Saint Anthony of Egypt, Abbot

January 17 – St. Anthony of Egypt, Abbot –

St. Anthony was the first Christian to live a life of consecrated solitude and is often called “The Father of All Monks.” As a hermit in the desert he lived a long and saintly life that influenced countless people both in his time and for generations after, even to this day. Saint Anthony founded no monastery. His rule consisted simply of prayers and manual work. He told his disciples that just as Christ was a carpenter and Paul was a tent maker, they also had to keep their hands busy to escape temptations. Today, a monastery bearing the name of Saint Anthony stands in the eastern desert. The cave, in which the saint spent most of his life, is located beside it.