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About Andronik

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  1. Welcome to the Monastery of Grand Duchess-Martyr St Elizabeth. Grand Duchess Elizabeth Fyodorovna of Russia was born Her Grand Ducal Highness Princess Elisabeth Alexandra Luise Alice of Hesse and by Rhine. She was the wife of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich of Russia, the fifth son of Emperor Alexander II of Russia and Maria Alexandrovna (née Princess Marie of Hesse-Darmstadt). She was also the elder sister of Alexandra Fyodorovna, the last Empress of Russia. After Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich of Russia was assassinated, while on service in the Kremlin by Socialist-Revolutionary, Ivan Kalyayev, on February 18, 1905, Grand Duchess Elizabeth became a nun, and gave away her jewelery and sold her most luxurious possessions. With the proceeds she opened the Martha and Mary home in Moscow, and for many years helped the poor and the orphans in Moscow to foster the prayer and charity of devout women. Here there arose a new vision of a diaconate for women, one that combined intercession and action in the heart of a disordered world. In April 1909 Elizabeth and seventeen women were dedicated as Sisters of Love and Mercy. Their work flourished: soon they opened a hospital and a variety of other philanthropic ventures arose. In 1918, the Communist government exiled her to Yekaterinburg and then to Alapaevsk, where she was killed by the local Bolsheviks on July 18, 1918, along with Grand Duke Sergei Mikhailovich Romanov; the Princes Ioann Konstantinovich, Konstantin Konstantinovich, Igor Konstantinovich and Vladimir Pavlovich Paley; Grand Duke Sergei's secretary, Fyodor Remez; and Varvara Yakovlevna, a sister from the Grand Duchess Elizabeth's convent. Her remains were buried in Jerusalem, in the Church of Maria Magdalene. She was canonised by the Russian Orthodox Church in 2001. Her principal shrine is the Marfo-Mariinsky Convent she founded in Moscow. She is one of the ten 20th-century martyrs from across the world who are depicted in statues above the Great West Door of Westminster Abbey, London. "All melts into intense gratitude to God, our Church and the noble examples I could see of true Orthodox people and I only feel so small and unworthy of God's boundless love and of the love I received in Russia - even the moments of sorrow were lit up with such comfort from above, the little human misunderstandings were so lovingly smoothed down that I can say 'thank God for all'". From a letter from St Elizabeth to Empress Alexandra Holy Royal Martyr Elizabeth - Pray for Us!
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