The Nun Sophia

Commemorated on December 16

      The Nun Sophia, in the world Solomonia, a great-princess, was the daughter of the boyar-noble Yurii Konstantinovich Saburov. In the year 1505 she was chosen as bride by the heir to the throne, the future great-prince Vasilii Ioannovich. Their marriage was unhappy, because Solomonia remained childless. In order to have an heir, great-prince Vasilii Ioannovich decided to wed a second time (to Elena Glinsky) and on 25 November 1525 he ordered Solomonia to be tonsured a nun. Forcibly monasticised with the name Sophia, Solomonia was sent under guard to the Suzdal' Pokrov-Protection convent, where by ascetic deeds she banished from her heart worldly thoughts, and totally dedicated herself to God. Prince Kurbsky calls the blessed princess "a Nun Martyress". In the manuscripts of the Saints she is termed as "the holy Righteous Princess Sophia the Monastic, for she did dwell at the Pokrov monastery convent, a wonderworker". Under tsar Feodor Ioannovich they esteemed her as a saint. Tsaritsa Irina Feodorovna sent to Suzdal', "to Great-Princess Solomonida, in other regards Sophia, a velvet veil with depiction of the Saviour and other saints". Patriarch Joseph wrote to the Suzdal' archbishop Serapion about the singing over Sophia of panikhidas and moliebens. The Nun Sophia reposed to God in the year 1542. In the descriptions by the Suzdal' sacristan Ananii there occur several instances of miraculous healings at the grave of the Nun Sophia.

1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.

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