Elder Markellos of Karakallou (1939 – 2006)
Very little is known of Elder Markellos’ early years. He was born in 1939 in Pteleos in Thessaly, south of Volos. He was a teacher, but left this to chase monasticism. He became a disciple of Elder Ephraim of Philotheou, who later went to Arizona. It was these monks from Philotheou who repopulated Karakallou in 1981 after the brotherhood was down to four monks (there are now over fifty).
In all stages of his earthly life, both as a layman and as a monk, he possessed purity, simplicity, modesty, wisdom and sincere love for God, Christ, the Theotokos, the Saints, and for every person. Elder Markellos was a prolific writer who was not afraid to discuss difficult topics, and frequently travelled around Greece to give talks and to see his many spiritual children. He focused on the problems of the modern world such as the spiritual lives of families, New Age spirituality, but also on the more traditional monastic aspects of spirituality such as the Jesus Prayer.
Elder Markellos once said: “Today our life has become poor because we do not know how to pray. We do not have communication with God. If you do not communicate with God, you communicate with worldly things and with the media. You are informed by this, however you cut yourself off from God. It is for this reason that we are spiritually poor. If you do not communicate with God, your Father, then you are poor and without comfort internally.”
When he passed away on September 11 2006, after a year of medical difficulties which he bore with his usual fortitude and trust in God, his funeral the next day was said by attendees to have the atmosphere of a celebration. After forty days requests came in from families and monasteries throughout Greece for Elder Markellos’ personal belongings as a blessing.
Source: Lychnos April – May 2019