The New Martyr Evgeny the Soldier - 1999

When I was in Moscow last year just about every parish book stall had a xeroxed notice about a young soldier named Evgeny, who had been captured by the Chechens along with five of his buddies. The Chechens promised to spare the young Russians their lives if they converted to Islam. The others agreed, but Evgeny refused, insisting that he was an Orthodox Christian. The Chechens sent his severed head to his mother as a sort of memento. He was martyred on his 18th (17th?) birthday. This young lad was everywhere (Moscow & environs, Sergiev Posad, Murom, Diveevo, Arzamas) recognized as a martyr in a spontaneous, popular movement of piety. His picture was everywhere, usually with the caption "martyred soldier Evgeny".

Priest Michael Carney
St. Herman of Alaska Mission
Grand Rapids, MI
Sent to the list: Tue, 21 Nov 2000 14:18:10 EST
Drawing by Paul Drozdowski, used with permission

(The following is from a dear friend and former parishioner, who is now living back in Moscow)

Dear Fr. Seraphim,

I asked my friends from Russia to send me a book about Evgeniy. I will receive it soon and will send you more information and few pics. Unfortunately, it's in Russian, if you know somebody who could help me to translate it to English, it would be great.

He was martyred on his 18th birthday, 6 months after he started his service. He was beheaded by Chechen field commander Ruslan Haihoroev, after Evgeniy denied to give up his cross (which by the way was part of the medal for bravery) for 3 months. Many months his mother searched for his body, and finally after paying $500, was shown the forest where he was. She found 4 more boys along with him. For weeks after bringing back the bodies, she tried to get his head back. Now, people put a giant wood cross on his grave. The cross that he did not give up, his mother, Lubov Radionova, gave to St Nicholas Church in Ordinka, Moskow.

He was canonized on August 20th. The church is to build in Hankala, near Grozniy. It will be the only Russian Orthodox church in Chechnia. Fr. Nazariy is to serve there.

I tried to translate to Eng., from many sites in Russian, if you want, I could send you links to them.

More information would be appreciated! Send to

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