Father Pavel

Father Pavel Adelheim was killed this evening in his own house. Stabbed to death by an insane young man...

He was an amazing man, probably the last of his kind. A confessor of faith, a man of indomitable spirit nothing could break. He took a stand for truth in a way that made everybody acknowledge it, whether people liked it or not.
It was somehow easy to remember about the royal priesthood of Christians in his presence, particularly when he was celebrating the Liturgy. And yet he was humility itself. And somehow it all went together and was as natural to him as his faith. Witness wasn't something he did, it was something he was. Every step he made, every word he said, his very presence, his eyes... The way he blessed you, making a full cross starting with your forehead and going wide about your shoulders saying carefully 'In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit'. And you knew he was praying for you. He was giving you his time and attention, making it both a greeting and a prayer. It was not easy to get used to it at first, it was almost too much. But his kindness made it all right very soon. It was genuine, it's just that we are not used to meeting men of his scale nowadays. It is too much for us, we feel a bit overwhelmed.

His father was killed during the time of the Soviet terror, his mother exiled, he was expelled from school for his Christian beliefs and for going to church. As a boy he went to secret Liturgies in an underground church community and it was then that he made his choice to become a priest. These days people don't make choices like that so early in life... He was taught his prayers and his ascesis in a monastery, he was arrested and imprisoned for building a church right under the nose of the Soviet authorities (he disguised the building site), he studied law in prison to help his cell mates write their appeals to the Soviet court. He lost his leg during an uprising in the prison camp and had to live with a peg leg for over 40 years serving as priest all the time, standing through the liturgies, the molebens, the baptisms.... He restored two churches and built one more for the inmates of an asylym. He built a church school, he lost everything he built and restored through the spite of the bishop who is the proud owner of an FSB (KGB) 'faithful service' award.

He was 'all things to all men'. The local baptists invited him to their prayer meetings and even baptisms and asked him to preach. And he went. His house was always full of people. He had a word, and a story, and a poem for everyone. He wrote poetry and lectured on Canon Law. And went to court to defend the right of his parisheners to exist and to matter. At 75 he kept a blog that was read by every conscientious person in the Russian church. And by many people not in that category too, of course. He was hated and feared by those whose conscience wasn't clear or was dead altogether. He was feared so much they tried to kill him. They made one attemped by tampering with his cars breaks but he survived. Not this time though...

He was a confessor of faith as it was, the last of the mohicans, yet the Lord saw it fit to crown him with the crown of a martyr. This world cannot bear people of that degree of righteousness. The tragedy of God's love in this world still has to be lived out by Christ's true followers. There is no need to pray for him, he will be praying for us...




who celebrate today :) Christ is risen!


всем, кто празднует ее сегодня! Христос воскресе!

May we all someday celebrate His resurrection together as one Church!

Book meme, via abishag

I felt very curious when I saw this one. How many do I know, how many have I read?

The Museum, Libraries and Archives Council's Top 30 Books every adult should read before they die. Bold the ones you've read. Italicize the ones you'd like to read. Strike out the ones you don't plan to read, or started but couldn't finish.

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - /have actually started this one and couldn't finish, but it does not mean I am not planning to read it; it happens, doesn't it?/

The Bible
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by JRR Tolkien

1984 by George Orwell - /have not finished this one either, but again intend to read it someday; maybe there should be another category?/ </i>
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens - /this one is another funny category - a 'don't remember whether I have read it or only seen it'/

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
All Quite on the Western Front by E M Remarque

His Dark Materials Trilogy by Phillip Pullman - /another category here - a 'never heard of' category/
Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks - /never heard of/

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
The Lord of the Flies by William Golding

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon - /never heard of/

Tess of the D'urbevilles by Thomas Hardy
Winnie the Pooh by AA Milne - /only read it in translation, in Russian/
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Graham
Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

The Time Traveller's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger - /never heard of/
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold - /never heard of/
The Prophet by Khalil Gibran - /never heard of/

David Copperfield by Charles Dickens

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov

Life of Pi by Yann Martel - /never heard of/

Middlemarch by George Eliot

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver - /never heard of/
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess - /never heard of/

A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Alexander Solzenhitsyn

I decided to underline the ones I haven't heard of. Nine out of thirty. Have definitely read 14. Intend to read 6. Only one is a book I have no opinion of though I have heard about it. Curious... I wonder what sort of a list our librarians would come up with. Strange that there is neither Shakespeare nor Dostoyevsky in this one. Nor Tolstoy for that matter. Was quite pleased to see Bulgakov though. There must be a good English translation.

... Supposing I were to list five books in that 'must read' category. Bulgakov would definitely be there, but what else? I don't think the Bible should come on the list since it seems to include fiction only and the Bible is definitely not in that category. What else? Erm... C. S. Lewis. Probably, Till We Have Faces. I think I would list E M Remarque, but maybe a different book, the Three Comrades. Number four? One Hundred Years of Solitude, Gabriel García Márquez. Then, I am not sure... Hard to close the list now that I have started thinking. It has been quite international so far (Russian, English, German, Columbian), but now I am beginning to think Russian: A. & B. Strugatsky, but I don't know which one to list, read them all if you can, if not choose from Hard to Be a God, Roadside Picnic, The Snail on the Slope, Monday Begins on Saturday, The Ugly Swans... oh, it's hopeless! Well, let's say Roadside Picnic if you have to choose one. N. S. Leskov, SOBORIANE (The Cathedral Folk). Ok, so I have come up with 6. Interstingly, this is very much a 20th century list. Not one book from before 1920! No, this is a very strange exercise. I wonder how the British librarians coped with it. How many books were they told to list? Very curious indeed... :)

"Мертвые души" - спасибо sige_vic

Из сегодняшнего поста sige_vic:

"Наконец-то осуществила свое очень давнее намерение - взялась перечитывать "Мертвые души". Получаю прямо-таки нечеловеческое удовольствие. "Сам хозяин, не замедливший скоро войти, ничего не имел у себя под халатом, кроме открытой груди, на которой росла какая-то борода". "

Мне навеяло, и я стала вспоминать - вот тут. По ссылочке ходить не обязательно, я и так запостю:

"Один из священнодействующих, тут же находившихся, приносивший с таким усердием жертвы Фемиде, что оба рукава лопнули у него на локтях и давно полезла оттуда подкладка, за что и получил в свое время коллежского регистратора, - прислужился нашим героям, как некогда Вергилий прислужился Данту, и провел их в комнату присутствия, где... за зерцалом и двумя толстыми книгами, сидел один, как Солнце, председатель".

Вот :)). Цитирую по памяти. Только в середине кусочек выпал (интересно, все остальное-то правильно помню?). Была у меня когда-то гениальная преподавательница русского языка на курсах по подготовке в ВУЗ, и мы с ней учили наизусть всякие классные предложения со сложным синтаксисом. Гоголь - это песня, это НАДО учить наизусть. Было еще что-то из Толстого и Чехова...

А-а, вот еще: "Но тут увидел Чичиков, что это был скорее ключник, а не ключница: ключница, по крайней мере, не бреет бороды, а этот, напротив того, брил, и, казалось, довольно редко, потому что вся нижняя часть лица у него... была похожа на щетку, какою чистят на конюшне лошадей". Здесь я, наверное, сильно наврала, но все равно здорово :))

Averintsev Yet Again - И снова Аверинцев

Открыла вчера "Стихи духовные" Аверинцева и не удержалась: после поездки в Индию так отозвался "Стих о уверении Фомы", что я снова стала переводить, чтобы можно было поделиться... (русский ниже)

Was thinking about India and found this poem by Averintsev. Wanted to share so much - here is the translation:

Стих о уверении Фомы
The Poem of Thomas’s Assurance
under the cutCollapse )

Request/Christmas Poll

Dear friends,

A good friend of mine is doing a research project (her very first!) and she needs native English speakers to help her with it. It's not difficult, we just need 9 people to write half a page on the same topic. I thought it might be fun if we made it into something like a Christmas poll. Let's say the topic is


We can share our thoughts here, online. I will then send your texts to my friend and she will try to identify the authors. The only requirement is that if you choose to participate please fill in this form (Biogr-form.doc, 20 кБ) and e-mail it to me (using the address on my profile page). When we are done I can ask one of you to write another, similar text (just to confuse her more :)) with two texts by the same author).

Thank you in advance for responding. Just please make sure that you write no less than half a page (A4) because shorter texts will be no use for the project.

To begin the game, here is my little essay:

Now, my job is done :) Hoping you will feel like sharing and wishing you a happy holiday time and a year full of blessings,

Yours thankfully,

Last night...



He lives in the world he creates.
Or does he?
He lives in the world he imagines.
He lives in the world he both creates
and imagines.
Can others live in it too?


Inspiration. A familiar breath
Of the wind which blows where it chuses.


Those lines that offend me…
I am scared to think
That if somebody had given me
This to read from Brendan Kennelly or Paul Durcan
I would have been prevented by prejudice
From exploring further and finding
That hidden treasure
And worse still,
From falling in love…



Poetry. A rhythmical prose,
No need even to rhyme.

Just get into the rhythm:
breathe in
breathe out
And write…