Wealthy Russian aristocratic lay woman married to an army officer. Widowed, she withdrew from the aristocratic life, financed churches, and gave away her wealth to the poor. Her family claimed she was insane and took her to court to stop her charity; the judge found her healthy and sane, and said she could do as she pleased. Ksenia was left homeless, living in a Saint Petersburg cemetery, and became known as a “fool for Christ”. She helped the local poor during the day, especially mothers of young children, and would work on church construction sites at night, moving bricks and materials so workmen could finish quicker during the day. She had the gift of prophesy, and of healing sick children.
- late 18th century Saint Petersburg, Russia of natural causes
- her grave became a pilgrimage destination, even during the era of Communist persecution
- pilgrims to the Chapel of Saint Ksenia leave prayer requests on slips of paper and lit candles in hopes of her intercession
- “Saint Ksenia Blazhennaya Peterburzhskaya“. Saints.SQPN.com. 22 August 2013. Web. 24 July 2014. <>