Commemorated on August 16
Saint Gerasimus the New Ascetic of Cephalonia was born in the village
of Trikkala in the Peloponessos. As a young adult, he became a monk on
the island of Zakynthos. On the Holy Mountain he became a schemamonk and
studied with the ascetics of Mt Athos. Receiving a blessing from the
Elders, the monk went to Jerusalem to worship at the Life-bearing Tomb
of the Savior. After visiting many holy places in Jerusalem, Mount
Sinai, Antioch, Damascus, Alexandria and Egypt, he returned to Jerusalem
where he became a lamp-lighter at the Sepulchre of the Lord.
monk was ordained a deacon and then a priest by the Patriarch of
Jerusalem, Germanus (1534-1579). St Gerasimus maintained the discipline
of an ascetic. For soltitude he withdrew to the Jordan, where he spent
forty days without respite. Having received the Patriarch’s blessing for
a life of silence, St Gerasimus withdrew to Zakynthos in solitude,
eating only vegetation.
After five years he was inspired to go
the the island of Cephalonia, where he lived in a cave. He restored a
church at Omala, and he founded a women’s monastery where he lived in
constant toil and vigil for thirty years. He prayed on bent knees
stretched out on the ground. For his exalted life he was granted a
miraculous gift: the ability to heal the sick and cast out unclean
At 71 years of age, the venerable Gerasimus knew that he
would soon die. He gave his blessing to the nuns and peacefully fell
asleep in the Lord on August 15, 1579. Two years later, his grave was
opened and his holy relics were found fragrant and incorrupt with a
Since the Feast of the Dormition falls on August
15, St Gerasimus is commemorated on August 16th. Today’s Feast
celebrates the uncovering of his holy relics in 1581.
SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2015(with 2014's link here also and further: 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!):
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