Pereslavl-Zalessky, Russia, November 13, 2017
The funeral for Abbess Barbara (Chekotkova) of St. Theodore Monastery in Pereslavl-Zalessky was served at her monastery on Friday. The Divine Liturgy and funeral were celebrated by Metropolitan Panteleimon of Yaroslavl and Rostov, Metropolitan Kirill of Ekaterinburg and Verkhoturye, Bishop Benjamin of Rybinsk and Danilovsk, and Bishop Theodore of Pereslavl and Uglich, along with clergy of the Yarsoslavl, Rybinsk, Pereslavl, Vladimir, and Ekaterinburg Dioceses, reports patriarchia.ru.
The abbess of St. Theodore Monastery in Pereslavl-Zalessky, 90 miles northeast of Moscow, departed to the Lord on Wednesday, having suffered a heart attack.
The abbesses and sisters of several other convents came to prayerfully bid farewell to the beloved Mother Barbara, who is remembered as a kind, sympathetic, sensitive, and gracious person. The funeral was sung by the hierarchical choir of the Yaroslavl Diocese and the sisters’ choir of the Entrance of the Theotokos Convent in Tolga.
Before the beginning of the funeral service, Met. Panteleimon of Yaroslavl and Rostov addressed those gathered, nothing that Mother Barbara spent her entire life serving God and man. “She first sought to learn to pray, to learn obedience. She became a role model for the sisters who labor in this monastery, and she became an example for all who came to the monastery for advice and consolation,” His Eminence stated. “Matushka remained faithful to love for God and the Church with dignity and righteousness from a young age. It was the orientation of her entire life,” he said, in remembrance of the newly-reposed abbess.
Following the funeral, Met. Kirill of Ekaterinburg and Verkhoturye, who elevated Mother Barbara to the abbacy, addressed the worshipers, noting of the reposed Igumena, “One day, coming to a church of God in her youth, she never left this path.”
“How often a man is tormented by his weaknesses and infirmities. But, thank God that among us are people who firmly, sincerely, and consistently walk the path once chosen by them. Abbess Barbara walked such a path. She left this life on the path to God—making haste in the morning to the church of God to pray, manifesting thereby a symbol of the constant path which she always clung to in her life,” His Eminence declared.
Noting that she was always obedient to her spiritual father, Archimandrite Naum (Baiborodin), who also recently reposed, the metropolitan exhorted all: “Every one of us is need of spiritual advice and spiritual support, but it’s also important to listen to the words of our spiritual guides and to strive to fulfill their advice.”
In conclusion, Met. Kirill exhorted all to remember and cherish Mother Barbara, and those like her, who always support and pray for us in the spiritual life.
Abbess Barbara was buried behind the altar of the convent’s cathedral.