On the eve of the feast of holy Hieromartyr Hilarion, Archbishop of Verea, the editors of Pravoslavie.ru received a simple and artless letter, which we reproduce here in English translation. The original was published on Pravoslavie.ru in the Russian, with no essential changes.
I, Elena Egorova, in Baptism Maria, want to tell the world and you, honorable fathers, about the miraculous help of our father Hilarion (Troitsky)—the wonderworker.
In 2005 I was sent by the church to work not for money, but for the glory of God. I served in a hospice near St. Petersburg and spent the nights in a women’s skete outside of town. The skete had wood heating, but the sisters had no firewood for the winter. The fathers blessed me to find a load of firewood “for the sake of Christ”. I went to Fr. Hilarion’s grave and said, “Father, there’s no firewood, and no money. Help!”
I left the monastery gates and waved down car going my way, because I didn’t have a penny for the bus. Then a car stopped, with a woman driver. She asked me why I was hailing a car, and did I need any help. I told her that I had no money, that I needed to buy firewood, but I didn’t know where I would find the money. She gave me four thousand rubles, and even drove me to the skete.
The second miracle
I buried my entire family, five people, over the course of three years and was left all alone.
When I left Tiumen [Siberia] for St. Petersburg to see my spiritual father, he had fallen and broken both his legs. He was walking to church on Christmas, slipped, his legs flew in between the steps, and he fell down headfirst.
I arrived, but no one met me. Then I went to the deacon; he was old, and his wife, too. It was a burden on them to have me as a hanger-on. I had to look for a job with a place to live.
I went again to the cemetery where Fr. Hilarion’s grave was, and cried: “No money, nowhere to live, no work, and no registration.”1
I prayed, and wept a while, then left the cemetery and saw a woman walking toward me who said, “What are you looking for here?”
I answered that I was looking for work with a place to live. Then she drove me to the Kirov factory and registered me in the dormitory. At least on that day she herself had come from the night shift. And the dormitory was located right outside the walls of that cemetery, where Fr. Hilarion lay at rest.
The Third miracle
In 2011, my school friends’ baby got sick and had one foot in grave. She called me, crying into the telephone, “What should I do?” I went to the cemetery, to Fr. Hilarion, turned on the phone, called her, and said, “Pray to Fr. Hilarion, he’ll help!” I had not even turned off the phone when another doctor arrived. He looked at the little one, gave him an injection, and the boy immediately came back to life—the diagnosis had been incorrect. We then discussed it and decided to buy a candle stand and bench for St. Hilarion’s grave.
The Fourth miracle
In 2011, while I was working in the Kirov factory, I earned as an apprentice 336 rubles a month, and a subway token cost fifteen rubles. How was I supposed to live? I went to Batiushka Hilarion and told him all about it… Then I looked, and saw a young man walking toward me, about thirty years old. I said to him, “Brother dear, pray for me, I don’t even have enough money to place a candle. I worked all month and didn’t receive any pay.” He gave me a thousand rubles. Then another passed by, and gave some more. In this way did Fr. Hilarion give me six thousand rubles on his grave, although I was asking for prayers, not money.
The Fifth miracle
In 2011, three months after my arrival in St. Petersburg, I went to the cemetery to pray to Batiushka Hilarion and met there a sister from the church store. She introduced me to Fr. Methodius, who is now in Vyritsy, and he blessed me to work as a sitter for a grandma who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and to live with her. That is how I lived, ready for anything, for two years before the grandma’s death. Now I am a novice in Rome, Italy.
I ask you as far as possible to retain the essence of this letter, as the language is not literary—I am a cook, and not a writer… I described it all as best I could…
I always give alms, and often receive Communion. If I do not do this, then all my prayers for help just lie on the desk of the Lord God’s “secretary” for a very long time. Well, everyone asks, “Why does God give things to some but not to others? I have noticed that to those who go to confession, receive Communion, eagerly buy food for the bums, God gives, you could say, before they even ask. But the misers, those who can’t stand through the services (or sit if they haven’t the strength), might ask for years and get nothing but a big zero.
I have worked in the hospice, and in drug rehabilitation, and I have seen miracles of recovery. As a rule, they all began after confession and Communion…
A deep bow to you all, and may God save you!