Charbel Mahkluf was a hermit who followed in the ancient tradition of the Desert Fathers. He was a Maronite, which is a rite of Catholicism found in Lebanon. He was an orphan and a shepherd from a pious family who lived in the highest village of Lebanon, Bekaa Kafra, and he tended their small flock of sheep.His father died and he was raised by an uncle who did not approve of his attraction for solitude and prayer. He would take the sheep to a grotto where he had put an icon of the Virgin Mary and remain in prayer all day. He became a monk and studied philosophy and theology, was ordained a priest, and was granted the privilege of living as a hermit. He remained in his hermitage for the last 23 years of his life, living a life of solitude and asceticism. He would not touch money, and acted as servant to everyone who visited him at his hermitage. People came to seek his counsel and blessing, and after his death there were many miraculous healings attributed to his intercession.