SAINTS OF MY HEART
Saint John Maximovitch & the Dove
When I came to San Francisco to be close to the saintly Archbishop John Maximovitch, I heard a lot of fascinating accounts of his ascetic life. Frequently I visited St. Tikhon’s Orphanage, founded by this Saint, and run then by his long-time assistant, Mrs. Maria Alexandrovna Shakhmatova (+1967). Archbishop John was a very busy man, and I did not dare to be often in his presence…
The orphanage was no longer a place where children were sheltered….Within its walls was Archbishop John’s tiny office, which was so small that even a bed would not fit, where he both lived and had his prayer-room and office…I would visit him there, and have long constructive talks that shaped my life.
One day I came to see Mrs. Shakhmatova, and she, as usual, insisted that I stay for tea, even though I never liked tea. She would get me into her kitchen, almost next to Archbishop John’s office, and ask, almost in the form of an interrogation, about my whereabouts, what I had done that week, what I had read, etc. Usually she scolded me for not visiting her more often Continue reading “Saint John Maximovitch & the dove”