Science of the Saints, 27 June, Our Venerable Father Sampson the Hospitaller

The Monk Sampson the Hospitable-to-Strangers was the son of rich and illustrious Roman parents. In his youth he received an excellent education, he studied the medical arts, and for free he doctored the sick. After the death of his parents Saint Sampson generously distributed alms and set free his slaves, preparing himself to go into the wilderness.

With this intent in mind he soon journeyed from Rome to the East. But the Lord directed him onto a different path, that of service to neighbour, and so Saint Sampson came to Constantinople. Settling into a small house, the saint began to take in the wandering homeless, the poor, and the sick, and he attended to them zealously. The Lord blessed the efforts of Saint Sampson and endowed him with the power of wonderworking. He healed the sick not only through being a skilled physician, but also as a bearer of the grace of God. The news about Saint Sampson spread widely. The patriarch, having summoned him, ordained him as presbyter.

One time it was revealed to the grievously sick emperor Justinian (527-565), that he could receive healing only through Saint Sampson. In praying, the saint extended his hand in the direction of the sick emperor, who then received relief, and soon recovered altogether. In gratitude the emperor wanted to reward his healer with silver and gold, but the saint refused and instead asked Justinian to build a domicile for wanderers and the sick. The emperor readily fulfilled his request.

All the rest of his life Saint Sampson devoted to serving his neighbour. He survived into old age and after a short illness he with joy expired to the Lord (+ c. 530). The saint was buried at the church of the holy Martyr Mokias. Many an healing was effected at the grave of Saint Sampson. His home for wanderers and the hospice remained open, and the saint did not cease to care for the suffering. He twice appeared to a neglectful worker of the hospice and upbraided him for his laziness. At the request of an admirer of Saint Sampson the vagrants-home was transformed into a church, and alongside it was built a new edifice for taking in the homeless. During the time of a powerful conflagration at Constantinople the flames did not touch the vagrants-home of Saint Sampson: through his prayers a strong rain poured down, which quenched the fire.

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