Anthony of the Kiev Caves, venerable

Dates of commemoration

Jun 18

(Church calendar - Jun 5) Synaxis of all venerable and holy Fathers of the Holy Mount Athos (movable feast on the 2nd Sunday of Pentecost)

Jul 15

(Church calendar - July 2) Synaxis of all Saints of Chernigov (movable feast - 1st Saturday after Jun 29)

Jul 23
(Church calendar - Jul 10) Day of repose in 1073
Jul 28
(Church calendar - Jul 15) Synaxis of All Saints of Kiev
Sep 14
(Church calendar - Sep 1) Synaxis of All Saints of Vinnytsia
Sep 15
(Church calendar - Sep 2) Commemoration of venerable Anthony and Theodosius of the Kiev Caves
Oct 11
(Church calendar - Sep 28) Synaxis of the Saints of the Kievan Caves Monastery, venerated in the near caves of Venerable Anthony

Life

Saint Anthony of the Kiev Caves was born in the year 983 at Liubech, not far from Chernigov, and was named Antipas in Baptism. Possessing the fear of God from his youth, he desired to be clothed in the monastic schema. When he reached a mature age, he wandered until he arrived on Mt. Athos, burning with the desire to emulate the deeds of its holy inhabitants. Here he received monastic tonsure, and the young monk pleased God in every aspect of his spiritual struggles on the path of virtue. He particularly excelled in humility and obedience, so that all the monks rejoiced to see his holy life.

The igumen saw in Saint Anthony the great future ascetic, and inspired by God, he sent him back to his native land, saying, “Anthony, it is time for you to guide others in holiness. Return to your own Russian land, and be an example for others. May the blessing of the Holy Mountain be with you.

Returning to the land of Rus, Anthony began to make the rounds of the monasteries about Kiev, but nowhere did he find that strict life which had drawn him to Mt. Athos.

Through the Providence of God, Anthony came to the hills of Kiev by the banks of the River Dnieper. The forested area near the village of Berestovo reminded him of his beloved Athos. There he found a cave which had been dug out by the Priest Hilarion, who later became Metropolitan of Kiev (October 21). Since he liked the spot, Anthony prayed with tears, “Lord, let the blessing of Mt. Athos be upon this spot, and strengthen me to remain here.” He began to struggle in prayer, fasting, vigil and physical labor. Every other day, or every third day, he would eat only dry bread and a little water. Sometimes he did not eat for a week. People began to come to the ascetic for his blessing and counsel, and some decided to remain with the saint.

Among Anthony’s first disciples was Saint Nikon (March 23), who tonsured Saint Theodosius of the Caves (May 3) at the monastery in the year 1032.

The virtuous life of Saint Anthony illumined the Russian land with the beauty of monasticism. Saint Anthony lovingly received those who yearned for the monastic life. After instructing them how to follow Christ, he asked Saint Nikon to tonsure them. When twelve disciples had gathered about Saint Anthony, the brethren dug a large cave and built a church and cells for the monks within it.

After he appointed Abbot Barlaam to guide the brethren, Saint Anthony withdrew from the monastery. He dug a new cave for himself, then hid himself within it. There too, monks began to settle around him. Afterwards, the saint built a small wooden church in honor of the Dormition of the Mother of God over the Far Caves.

At the insistence of Prince Izyaslav, the igumen Barlaam withdrew to the Dimitriev monastery. With the blessing of Saint Anthony and with the general agreement of the brethren, the meek and humble Theodosius was chosen as igumen. By this time, the number of brethren had already reached a hundred men. The Kiev Great Prince Izyaslav (+ 1078) gave the monks the hill on which the large church and cells were built, with a palisade all around. Thus, the renowned monastery over the caves was established. Describing this, the chronicler remarks that while many monasteries were built by emperors and nobles, they could not compare with those which are built with holy prayers and tears, and by fasting and vigil. Although Saint Anthony had no gold, he built a monastery which became the first spiritual center of Rus.

For his holiness of life, God glorified Saint Anthony with the gift of clairvoyance and wonderworking. One example of this occurred during the construction of the Great Caves church. The Most Holy Theotokos Herself stood before him and Saint Theodosius in the Blachernae church in Constantinople, where they had been miraculously transported without leaving their own monastery. Actually, two angels appeared in Constantinople in their forms (See May 3, the account of the Kiev Caves Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos). Having received gold from the Mother of God, the saints commissioned master architects, who came from Constantinople to the Russian land on the command of the Queen of Heaven to build the church at the Monastery of the Caves. During this appearance, the Mother of God foretold the impending death of Saint Anthony, which occurred on July 10, 1073.

Through Divine Providence, the relics of Saint Anthony remain hidden.

Source:
https://oca.org/saints/lives/2010/09/02/102463-venerable-anthony-of-the-kiev-far-caves

 

Holy relic type

unless specified otherwise below, "holy relic" means a fragment of a bone of the saint

Holy relic

Location of the holy relic in the Cathedral:

Dry well on the south side of the altar, reliquary #13

Icon

Troparion

глас 4 От мирска́го мяте́жа изше́д,/ отверже́нием же ми́ра еван'гельски Христу́ после́довал еси́/ и, равноа́нгельное житие́ пожи́в,/ в ти́хое приста́нище Святы́я Горы́ Афо́на дости́гл еси́,/ отону́дуже благослове́нием отце́в в го́ру Ки́ева прише́д/ и та́мо трудолю́бно жи́знь соверши́в,/ оте́чество твое́ просвети́л еси́/ и, мно́жеству мона́шествующих стезю́, веду́щую к Небе́сному Ца́рствию, показа́в,/ Христу́ сия́ приве́л еси́,/ Его́же моли́, Анто́ние преподо́бне,// да спасе́т ду́ши на́ша.

Тропарь прпп. Антония и Феодосия из службы 2 сентября, глас 4
Зве́зды мы́сленныя,/ просия́вшия на тве́рди Церко́вней,/ и́ноков Росси́йских основа́ние/ пе́сньми, лю́дие, почти́м,/ ра́достныя похвалы́ си́м воздаю́ще:/ ра́дуйтеся, преблаже́ннии отцы́,/ Анто́ние со Феодо́сием богому́дрым,/ при́сно моля́щиися о возсле́дствующих// и чту́щих па́мять ва́шу.

Ин тропарь прпп. Антония и Феодосия из службы 2 сентября, глас 3
Дво́ицу нача́льных росси́йских свети́л почти́м,/ Анто́ния, Бо́гом по́сланнаго,/ и Феодо́сия, Бо́гом дарова́ннаго:/ ти́и бо пе́рвии, равноа́нгельным в России́ житие́м/ просия́вше от го́р Ки́евских,/ освети́ша оте́чествия на́шего вся́ концы́,/ и пу́ть к Небеси́ пра́вый мно́гим показа́ша,/ и, первоотцы́ и́ноком бы́вше,/ ли́ки спаса́емых Бо́гови приведо́ша,/ и ны́не, предстоя́ще в вы́шних немерца́емому Божества́ Све́ту,// мо́лятся о душа́х на́ших

Kontakion

глас 8 (Подобен: Взбранной)
Возложи́в себе́ Бо́гу, па́че все́х возлю́бленному от ю́ности, преподо́бне,/ Тому́ от всея́ души́ любо́вию после́довал еси́,/ ми́ра же тле́нная нивочто́же вмени́в,/ в земли́ пеще́ру соде́лал еси́/ и, в не́й до́бре проти́ву неви́димаго врага́ ко́зней подвиза́вся,/ я́ко светоза́рное со́лнце, во вся́ концы́ земли́ возсия́л еси́,/ отону́дуже, веселя́ся, преше́л еси́ к Небе́сным черто́гом./ И ны́не со А́нгелы Влады́чню престо́лу предстоя́,/ помина́й на́с, чту́щих па́мять твою́, да зове́м ти́:// ра́дуйся, Анто́ние, о́тче на́ш.

Ин кондак, глас тот же
В ми́ре я́ко А́нгел, о́тче, пожи́л еси́,/ в земли́ пеще́ру себе́ соде́лав,/ в не́йже до́бре подвиза́вся проти́ву неви́димаго врага́ ко́зней,/ и отту́ду, веселя́ся, преше́л еси́ к Небе́сным черто́гом./ Помина́й на́с, чту́щих па́мять твою́, да зове́м ти́:// ра́дуйся, Анто́ние, о́тче на́ш.

Кондак прпп. Антония и Феодосия из службы 2 сентября, глас 8
Дво́ицу вели́ких оте́ц и пра́вило и́ноков све́тлое,/ у́мныя зари́, онебе́сившия Росси́йскую Це́рковь,/ кто́ по достоя́нию хвала́ми воспое́т?/ Ти́и бо Престо́лу Бо́жию предстоя́т./ Но, я́ко иму́щии дерзнове́ние ко Святе́й Тро́ице,/ Анто́ние преблаже́нне и Феодо́сие приснопа́мятне,/ моли́теся о моле́бная ва́м принося́щих// и любо́вию пе́сньми ва́с ублажа́ющих.

Ин кондак прпп. Антония и Феодосия из службы 2 сентября, глас 2
Тве́рдыя столпы́ благоче́стия,/ недви́жимая и́ноческих законоположе́ний основа́ния/ и необори́мыя сте́ны Росси́йския восхва́лим:/ Анто́ния, возлю́бльшаго Бо́га,/ и Феодо́сия, возлю́бленнаго Бо́гом:/ труды́ бо о́нех и по́стническия по́двиги прия́т па́че вся́каго всепло́дия// Еди́н во святы́х прославля́емый.

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