Icon of St. Sarah of the Desert - 1SA21

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Commemorated on July 13


Amma (Mother) Sarah of the Desert (5th century) was one of the early Desert Mothers who is known to us today through the collected Sayings of the Desert Fathers and of the Holy Women Ascetics (the Matericon). She was a hermit and followed a life dedicated to strict asceticism for some sixty years.

Sarah is said to have dwelt in a monastic cell near a large river, likely the Nile, at which she would never look. Her sayings attest that this saint spent her life battling a demon that tempted her to fornication. Records indicate that Sarah lived near Skete in the early to mid-5th century. She lived a life of severe asceticism, refusing wine, laughter, or to leave her cell except to attend church.

She was not completely isolated and received visitors during her time as a hermit. On one occasion, monks of Scetis came to visit her. She gave them a fruit basket and they honored her by eating the bad fruit and leaving her the good fruit to eat.

Among her sayings recorded in the Sayings of the Desert Fathers are:

"I put out my foot to ascend the ladder, and I place death before my eyes before going up it."

"It is good to give alms for men's sake. Even if it is only done to please men, through it one can begin to seek to please God."

Among her saying recorded in the Mataericon are:

"I fear three things: when the soul must depart from the body, when I must be presented to God, and when the last decree will be made about me on the day of Judgment. Thinking upon this I am terrified and tremble."

"Be as though you were dead: do not care about human dishonor; nor about worldly glory; in stillness, retreat into your cell; continually remember only God and death, and you will be saved."

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  • 5
    Icon of Sarah of the Desert

    Posted by Cate Smith on 4th Aug 2023

    We were so full of joy when we saw this. We've been waiting for some time for someone to write this icon. It will be such a blessing for our daughter, who can now include her saint with the other icons in their icon corner. Thanks so much!

  • 4

    Posted by Unknown on 14th Jul 2023

    Beautiful color quality, I was glad to find a rare Saint as her in English.

  • 5
    Icon of St. Sarah of the Desert

    Posted by Andrew on 30th May 2023

    I do not know where to begin in sharing my thanks and gratefulness to the Uncut Mountain Supply Team! My wife's patron saint is Saint Sarah and because she is not as commonly known, we could not find an icon of her. We are so grateful to the UMS team for writing this icon of St. Sarah!

    God Bless!