The pious parents of St. Theodosius lived in the city of Vasiliev. When they had a son, on the eighth day he was given a name, on the fortieth – they called him. Then the parents of the blessed moved to the city of Kursk.
The boy grew up, went to church every day, avoided children’s games, and his clothes were old and patched. Theodosius, at his request, was given to the teacher. The boy studied divine books and achieved great success in this.
Theodosius was thirteen years old when his father died. The boy at this time became even more zealous for work and worked with his slaves in the field. Mother this behavior seemed a disgrace, and she often beat her son. My mother wanted Theodosius to dress more cleanly and play with his peers.
Hearing about the holy
Three days later, the mother of Theodosius learned that his son had gone with the pilgrims. She went in pursuit. Having overtaken his son, his mother beat him, tied him, showered the strangers with reproaches, and led the young man home. Two days later, she unleashed Feodosia, but ordered to wear fetters. When the son promised his mother that she would not run away, she allowed to remove the fetters.
Theodosius again went to church daily. Often there was no liturgy in the church, because nobody peep prospor. Then the young man himself took up this matter. Peers laughed at him, and his mother persuaded to stop baking prosphora. Theodosius so reasonably answered her about the importance of this matter, that her mother left him alone for a year. And then she began to persuade her son again, then by caress, then by beating. In despair, the young man went to another city and settled with the priest. Mother again found him and brought her home with beatings.
The lord of the city fell in love with Theodosius and presented him with light clothes. But Theodosius
Feodosy began to wear the chains – girded himself with an iron chain. When he changed his clothes for the holiday, so that among the other young men to serve in the feast of the nobles, the mother noticed this chain. She tore off the chains with anger and beating. And the young man went humbly to the feast.
The young man began to think about how to get a haircut for monks and hide from his mother. When the mother of Theodosius went to the village, he went to Kiev. Merchants marched along the same road, and Theodosius secretly followed them. Three weeks later, the young man arrived in Kiev. He went around all the monasteries, but he was not accepted anywhere, seeing poor clothes.
Then Theodosius heard of the blessed Antony, who lived in a cave, and hurried to him. Anthony, testing Feodosia, expressed doubt that the young man can endure all privations. Although Antony himself saw that it was Theodosius who, in the future, would arrange a glorious monastery here. Theodosius promised to obey Antony in everything. He allowed the young man to stay. Priest Nikon, who also lived in this cave, tonsured Theodosius and clothed him in monastic clothes.
Devoting himself to God, Theodosius spent his days in labor, and nights in prayer. Antony and Nikon were amazed at his humility and firmness of spirit. And the mother in the meantime was looking for Feodosia in her city and in the neighboring ones. She announced that anyone who brought her information about Theodosia would receive a reward. People who saw Theodosius in Kiev, told the mother about how the boy was looking for a monastery. The woman went to Kiev and went around all the monasteries. She came to the cave of Antonia. When old Anthony came out to the woman, she led a lengthy conversation with him, and at the end she mentioned her son. Anthony told her to come the next day to see his son. But Theodosius, despite Antony’s entreaties, did not want to see his mother. The woman came and began to shout angrily at Antonia: “You kidnapped my son…” Then at last Theodosius went out to his mother. She hugged her son, she burst into tears and tried to persuade her to return home, for she could not live without him. And Theodosius urged his mother to take a haircut in the convent: then he would see her every day.
My mother did not want to hear about this at first, but ultimately succumbed to her son’s persuasion. She was tonsured at St. Nicholas’ nunnery, lived many years in repentance and died. She herself told one of the monks about the life of Theodosius from childhood to the time when he came to the cave.
First there were three monks in the cave: Anthony, Nikon and Theodosius. To them often came the noble boy, the son of the first of the prince boyars, John. The young man wanted to become a monk and also settle in a cave. Once he put on a rich dress, mounted his horse and went to the old man Antony. Before the cave he folded his clothes, put the horse in a rich decoration and renounced wealth. The young man begged Anthony to cut his hair. The old man warned the young man of his father’s anger. But still he tonsured him and called Varlaam.
Then, with the same request, a skopec, a beloved prince’s servant, came to the cave. He was cut and named Ephraim. And Prince Izyaslav was angry at the fact that, without his permission, a scopeg and a young man were tonsured into monks. The prince ordered that Nikon convince the new monks to go home, threatening otherwise to fall asleep a cave and imprison monks.
Then the Chernorizians gathered to go to another land. And Izyaslav’s wife began to tell her husband that the departure of the monks threatens the land with disaster. And the prince forgave the monks, allowing them to return to the cave.
But the boyar John, the father of the vigorous youth, bursting with anger, burst into the cave, tore off his son’s monastic clothes, dressed in a boyar dress. And since the young man Varlaam resisted, his father ordered him to bind his hands and lead him through the city. The son on the way ripped off his rich clothes.
At home Varlaam did not want to eat. His wife tried to deceive him, but he only prayed and sat motionless in his place for three days. Then the father took pity on his son and allowed him to return to the monastic life.
From that time many came to the holy fathers Antony and Theodosius, many became blacks. And Nikon left the cave and settled on the island of Tmutorokansky. Ephraim the Skopets began to live in one of the monasteries of Constantinople, and another monk, in the past boyar, on the island, which was later named Boyarov.
Theodosius became a priest. At that time there were already fifteen men of the brethren, Abbot was Varlaam. Anthony, loving solitude, dug a cave on another hill and lived in it, not going anywhere. When Barlaam was transferred to the monastery of St. Dmitry, the new hegumen was Theodosius. The number of brothers increased, they did not have enough room in the cave. Then Feodosy near the cave built a church in the name of the Virgin, a lot of cells and surrounded this place with a wall.
Theodosius sent one monk to Constantinople, to Ephraim the scop. He rewrote for him the statute of the Studio Monastery, and Theodosius arranged everything in his monastery on this model.
During Lent, Theodosius closed himself in his cave. Here, many times he was harmed by demons, but the saint drove them away with prayer. Even evil spirits were messed up in a house where the brethren baked bread. Theodosius went to the bakery and spent a whole night in prayer. After that the demons did not dare appear there. In the evenings, Feodosy bypassed all the monastic cells: is not anyone busy with an empty conversation? And the next morning instructed the guilty.
Princes and boyars often came to the monastery, confessed to the saint. They brought rich gifts. But Prince Izyaslav especially loved Saint Theodosius. One day the prince came to the monastery at noon hours, when he was told not to let anyone in. The gatekeeper did not let the prince in, but went to report to the hegumen. Izyaslav was waiting at the gate. Then the hegumen came out and received him.
Varlaam went to Jerusalem. On the way back, he fell ill and passed away. His body was buried in the monastery of Theodosius. And the abbot of the monastery of St. Dmitry became another monk from the monastery of Theodosius – Isaiah. Nikon returned to the monastery to Feodosia. The abbot revered him as a father.
Theodosius did not disdain any work: he helped to knead the dough, to bake bread. He wore water and chopped wood. To work and to church he came before others and left later than others. He slept sitting and wore wiry hair shirt.
Once Feodosy came to Prince Izyaslav and stayed late. The prince ordered to take Theodosius back in the cart so that he slept on the way. The driver, looking at the clothes of Theodosius, thought that this poor monk. He asked Theodosius to mount his horse, and went into the cart and fell asleep. At dawn, the abbot awoke him. The driver, waking up, saw with horror that before Theodosius all bowed. Arriving at the monastery, the abbot ordered to feed the driver. The driver himself told about this incident.
Theodosius taught all monks humility and struggle with evil spirits. One of the monks, Hilarion, was haunted by demons every night. He wanted to go to another cell, but St. Theodosius did not allow. When Hilarion succumbed, Theodosius made the sign of the cross over him and promised that the demons would no longer appear. And it happened.
One evening, an economist came in to Feodosia and said that there was nothing to buy for the brethren. But Theodosius advised him not to worry about tomorrow. Econom after a while again went in and spoke about the same, but the abbot answered the same. When the economist left, before St. Theodosius appeared a certain boy and gave gold. Then the abbot called the economist, ordered him to buy everything he needed. And the goalkeeper later said that that night nobody came to the monastery at all.
At night, Theodosius prayed, but pretended to others that he was asleep. In the monastery was the monk Damian, who in all imitated Theodosius and became famous for his holy life. On his deathbed, he prayed that God would not separate him from Feodosy in the next world. Then an angel appeared to him in the form of Hegumen Theodosius and said that Damian’s request had been heard.
The brothers became larger, and St. Theodosius expanded the monastery. When the fence was broken during the construction, robbers came to the monastery. They wanted to rob the church. It was a dark night. The robbers came to the temple and heard the singing. They thought that the service was not over yet, but in fact the angels sang in the church. During the night, the robbers approached the church several times, but each time saw the light and heard the singing. Then the villains decided to attack the brethren during the morning prayers, to kill all the monks and seize the church wealth.
But when they ran up, the temple ascended into the air with all those who were in it, who did not even feel anything. When the robbers saw the miracle, they were horrified and returned home. Then the ataman with three thieves came to Feodosiya to repent.
One of the boyars of Prince Izyaslav saw the same miracle: the exalted church, which, before his eyes, sank to the ground.
Another boyar, preparing for the battle, promised that if he wins, he will donate gold and a salary to the icon of the Mother of God in the monastery. Then he forgot about this promise, but the voice that sounded from the icon of the Virgin reminded him. He also donated the holy gospel to the monastery, and the visionary Theodosius learned about this earlier than the boyar showed the Gospel.
Prince Izyaslav, having lunch in the monastery, was surprised: why monastic food is much tastier than expensive dishes at the prince’s table? Theodosius explained that in the monastery a meal is prepared with prayer, with a blessing, and the prince’s servants do everything “quarreling and laughing”.
If the hegumen found in the monastic cells something not laid down by the rules, he threw it into the oven. Others, unable to withstand the rigor of the statute, left the monastery. Theodosius mourned and prayed for them until they returned. One monk, who often left the monastery, came and laid before Theodosius money, which he acquired through his work in the world. The abbot ordered everything to be thrown into the fire. The monk did so and spent the rest of his days in the monastery.
When robbers were caught robbing one of the monastic villages, Theodosius ordered to untie and feed them, and then, after instructing them, he let go of the world. Since then, these villains no longer rampant.
Theodosius gave the tenth part of the monastery property to the poor. One day a priest from the city came to the monastery and asked for wine for the liturgy. The saint ordered the sacristan to give the priest all the wine, leaving nothing to himself. He obeyed not at once, reluctantly, but that same evening three wagons arrived in the monastery, in which were the korchagi with wine.
Once the abbot ordered to bring the white bread brought by someone to the table. Kelar put them off for another day. Upon learning of this, Theodosius ordered the bread to be thrown into the water, and put on penance penance. So he did, when something was done without a blessing. After the death of Theodosius, under Hegumen Nikon, the following happened. Kelar lied that he did not have flour to make special white bread with honey. In fact, he put off the flour for later. And when he was about to bake bread from it, then, filling the dough with water, he discovered a toad that had polluted the water. I had to throw out the dough.
On the Feast of the Assumption in the monastery there was not enough wood oil for the lamp. Econom offered to use linseed oil. But in the vessel was a dead mouse, and poured out the oil. Theodosius laid his hope on God, and on the same day a certain man brought a wooden oil to the monastery.
When Prince Izyaslav came to the monastery, the abbot ordered to cook dinner for the prince. Kellar said that there is no honey. Theodosius ordered to see him again. Kellar listened and found a vessel full of honey.
One day, Theodosius drove demons out of the crib in the neighboring village, as before from the bakery. And then another miracle happened with flour. The senior baker said that there was no flour left, but according to the prayers of St. Theodosius, he found the gruel full.
One man was shown in the vision the place where the monastery brothers later moved. The fiery arc was pinned one end to that place, and the other to the existing monastery. Others saw a religious procession at night, going to the place of the future monastery. In fact, in the procession of the cross, not the people, but the angels.
Theodosius often argued about Christ with the Jews, wanting to convert them to Orthodoxy. The hegumen’s prayer protected the monastic possessions from all harm.
At that time, the two princes went to war with Izyaslav and drove him out. The prince of Kiev became Svyatoslav. Arriving in the city, he invited Theodosius to a feast, but he refused, and instead began to denounce the prince in his unrighteous deed with his brother, Izyaslav. Theodosius wrote to Svyatoslav an accusatory letter. He, having read, was enraged. Many feared that the prince imprisoned Theodosius, and begged the saint to stop reproof, but he did not agree. However, the prince, although angry, did not dare to harm Hegumen Theodosius. And he, seeing that he had not achieved anything by conviction, left Svyatoslav alone. Learning that the anger of Theodosius had subsided, the prince came to his monastery. The saint taught the prince of brotherly love. And he put all the blame on his brother and did not want to put up. But he listened to Theodosius with attention. Hegumen also went to visit the prince. Svyatoslav out of respect for the saint stopped secular music at the appearance of Theodosius. Every time the prince was happy with the arrival of the hegumen, but he did not want to return the throne to his brother. And in the monastery the brothers prayed for Izyaslav as the prince of Kiev.
Theodosius planned to move to a new place and create a large stone church in the name of the Theotokos. Prince Svyatoslav himself first began to dig the land for construction. St. Theodosius did not finish this work during his lifetime, the church was completed under the hegumen Stephen.
Many mocked the worn clothes of Theodosius. Many, seeing him, did not take for the hegumen, but for the cook. Feodosy himself sometimes humbly hid his name from those who came and at the same time helped everyone: once he helped a woman who was offended by a judge.
St. Theodosius knew in advance the day of his death. He called the monks, instructed them, and then let go and began to pray. After three days of grievous illness, he again gathered the brethren and ordered her to elect a new hegumen. The monks were sad. They elected hegumen of the church regent Stefan, Theodosius blessed him and placed him as abbot. He called the day of his death – Saturday.
When the Sabbath arrived, the Monk Theodosius said goodbye to the weeping brotherhood. He commanded that no one but the monks themselves should bury him. Then the saint released all and died with prayer on his lips.
At this time, Prince Svyatoslav saw a fiery pillar above the monastery and guessed that Feodosy had died. But no one else saw this. However, many people came to the monastery, as if somehow miraculously learned about the death of a saint. Brothers for the pearl gate and waited for the people to part. It began to rain, people fled, and immediately the sun shone. The monks buried the body of Theodosius in a cave.
Theodosius died in 1074, May 3.