Photo: – 16/3/17

On March 14, Metropolitan Eusebius of Pskov and Porkhov celebrated the rite of the founding of a temple in honor of the Holy Royal Martyrs at the station in the city of Dno, where on March 15, 1917, Tsar Nicholas II signed his abdication in favor of his brother Michael, reports the site of the Pskov Diocese.

His Eminence was assisted by the deputy abbot of the Holy Annunication-Nikandrov Hermitage Archimandrite Seraphim (Ivashchenko), abbot of St. John the Theologian-St. Savva of Krypetsk Monastery Igumen Savva (Komarov), and others. Governor Andrei Turchak of the Pskov region and monastics and faithful from throughout the area were in attendance.

Metropolitan Eusebius addressed the crowd before beginning the rite, stating, “Today we remember an especially sad day for our Russia—the removal from power of the Russian Tsar Nicholas II. It is a sorrowful day.”

“The reign of Emperor Nicholas was in the line of his predecessors from the days of Prince Vladimir and our holy compatriot, the right-believing Russian Princess Olga. Tsar Nicholas maintained, adorned, edified, and expanded Russia, caring for its people,” the hierarch stated. “But there was also the influence of special worldly forces which overtook Russia like a hurricane and beheaded it, promising Heaven on earth. But, probably, they will not receive the Heavenly Paradise.”

Metropolitan Eusebius also expressed the hope that this day would mark a new era of prosperity in Russia, overthrowing the horrors of the previous century. “And whatever may be said about the emperor Tsar Nicholas, we know one thing—he loved his people, he loved God, and he was committed to the holy Orthodox faith of his ancestors and did not change in the difficult times for the Russian people and the Russian homeland. Let us beseech the Lord for His blessing on the beginning of our building here on this place a church-monument,” he continued.

Then His Eminence celebrated the rite of the foundation of a new church, seeking the blessing of the Lord on the house of God and those who will build it, during which the entire foundation was sprinkled with Holy Water. Together with the Pskov governor, the metropolitan also laid a foundation stone.

Following the celebratory rite, His Eminence again addressed the people, encouraging them to bring to the church their zeal, their heart, their love of country, and their love for their pious ancestors, “and may God grant that this building would be successful, well-pleasing, and memorable, serving for the benefit of all, for both the living and for our descendants,” he concluded.