Our venerable and God- bearing father ''' Mark the Ascetic''' was born in Athens in the fifth century, and lived in the Egyptian desert as a [[ monk]]. His [[feast day]] is commemorated on [[ March 5]].
St. Mark was an [[ ascetic]] and [[ wonder- worker|miracle- worker]], sometimes known as '' Mark the Faster''. In his 40th year he was [[ tonsure]] d a monk by his teacher, St. [[ John Chrysostom]]. Mark then spent 60 more years in the wilderness of Nitria ( a desert in Lower Egypt) in [[ fast]] ing and [[ prayer]] , and in writing many spiritual works concerning the salvation of souls. He knew all the [[ Holy Scriptures]] by heart. He was very merciful and kind, and wept much for the misfortunes that had befallen all of God's creation.
On one occasion, when weeping over a hyena's blind whelp, he prayed to God and the whelp received its sight. In thanksgiving the mother hyena brought him a sheepskin. The [[ saint]] forbade the hyena in the future to kill any more sheep belonging to poor people. He received [[ Eucharist| Communion]] at the hands of [[ angels]]. His [[ homily| homilies]] concerned such topics as the spiritual law, repentance, sobriety, and are ranked among the preeminent literature of the Church. These works were praised by the [[ Patriarch]] [[ Photius the Great]] himself.
Do not seek the perfection of the law in human virtues, for it is not found perfect in them. Its perfection is hidden in the Cross of Christ."