May 6, 2019

Saint Micah of Radonezh, Disciple of Saint Sergius (+ 1385)

St. Micah of Radonezh (Feast Day - May 6)

Venerable Micah of Radonezh was one of the first disciples of the Venerable Sergius of Radonezh, and lived with him in the same cell, and under his guidance he attained a high degree of spiritual perfection. For his meekness of soul and purity of heart, Saint Micah was permitted to witness the appearance of the Mother of God to his great teacher.

Every day Saint Sergius chanted the Akathist to the Most Holy Mother of God in front of her icon after the evening cell rule had been performed. One night after a fervent prayer to the Mother of God in his cell, he sat down to rest for awhile, and his holy soul felt the approach of a heavenly phenomenon. Suddenly he said to his disciple, “Be alert, my child, for we shall have a wondrous visitation.”

Hardly had he uttered these words when a voice was heard, “The All-Pure One draws near.” Suddenly there shone a light brighter than the sun. Saint Micah fell down upon the ground in fear, and lay there as if he were dead. When Saint Sergius lifted up his disciple, he asked, “Tell me, Father, what is the reason for this wondrous vision? My soul has nearly parted from my body from fright.”

Saint Sergius himself could not yet speak from the excitement of his soul, only his face was radiant with heavenly joy. “Wait, child,” he told his disciple, “for my soul trembles at this vision.” When, finally, the elder calmed down somewhat, he sent the Saint Micah to invite two reverent men from among the brethren – Isaac the Silent and Simon the Ecclesiarch. All together they performed a moleben to the Mother of God. According to tradition and recorded in the Nikon Chronicle, this heavenly visit was after the feast of the Nativity of Christ, on the night from Friday to Saturday and, as they think, in 1384. Others believe it was after the feast of the Nativity of Christ in 1379.

In grateful recollection of this wonderful visit to the Monastery of Saint Sergius, every Friday night an all-night vigil with the Akathist of the Mother of God is done in the southwest porch of the Trinity Cathedral, where, according to legend, the cell of Saint Sergius stood and where now the majestic icon depicting this wonderful visitation of the Heavenly Guests took place.

Saint Micah fell asleep in the Lord in the year 1385, and was buried by his spiritual father Saint Sergius.

Saint Micah’s relics rest in a crypt at the Trinity-Sergiev Lavra. On December 10, 1734, over Saint Micah’s tomb, a church was consecrated in honor of the Appearance of the Most Holy Theotokos and the Holy Apostles Peter and John the Theologian to Saint Sergius of Radonezh.