Venerable Sergius the Obedient of the Kiev Near Caves

Saint Sergius the Obedient of the Kiev Caves, Near Caves, was a Greek who began his monastic life on Mount Athos. Later, he came to Russia and settled in the monastery of the Life-Giving Trinity under the guidance of St Sergius of Radonezh (July 5) and (September 25). After several years, with the blessing of the igumen, St Sergius went into the Vologda forests and settled at the bank of the River Nurma. There he set up a cross and built a chapel with a cell, in which he lived an ascetical life in deep silence, “going forth in angelic life,” and patiently enduring temptation from demons and malevolent people.

It pleased the Lord to summon the saint from his solitude, so that in his wisdom and spiritual experience he should serve for the salvation of others. From various places forty men gathered around him, thirsting for the spiritual life. By their common efforts, the brethren built a large church in honor of the Procession of the Venerable Wood of the Life-Creating Cross of the Lord (August 1). The monastic cells were built around the church.

St Paul of Obnora (January 10) led an ascetical life about three miles from the Nurma monastery, and St Sergius often visited him for soul-profiting conversation. When it was time for St Sergius to go back to his monastery, St Paul would accompany him for two-thirds of the way. Later, a chapel was built to mark the place where they parted. St Sergius died on October 7, 1412. Since 1546, the Church has venerated him for his saintly life.