John Archbishop And Hieromartyr Of Riga 3 of 3

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The crime was never properly investigated or explained. But the people knew the truth. At the funeral the whole city was in mourning; 100,000 people - about a quarter of the population of Riga - were in the streets, and over one hundred Orthodox priests together with several representatives of other faiths were present.

A Russian student, M.I. Dobrotvorsky, saw the archbishop, vested and surrounded by unknown worshippers with shining faces, praying beside his body. The body of the archbishop was accompanied by a vast crowd from the cathedral to the Holy Protection Cemetery, where a small chapel was later raised over the grave. Archbishop John died for Christ and the Orthodox Faith on October 12, 1934.

(Sources: Lyudmilla Koeller, Sv. Ioann (Pommer), Arkhiepiskop Rizhskij i Latvijskij, Holy Trinity Monastery, Jordanville, 1984; Koeller, "Archbishop John of Latvia", The Orthodox Word, vol. 10, no. 1 (54), pp. 10-18; "Kopiya pis'ma Arkhiepiskopa Rizhskago Ioanna na imya Arkhiepiskopa Litovskago i Vilyenskago Elevferiya, 2 noyabrya 1927 g.", Pravoslavnaya Zhizn', nos. 3-4, May-June-July-August, 1992, pp. 52-53; M.E. Gubonin, Akty Svyateishego Patriarkha Tikhona, St. Tikhon's Theological Institute, 1994, p. 975; Za Khrista Postradavshiye, Moscow: St. Tikhon's Theological Institute, 1997, p. 507)


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