St. Petersburg, October 4, 2016
Young moms and women in difficult life situations can now appeal for help to a special home which has opened at the Resurrection Novodevichy (“New Maidens’”) Convent of St. Petersburg, reports the St. Petersburg Metropolia.
Priest Eugene Melnikov, a cleric of Novodevichy Convent, blessed the new “Blagodat’” (“Grace”) asylum for young mothers at the convent on September 30, 2016.
“We hope that it will be for the good of those who will live here. May Divine providence make your stay at this home a small step towards the salvation of your souls and the souls of your little ones,” said Fr. Eugene, addressing the home’s residents.
Abbess Sophia who together with the sisters was present at the blessing ceremony gave the asylum the “Reigning” icon of the Mother of God.
“Every mother is a martyr of God because she does not sleep at night for years, devoting all her energy to raising her children. Every mother offers up her prayers at home by the icons, in the churches of God and always in her heart—both during her journey to work and at work—she thinks of her children permanently. And in this sense she bears the cross of a martyr because children are often ill and sometimes sin,” she said.
The abbess gave icons of the Most Holy Mother of God to the home’s supervisors Natalia Kirillova and Elena Pavlova as a token of her gratitude for their many years of selfless service to and support for young mothers.
In her turn, Elena Pavlova related that at the support center mothers learn to communicate with their kids, cook food, can go for a walk, and attend services at the convent on a voluntary basis.
“As they reside on the territory of the convent they begin go to church, take Holy Communion, pray and ask for the Lord’s help. And they rear their children in the Orthodox tradition,” the support center’s supervisor said.
The Blagodat’ (Grace) support center has existed since 2010. Initially children from a closed orphanage resided in it. Presently its residents are several moms with nurslings who are in a difficult situation after the orphanage. Nearly all of them have financial problems and have no accommodation.
Those in charge of this project help the women with children solve their problems with documents, obtain a living space through guardianship bodies, and also provide them with food and drugs through their sponsors.