Church History Saints

St. Theophan the Recluse

“…the essence of prayer is the lifting
of the mind and heart to God”

– St. Theophan

“Descend with your attention into the heart, stand there before the Lord and admit nothing sinful to enter there. In this is the entire activity of inner warfare.”

“It is a great error to think that you must undertake important and great labors, whether for heaven, or, as the “progressives” think, in order to make one’s contribution to humanity. That is not necessary at all. It is necessary only to do everything in accordance with the Lord’s commandments.”




O Theophan, thou man of God and faithful servant of Christ,
Lover of stillness, who didst converse alone with the one God:
Be thou mindful of us who honor thy holy memory,
And bear thy fervent supplications to the Lord,
That he may save our souls.

Kontakion III

The power of God made of thee, a weak human vessel, a well-spring of wisdom, O holy hierarch Theophan, and gave thee to the people as a good shepherd who giveth up his life for their salvation and unceasingly crieth to the Lord: Alleluia!

Ikos III

Having the Lord alone in thy heart, O favorite of God, with great joy thou didst commit all the treasures of thy soul and mind to the service of the Church, teaching and instructing all who had recourse unto thee. And, blessing thy labors, we cry out to thee thus:

Rejoice, thou whose thirst the Lord quenched with great wisdom;
Rejoice, thou who wast nourished amid ascetic labors!
Rejoice, hierarch chosen by God;
Rejoice, untiring advocate for us before the Lord!
Rejoice, humble bearer of the rank of bishop;
Rejoice, faithful teacher of the knowledge of God!
Rejoice, uprooter of schisms harmful to the soul;
Rejoice, zealot of the Orthodox faith!
Rejoice, O holy hierarch Theophan, all-wise teacher and instructor in the Christian life!

(From the “Akathist Hymn to the Holy Hierarch Theophan” from The Book of Akathists, Isaac Lambertsen, trad., Holy Trinity Monastery, 2008, p. 443.)

Feast Day(s)

January 10 – born 1815
January 6 – reposed in the Lord, 1894
June 6 – canononized, 1988


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