The Monastery of St. Herman of Alaska, Platina, California

In the hills of northern California there is an Orthodox monastery dedicated to St. Herman of Alaska. Monastic life began in this beautiful but austere landscape in 1968, when two missionary-monastic aspirants, Eugene Rose and Gleb Podmoshensky, moved there and began their life of prayer combined with patristic study, writing and teaching. They would soon be tonsured monks and become Fr. Seraphim and Fr. Herman. Fr. Seraphim reposed in the Lord in 1982, and Fr. Herman in 2014. The monastery is now a part of the Serbian Orthodox Church, and its abbot is Fr. Damascene (Christensen)

Highway 36, leading to the monastery

Highway 36, leading to the monastery

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

Beegum Gorge Road, to the monastery

Beegum Gorge Road, to the monastery

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The monastery gates

The monastery gates

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The old cross and Fr. Seraphim’s grave

The old cross and Fr. Seraphim’s grave

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The bell outside of Fr. Seraphim’s cell. Visitors would ring on their way to the cell

The bell outside of Fr. Seraphim’s cell. Visitors would ring on their way to the cell

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The ascetic cell of Fr. Seraphim Rose

The ascetic cell of Fr. Seraphim Rose

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

Inside Fr. Seraphim’s cell. An icon of the monastery’s patron saint, Herman of Alaska

Inside Fr. Seraphim’s cell. An icon of the monastery’s patron saint, Herman of Alaska

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The old mechanical printing press, used to produce books and the English language periodical, The Orthodox Word

The old mechanical printing press, used to produce books and the English language periodical, The Orthodox Word

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

Linotype

Linotype

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

An old printing plate with the image of St. Seraphim of Sarov

An old printing plate with the image of St. Seraphim of Sarov

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The monastery church

The monastery church

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The monastery graveyard

The monastery graveyard

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The water pump. A very deep well in a very dry land

The water pump. A very deep well in a very dry land

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

Inside the monastery church

Inside the monastery church

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The reader’s stand. There is no electricity in the church, and services are read by candlelight

The reader’s stand. There is no electricity in the church, and services are read by candlelight

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The lower side alter, dedicate to Sts. Sergius and Herman of Valaam

The lower side alter, dedicate to Sts. Sergius and Herman of Valaam

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The library, and a chapel dedicated to the Royal Martyrs, Tsar Nicholas II and his family

The library, and a chapel dedicated to the Royal Martyrs, Tsar Nicholas II and his family

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

Inside the chapel to the Royal Martyrs

Inside the chapel to the Royal Martyrs

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The Monastery trapeza

The Monastery trapeza

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

Feline friends

Feline friends

Photo by Metropolitan Tikhon (Shevkunov)

The threat of fire

Platina, like most of California, becomes very dry in the summer. Forest fires are a constant threat. Within the past week, the forest right next to the women’s skete of St. Xenia of Petersburg, also founded by Fr. Serpaphim (Rose), was ablaze and the fire has been spreading toward the monastery. Through the prayers of all who love the monastery and skete, the fire has not engulfed the skete or monastery, but prayers must not stop until the danger is over.

These photos were taken a few days ago by a novice of the monastery. The whole territory is filled with smoke, as bulldozers clear fire lines around the monastery another houses. The brothers express special thanks and prayers to all the vigilant firefighters!

Photo by Novice Pavel

Photo by Novice Pavel

Photo by Novice Pavel

Photo by Novice Pavel

Photo by Novice Pavel

Photo by Novice Pavel

Photo by Novice Pavel

Photo by Novice Pavel

Photo by Novice Pavel

Photo by Novice Pavel

Comments
Victor kowalenko8/27/2021 1:00 am
I pray that all are safe due to the nearby fire at the Monastery and St Xenia Skete . Please Pray for the soul of Bill Petrovic who passed away 10 years ago on August 26, 2011.
Editor8/17/2021 1:05 pm
Tariq: You can contact the Monastery directly for information on pilgrimages through their website. https://www.sainthermanmonastery.com/ Click the contact us tag on the upper right hand corner.
Tariq Saba8/16/2021 9:20 pm
May I please stay at the monastery for a month or two? I am an Orthodox christian. I live in Corona,CA. I am thinking about venerating the Iveron Icon in SF on Thursday and I want to continue my trip to the monastery. I will help with all of the monastery chores and attend the services. This is not my first time visiting a monastery. I stayed for almost a month at St. Anthony’s in AZ back in January. May you please allow me to stay for a month or two? I really want to grow closer to God and I want to learn as much as I can. I love father Seraphim Rose. I read a couple of his books and I want to visit please. Pray for me a sinner, Tariq Saba 9517100417
cheron julien8/14/2021 6:28 am
de tout coeur avec vous dans ce lieu
Melania Murray8/13/2021 6:20 pm
Praying a moleben to St. Herman of Alaska and the most holy Mother of God for safety of the monastery and all who dwell there. St. Herman stopped a tidal wave on Spruce Island through prayer.
Liudmila Kovalchuk8/13/2021 3:52 pm
Are the safe? Is it here any way to get in touch with them?
WALKER JOSE LIMA8/11/2021 1:37 am
Pelas orações da Mãe de Deus tem piedade de nós! Salva, Senhor, o Teu povo a abençoa a Tua herança.
Ronald J. Brotzman8/9/2021 9:57 pm
FR. Martin and All: WE here at St Lukes pray for your personal safety and the protection of your monastery and all it contains. Ron Brotzman
damjan8/9/2021 8:19 pm
One can smell and feel holiness just from the photos. What an oasis of Christendom right in of all places California! Dear Lord guard your people in the hours of fire peril!
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