Social aid


Church is the stairway to Heaven

Man was intended by the Creator for happiness, love and eternal life, but by sin had severed himself from the source of the true happiness, God. Immersed in the worldly temptations, he continues to seek earthly pleasures forgetting that it is impossible to fully attain them without the Creator.

The price for a life lived without God is broken families, abandoned children, drinking, drug addiction, overpopulated prisons. But this is not the end of it all. Christ, who accepted repenting sinful women and robbers, waits for our repentance even now and is ready to give us his fatherly embrace, heal our wounds and take us, the repenting, into his heavenly abodes.

The church is the stairs to Heaven. Church is a ship of salvation. And here, in the church of the Dormition of the Holy Mother of God, it is particularly evident.

The rector of the church igumen Theophan (Pozhidayev) and his assistants carry a most heavy burden. In the church and the adjoining farm many needy, homeless, aged people, many of those who have made mistakes in their lives and suffer from many spiritual faults of the modern day, but with all their strength are trying to get back on the right track, find shelter, obedience in work and spiritual guidance.

The prayer of repentance and work within one’s strength is the best medicine to a wounded soul.

And people come, often from afar, seeking prayer.

Here people released from prison and desiring to become sound members of the society undergo rehabilitation.

In the church spiritual conversations with the parishioners are organized and there is a library of spiritual literature.

In summer children and teenagers gather at the farm with their tutors.

This isn’t a summer camp but a summer Christian work squad. Strict discipline, prayer and work in the field, beeyard and animal farm appropriate and interesting for city children teach them love towards earth, responsibility and composure.

Christian education classes, wholesome readings and conversations with the priest give a strong positive spiritual impulse to the children throughout their stay in the squad. They return home quite changed. Of course, there can be no summer without rest, games and swimming.

Every year on Christmas the church community organizes a Christmas Party for children and their parents. At the end of the party presents are given, usually about 200 and these aren’t just a pack of sweets, but also toys or books. The kid’s joy has no limits.

The church community doesn’t forget children, elderly people, the sick and the poor. Thanks to the work of the rector, benefactors and the parishioners, it is possible to help different organization (homes for the elderly, children’s homes, shelters,…), but in the weekends and holidays it is possible to feed the hungry coming to the church – up to 100 and more people. People are fed with products grown on the farm therefore working hands are always welcome. Many organizations send to the church of the Dormition of the Holy Mother of God letters thanking for aid or simply make thank-you calls on the phone.

The rector has many worries. He has to perform the church service, give attention to all seeking advice and prayers, solve practical issues, in spring it is necessary to sow cereals and plant vegetables on time, in autumn – to harvest the crops, so that there is food for the hungry.

Here, in the small church community, a big work of God is being done – saving human souls through work on the land and prayer. But one human soul is more precious to God that all the beauty and goods of the world, because the Lord created man for Himself and human heart cannot find peace until it finds the Lord.

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