Venerable Mikael of Parekhi (8th–9th centuries)

Memory 27 May (9 June)

Saint Mikael of Parekhi was a native of the village of Norgiali in the Shavsheti region of southern Georgia. He was tonsured a monk in the Midznadzori Wilderness.

Fr. Mikael journeyed to Khandzta Monastery, and with the blessing of the brotherhood, he built a small chapel and dwelling for the monks nearby. Built in a cave on the side of a cliff, St. Mikael’s establishment was difficult to reach (the new monastery was called “Parekhi,” or “Cave”). God was pleased with his good works, and He granted St. Mikael the gift of working wonders. In a divine revelation, St. Mikael was instructed to send his disciples Serapion and Ioane to the region of Samtskhe. There they established a beautiful monastery in the village of Zarzma.

After some time Father Mikael abandoned his cell and settled at the top of a large boulder. Once the devil caused him to stumble off the rock, but the Lord protected him and he remained unharmed. Frightened by the incident,Mikael sent his disciples to bring St. Grigol of Khandzta, and he related to him all that had happened. The blessed Grigol assuaged his brother’s fears, erected a cross on either side of Mikael’s cell, and told him, “These two crosses of Christ will protect you, and the mercy of the Most Holy Trinity and the Precious Cross will be upon you.”

St. Mikael lived to an old age, and he was buried at Parekhi Monastery. Many faithful pilgrims who have visited his grave have been healed of their infirmities.

According to Basil of Zarzma, St. Mikael’s disciples wrote accounts of his labors, wisdom, and miracles after his repose, but these works have unfortunately not been preserved. What we know about the life of St. Mikael of Parekhi was preserved in the hagiographical writings of the 10th and 11th centuries.

Have boldness before God, O Holy Father Mikael, who didst labor without ceasing for the prosperity of thy monastery, and through thy holy prayers open the gates of His mercy!

Archpriest Zakaria Machitadze


For further information on the book THE LIVES OF THE GEORGIAN SAINTS by Archpriest Zakaria Machitadze contact St. Herman Press:
St. Herman Press, P.O. Box 70, Platina, CA 96076
http://www.stherman.com/catalog/chapter_five/Lives_of_the_georgian_saints.htm

6/15/2007

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