St. Anthony
(c. 251-356)

Egyptian from Coma, who gave away everything he owned to the poor at the age of 20 and started a life as a hermit.

St. Anthony was the first person we know of to have established how religious life should be in Christianity. He founded Christian communities of hermits in Fayum and Pispir and became very famous both in his native country and abroad. People of all social classes came to him for advise.

One of his closest personal friends was St. Athanasius, who eventually became his biographer.

At the age of 90 St. Anthony held a sermon where he condemned the so called Arians as heretics. He died in one of his communities on Mt. Kolzion.

In art he is depicted with a pig (evil) and a T-shaped cross, sometimes also with a torch.

Orthodox nameday: 17/1

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St Anthony