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Basil the Great (Athos) Icon - S331


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Saint Basil was born in 329 in Caesarea to a pious and holy family of saints. He was friends with Gregory the Theologian and they studied together in Athens. Basil embraced the monastic life  and lived in various monasteries throughout the Mediterranean region. In 370, he was elected bishop of Caesarea. He was a bulwark against the Arian heresy in Cappadocia, and even the Arian emperors could not overcome his wisdom. He was a prolific writer and liturgist, standardizing the Divine Liturgy of Saint Basil that continues in use in the Orthodox Church today, especially during Lent. Weakened by his strict asceticism, he reposed on January 1, 379, at the age of 49. His feast is celebrated on January 1, and again on January 30, together with Gregory the Theologian and John Chrysostom.

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