Saint Tikhon (in the world Vasily Ivanovich Bellavin) was born on January 19, 1865. From an early age, his father took the boy with him to serve, and love for the temple became an integral part of his life. He received his education at the theological school of his native city, and then at the Pskov Seminary and the St. Petersburg Theological Academy.
In 1888, Vasily Bellavin graduated from the academy and was sent to the Pskov seminary to teach dogmatics, moral theology, and French. In 1891, the young teacher took the tonsure with the name Tikhon in honor of St. Tikhon of Zadonsk. Ordained to the rank of hieromonk, a year later he was transferred to the Kholmsky Seminary, where he was appointed inspector.
In December 1898, Bishop Tikhon was appointed to the Aleutian-American See, which was located in San Francisco. In 1905, Saint Tikhon was elevated to the rank of archbishop, and two years later he was transferred to one of the most honored cathedras in Russia, Yaroslavl.