St Anthony of Optina:helper with real estates ales

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Barbara
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St Anthony of Optina:helper with real estates ales

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Firmly rooted in hesychia to the complete cutting off of his own will, and to that humility which allows God to act in the heart of the monk, all his life long Anthony considered himself to be the disciple of Moses. The often harsh manner of Moses towards him was in order to put him to the test. He always kept a respectful silence in his presence and confessed to him his every thought. He was very zealous for common prayer and would devote his free time in his cell to reading or to prayer. He cleared the ground and built the first cells of the Skete with his own hands, and for fourteen years watched over its spiritual and material organization. The community was constituted as a real antechamber of Heaven where the strict observance, humility and simplicity of the monks and their deep compunction during the long services were so plainly evident that, under the direction of Anthony, the Skete became a lodestone or magnet to spiritual men.
Often ill, and suffering for thirty years from suppurating sores on his legs that made him feel as though cut by a saw, Father Anthony appeared always joyful nonetheless, and looked on his trials as a God-sent remedy for his salvation. He possessed his soul in patience and, when unable to leave his cell, would devote himself the more to prayer and to reading until he had the strength to get back to work.

In 1859 he faced an even greater trial. Bishop Nicholas of Kaluga, who was opposed to the influence of the startsi, appointed him Abbot of Maloyaroslavets that was accustomed to receive its superiors from Optina. The duty of directing a community of twelve monks who lacked unity and fervour in a monastery situated near a town became a real martyrdom for Anthony. Several times he begged the Bishop to relieve him of his post, but met with a firm refusal.

The affairs of the Monastery of Maloyaroslavets occasionally took Anthony to Moscow where he came to the notice of the holy Metropolitan Philaret (19 Nov) who, sympathizing with his spiritual trial, interceded for him with the Bishop of Kaluga. Anthony’s resignation was only accepted after the appointment of a new Bishop. Then, having installed his successor, he was able at last to return with joy to Optina and to resume his place as his brother’s disciple (1958). He spent the last three years of his life in a small cell in the Skete with a view only of the sky, surrounded by a mountain of books, and no longer concerned with administrative matters. He retained the same zeal for prayer as in his youth and would often say, “Pray fervently to the Lord God and your cold heart will be warmed by His sweetest Name, for our God is Fire. Calling upon His name destroys impure thoughts and also warms our hearts to fullfil His commandments.” When he served the divine Liturgy he was full of grace, especially at the moment of the Great Entrance.

Anthony lent his support to the institution of the startsi and to the development of their ministry, but he held back from spiritual direction himself, although warm and affable towards those who sought his help. When visitors put to him philosophical or theological questions, he would refer them to Father Moses or to Starets Macarius, or simply reply, “Purify your heart and you will learn everything.”

He was greatly afflicted by the death of his brother and spiritual Father Moses in 1862, and remained in seclusion for almost a year in order to re-establish in secret his spiritual communion with the departed. As increasing infirmities left him incapable of going to church, he received the Great Habit in his cell and thereafter devoted himself entirely to prayer. On his cell-wall he hung up an inscription in large letters that read, “Don’t waste time!” Reckoning that he was no more than a beginner, he added labor to labor in preparation for his meeting with God. He made all the arrangements for his burial and, having taken the blessing of Abbot Isaac for his last journey, he gave up his soul to God on 7 August 1865. He was buried next to his brother.

The work of the venerable Moses and Anthony had created conditions favorable to the establishment of startchestvo, which came into its own with the arrival at Optina in 1829 of Starets Leonid, who was already sixty and was to spend the remaining twelve years of his life at the Skete.
https://stpaisiusmonastery.org/about-th ... na-elders/
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Re: St Anthony of Optina:helper with real estates ales

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How is Elder Anthony [ Putilov ] a helper with real estate sales ?
One beautiful example is the following narration by Simeon Ivanovich Yanovsky, former Alaskan administrator and adventurer and 'discoverer' of St Herman of Alaska. At one juncture at the very end of his spiritual father's life, Yanovsky found himself worrying about supplying the money to equip 2 daughters for their convent life at the Kaluga Kazan Convent :

"I had long since announced that I was selling my entire estate, as well as one separate, not very large piece of undeveloped land of 45 acres; but no buyers had shown up.

And then to our great amazement, through the prayers of Fr Anthony, a lady came to Kaluga all the way from the Tula province, travelling over 130 kilometers to make an offer only for the little empty lot. It had been advertised in the newspapers: 'Refer in Kaluga to our son so and so...'

But at this time our son had gone away on business to Ryazan and Voronezh province. Consequently this lady, not having met our son, would have returned and the sale would not have taken place. By God's Providence it happened that -- [ to be continued ]
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Re: St Anthony of Optina:helper with real estates ales

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Traditional Kaluga Mother of God Icon

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Ornate modern depiction of the Kaluga Mother of God Icon

Summary of the Kaluga Icon :

"The Kaluga Icon of the Mother of God appeared in 1748 in the village of Tinkova, near Kaluga, at the home of the landowner Basil Kondratevich Khitrov. Two servants of Khitrov were cleaning out junk from the attic of his home. One of them, Eudokia, noted for her temper, was given to rough and even indecorous language. Her companion was modest and serious.

They discovered a large package covered in a linen cloth. Undoing it, the girl saw the picture of a woman in dark garments with a book in her hands. Considering it to be the portrait of a woman monastic and wanting to bring Eudokia to her senses, she accused her of being disrespectful to the abbess.

Eudokia jeered at the scolding words of her companion, and becoming increasingly angry, she spit on the picture. Immediately, she became convulsed and fell down senseless. She also became blind and mute. Her frightened companion reported what had happened to the household.

The next night, the Queen of Heaven appeared to Eudokia’s parents and told them that their daughter had behaved impertinently toward Her and She ordered them to serve a Molieben before the insulted icon, then sprinkle the invalid with holy water at the Molieben.

After the Molieben Eudokia recovered, and Khitrov took the wonderworking icon into his own home, where it granted healing to those approaching it with faith. Later, the icon was placed in the parish temple of the Nativity of the Most Holy Theotokos in the village of Kaluga. At the present time it is located in the cathedral church of Kaluga.

Through this icon the Mother of God has repeatedly manifest Her protection of the Russian land during difficult times. The celebration of the Kaluga Icon on September 2 was established in remembrance of the deliverance from a plague in 1771... In 1898, a celebration was established on July 18 in gratitude to the Mother of God for protection against cholera.
The icon is also commemorated on the first Sunday of the Apostles’ Fast" -- https://www.oca.org/saints/lives/2018/1 ... -of-kaluga

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Narrative of Simeon Ivanovich Yanovsky from previous post continues here : "I went together with my wife at that time to Kaluga in order to have a moleben served and venerate the wonder-working Kaluga Icon of the Mother of God, which had then been brought back to Kaluga.

Miraculously we arrived in Kaluga on the same day as this buyer ; on the next day she came to us with an offer.

I took her to see the parcel. She was pleased with the parcel, even with the slope and lay of the land ; everything corresponded with her wishes. The business was at once concluded ; the buyer gave almost the very price which I had desired. In this way we place a deposit in the convent, clothed our daughters and were able to further satisfy some of their needs How happy they were now...on the Feas of the Protection of the Most Holy Theotokos in 1864" Yanovsky's daughters entered the Kaluga Convent of the Kazan Mother of God. One of them, Alexandra, went on to become the Abbess of the Convent...She died in 1914, at the age of 76. In 1899 she was awarded a silver pectoral cross by the Russian Orthodox Church, and in 1907 she was given a gold cross from the Office of Tsar Nicholas II."

All this great good fortune occurred, Yanovsky knew, through the powerful prayers of his spiritual father, Elder Anthony of Optina Hermitage not far from the province's urban center, Kaluga. Surely the entrance of the Yanovsky girls into the Kaluga Kazan Convent had been helped much by the Elder's intervention. We must remember that the Ambrose-Kazan Shamordino Convent was a couple of decades away from being founded by St Amvrosy of Optina. Thus the Kazan Convent in Kaluga must have been a convenient and propitious choice.

Neither was this is the only real estate miracle St Anthony seemed to have brought about to help the financially struggling Yanovsky family.
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Re: St Anthony of Optina:helper with real estates ales

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And struggling they were.
Elder Anthony was fully aware of their plight. One wonders from this distance of time why the Manager of all the American Colonies for the newly-formed Russian-American Company could not have benefited from this high position.

On one hand, Yanovsky disliked the high cost of living in Alaska. Perhaps he was forced to entertain many Russian visitors from his own pocket. After all, there were no expense accounts in those days, with reimbursements for mileage traveled by sledge or by ship to the various islands, including St Herman's Spruce Island.
Probably the Russian colony expected to be feted with grand parties and comparatively fancy dinners. But in 1816-21, Yanovsky's years in Alaska, supplies would have been scarce. Presumably nearly all goods would have to come from western Russia itself after months of travel overland across Siberia.

Four years of this duty as Chief Manager was more than enough for Yanovsky, who sent to St Petersburg for a replacement. Almost the minute this Captain Mouraviev arrived, Yanovsky and his family departed for the Russian capital.
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Re: St Anthony of Optina:helper with real estates ales

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After many adventures, Simeon Ivanovich reached St Petersburg.
A side note is that St Herman of Alaska had warned Yanovsky to NOT take his half-Aleut wife there, but to keep her with Yanovsky's family, which lived in the town of Glukhov, Ukraine. Disobeying this precise order by the Valaam monastic transplanted to Spruce Island, Yanovsky suffered various bad consequences. Not only did the wife, Irene Alexandrovna, repose in 1824 in the northern capital [ she is buried in the Smolensk Cemetery, where St Xenia's shrine is located ], but financially, disaster struck.

Her father was Alexander Alexeevich Baranov, the previous governor of the Alaskan colonies. Strangely, when he was arriving to take up his post in Alaska, Baranov barely survived shipwreck.
Yanovsky now learned that his father-in-law had reposed at sea on return to St Petersburg on the navy vessel Kutuzov. The date was April 16, 1819, and the location the Sunda Strait between the Indonesian islands of Java and Sumatra.

Distressingly for Yanovsky, all papers of Baranov's were confiscated by the Russian-American Company and became inaccessible even to its former Chief Manager. The 1 MILLION RUBLES which Baranov had promised his successor as compensation for his service in that hardship post would never see the light of day. It is not known whether there existed a signed agreement to this effect which was lost or conveniently hidden by the Company's accountants. However, one imagines that the deal between the 2 Alaskan governors was verbal, sealed only with a friendly handshake.

Thus Yanovsky found himself and his young children in the equivalent of a financial shipwreck. Forced to take on a regular job, the former high colonial official in 1834 became the principal of the Kaluga Junior College. He held this position through various vicissitudes until 1852. Aged 63, Yanovsky retired to his estate in the countryside. It is not explained where he acquired this property, but one assumes he purchased it either as a prospective dacha or else anticipating his sunset years.

But there was a serious problem: there was no house on the estate and no real money to construct one ; in fact the Yanovskys were already in debt.

Enter Abbot Anthony, "The Real Estate Optina Elder". Appealed to by his anxious disciple Simeon Ivanovich, St Anthony agreed to pray.

Yanovsky recorded the dramatic result :

"...we had, all told, only 400 rubles in cash, as well as 100 logs prepared. With such scanty means I began to build a sufficiently large house. What happened? Through the prayers and blessing of Fr. Anthony, God unexpectedly sent us help in an unimaginable way so that in one summer the exterior of the house was built and roofed.

The next year the floor was planked, the stove was built, window sashes were installed, the doors were hung, and the rest also. Towards autumn we were able to move our things into it and live.

After totaling everything up, we found that the house alone, without the outbuildings, had cost us more than 2,000 rubles in silver ; including wages it had cost more than 3,000.

The house turned out to be warm, cozy, spacious, and beautiful.

It is clear that the Lord helped us on account of the prayers and blessing of Fr Anthony."
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Re: St Anthony of Optina:helper with real estates ales

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From the St Paisius Monastery in Safford Arizona comes this icon of St Anthony of Optina :

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"This icon of the Venerable Elder Anthony, painted by one of the sisters of Maloyaroslavets Monastery and embedded with a portion of the saint’s relics, was gifted to our monastery."-- St Paisius Monastery website

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More about Elder Anthony's sad association with the St Nicholas-Black Island Monastery [ revived as a Convent ] in Maloyaroslavets later on this thread

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Restored dome of the main Cathedral of St Nicholas Cherno-Ostrovsky Convent today
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