MOSCOW: May 23, 2008
"Russian Diaspora Foundation" Hosts an Evening in Memory of His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus
Fond Russkoye Zarubezhie ("Russian Diaspora Foundation") filled Solzhenitsyn Hall in Moscow on Thursday evening to honor His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus of blessed memory. Politicians, clergymen and laypersons who knew him shared their recollections of Vladyka, ITAR-TASS reports.
The theme of the night was the notion that thanks to the reestablishment of the unity of the Russian Church, towards which Metropolitan Laurus exerted great effort, Russian society accepted the importance of the Church for the future of Russia even more. The stream of new blood—the intellectual and practical pillars of our compatriots abroad—adds impetus to the nation's development, and, first of all, adds to its moral underpinnings.
The example he gave of a humble and patient attitude towards his opponents is influencing the political elite of our country, says State Duma Deputy Alexander Tyagunov. Evgeny Tabachnikov, Representative of the International Council of Russian Compatriots, recalling the town of Ladomirovo (in what is now Slovakia), said that as a child he would go together with others to tend to the graves of Russian soldiers who fell during the breach of Brusilovsk. Tabachnikov said that these graves were recently restored, and a memorial to the soldiers was erected. It is noteworthy that Vladyka Laurus intended to visit his homeland this May.
Monk Vsevolod Filipiev, who spent a great deal of time with Metropolitan Laurus in Jordanville, remarked that he was always impressed with his "social simplicity, quietude, wisdom and self-restraint." "The rhythm of prayer guided his entire life: waking at four-thirty in the morning, prayer, then work, divine service in church again. And this was every day," recalled Fr Vsevolod. "It is remarkable how many enemies he still had (in the matter of reunification with the Moscow Patriarchate). But he never punished anyone, saying 'Let us wait, maybe they will come to understand.'"
The speakers noted that they felt no sorrow, because the man had accomplished his life's task and reposed in the Lord in peace. They said that the death of Metropolitan Laurus occurred on March 16, the Sunday of the Triumph of Orthodoxy, the next day being the feast day of the Reigning Icon of the Mother of God, which was taken by a Moscow delegation throughout the diaspora in honor of the reunification of the Russian Orthodox Church.