Matushks Makariya

Matushks Makariya

Date of Birth: 11.06.1926
Country: Russia

  1. Biography of Mother Makaria
  2. The Chosen One
  3. The Power of God in Weakness
  4. A Life of Service and Healing
  5. A Holy Grave
  6. A Child of Fate
  7. A Chosen Vessel
  8. An Early Calling
  9. A Heavenly Encounter
  10. A Gift of Healing
  11. The Path of the Chosen One
  12. A Life of Prayer and Service
  13. A Heavenly Connection
  14. The End of Earthly Journey

Biography of Mother Makaria

The Chosen One

Mother Makaria was a schema nun of the Russian Orthodox Church. One day, a strange man entered her home claiming to be a potter. "No, you are not a potter, you are a priest," said Feonyushka, as she was called by her family. "Save me, I cannot walk." "Endure, for it is God's will," he replied. He then read a prayer over her and advised her mother not to take her to doctors or give her away to an orphanage. Before leaving, he told the young girl to learn a prayer to Saint Tikhon of Kaluga. This is how the venerable Theodosia first appeared.

The Power of God in Weakness

A village is not complete without a righteous person. This is a centuries-old truth of the Orthodox people. To us simple mortals, the holy righteous ones may seem like legends, but they lived among us and still do. They quietly continue their unceasing prayer - for us, for all of Russia. According to the righteous Mother Makaria, there are still many, many of them, "...they are in the mountains, in small little huts, so small - just a table and an icon hanging. They are pillars from earth to heaven!" Mother Makaria herself is one of them. A righteous woman, a great spiritual worker, chosen by God.

A Life of Service and Healing

Mother Makaria lived, served God, and helped people in the village of Tyomkino, in the Vyazemsky District of the Smolensk Region, for over half a century. People from all over Russia came to her seeking healing for their spiritual and physical ailments. Her earthly journey ended here. But people still come to visit her.

A Holy Grave

Her grave is the first one from the entrance of the village cemetery. On the grave, there is a black granite slab, a large cross, and many flowers and lit candles. I knelt down, placed my candle, and bowed my head to the damp and warm earth. I whispered heartfelt words to her, whether they were prayers, complaints, or justifications, addressing her as if she were alive, confident that Mother Makaria hears me and elevates my confused outpourings to where they can be accepted. The summer sky shone above us. The grass was green, and the birds chirped happily and freely. A car stopped by the fence. A well-dressed middle-aged woman got out. She waits to approach the grave herself. She comes here every summer from Obninsk, just as she used to come to Mother Makaria during her lifetime. Through prayers, holy water, holy oil, wise guidance, and a few words of spiritual conversation, Mother Makaria healed her from a deadly illness. And she healed many others who came to her.

A Child of Fate

I hold a small colorful icon in my hands. I try to discern in the lines, faded by time and life, the image of a blue-eyed, lively, and eloquent girl. She was born on June 11, 1926, in the village of Karpovo, in the Vyazemsky District of the Smolensk Region. She was born on the day when Orthodox Christians celebrate the icon of the Mother of God "Intercessor of Sinners" and remember the martyr Feodosiya. Truly, nothing in this world happens by chance! During her baptism, the girl was named Feodosiya (the same name as her mother), which means "given by God." The abbot of the church where she was baptized, Hieromonk Vasily, was endowed with the gift of foresight. As he handed the child to her parents, he said, "She is a good girl, she will live, but she will not walk."

A Chosen Vessel

It happened just as he predicted. The lively girl started walking and talking early. But one day, a stranger woman entered their home and, seeing the lively girl, stroked her head and back, saying, "Such a little one, and she's already walking." Immediately, the girl's knees gave way, and she fell, never to walk again. Many times, G.P. Durasov, who often encountered her, compiled the biography of the blessed elder Mother Makaria based on personal meetings, testimonies of people who knew her, and her own stories. If you read his book "God's Gift" (published by "Satis," St. Petersburg, 1994 and Voronezh, 2000), your own life will become deeper and richer.

An Early Calling

Her chosenness manifested at a very young age. When the baby was placed in a cradle hanging from the ceiling, a candle would mysteriously light from noon to three o'clock. Those who witnessed it would say, "Don't our children do the same? But a candle does not light above them." One day, a strange man entered their home and introduced himself as a potter. "No, you are not a potter, you are a priest," said Feonyushka, the young girl's nickname. "Save me, I cannot walk." "Endure, for it is God's will," he replied. He then read a prayer over her, and advised her mother not to take her to doctors or give her away to an orphanage. Before leaving, he told the young girl to learn a prayer to Saint Tikhon of Kaluga. This is how Saint Theodosia revealed herself for the first time.

A Heavenly Encounter

When she was eight years old, she fell into a lethargic sleep for no apparent reason. During this sleep, her soul ascended to paradise, where her guardian angel showed her the heavenly realm. In the Kingdom of Heaven, she met the Mother of God for the first time. "She is the most beautiful there!" she later shared.

A Gift of Healing

With the blessing of the Queen of Heaven, she received the gift of healing people. Until the age of eleven and a half, she was visited in her dreams by heavenly beings who taught her how to bless water and oil for healing, and which prayers to recite. She remembered everything. Only after that did the Queen of Heaven allow her to receive people, heal them, and teach them how to pray. The times were difficult, the "godless five-year plan" had begun, churches were being destroyed, and faith was being uprooted from people's minds. In the depths of the Smolensk Region, the preservation of believers and the conversion of new people to the faith were carried out through such blessed individuals as the chosen one of God, the young Theodosia.

The Path of the Chosen One

The path of the chosen one is very difficult. They are constantly sent trials, through which their spirit is strengthened. The heaviest trial befell the girl during the war years. In August 1941, the village was invaded by the Germans. The family scattered in different directions. Theodosia was left alone in an empty and cold house, without a piece of bread. The villagers brought their children to her, and they themselves hid in the forest. The fifteen-year-old girl, practically helpless, found herself with 36 children in her arms. "I lit 7 lamps and 12 candles and began to pray"... No one touched them, and a German officer gave her a "protection certificate."

When the enemy left the village and the residents returned home, the Artemyev family, a collective farm brigade leader and his family, moved in with them. Theodosia told them, "Go to Zagolovka, there is a village council there, they will help you." In winter, crawling through the snow, she made her way to another village. But no one wanted to take her in - they had difficulties of their own. She remained on the streets and lived there for 700 (!) days, seeking shelter in haystacks, or even in the snow. It is unimaginable! She was accidentally found by a 72-year-old nun named Natalya, who lived in the village of Tyomkino. She took in the unfortunate girl, sheltered her, and provided warmth.

At the age of fifty, the young maiden Feodosia was tonsured as a nun under the name Tikhon. After a year and a half, in February 1978, she received the great angelic rank of schema-nun with the name Makaria. And soon after that, the Queen of Heaven appeared to her again and told her that she had chosen her for a great feat. From now on, she was to take on the sufferings and illnesses of all those who turned to her for healing, embracing all the pain and sorrow of Russia in her heart, and humbly carrying this unparalleled burden on her shoulders.

A Life of Prayer and Service

"Matushka, why did you choose such a difficult path?" the nun asked, referring to her own illness. "I have searched everywhere, but I cannot find anyone better than you," the Queen of Heaven replied. "You are perfect in my eyes!"

Mother Makaria faced numerous questions. She provided answers according to the spiritual maturity of each person. "If you want to receive grace," she said, "you must prepare yourself to receive the spark of God. Anyone can receive grace; just pray to God, ask Christ: 'Lord, forgive and have mercy on me.' When the time comes, He will send you grace." She urged everyone to pray to the Savior and the Queen of Heaven. She herself fervently prayed for all people, for Moscow, for Russia. She spoke of Moscow, saying, "Moscow is a holy city; Orthodox believers should not leave from here." "I am afraid to sleep," she confessed, "in these troubled times, one cannot sleep. It is unknown what is happening in our Russia." And, as if receiving an answer to her prayers from the heavenly heights, she said, "Russia will never perish! The Lord will enlighten her, and she will be Russia once again."

"Matushka, isn't it difficult for you to bear such a great cross?" people would ask her. "It even seems light to me," she would reply.

A Heavenly Connection

An extraordinary and amazing aspect of Mother Makaria's life was her relationship with the Queen of Heaven. She not only saw her but also conversed with her. When you leave Mother Makaria's home and walk through the yard towards the gate, you will see a blue door facing the sunrise. It was through this door that the Queen of Heaven entered the schema-nun's home. "Wherever she passes, flowers bloom, and where she stays, flowers bloom. And here, she passes through the terrace, and all the doors obey her, as she walks around, visiting."

The Mother of God conversed with Mother Makaria, guiding her, answering her questions, and informing her of events in the world. But most importantly, she provided her support, compassion, and reminded her of her duty. "Mother of God, raise me from the bed," the schema-nun would request. And she would hear in response, "The time has not come. I would have taken you long ago, but I cannot find anyone to take your place." She would ask, "Will Russia exist? Will Russia survive?" And she would receive the answer, "Russia is a multi-Orthodox country. Russia will not perish!"

The End of Earthly Journey

The last years of Mother Makaria's life were difficult. Illnesses burdened her, her strength diminished, and a heavy and incomprehensible turmoil surrounded her. At the intersection of two great weeks - the Week of All Saints and the Week of All Saints of the Russian Land, on June 18, 1993, at 23:30, Mother Makaria's earthly journey ended. A new life of her soul began. Her last words were, "Fast, pray, in this lies salvation!"

Even during her lifetime, Mother Makaria once, while gazing out the window, said, "A church will stand here." And in July 2000, on the seventh anniversary of Mother Makaria's passing, a wooden church was erected exactly in that spot, dedicated to the icon of Smolensk Mother of God. "A village is not complete without a righteous person," says the Russian proverb. And a village cannot exist without a church.

Mother Makaria did not have her own children, but she was bestowed with such a power of maternal love for all living beings that anyone who was near her felt like her "child" and approached her with childlike trust. With this feeling of childlike protection, we left the quiet holy abode of the righteous woman.

At home, I played the cassette I bought there. Mother Makaria's living voice, slightly cracked but resonant and deep, seemed to sing directly to me: "Holy Trinity, have mercy on u-us; Lord, cleanse our sins; Holy One, visit and heal our infirmities; for the sake of Your name..." Mother Makaria's body may have been weak, but her spirit was high and strong, her prayer powerful and healing, her feat great. Truly, "the power of God is made perfect in weakness."