Saturday, July 16, 2016

Ivan Vasilyevich Moiseyev

The son of Baptist peasant farmers, Ivan “Vanya” Moiseyev entered the army at eighteen to perform two years of required military training and service. Because he spoke openly of God, which was forbidden in the atheistic regime, Vanya was persecuted by his military supervisors.

At the age of 20, Ivan knew that the communists would kill him. On July 11, 1972, he wrote his parents, “You will not see me anymore.” He then described a vision of angels and heaven which God had sent to strengthen him for the last trial. A few days later, a coffin arrived at his parents' home, welded shut. Vanya's mother insisted it be opened. A brother, who belonged to the Communist party resisted, but the rest of the family prevailed. Vanya was barely recognizable. Witnesses, Christian and non-Christian alike, signed a statement which declared that his chest had been burned. His face and body were lumped and bruised. Heel marks marred his body. His heart was punctured in six places. Vanya had been beaten and stabbed six times on the chest, and then drowned.

His family did not know about all the things which happened to Vanya, but his letters and the testimonies of the other witnesses completed the puzzle and made the story of Vanya known.
Colonel Malsin, his commander, said, “Moiseyev died with difficulty. He fought with death, but he died as a Christian.”

Ivan Vasilyevich Moiseyev - 16 July - Soldier and Martyr

The Collect

O Almighty God, by whose grace and power thy holy martyr Vanya triumphed over suffering and was faithful even unto death: Grant us, who now remember him with thanksgiving, to be so faithful in our witness to thee in this world, that we may receive with him the crown of life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Lesson - Ecclesiasticus 51:1-12

The Holy Gospel - St. Luke 12:2-12


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