Thousands gather at Lavra to celebrate St. Job of Pochaev

Pochaev, November 14, 2019

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The holy Orthodox Church celebrates the memory of the great St. Job, the abbot and wonderworker of Poachev, on October 28/November 10, and thousands of faithful Ukrainian Orthodox pilgrims join in the celebration every year at the Holy Dormition-Pochaev Lavra.

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As the feast fell on a Sunday this year, the services were even more beautiful and festive, as the repose of the great ascetic was celebrated alongside the glorious Resurrection of Christ that is the hope of all ascetics and true Orthodox faithful, reports the Lavra’s website.

The feast began with the All-Night Vigil served on Saturday evening by His Eminence Metropolitan Theodore of Kamenets-Podolsky. During Matins, the Akathist to St. Job was read while pilgrims venerated the incorrupt relics of St. Job and were anointed with blessed oil.

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St. Job reposed in 1651 and his relics were discovered to be incorrupt in 1659.

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Two Liturgies were served in Holy Transfiguration Cathedral on the day of the feast itself, at 5:00 and 10:00 AM. The late Liturgy was led by Met. Theodore, with the concelebration of His Eminence Metropolitan Vladimir of Pochaev, the abbot of the monastery, His Eminence Metropolitan Philaret of Lvov and Galicia, His Eminence Archbishop Job of Shumy, His Eminence Archbishop Theodosy of Boyarka, and the clergy and guests of the monastery.

The sermon after the Gospel was delivered by Met. Theodore.

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Following the Liturgy, a procession was held on the territory of the Lavra, and the relics of St. Job were transferred to the Cave Church, where they are permanently kept. A moleben was celebrated before the relics there.

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Saint Job, Abbot and Wonderworker of Pochaev (in the world named Ivan Zhelezo), was born around 1551 in Pokutia in Galicia. At age ten he came to the Transfiguration Ugornits monastery, and at age twelve he received monastic tonsure with the name Job. The venerable Job from his youth was known for his great piety and strict ascetic life, and he was accounted worthy of the priestly office.

Around the year 1580, at the request of the renowned champion of Orthodoxy Prince Constantine Ostrozhsky, Saint Job was appointed the head of the Exaltation of the Cross monastery near the city of Dubno, and for more than twenty years he governed the monastery amidst the growing persecution of Orthodoxy on the part of the Catholics and Uniates.

At the beginning of the seventeenth century, Saint Job withdrew to Pochaev hill and settled in a cave not far from the ancient Dormition monastery, famed for its wonderworking Pochaev Icon of the Mother of God (July 23). The holy hermit, beloved by the brethren of the monastery, was chosen as their Igumen. Saint Job zealously fulfilled his duty as head of the monastery, kind and gentle with the brethren, he did much of the work himself, planting trees in the garden, and strengthening the waterworks at the monastery.

Saint Job was an ardent defender of the Orthodox Faith against the persecution of the Catholics. Following the Union of Brest (1596), many Orthodox living in Poland were deprived of their rights, and attempts were made to force them to convert to Catholicism. Many Orthodox hierarchs became apostates to Uniatism, but Saint Job and others defended Orthodoxy by copying and disseminating Orthodox books. Prince Ostrozhsky was also responsible for the first printed edition of the Orthodox Bible (1581).

In taking an active part in the defense of Orthodoxy and the Russian people, Saint Job was present at the 1628 Kiev Council, convened against the Unia. After 1642, he accepted the great schema with the name John.

Sometimes he completely secluded himself within the cave for three days or even a whole week. The Jesus Prayer was an unceasing prayer in gentle heart. According to the testimony of his disciple Dositheus, and author of the Life of Saint Job, once while praying in his cave, the saint was illumined by a heavenly light. Saint Job reposed in the year 1651. He was more than 100 years old, and had directed the Pochaev monastery for more than fifty years.

The uncovering of Saint Job’s relics took place on August 28, 1659. There was a second uncovering of the relics on August 27-28, 1833.

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