Patriarchal Stavropegic Monastery of St. John the Baptist (Maldon, Essex)

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Patriarchal Stavropegic Monastery of St. John the Baptist
Jurisdiction Constantinople
Type Male Stavropegic Monastery
Founded 1959
Superior Elder Kyrillos
Approx. size ~25 monastics
Location Tolleshunt Knights, Maldon, Essex, England
Liturgical language(s) Many
Music used Russian Chant
Calendar Revised Julian
Feastdays celebrated St John the Baptist
Official website none advertised

The Patriarchal Stavropegic Monastery of St John the Baptist is a monastic community for both men and women, directly under the Ecumenical Patriarchate. It is located in Tolleshunt Knights, Maldon, Essex, England.

The community was founded in 1959 by Elder Sophrony (Sakharov), under the jurisdiction of His Eminence Metropolitan Anthony, Metropolitan of Sourozh and ruling Russian bishop in England, with six monastics from a number of nations; soon after, in 1965, the Monastery moved under the direct jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.

The community consists of men and women living the monastic tradition of a Christ-centered prayer life for the monastic members. Currently, the majority of the community are nuns (~15-20), with a smaller number of monks.

Daily life

When founding the monastery, Elder Sophrony wanted to be sure that his community would not just have outward conformity, but have its focus on inner asceticism. The typikon of the monastery, consisting of repetition of the Jesus Prayer for approximately 4 hours per day and Divine Liturgy three or four times per week, found inspiration in Elder Sophrony's experience in the Athonite desert, and precedent in Athonite skete practise, St Nikodemos and St Paisios Velichkovsky.

Also, another distinctive part of this monastery is that it is a double monastery; that is, the community has both monks and nuns. This is rare, but is not unheard of, in Orthodox monasticism.


  • 1958: Elder Sophrony had six people living near him and seeking the monastic life. A property at Tolleshunt Knights, Maldon, Essex, England was inspected.
  • 1959: Community of St John the Baptist formed at Tolleshunt Knights under Metropolitan Anthony (Bloom) of Sourozh. Monastery has both monks and nuns, due to Elder Sophrony's inability to oversee two separate communities.
  • 1965: Monastery of St John the Baptist moved under the Ecumenical Patriarchate's omophorion. Later, the Ecumenical Patriarchate would upgrade the Monastery to Stavropegic.
  • 1973: Publication of a more complete translation of Monk of Mt Athos (the life of St Silouan).
  • 1975: Publication of Wisdom of Mt Athos (the writings of St Silouan).
  • 1977: His Life is Mine published.
  • 1985: We Shall See Him As He Is published.
  • 1987: Ecumenical Patriarchate glorifies St Silouan the Athonite.
  • 1993 Jul 11: At Elder Sophrony's repose, there were 25 other monastics at his monastery. Elder Sophrony had previously stated that he would not repose until the crypt was ready for his burial.
  • 1993 Jul 12: Crypt built. Elder Sophrony, having been told that it would be ready for its first burial on the 12th, stated that he "would be ready".
  • 1993 Jul 14: Funeral and burial of Elder Sophrony.
  • 1993 Jul 24: Mother Elizabeth, the eldest nun, reposed. Elder Sophrony had previously said that he would repose, and that she, too, would repose soon after.

Famous inhabitants


  • I Love Therefore I Am, by Hmk Nicholas V Sakharov.

External links