Venerable Andronicus of Egypt with his Wife

Saint Andronicus and his wife Athanasia of Egypt lived in Antioch in the fifth century. St Andronicus was a craftsman who divided his earnings into three portions. One part he gave to the Church, the second to the poor, and the third he used for his family. When the Lord took the son and daughter of Andronicus and Athanasia, the pious couple decided to devote themselves fully to the service of God, helping the poor and the sick. Soon the saintly spouses set out for Alexandria, where Andronicus entered a skete monastery, and Athanasia entered the women’s Tabennisiota monastery.

After twelve years of ascetic life St Andronicus went to Jerusalem to pray at the holy places. He met a co-pilgrim, St Athanasia, who, foreseeing the difficulties of the journey, had donned men’s attire. They did not recognize each other, since long ascetic effort had altered their appearance. When they returned from Jerusalem, both monks settled into a single cell and for many years lived the ascetic life in silence. St Athanasia wrote a note to be read after her death, revealing her secret.. St Andronicus died soon after St Athanasia.