [[ordination|ordained]] him a [[priest]]. In 494, the [[patriarch]] named St. Sabbas the [[archimandrite]] of all the monasteries in Palestine.
St. Sabbas reposed in 532.
* John Patrich. ''Chapels and Hermitages of St. Sabas’ Monastery,'' Yoram Tsafrir, ed., Ancient Churches Revealed, Jerusalem: Israel Exploration Society, 1993. ISBN 965-221-016-1
* Joseph Patrich. ''[ The Sabaite Heritage in the Orthodox Church from the Fifth Century to the Present].'' Peeters Publishers, 2001. 463 pp. ISBN 9789042909762
[[Category:Byzantine Saints]]
[[Category:Desert Fathers]]
[[Category:6th-century saints]]
[[el:Σάββας ο ηγιασμένος]]
[[ro:Sava cel Sfinţit]]