Saint Marina the Monk

Marinus was born Marina in the 6th century. Her father wanted to join a monastery (Monastery of Qannoubine, in the Holy Valley, Lebanon) so he took his daughter – disguised as a boy – with him. Both were admitted and became monks. After living in the monastery for a number of years, it became necessary for both father and daughter to travel. Whilst staying at an inn, the innkeeper’s wayward daughter was attracted to Brother Marinus and tried to seduce her. When Marinus refused the advances, the innkeeper’s daughter claimed that “he” had seduced her and she was pregnant. Marinus refused to debunk the claims by showing that she was, in fact, female, and she was kicked out of the monastery. She lived outside the monastery walls begging. To make matters worse, Marinus was forced to take custody of the child and raise him. She remained there, raising the child, performing harsh penances, and undertaking menial jobs. It was not until her death that her sex was finally revealed. Marinus is revered as a saint in the Roman Catholic, and Orthodox Churches. She is known as Saint Marina the Monk.

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