Michael of the Klops Monastery, Novgorod, the fool-for-Christ, venerable

Dates of commemoration

Jan 24
(Church calendar - Jan 11) Day of repose in 1453-1456
Jul 06
(Church calendar - Jun 23) Day of translation of the relics


Blessed Michael of Klops was of noble lineage, and he was a relative of Great Prince Demetrius of the Don (1363-1389). He took upon himself the exploit of foolishness for Christ to avoid the praise of men. Leaving Moscow dressed in rags, he arrived at the Klops monastery, near Novgorod.

No one knew how he got into the locked cell of the hieromonk Macarius, who was going round the cell censing during the Ninth Ode of the Canon. A man in monastic garb sat there beneath a candle, copying out the Acts of the Holy Apostles. After the end of Matins the igumen came with some of the brethren and asked the stranger who he was, and what his name was. But he responded only by repeating the questions, and did not reveal his origin.

In church the stranger sang in the choir and read the Epistle, and he also read the Lives of the Saints at meals. All who listened were moved by the beauty and spirituality of his reading. On the Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord, the Klops monastery was visited by Prince Constantine Dimitrievich (son of Great Prince Demetrius of the Don ).

After Communion he was in the trapeza with the princess, during which time the unknown stranger read from the Book of Job. Hearing the reading, the prince approached the reader and looked him over. Then he bowed down to him, calling his kinsman Michael Maximovich by name. The fool remarked, “Only the Creator knows me, and who I am,” but he confirmed that his name was Michael.

Saint Michael soon set an example for the brethren in all the monastic efforts. He lived at the Klops monastery for forty-four years, exhausting his body in work, vigils and various deprivations, and he received from the Lord the gift of clairvoyance.

He denounced the vices of people, not fearing the powerful of this world. He predicted the birth of Great Prince Ivan III on January 22, 1440, and his capture of Novgorod. He denounced Prince Demetrius Shemyaka for blinding his brother the Great Prince Basil the Dark (1425-1462).

On a sandy spot Saint Michael summoned forth a spring of water, having written upon the earth: “I will take the cup of salvation (Ps. 115/116:13), let the well-spring show forth on this spot.” And during a time of famine, the supplies of bread at the monastery granary did not diminish, though they distributed grain abundantly to the hungry.

Having indicated beforehand the place of his burial, the saint died on January 11, 1453.



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:

Relics cabinet in the Altar sacristy, reliquary #13



Тропарь преподобного Михаила Клопского, Новгородского, глас 8
Иже на земли Христа ради волею в буйство преложився, / мира сего красоты отнюд возненавидел еси / и, плотская играния увядив постом и жаждею и на земли леганием, / от зноя же и студени, от дождя и снега / и от прочия воздушныя тягости никогда же уклонился еси, / душу же очистил еси добродетельми, яко злато в горниле, / отче преподобне Богоносне Михаиле, / и ныне на Небесех предстоиши престолу Пресвятыя Троицы. / Но яко имея дерзновение многое, / моли Христа Бога спастися душам нашим.


Кондак преподобного Михаила Клопского, Новгородского, глас 8
Духа Святаго силою уподобился еси Богоглаголивым древним пророком,/ сказав безвестная и тайная и еже годе судьбам Божиим в сбытие, / и ина многа чудеса о Христе сотворив,/ и люди удивив, торжествовати устроил еси вопиющия: / слава Богу, прославляющему святыя Своя.

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  • Washington, D.C., 20011

Phone  (202) 726-3000

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