A new history series from Monastery Press, The Russian Golgotha), tells the story of Russia's new martyrs men, women, and children slain for their refusal to abandon their Orthodox Christian Faith even under the most severe pressure from Communist authorities in the 20th century.
"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 faithan unheard of and shocking phenomenon!" (from the epistle of blessed Metropolitan Philaret "Orthodox Russia" 6/14/81) (for the full epistle see http://www.roca.org/OA/11/11d.htm)
Our present work was begun in 1993, with the goal to catalog from every region of Russia as many lives of these New Martyrs as possible. It has been through numerous revisions as new information and sources have either added to or confirmed previous material. Several of the lives have been printed over the years in various publications of the Russian Church Abroad. In 1999, the compiler Vladimir Moss had given the rights and materials to Monastery Press with the hope to see the entire work (which at present exceeds 6000 pages) published as a whole. During the entire process of getting this work to print the compiler has been sending updated information. Indeed, even the last week of pre-press work information was coming in...
Despite arrest, imprisonment, torture, betrayal by informers, the forced closing of monasteries and convents, oppression by an atheist regime did not destroy the Church in Russia, but instead strengthened it and gave Russia a plentiful yield of new martyrs from all walks of life, from the nobility to the peasantry. Their stories now are told in The Russian Golgotha, an illustrated English-language history designed for years of use.
This 536-page account of selected martyrs' lives, including the Russian Royal Family, includes other material never before published in English or Russian, and is an invaluable resource for anyone interested in this dark, yet ultimately triumphant era in Church history.
Download a sample chapter(PDF 114 KB )
The Russian Golgotha describes:
- How Orthodox Christians of all ranks, from hierarchs to lay people, resisted the "sovietization" of Orthodoxy and, in many cases, sacrificed their lives rather than accept compromise with the atheist regime.
- How the example and teachings of brave Orthodox Church leaders helped to keep true Orthodox Christianity alive in Russia despite all efforts to suppress it during the Soviet era.
- How the best efforts of the KGB and other Soviet agencies failed to extinguish Orthodox Christianity in the lives of believers all across Russia.
The author, distinguished Orthodox Church historian Vladimir Moss, assembled this account of Russia's new martyrs from primary sources including interviews with relatives and acquaintances of the martyrs, and from the martyrs' own conversations and writings. Much of this material has never been published in English or Russian before.
The result is a moving and highly readable book that represents an historic event in the documentation of Orthodox Church history and the history of 20th-century Russia. The text includes an extensive introduction and explanatory footnotes for the benefit of readers who may not be intimately familiar with the historical background of the new martyrs' stories.
For scholars, an especially valuable element of The Russian Golgotha is the extensive bibliography, which provides a much-needed listing of resources for research on the new martyrs and on Orthodox Christianity in Russia during the Soviet years.
The Russian Golgotha Volume One, is the first in a projected series of volumes from Monastery Press about the lives of Russia's new martyrs. The work is presently divided into seven sections:
A. The Royal Martyrs: Tsar-Martyr Nicholas II and his family, Grand-Duchess Elizabeth Fyodorovna
B. The Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia: Patriarch Tikhon
C. The Martyrs and Confessors of Northern and Western Russia, Belarus and the Baltic.
D. The Martyrs and Confessors of Central Russia
E. The Martyrs and Confessors of Southern Russia and the Ukraine
F. The Martyrs and Confessors of Eastern Russia and the Caucasus
G. The Martyrs and Confessors of the Urals, Siberia and Central Asia.