Sergei of Radonezh
We do not know when Sergei of Radonezh was born; we do know he died of high age, in 1392 in Russia.
In 1422 he was declared patron saint of Russia. From his hagiography (written by Epiphanius the Wise, 25 years after his death) we know that he did not do well at school learning, while both his elder brothers did.
Also, he carved wooden toys for children.
Though not much politically interested, he was instrumental by his support of prince Dimitri Donskoi, in his struggle against the Tartars and the battle of Kulikovo (1380), in helping Rusland to become a nation.
The hermitage which Sergius started himself so as to be able to live his life as an ascetic monk, became, after his canonization in 1452, the monastery Holy Trinity, Sergiev Posad, the most important Russian monastery and the spiritual centre of the Russian Orthodox Church.
Together with St Alban, he is patron of the Fellowship of Saint Alban and Saint Sergius, a Christian society founded in 1928, which aims to foster contact between Christians, especially those of the Anglican and Orthodox traditions. The society is still active in fostering unity between Christians: “It realises that unity in Christ need not mean uniformity in Christ”
The Fellowship introduced the writings of many Russian Orthodox thinkers to the English public, Vladimir Lossky may be known to you. I know that “The Church of England has a great history of relations with the Russian Orthodox Church” (Bishop of London, 21 02 2014) but even so, I have not been able to find out yet when or why Sergei was declared a saint on the calendar of the saints of the church of England, not even in the review of Historical Contact of the Eastern Orthodox and Anglican Churches.
I am very glad though hat he is in the calendar; it gives us hope indeed for unity in diversity.
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