Bishop Sergius, in the world John Prokhorovich Druzhinin, was born, according to one source, in 1853 in Saint Petersburg province. However, according to another source he was born on June 20, 1863 in the village of Novoye Selo, Bezhetsk uyezd, in the family of a peasant of Tver province. According to yet another source - the GPU - he was born in 1858.
He was educated at home, but received most of his monastic education in the Sergiev Hermitage, founded by Bishop Ignatius Brianchaninov.
"My father," wrote the bishop during his investigation, "sold his land holding in Tver province and... bought, together with others, a plot of land in Yaroslavl province, where he lived until his death. Many in our family went into monasteries, and I myself from the age of 12 began to visit men's monasteries in which there lived relatives of my mother's. When I was 18, on the advice and insistence of my female cousins, who were nuns of the Resurrection Novodevichi monastery [in St. Petersburg], I left for Valaam. [But] the conditions of obedience in this monastery were so difficult that I was not able to fulfil them for reasons of poor health.
"For that reason, on the advice of the superior, I went to the Sergiev Hermitage..., where I spent six years as a novice. At first I was appointed to be under the direction of the elder Gerasimus, who had been the wealthy landowner Zagreby in the world, and who entered the monastery after graduating from university... and I remained with him after being tonsured for ten years until the death of Elder Gerasimus... Then, when I was already a hierodeacon, I came under the direction of Archimandrite Barlaam, and after his death - under the direction of Igumen Agathangelus, who was a former landowner from Yaroslavl province... and after his death - of the superior, Archimandrite Michael. My intercourse with the above-mentioned directors strengthened me in true Orthodoxy, in the monastic life, and in obedience to spiritual authority and devotion to the throne.
"... From the moment of my tonsure I lived in the rooms of the superior and fulfilled the obediences, first of assistant to the sacristan, and then of sacristan."
On September 24, 1894 he was tonsured, and in 1898, he was ordained to the priesthood, and soon after became a spiritual father.
Not far from the Hermitage, in Strelna, Great Prince Demetrius Constantinovich (1860-1919) lived in his palace during the summer, while in Pavlovsk there lived his elder brother Constantine Constantinovich (1858-1915) with his numerous family. Since they were very pious people, they often visited the Hermitage for services. "After the services," reminisced Bishop Sergius, "the guests sometimes called on the superior, and I had to receive them and give them tea and monastery bread. According to the choice and appointment of the Great Prince [Demetrius], I was told to serve in the inner palace church during the summer, and from August 15 to May 21 - in the Pavlovsk palace."
After two years of service by the young hieromonk, Great Prince Constantine Constantinovich formed such a good opinion of him that he petitioned in the name of all the "Constantinovichs" that he become their spiritual father. This took place in the Pavlovsk palace before Pascha, 1900. Bishop Sergius remained the spiritual father of the Great Princes until the arrest of most of this branch of the Romanovs in April, 1918.
Only once did he part from them for a short period, in 1904-05, when he was sent to the army in Manchuria.
Thus the destiny of Hieromonk Sergius was closely linked with that of the Constantinoviches. "After the February revolution, during the disorders, Queen Olga Constaninovna of Greece... suggested that I go to her in Greece. I turned down this offer and declared that I wanted to remain with my brothers during the times of trouble, and not only when I had to travel in the automobiles of the Great Princes."
In 1904 Fr. Sergius was raised to the rank of archimandrite, and on May 6, 1915 was appointed superior of the Trinity-Sergiev Hermitage by Metropolitan Vladimir (Bogoyavlensky) of Petrograd, the future hieromartyr, on the recommendation of Great Prince Demetrius Constantinovich, although the sacristan stubbornly opposed this and put forward instead the candidacy of the deputy - Hieromonk Joseph. The Great Prince's recommendation cost the superior dearly immediately after the February revolution, when 25 monks, aiming to "make the atmosphere of the monastery healthier", denounced him to Metropolitan Benjamin (Kazansky), declaring that Fr. Sergius was "an appointee of Great Prince Demetrius Constantinovich, Metropolitan Pitirim and Rasputin".
In their denunciation composed of 22 points, the brotherhood, supported by the local "progressive" intelligentsia, accused Fr. Sergius, among other things, of "forcing the whole brotherhood to sign a paper against Bishop Antonin [Granovsky], who for six years suffered for freedom in this sacred community and requested that he retire here" - that is, of not allowing the future renovationist to return to the Hermitage. In reply the supporters of Fr. Sergius refuted this in Petrogradsky Listok (March 18, 1917, N 66) and sent the Over-Procurator a letter in which they said: "Fr. Sergius enjoys the general deep respect of the local population... He is strict, but his strictness is just... and is necessary for the maintenance of order."
After an investigation which proved that Fr. Sergius' strictness was indeed just, the rebellious brotherhood had to repent and take back their tale-bearing. The "democratic rebellion" against the superior ended in complete failure, and he remained at his post for a further two years. Nevertheless, in 1919 the monks of the Hermitage succeeded in expelling their strict superior, and he went to serve in the parish church of St. Andrew of Crete at the Volodarskaya station two versts away.
Concerning the pre-revolutionary years, Archimandrite Sergius reminisced with the warmest emotion: "Since his Majesty received the court clergy at the Nativity of Christ and on the second or third day of Pascha, I also met him... On Nativity, 1916, I saw him for the last time and had quite a long conversation with him. I had the impression from the Tsar's appearance that he was a gentle, humble, wonderfully meek man... extraordinarily delicate in his way of speaking with people, and with a pleasant glance." His Majesty's abdication, therefore, "I reacted to with great compassion, being sorry for the anointed of God," while the Bolshevik revolution "I regarded as the greatest woe for the country, signifying the destruction of old Russia."
According to one source, Fr. Sergius often carried out the duties of spiritual father to the tsar.
Since he had spiritual vision, the old monk did not give in to the political insinuations of his time, which were being spread by the enemies of the throne. "I did not believe," he recalled, "in the Rasputin stories... One of my spiritual sons was a valet of the Tsar himself, having served with him for 24 years, a certain John Vasilyevich. However, during confession, I asked him: is it true what they say about the drunkenness of the tsar, Rasputin and the tsaritsa? The valet swore to me that it was all a lie, and this is enough for me." And yet the name of Rasputin is used to this day to slander the monarchy and the royal martyrs!
Directness and firmness were the distinguishing characteristics of Fr. Sergius. "During the requisitioning of the church valuables I took the position of the patriarch and considered that... the requisitioning of the valuables was an act of crude violence and arbitrariness on the part of Soviet power." But in another situation he expressed himself fairly severely concerning the patriarch: "I was sorry about Tikhon's repentance before Soviet power [in June, 1923], and I considered that Tikhon had conceded more than was fitting."
In the first half of the 1920s, Archimandrite Sergius did not play a prominent role in the life of the Petrograd diocese. In 1922 he was arrested but soon released. At the request of his parishioners, the future hieromartyr, Fr. Michael Cheltsov, who had met Fr. Sergius in 1920 and become close to him, petitioned the patriarch to consecrate him to the episcopate, first of the Krasnoselsk diocese, and then of the Narva diocese. He wrote about this several times, and in October, 1924 had a personal meeting with the patriarch about this. In support of this petition 30,000 signatures had been collected.
However, the diocesan council headed by Bishop Benedict (Plotnikov) of Kronstadt, who was ruling the Petrograd diocese, objected to the consecration. Bishop Benedict rejected a special petition that was addressed to him on the grounds that he had no need of a bishop and that the candidate was not of episcopal material. He said that he had invited Archimandrite Sergius to see him, and had asked him not to seek the episcopate. Then the diocesan council sent a report to the patriarch in which they said, among other things, that "the lack of indication of the degree of power of the bishop (but only of 'the parishes which recognize him') threatens to have large consequences". At the end of the report there was even expressed the threat "to decline from further administration of the diocese" if the patriarch rejected the council's objections. However, the delegation insisted, and even said that they would attain their end without Benedict - they would go to the Patriarch in Moscow. Finally, Archimandrite Sergius was called to Moscow, and there, on October 24, 1924, he was consecrated Bishop of Narva, a vicariate of the Petrograd diocese, by Patriarch Tikhon.
Since the new vicar bishop did not receive a see - Narva was on the territory of Estonia (which is why it was later renamed Kopora), he, in his own words served in Leningrad "by invitation: in the Izmailovo cathedral... in the Synodal podvorye, in the church [of the Protecting Veil] on Borovaya", but most often in his former church on Volodarskaya, where he continued to live in the house of Melnikov. The episcopate of Petersburg politely took no notice of him, considering him to be a uneducated peasant and not their equal, while some of them saw in him a certain "mercantile thriftiness".
From 1926 to 1927 Vladyka was Bishop of Kopor and superior of the Sergiev desert.
Bishop Sergius heard about Metropolitan Sergius' declaration of July 16/29, 1927 "from the priest Sergius Tikhomirov, my spiritual son, who, on arriving for confession, declarared that 'it was impossible to have any communion with Metropolitan Sergius since he was a traitor of the Church and a Judas'. It did not take long to persuade Bishop Sergius, who considered that "Soviet power is an atheist power, and to support an atheist power means to become an atheist oneself". Insofar as the deputy of the patriarchal locum tenens had "in his declaration supported Soviet power and led the Church of Christ along a false path to destruction", Bishop Sergius, having consulted with Archbishop Demetrius (Lyubimov) and the priests Nikitin, Veryuzhsky and Andreyev, "consciously passed over to this group, so as together with them to rise, and, if need be, die in defence of True Orthodoxy."
By his own admission, at the beginning Bishop Sergius "was fainthearted". On December 14/27, 1927, he, together with Archbishop Demetrius of Gdov, broke communion with Metropolitan Sergius, for they had become convinced "that the new direction and organization of Russian Church life undertaken by him would neither be repealed nor changed". They wrote: "This is 'the testimony of our conscience' (II Cor. 1.12): It is no longer permissible for us, without sinning against the canons of the Holy Orthodox Church, to remain in ecclesiastical communion with the deputy of the Patriarchal locum tenens - Sergius, metropolitan of Nizhni-Novgorod, and his Synod, and with all who think as they do. It is not out of pride - let this never be - but for the sake of peace of conscience that we disavow the person and the deeds of our former head, who has unlawfully and immoderately gone beyond his rights and has introduced great disturbance and the 'smoky arrogance of the world' into the Church of Christ, whose duty is to bring to those who desire to see God the light of simplicity and the tribute of wisdom in humility (from the Epistle of the African Council to Pope Celestine)."
On December 17/30, Bishop Sergius was banned from serving by Metropolitan Sergius, and he, "frightened by the punishment, declared to Bishop Nicholas (Yarushevich) that he was walling himself off from those who were breeding strife". However, Metropolitan Joseph gave him courage, and he returned to the True Orthodox confessors. Then, on January 12/25 he was "defrocked" by Metropolitan Sergius for continuing to mix with the "schismatics", i.e. the True Orthodox, and continuing to serve after his ban.
Bishop Sergius signed the acts of the so-called "Nomadic Council" of the Catacomb Church, which took place between March and August, 1928, and distinguished himself particularly at that Council by his defence of the sanctity of the Royal Martyrs.
Until the arrest of Archbishop Demetrius, Bishop Sergius to a certain extent remained in the shadows. But from the time of Archbishop Demetrius' arrest in November, 1929, Bishop Sergius, according to the decree of Metropolitan Joseph, embarked upon the administration of the Josephites in Petrograd. "I received all indications and instructions from Metropolitan Joseph (Petrovykh). Members of our organization came to me from all over the USSR asking me to ordain them to the priesthood or the rank of archimandrite... I don't remember who or how many I ordained." The closest assistant of Bishop Sergius at this time was the sacristan of the cathedral of the Saviour-on-the-Blood, Protopriest Nicephorus Strelnikov.
Bishop Sergius paid particular attention to the village clergy, making ordinations, appointments and transfers, especially from parishes which had joined the movement under Archbishop Demetrius. This was elicited by the fact that "the introduction of dekulakization and collectivization in the countryside, the closing of churches and the insupportable taxes made the peasants bitter towards Soviet power". Thus he sent Hieromonk Theodore to the village of Nadba in the Pskov region, and Hieromonk Barsonuphius to the village of Utorgoshchi in the Luga region.
Bishop Sergius' position was complicated by the fact that he did not enjoy the same authority as Archbishop Demetrius, so people went with their questions either to Metropolitan Joseph or to his representative in Petrograd, Fr. Alexander Sovyetov. Some of Archbishop Demetrius' admirers considered that he had been the only bearer of True Orthodoxy, and even before the arrest of Demetrius, a part of the parish council of the cathedral of the Saviour-on-the-Blood affirmed that "it was impossible to trust" Bishop Sergius since he was a conformist. The new superior of the cathedral, Fr. Alexander Sovyetov, supported this far-fetched opinion. "After the arrest of Archbishop Demetrius, everyone was surprised that Bishop Sergius (Druzhinin) had not been subjected to arrest; they considered that he had betrayed [the Church] to the GPU... and they began to fear him." In the summer of 1930, after the priest Victorin Dobronravov, Nicholas Ushakov and Alexis Voznesensky had visited the Modensky monastery, Metropolitan Joseph proposed that Bishop Sergius limit his rights of administration to ten points.
In these points, for the sake of peace in the diocese and the security of Vladyka himself, the metropolitan suggested that he only served and prayed, nothing more - that is, not administer his diocese. Knowing Bishop Sergius' fairly abrupt character, Metropolitan Joseph advised him: "Be condescending, tender and respectful to all alike". At the same time he demanded from Fr. Victorin and his supporters that after Vladyka Sergius had received these points they should cease to persecute him. And he warned them strictly: "Those who are not with them (Bishops Sergius and Basil of Kargopol) are not with me."
In this way, according to Victor Antonov, Metropolitan Joseph "distanced himself from the radical group of priests, who 'called on people not to register churches in Soviet institutions and declared that registration was criminal and sinful', pushing the Josephites prematurely into the catacombs."
n his parish in Strelna, Vladyka also had to experience unpleasantnesses. Since the priest serving with him, Fr. Basil Vishnevsky, had not joined the Josephites, the parish split into two. Then Bishop Sergius invited Fr. Ishmael Razhdestvensky, the first priest to stand up in defence of True Orthodoxy, to a meeting. He arrived not alone but with other parishioners of the Stelna parish, and the church was saved.
Following the testament of Patriarch Tikhon, both Vladykas, Demetrius and Sergius, actively ordained not only priests, but also bishops. In the autumn of 1928, in the St. Pantaleimon church of the Alexander-Oshevensky podvorye on Piskarevka, they secretly, behind closed doors, consecrated the doctor of the Butyrki prison, Michael Alexandrovich Zhizhilenko, as Bishop Maximus of Serpukhov. After the arrest of Archbishop Demetrius, Sergius selected "for the preservation of True Orthodoxy" the following local archimandrites as worthy of secret consecration to the episcopate: Nicon (Katansky), "since he has graduated from two higher educational institutions", Alexis (Tereshin) from the Alexander-Nevsky Lavra, and Claudius (Savinsky) from the Kiev Caves Lavra. However, he did not succeed in consecrating them.
Being a sincere man, Vladyka Sergius could not hide his political sympathies and antipathies. "He naturally gravitated to the old times and could not sympathize with the new Soviet government," noted Metropolitan John (Snychev), the contemporary historian of the Moscow Patriarchate. But it may be asked what true archpastor could sympathize with the atheist power that had mercilessly annihilated historical Russia? "I hate the Bolsheviks," declared Vladyka courageously to the chekists, "because they murdered him [the Tsar] and his heir. And I consider them to be outcasts of the human race [a quotation from Patriarch Tikhon's anathema against the Bolsheviks in 1918]... At the present time persecutors of the Christian Faith have been gathered from all over the world to assume power. The Russian Orthodox people is tormented under the heavy persecutions of this power..."
Bishop Sergius' ideal state was the monarchy, for "True Orthodoxy can exist only under a monarch... Only a monarchy can restore order to ravaged Russia."
On December 7, 1930, Bishop Sergius was arrested together with Bishop Basil of Kargopol and a group of Petrograd Josephites numbering 75 people in all in connection with an alleged "counter-revolutionary organization" which was supposedly aiming "to undermine and overthrow Soviet power by means of an armed rebellion". The investigation was conducted by the well-known "specialist in religious affairs", A.V. Makarov, and lasted for a comparatively long time. Bishop Sergius was indicted and imprisoned on 30 May, 1931, and sentenced to five years in prison by a trial college of the OGPU on October 8, 1931.
Exactly a year after his arrest he arrived in the Yaroslavl political isolator, where Archbishop Demetrius was already imprisoned, and spent the whole of his term there with the exception of a three-month period from January 21 to April 26, 1935 in the prison hospital of Moscow's Butyrki.
When his term was completed, on October 7, 1935, a special session of the OGPU despatched Bishop Sergius to three years' exile in Yoshkar-Olu, Mari ASSR.
Setting off under convoy on December 5, he soon arrived in the Trans-Volga town and settled at Volkova street 94 with the nun, Anna Stepanovna Komelina, where he lived a cloistered life, only rarely receiving news and parcels from from kind acquaintances and spiritual children. One of his former parishioners sent him an antimins and vestments with the words: "Keep it somehow, so that it doesn't fall into the hands of enemies." Ivan Kornilyevich Kornilov, the warden of the St. Theodore church in Detskoye Selo who was living in exile in Arkhangelsk, having found out Vladyka's address from Bishop Abraham (Churilin), told him that together with him in Arkhangelsk there was living Fr. Basil Veryuzhsky, the superior of the cathedral of the Saviour-on-the-Blood in Leningrad, and that the cathedral's protodeacon, Fr. Basil Smirnov, was returning there from exile. In March, 1936 the pensioner Catherine Averyanovna Kiseleva, who had learned Vladyka's address from the Red Cross, came from Leningrad to look after him.
A month earlier, on February 14, the local chekists had arrested the peasant Igor Ilyich Stenkin, born in 1887, who under interrogation admitted that he was a member of a group of 21 people belonging to the "True Orthodox Christians", and that they gathered in his house and in the house of Praskovya Alexandrovna Kirpichnikova from the village of Vazhnanger, insofar as "from the moment of the arrest in 1932 of our Orthodox priest Alexander Semyonovich Ignonosov of the Malo-Sundyarsky church, we all stopped going to church and prayed at home, because the church was of the sergianist orientation, which, in accordance with our convictions, we consider to have fallen away from Orthodoxy and sold itself to Soviet power."
From 1934 this group of True Orthodox Christians corresponded with Archbishop Seraphim (Samoilovich) of Uglich, who, on serving his term on Solovki, lived in exile in Arkhangelsk.
Another pastor who spiritually fed the True Orthodox Christians was Fr. Chariton Ioannovich Poido. Born in September, 1883 in the family of a peasant of the village of Dneprovo-Kamenki, Likhovsky uyezd, Ekaterinoslav province, he finished two classes in the village school and at the beginning of the First World War was a novice in the Svyatogorsk Dormition Desert, and then in the Trinity - St. Sergius Lavra. In 1915 he was captured by the Germans, and was in captivity for four years. On returning to his homeland, he was ordained and began to serve, although it is not known where. In 1920 he was imprisoned for three months for not concealing the miracle of the renovation of an icon. In 1927, while living, in his words, "as a prisoner of the Orthodox Faith in the Soviet Union", was exiled for three years to Mari district, where, on the expiry of his term on January 30, 1930 (according to another source, he was sentenced to seven years' imprisonment in 1932) he was given another three years - but this time in a camp in Kotlas. The confessor spent two more years in exile in Arkhangelsk, and on being freed in 1935, returned to Mari district, where he began to serve in secret. He was arrested on August 26, 1937 in the village of Koryakovo, in the house of the nun Maria Bulygina, "who, together with him, conducted counter-revolutionary, destructive work among the collective farm workers".
Fr. Chariton was the priest not only of Stenkin's group, but also of True Orthodox peasants from the Vilovatovsky, Kuznetsovsky, Kozhvozhsky and Krasno-Volzhsky villages, that is, of a fairly large Trans-Volga Catacomb community, which was canonically subject probably, although this is not certain, to Bishop Sergius. On being arrested, "Poido declared that he did not recognize Soviet power since it was the power of the Antichrist, and he was struggling against Soviet power and would continue to struggle against it in the future". He explained that he was struggling against it "by way of the defence" of the Orthodox Church and "the teaching of Christ". Fr. Chariton refused to answer most of the questions posed to him, but only admitted that "he taught Christians that peasants should not go into the collective farms, and should not believe in the teaching of Soviet power and should not submit to it", and he considered "Soviet lawa to be atheist, and not in accordance with the spirit of Orthodoxy".
Stenkin turned out to be more talkative, and openly told the investigator about his profound disgust with Soviet power: "I did not pay taxes, nor did I pay grain or meat or other compulsory deliveries; I accepted no obligations or monetary gifts from the local authorities.. I did not go out to timber-felling; I do not admit my children to Soviet schools; I do not use medical aid or goods of Soviet manufacture." This total rejection was typical for Catacomb Christians from the first years of their appearance, and it was for this reason that they were subjected to especially heavy persecution.
The former church warden gave the following theoretical justification of his behaviour: "I refused and still refuse to carry out any of the laws of Soviet power because I am a True Orthodox Christian, and Soviet power was created not by God, but by Satan, and is an atheist power that has sold itself to the antichristâ€¦ The Law of God teaches us not to recognize it since it is an atheist power and not to support it materially. We True Orthodox Christians believe in and fulfil this law." Stenkin also spoke about the destiny of this power: "A power created not by God and not recognizing God will not exist for long, and we are waiting for a power that will support religionâ€¦"In the case of military action we shall not go to fight for Soviet power and we shall continue to conduct that political line which we are conducting nowâ€¦"
Portraits of Tsar Nicholas II and articles about his Majesty were found among the True Orthodox Christians, which for the investigators was "material proof of their unquestionable desire to restore the old order in the country". "In our prayers we commemorated the Tsar," said Stenkin at his interrogation.
Vladyka Sergius was arrested on September 7, 1937 (NS), after the interrogation of the nuns who knew him - the community led by the former abbess of the Mother of God - St. Sergius monastery in Yoshkar-Olu, Magdalene Bolshakova. The nuns were very firm, and replied to the interrogators' questions very shortly and negatively. When the elderly Anastasia Nesterovna Zadvorova was asked: "Do you admit that you used religion in a struggle against Soviet power?" she replied: "No, I do not admit it." However, the investigators did not need complicated argumentation - those arrested themselves admitted their anti-Soviet views and acts. The main task of the interrogators was to link Bishop Sergius with the Catacomb nuns, who did not everywhere join the Josephites, and to make him out to be their leader. They were helped in carrying out this task by the sergianist priest Ioann Alexeyevich Demidov, who served in the Velyunovsky church. He gave the following evidence at the interrogation: "From the beginning of Sergius Druzhinin's political exile he surrounded himself with the most reactionary part of the clergy and monasticsâ€¦ conducting active counter-revolutionary work in the rallying and uniting of counter-revolutionary groups of churchmen, followers of the True Orthodox Church". Fr. Ioann gave evidence as to who had assembled at the bishop's house and when. He also said that in the summer of 1937 Bishop Hilarion (Belsky), a convinced opponent of Metropolitan Sergius, visited Bishop Sergius and "very much besought him not to join the sergianists and renovationists who had sold themselves to the Bolsheviks". Vladyka Hilarion had only just returned from imprisonment on Solovki and was soon also repressed.
Bishop Sergius was interrogated only once, on the day of his arrest. He praised Tsar Nicholas and placed him among the saints. This monarchism of Bishop Sergius was enough for the investigators to accuse him of "organizing a counter-revolutionary group of churchmen, through whom he waged an active struggle with Soviet power for the restoration of the monarchist order." However, Vladyka refused to admit that he was guilty of counter-revolutionary activity. Fr. Chariton acted in the same way, as did the majority of the nuns who suffered for the Orthodox faith. These nuns, who were mainly of peasant stock, were: Anna Mikhailovna Komelina (born 1868), Praskovya Demidovna Gryazeva (1868), Vera Pavlovna Bakhtina (1878), Maria Ivanovna Portnykh (1893), Catherine Sergeyevna Shorikova (1870), Anna Andreyevna Yamshchikova (1871), Ustinya Markovna Bashnina (1872), Martha Stepanovna Kozhevnikova (1872), Catherine Vasilyevna Shorygina (1874), Anna Ivanovna Shakhmatova (1865), Anastasia Nesterovna Zadvorova (1871), Akulina Alexeyevna Kozhevnikova (1872), Eudocia Ivanovna Starodubtseva (1873), Irina Platonovna Zinovyeva (1885), Pelageya Ivanovna Shikhaleva (1873), Stepanida Semyonovna Sharynina (1875), Maria Stepanovna Bulygina (1880). The oldest of these nuns was 72, the youngest - 56. Most of them received ten-year terms in the northern camps, where Bashnin and Sharikova died five years later.
On September 11, Vladyka Sergius was condemned on the standard charge of a "fascist conspiracy". Together with him there suffered in the basement of the local prison: Fr. Chariton and the nuns Shakhmatova, Advorova and Starodubtseva. They were shot between 7 and 8 in the evening on September 4/17, 1937.
Bishop Sergius died, as he lived, with the conviction that "True Orthodoxy through the Church ravaged by the Bolsheviks will lead to our victory", to victory promised by Christ over "the gates of hell".
(Sources: Victor Antonov, "Svyashchennomuchenik Episkop Sergij (Druzhinin)", Pravoslavnaya Zhizn', 48, N 2 (554), February, 1996; M.E. Gubonin, Akty Svyatejshego Tikhona, Patriarkha Moskovskogo i Vseya Rossii, Moscow: St. Tikhon Theological Institute, 1994, p. 894; I.M. Andreyev, Russia's Catacomb Saints, chapter 6; Protopresbyter Michael Polsky, Novye Mucheniki Rossijskiye, Jordanville, 1949-57, part 2, chapter 19; Russkie Pravoslavnye Ierarkhi, Paris: YMCA Press, 1986, p. 68; Metropolitan Manuel, Die Russischen Orthodoxen Bischofe von 1893-1965, Erlangen, 1989, vol. VI, p. 108; Bishop Ambrose (von Sievers), "Istoki i Svyazi Katakombnoj Tserkvi v Leningrade i obl. (1922-1992)", report read at the conference "The Historical Path of Orthodoxy in Russia after 1917", Saint Petersburg, 1-3 June, 1993; "Episkopat Istinno-Pravoslavnoj Katakombnoj Tservki 1922-1997g.", Russkoye Pravoslaviye, N 4(8), 1997, p. 4; Lev Regelson, Tragediya Russkoj Tserkvi, 1917-1945, Moscow: Krutitskoye patriarsheye podvorye, 1996, pp. 593-594; Bishop Ambrose (von Sievers), "Katakombnaya Tserkov': Kochuyushchij Sobor 1928 g.", Russkoye Pravoslaviye, N 3 (7), 1997; Victor Antonov, "Yeshcho raz of svyashchennomuchenike Sergii (Druzhinine), Pravoslavnaya Zhizn', 48, N 2 (578), February, 1998, pp. 18-22; Michael Shkarovsky, "Iosiflyanskoye Dvizheniye i Oppozitsiya v SSSR (1927-1943)", Minuvsheye, 15, 1994, pp. 446-463; I.I. Osipova, "Skvoz' Ogn' Muchenij i Vody Slyoz", Moscow: Serebryanniye Niti, 1998, p. 259)
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