Welcome to St. Theophan the Recluse Skete
St. Theophan the Recluse Skete was formed in October 2013 by the late reverend Archimandrite Seraphim (May his memory be eternal) with the acquisition of a house and property. The next ten months were spent working long days with a dear friend (Jim) renovating the house to the point where Archimandrite Seraphim could move in. There was so much to do, from installing 27 termite shields under the house to renovating one room at a time. All rooms required extensive work, painting, fabricating door and window trim from cheap rough lumber, and installing same. Some rooms required flooring. All required mini blinds. He also had to acquire appliances and a central air/heat system as well as furniture. Through shopping at thrift stores and on Craig’s List Archimandrite Seraphim was able to acquire all that was needed at extremely affordable prices. The first order of business so to speak, was to get a workshop built on the property so he would have a place to store all of tools and also accomplish all the woodworking that was needed. Archimandrite Seraphim was always thinking of others, and as a result, his shop was a priority so that he would be able to start making icons for those who needed them. He would design, crop and print them, mount them himself on high grade wood, and mail them out at no charge to the recipient. God blessed him in that the shop that he wanted, it was on sale for $1,500.00 less than the usual price, so he purchased it and Jim help him set up the 20 ft. by 20 ft. workshop.
The Skete was located seven miles East of Picayune MS in a somewhat rural setting and includes a 1,000 sq. ft. house on two acres of land (partially wooded). Archimandrite Seraphim had hope to gradually acquire more fruit/nut trees, and to build some raised bed vegetable gardens in order to be a little more self sufficient.
The true aim of our Christian life is the acquisition of the Holy Spirit. As for fasts, and vigils, and prayer, and alms-giving, and every good deed done because of Christ, they are only means of acquiring the Holy Spirit. Of course, every good deed done because of Christ gives us the grace of the Holy Spirit, but prayer gives it to us most of all, for it is always at hand, so to speak, as an instrument for acquiring the grace of the Spirit. For instance, you would like to go to church, but there is no church or the service is over; you would like to give alms to a beggar, but there isn’t one, or you have nothing to give. You would like to do some other good deed in Christ’s name, but either you have not the strength or the opportunity is lacking. This certainly does not apply to prayer. Prayer is always possible for everyone, rich and poor, noble and humble, strong and weak, healthy and sick, righteous and sinful.
+ St. Seraphim of Sarov