4 thoughts on “St. Xenia Fool for Christ

  1. Thoughtful, prayerful icon. Hadn’t seen it. Thank you, G.J.

    Note: If you like historical fiction, here’s a book I read a few years ago when I was trying hard to “get” the Holy fool concept. It helped: http://www.rusoffagency.com/authors/dean_d/mirrored/the_mirrored_world.htm

    Also, I like knowing that the name Xenia comes from the Greek work for hospitality, which they have been known for all the way back to Homer. It makes it easier for me to understand how she saw herself, or–if she didn’t choose that name with its meaning in mind–how God saw her. Either way, she isn’t “strange” as in “stranger.”


    1. Thank you, Albert. For historical fiction about a holy fool, you can’t beat Laurus, which is written by a historian and an Orthodox Christian who actually knows his subject as an academic and as a believer/participant in the tradition and reality of holy fools. But I didn’t know about Dean’s book, and I was glad to read about it further on Goodreads. Many reviewers there had come away with the understanding that Xenia’s later life was a “descent into madness,” which is a natural conclusion for an observer who has only had an intellectual connection.


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