недеља, 05. фебруар 2012.

Blessed the Feast of the Holy New Martyrs of Russia!

With the appearance and consolidation of God-fighting communism in Russia, there began a persecution of the faith unheard of in its cruelty and broad scale. As one Church writer has defined it, Orthodox Russia has been on Golgotha, and the Russian Church on the Cross ... The Russian Church and people have given an uncounted multitude of cases of the martyric endurance of persecutions and death for faith in Christ... not merely hundreds or thousands, but millions of sufferers for faith--an unheard of and shocking phenomenon! But at the same time the Russian land is being purified of this defilement by the sacred blood of the New Martyrs who have suffered for faith and righteousness.

The Russian land has been abundantly watered by this blood--watered, sanctified, and cleansed from the senselessness of the atheists and God-fighters! Great and numerous is the choir of the Russian New Martyrs. It is headed first of all by the sacred names of His Holiness, Patriarch Tikhon, the murdered Metropolitans Vladimir and Benjamin; Metropolitan Vladimir occupies a special place of honor in it as the first martyr who placed the beginning of this glorious choir.

At the same time, an entirely special place in the choir of the New Martyrs is taken by the Royal Family, headed by the Tsar-Martyr, Emperor Nikolai Alexandrovich, who once said: "If for the salvation of Russia a sacrifice is needed, I will be this sacrifice." The great podvig of the Holy New Martyrs is a Feast not only for the Russian Orthodox Church, but also for the entire Orthodox Catholic Church, because the whole Orthodox Church in all its parts is one and lives a single spiritual life.

Let this great podvig of the Holy New Martyrs' witness of the Orthodox faith and the beauty of the exploit of martyrdom be not only a general Church solemnity, but also a personal solemnity for each of us!

-Blessed Metropolitan Philaret (Voznesensky)
(ROCA-Russian Orthodox Church Abroad)

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