The Monk Joasaph of Kamensk, Vologda Wonderworker
Commemorated on September 10
The Monk Joasaph of Kamensk, Vologda Wonderworker, in the world was named Prince Andrei (Andrew). His parents – prince Dimitrii Vasil'evich of Lesser Zaozersk (a descendant of holy Nobleborn Prince Theodore (Feodor) Rostislavich, of Smolensk and Yaroslavl'), and princess Maria – were known for their deep piety, which they imparted to the future ascetic. At twenty years of age Prince Andrei accepted tonsure at the Kubensk Spaso-Kamenyi monastery with the name Joasaph, in honour of Saint Joasaph, son of an emperor of India (Comm. 19 November). The Monk Joasaph gained a good reputation for himself by complete obedience, keeping of the fasts, zeal in prayer and love for books. The brethren of the monastery were amazed at the gracious meekness and sincerity of mind of the young ascetic. Under the spiritual nurture of the experienced elder Grigorii (Gregory), afterwards bishop of Rostov, Saint Joasaph progressed in virtue. He led the life of an hermit in his cell and attained to high spiritual talents. Saint Joasaph asceticised at the Spaso-Kamenyi monastery over the course of five years. In the final year of his life he partook of food only once during the week and communed the Holy Mysteries each Sunday. Before his end the monk took his farewell from the brethren, consoling and admonishing the monks not to grieve over his parting. In the presence of the brethren the monk made the monastic rule, said prayer to the Lord and to the Mother of God, then he lay down upon his death bed and quietly died with prayer on his lips, on the day of 10 September 1453.
© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.