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April 21, 2015

Saint Anastasios of Sinai

St. Anastasios the Sinaite (Feast Day - April 21)


On Sinai, Anastasios, you became like a new Moses,
And before your end you saw the God you bear.

Our holy father among the saints, Anastasios, lived in the seventh century, and was born of pious parents, likely in Amathos of Cyprus, though he is traditionally said to have been from Alexandria. At an early age he renounced the world and all in it and took up his cross, according to the command of the Lord. He was tonsured a monk and followed Christ with eagerness, pursuing the great struggles that lead toward virtue. After visiting Jerusalem as a pilgrim and venerating the holy places in the Holy Land, he went to Mount Sinai where he found monks that lived an austere life at the Monastery of Saint Katherine, and he stayed with them. There he served with perfect obedience and extreme humility, on account of which he received gifts from God, such as wisdom and knowledge, which he used to record the many lives of the holy fathers and wrote soul-benefitting works. Having arrived at a ripe old age, he reposed in peace in the early eighth century.

Among the writings of Saint Anastasios are the following:

1. Hodegos - This work consists of 24 chapters and it is called Hodegos (The Guide) because it was meant to be a guide to uphold Orthodoxy against the Monophysites.

2. Questions & Answers - In this work Saint Anastasios follows the method of Saint Maximus the Confessor, with a question and answer format, in which he answers doctrinal, practical and ecclesiastical questions.

3. Discourse on the Holy Synaxis and Against Condemnation and Speaking Wrong of Others - In this work, among other things, he speaks about the Divine Eucharist.

4. Hexaemeron - Consists of twelve books on the interpretation of the first three chapters of Genesis.

5. On the "in the Image" - Two discourses on man being made in the image of God.

6. On the Impious Arians - Consists of passages from the fathers against the heretics.

Lastly, we will briefly present an interpretation of St. Anastasios of the words of the Lord: "Judge not and you shall not be judged."

"When you see your brother sin, do not judge him, even if he is a priest. We should remember that we have only one judge, God, who will render to each of us according to our works. Certainly you have seen your brother sin, but have you perhaps observed his good works? Perhaps this sin which you saw, he washed away thoroughly with the tears of his repentance."