Our Holy Father Prochorus the Orach-Eater
A wonder-worker of the Monastery of the Caves in Kiev, he was named the Orach-eater because the whole time he lived in the monastery, he never tasted bread but fed himself on orach* pre-pared according to his own particular method as a sort of bread. When he gave someone some of this bread with his blessing, it was as sweet as honey, but if anyone stole some, it was as bitter as wormwood.
At one time, when there was a dearth of salt in Russia, Prochorus distributed ashes to the people for salt. The ashes that he distributed with his blessing became salt; ashes, however, that anyone took for himself remained ordinary ashes. Prince Svyatopolk ordered that all the ashes from Prochorus' cell be brought to the court without his permission, let alone his blessing. When the ashes were brought there, it was obvious to everyone that they were ashes and not salt. Then Prochorus told all the people who came to him for salt to go to the prince's court, and, when the prince threw the ashes away, to take them and use them as salt. This they did, and the ashes again became salt. The prince himself, learning of this, was filled with a deep respect and love for him and, when Prochorus died in 1107, placed him with his own hands in a grave near the great Rus-sian saints, Antony and Theodosius.
'Orach- a kind of mountain spinach. Tr.
* From "The Prologue from Ochrid", by Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic - Lazarica Press - Birmingham 1985
Four Book Edition - Translated by Mother Maria - Dates based on old church calendar.
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