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November 24, 2020

Saint Simon of Soiga (+ 1562)

St. Simon of Soiga (Feast Day - November 24)

Venerable Simon of Soiga belonged to the Komel disciples of Saint Sergius of Radonezh. He was born in Solvychegodsk in the family of Nikita Tentyukov. From a young age, the grace of God rested on him. He shied away from the bustle of the world. In his younger years, he left his parents' house and was tonsured at the Komel Monastery under Saint Cornelius (May 19). He passed through his obediences with such ascetics and disciples of Cornelius of Komel as Gennadius of Liubimsk (Jan. 23), Cyril of New Lake (Feb. 4), Herodion of Iloezersk (Sep. 28), Adrian of Poshekhonsk (Mar. 5), Laurence of Komel (May 16).

After the death of his mentor Saint Cornelius, Saint Simon was, for a certain time, the companion of Saint Longinus (Feb. 10), the founder of the Koryazhemsk Monastery, and went with him to dwell in the wilderness. After this, on September 16, 1539, he settled at the River Soiga, 60 versts from Koryazhma. There he established a church in honor of the Transfiguration of the Lord, consecrated on May 17, 1541. After founding a monastery by this church, the Saint was chosen abbot by the brethren, in which capacity he served for twenty years.

Venerable Simon died on November 24, 1562 and was buried in the monastery he founded (Spaso-Preobrazhensky Monastery), in the church dedicated to the Holy Great Martyr Katherine, whose feast is also observed on November 24 in Slavic Churches (November 25 in Greek Churches). The Russian Orthodox Church canonized him on February 16, 2016.