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A very short history of the St Herman of Alaska English-language mission

Fr Basil Willow:

Christ is amidst us Fr. Paul.
I am so often intrigued by the commentary flying around about Fr Seraphim Rose,
Especially by those souls who have never met him, nor studied his carefully crafted texts for our times on our timely issues. They speak like they were his disciples or spiritual children, or perhaps vehement enemies because some career clergy/ bishops, did not have it in themselves to compete on Fr Seraphim’s theological & scientific gifts.
Even more disturbing is the dribble, in the West mainly, that attacks Fr Seraphim’s spiritual Father, Abbott Herman of Platina. As he, Abbott Herman often told us, he literally had to “feed”, Fr Seraphim, in order for the latter to “kill” his western mind & bring it into the realm of original Christianity. No easy task. Today Fr Seraphim is treated like a Saint in Russia, Mount Athos & many other places.
Good for you Fr Paul to take up the enormous challenge of taking up the continuation of operating the St Herman bookstore on Gerry Blvd SF, next to the huge Cathedral, built by Holy Archbishop John, while we struggled with the Australian bookstore, first on Nicholson St Brunswick, where right accross the road is a Greek Church containing the incorrupt fingure of St John the Baptist.
Then we moved the missionary bookstore to Auburn Rd Auburn. A suburb close to many tertiary colleges. Today it is part of our Chapel dedicated to St Herman & the Dormition of the Theotokos

Aboona Paul Baba:

Hello Fr. Basil+ Yes truly inspiring days in Orthodoxy coming from St. Herman of Alaska Monastery+ We didn’t have much at all in English but from what came from those two hero’s gave us… I remember Fr. Herman visiting you and the Australian bookstore community. I saw Fr. Herman with friends the day he returned to San Francisco and told us stories from his trip – a parrot that talks?. He rushed out from us and said he needed to get to the Monastery quick before they burn it down. He smiled and we took it as a joke. Upon his arrival the Monastery had burned down to the ground. He cried from such saddness.. A hanging lamp cracked from the heat and oil burned up in flames. My Byzantium Gallery on Geary blvd. next to St. John and the Cathedral was very good and some difficulty. I can’t even imagine having Byzantium now knowing all these facebook friends 🙂 I painfully miss those days of elders…Fr. Spiridon, Fr. Metrophanes and the wonderful miracles from God that came in from the people.


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