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175. March 28/April 10, 1975

Dear Christopher,
Greetings in our Lord Jesus Christ.

Please forgive our long silence, and this poor note. We’ve had very difficult times, with unbe-lievable snow falls (nearly 4 feet in one day the first week of Lent) and much pressure of work to get caught up. The enemy works full time, and so we must keep struggling too to make True Orthodoxy known. But we give thanks to God for everything, and deep down we are peaceful.

Enclosed are Thomas’ pictures of your Baptism. At your request we also took some pictures in the snow and will send when ready. We have a picture of Thomas leaping from the roof into the snow also, but he sent it away and we’ll have to get a copy.

We are all well after some winter flu. Paul Bartlett the new convert has been with us for a month in order to find out “what to do” with his life. If our converts will only keep the fear of God in their hearts and resolve to serve God no matter what — then all trials and temptations can be surmounted and they can save their souls.

We look forward to your visit this summer. Until then, go one step at a time and don’t allow discouragement into the heart. God is with us, as we sing every night in our Lenten services.

Do you have the Ladder of St. John, or the Desert Fathers? You should be reading some such spiritual book during Lent — we are reading them during morning church services.

Our weather is still cold, but hopefully our garden will be started soon.

Forgive me and all us poor sinners, and pray for us. I’ll write again sooner.

With love in Christ,
Seraphim, monk

[Note from Fr. Herman:] Beloved infant! Cheer up! You are a true Christian, remember that the Kingdom of God is yours if you’ll endure a bit more. We are sending you the Ladder anyway. See to it you have it read before Pascha. Where are you going to be at Pascha? Can’t you take a trip to S.F. for it? To receive Holy Communion?

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