Venerable John of the Ancient Caves in Palestine

Commemorated on April 19

Saint John of the Ancient Caves is so called because he lived during the eighth century in the Lavra of Saint Chariton (September 28). This was called the “Old,” or ancient cave, since it was one the oldest of the Palestinian monasteries. The Lavra was situated not far from Bethlehem, near the Dead Sea.

Saint John in his early years left the world, went to venerate the holy places of Jerusalem, and settled at the Lavra, where he labored in fasting, vigil, and prayer. He was ordained to the holy priesthood, and glorified by his ascetic life.

Troparion — Tone 8

The image of God was truly preserved in you, O Father, / for you took up the Cross and followed Christ. / By so doing, you taught us to disregard the flesh, for it passes away, / but to care instead for the soul, since it is immortal. / Therefore your spirit, O holy Father John, rejoices with the angels.

Kontakion — Tone 2

(Special Melody: Seeking the highest) / Divinely arming yourself with purity of soul, / and wielding incessant prayer as a spear, / John, our father, you impaled hordes of demons. / Unceasingly pray for us all!

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