[St. Pachomius Library]

St. Bessarion the Wonder-Worker

IV Century
Sometimes called Bessarion the Great, St. Bessarion (fl. IV Century) was an Egyptian who became a monk at Sketis under Anthony of Egypt. Bes, as he is also known, was later a disciple of Macarius the Great. Before founding his own monastery, Bessarion wandered among the cells of Sketis. He is said to have kept vigil 40 nights in a row and to have slept sitting or standing for 40 years. He is said to have had a vision of Theophilus of Alexandria destroying the pagan temples and to have changed salt water into fresh without aid of scientific equipment. His disciple Doulas, whose name means slave, recorded the stories and sayings of Bessarion found in collections of the wisdom of the Desert Fathers.

Karen Rae Keck


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