The story of St. Antipas I (1816-1882)
Elder Antipas, a Romanian monk on Mt.
Athos, was instrumental in founding the Romanian "Prodromou" Skete with
his Elder Niphont, who tonsured him and blessed his beginning as a desert dweller.
Fr. Antipas found an icon of the Mother of God and took it as a blessing for his
travels. After a few years he became the abbot of one of Niphont's monasteries
but was sent to Russia to raise funds and there found "Va-laam", where
he decided to remain. He was granted the gift of seeing into the mysteries of the
souls of others, and his grace-filled life quickly drew many brothers to him for
counsel. He ended his days as a beloved and highly respected elder of Valaam. His
relics were recently discovered and he was canonized as a local saint. His reliquary
is located in the same church as that of the founders ofValaam. In addition to being
an inspirer to monks to lead an exalted way of life, he was also an inspiration to
the future New Martyr Bishop Arsenius of Serpukhov. The latter, on his first and
only visit to Valaam, spent deep hours of prayer to decide his future at St. Antipas'
grave, which was located at a distance from the rest, near the Golgotha chapel.
Text from Valaam Patericon Book of Days
of Alaska Brotherhood, Platina California)