Feast Day: December 05
Born:439 :: Died:532
Sabas, one of the most famous monks of Palestine, was born at Mutalaska in Cappadocia. His father was an officer in the army. When the officer was sent to Alexandria, Egypt, he left his eight-year-old son with his brother-in-law.
But his aunt treated him badly, and the unhappy young Sabas ran away to another uncle. Then an argument arose between the two uncles and Sabas felt terrible. He liked to see people at peace.
So he ran away to live in a monastery and his uncles felt ashamed of themselves. They asked Sabas to come back and said they would give him all his property. But by this time, Sabas was very happy in the monastery. He did not want to leave.
Even though he was the youngest monk, he was the most fervent. When he was eighteen, Sabas went to Jerusalem. He wanted to learn to live alone with God.
He was advised to live in another monastery there for a while because he was still young. He obeyed and joyfully did all the hard work. He chopped wood for the fires and carried the heavy jugs of water.
One day, St. Sabas was sent to Alexandria, Egypt, as the traveling companion of another monk. There he saw his father and mother! They pleaded with him to come home with them. They wanted him to enjoy the same honors his father had won.
But Sabas refused. He would not even take the money they tried to give him. Finally he accepted three gold pieces. Then when he got back to the monastery, he gave them to the abbot.
At last, he was able to spend four years completely alone, as he desired. Then he was asked to start a new monastery. Many disciples came to him to learn how to be monks. Before long, he was put in charge of all the monasteries in Palestine.
Sometimes Sabas was sent to the emperor on important Church affairs. Even then, he wore his poor cloth habit, and kept to his hours of prayer. St. Sabas died in 532.
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