Saint Nimatullah Kassab Hardini

Youssef Kessab was born in Hardine, North Lebanon, in 1808. He joined the Maronite Lebanese Order as a novice at the monastery of Saint Anthony the Great and in 1828 took the name of Nimatullah, which means the Grace of God. He spent there some peaceful time growing in holiness and learning skillful trades like binding books in the monastery’s printing house. In 1830, Nimatullah professed his solemn vows. Upon completing his theology studies, he was ordained to the sacred priesthood at the Monastery of Saints Qobrianos and Youstina, in Kfifane (Batroun, North Lebanon) in December 25th, 1833.

He was elected Provincial Counselor by his order’s chapter three times: 1845-1848; 1850-1853; 1856-1858. He was a teacher in several schools run by his order, especially the one annexed to the Kfifane monastery. His most notable student was Saint Sharbel Makhlouf, who studied under Saint Nimatullah from 1853-1858. 

Nimatullah died at the Monastery of Saints Qobrianos and Youstina on December 14, 1858.

Upon order from Patriarch Boulos Massad, and due to increasing demands from visitors, his uncorrupted body was closed in a sealed coffin and moved to a separate cell at the monastery in 1862. Beatified on May 10, 1998, he was canonized Saint for the Whole Church on May 16, 2004.