Saint John the Little Author Saint Zacharias of Sakha.

St. Zacharias of Sakha: When saints inspire saints

Inspired by the fathers

The faith of the early church fathers continues to inspire us thousands of years after they’d lived.

About 1300 years ago, Saint Zacharias made a decision that changed my life!

He decided to write the story of Saint John the little.

If it wasn’t for him, we would’ve lost the story of this great desert father to history, and Saint John’s graphic novel would’ve never happened!

The life of Saint Zacharias

Saint Zacharias is an eighth-century bishop of a town in Cairo, Egypt called Sakha. His father was a government secretary when he resigned and answered the call to priesthood. Zacharias, like his father, was fluent in greek and coptic and also worked in the “diwan” (the place that assessed taxes and maintained soldier pay and names).

While working at the Diwan, Zacharias made a pact with a close friend and coworker to follow the monastic life. Soon after, they were inspired by a visiting monk to travel to the monastery of John the Short in Scetis where they later got ordained.

Zacharias grew in wisdom and sanctity, and was later ordained a bishop on the city of Sakha and served for 30 years.

What hits me hardest in this story (which is admittedly a lot less exciting than a lot of saint stories!) is how large of an impact this saint’s service had.

We wouldn’t know the life of the incredible saint John the little if it wasn’t for Saint Zacharias applying his education and background in writing to his service as a bishop. It not only affirms that God can use anyone for His plan for salvation, but also that each of our talents can be used in ways we might never understand.

Here’s what he wrote at the end of the life of Saint John the little:

When we emulate [Saint John’s] faith in word and deed, he will increase his prayers before the Lord for us, since he has the power to do this and is worthy to pray on our behalf that our life may be upright just as he who succeeded in enacting the will of God in this world so that everyone, especially God and all his saints in the midst of heaven, will turn to us and say “Truly these are genuine sons [and daughters] of Abba John the little.

Saint John the little Christian Orthodox Graphic Novel Book Image