About Us

The Abbess and sisters of St. Paisius Monastery with His Grace, Bishop Irenei now of London and Western Europe.


St. Paisius Orthodox Monastery is an English-speaking community which lives out its monastic life with the blessing of His Eminence KYRILL of San Francisco and Western America (ROCOR).


The sisterhood had its beginnings over 30 years ago in northern California. At the newly established St. Paisius Monastery, many young women began to gather around the Abbess, who was then joined by other nuns seeking a traditional coenobitic life.

When the sisterhood numbered almost twenty, the need for a permanent location became paramount. The sisters found suitable property in the high desert of Arizona. The desert terrain required much hard labor to subdue and cultivate, but the sisters accepted this as a necessary part of their spiritual struggle. Over time, by the grace of God, a spacious catholicon was constructed which stands as the jewel of the monastery. In addition, an olive orchard and fruit orchards have been planted, along with a sizeable vegetable garden to feed the sisters and the thousands of guests who visit each year. The wild desert around the main buildings have been transformed with beautiful desert landscaping, the work of the sisters’ hands, and other buildings necessary for the proper functioning of the community are slowly being built.


To support themselves, the sisters publish books on the spiritual life, as well as numerous akathists with themes which support the Christian home and the struggles of Christians living in the world. Almost 150,000 copies of these akathists have been printed. The sisters also have an online bookstore, and make prayer ropes which are ordered by Christians around the world.


The Abbess of the monastery is Nun Michaila. The Divine Liturgy is served several times a week, along with the full cycle of church services.