"Now at the close of my life I have decided to talk to my brethren of things I would not have ventured to utter earlier, counting it unseemly.…”
Thus wrote Archimandrite Sophrony, then ninety-two years old, in We Shall See Him as He Is, his spiritual autobiography. In this book Fr. Sophrony, one of the most beloved orthodox Christian elders of our times, revealed to the world his own experience of union with God, and the path to that union. drawing near to God with intense love and longing accompanied by struggle, self-emptying and searing repentance, Fr. Sophrony was granted to participate in the life of God Himself through His uncreated Energies. Like orthodox saints throughout the centuries, he experienced God’s grace as an ineffable, uncreated Light. It was in this Light that Christ was transfigured on Mount Tabor before His Apostles, and it is in this Light that we shall see Him as He is (I John 3:2).
Born into a Russian Orthodox family in Moscow in 1896, Archimandrite Sophrony embarked on a successful career as a painter in Paris. There he delved into Eastern religions for a time, before repenting bitterly of this and returning to the faith of his childhood. After a brief period of theological study in Paris, he left for the ancient orthodox monastic republic of Mount Athos in Greece, where he spent fifteen years in a monastery and a further seven as a hermit “in the desert.” on Mount Athos he became the spiritual son of a simple monk of holy life, Elder Silouan. It was under the guidance of Elder Silouan that Fr. Sophrony experienced divine illumination, knowing God intimately as Personal Absolute—as the one Who revealed Himself to the Prophet Moses as “I AM” and Who became incarnate as man in Jesus Christ. In 1959, Fr. Sophrony founded the Monastic Community of St. John the Baptist in Essex, England, which has since become a major orthodox spiritual center for all of Western Europe. His books on the life and teaching of his elder, Fr. Silouan—published most recently in a single volume, as Saint Silouan the Athonite—led to the canonization of Elder Silouan by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of the orthodox Church in 1988. Elder Sophrony reposed in 1993, at the age of ninety-seven.
By special arrangement with the St. John the Baptist Monastery in Essex, England, the St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood has now published the first American edition of Archimandrite Sophrony’s classic work, We Shall See Him as He Is.
Author: Archimandrite Sophrony (Sakharov)
248 pages, paperback
Copyright St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood
From the Author
Very little is generally said in the church media regarding the priesthood and priests themselves. What is written typically has to do with the participation of priests in clerical or diocesan conferences, which begs the question: Is it even useful to publish anything about the priesthood in publications intended for the laity? We believe that it is not only useful, but also necessary to bring to light the mutually beneficial relationships between the pastor and his flock (with all good intentions, of course), and thus to promote a much desired harmony and mutual support—all the more, if the positions put forth with regard to the priesthood are frank and upright. Here the Apostle Paul serves as an example of one who was not afraid to show his weaknesses: “For I am the least of the Apostles, that am not meet to be called an Apostle, because I persecuted the Church of God” (1 Cor. 15: 9).
The Church of Christ is currently living in the most distressing time of its historical existence— a time of militant apostasy. And on whose shoulders does the duty of standing for the Truth principally fall, if not on the shoulders of priests? Priests take upon themselves all the evil, all the vilification of the secularized, apostatizing, and morally fallen modern world. It is for this reason alone that one should write more frequently in support of these zealots for the Faith and for Christ’s Church, raising awareness of a modern-day priest’s spiritual make-up, so that the laity might understand all the difficulties of the pastor’s challenge and join with him in a working partnership, as the Apostle Paul calls us to do: “Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Gal. 6:2).
These are the honest thoughts and blessed intentions that we set forth as the basis for our narrative on the priesthood and on priests, those stalwart spiritual warriors marching forth along the difficult paths of our apostatizing time.
Author: Protopresbyter Valery Lukianov
In the early years of his life, Protopresbyter Valery Lukianov, the author of this memorable book, was under the spiritual guidance of St. John (Maximovitch) of Shanghai, who subsequently ordained him to the diaconate. After Archbishop John’s canonization on June 19/July 2, 1994, Father Valery set as his goal to share the miraculous events of the glorification with a wide audience of believers through the publication of his book, Lantern of Grace – in Russian (1999), followed by the English translation (2004). The book was reissued as an enlarged Russian edition (2010), that embraced our younger generation, including stories and reminiscences of students, altar boys, orphans, and numerous other people from various walks of life, whom St. John helped in time of need. The present extended English edition (2017) incorporates additional material on Vladyka’s life, his repose and the funeral, the uncovering and re-vesting of his relics, preceding the canonization, and the ever memorable and joyous glorification. This book contains a collection of precious photographs of Vladyka John, a saint who was our contemporary.
As readers make their way through the pages of this book, we hope they will feel the blessing bestowed by the hand of this wondrous miracle-worker. We trust that, guided by the ever-present Hand of God, they will discover a fresh, new source of faith and hope.
The Russian Orthodox Youth Committee has published its revised pocket size soft-cover Prayer Book.
The Prayer Book is an excellent aid for those, to whom the faith and the Church are dear, but who find it difficult to read Church Slavonic. This paperback prayer book is written in Russian (with accent marks) and with parallel English text.
Dimensions: 5" x 6.5" x 0.6"
Archpriest Seraphim Slobodskoy
First English Edition
Copyright Holy Trinity Publications