Procopius, Archbishop And Hieromartyr Of Kherson

Archbishop Procopius, in the world Peter Semyonovich Titov, was born on December 25, 1877 in Kuzminsk, Tomsk province, in the family of a priest. In 1901 he graduated from Kazan Theological Academy. He was tonsured and ordained to the priesthood. In 1909 he was raised to the rank of archimandrite and appointed assistant to the head of the school for pastors in Zhitomir. On August 30 / September 12, 1914 he was consecrated bishop of Elisavetograd, a vicariate of Kherson diocese. In 1917-18 he participated in the Local Council of the Russian Orthodox Church. He was condemned in Odessa at the beginning of the 1920s.

According to one source, from 1923 to 1926 he was in Solovki, and later in Tomsk and Kamyshina. In 1924 he was made bishop of Kherson, receiving the rank of archbishop in 1925. On November 27 / December 10, 1925 he was arrested. In May, 1927 he was exiled to the town of Turtkul.

According to another source, however, he was in prison in Kherson and Moscow from 1923 to 1924. Then he was released without the right of leaving Moscow, only to imprisoned again in Butyrki from November 27, 1925 to June, 1926, when he was exiled to Solovki.

Vladyka Procopius signed an epistle against the declaration of Metropolitan Sergius. In September, 1928 he was removed from his see by Sergius. In March, 1929 he was transferred from Solovki to exile in Tobolsk province. However, Archbishop Procopius did not separate from Metropolitan Sergius at this time, and did not approve of the Nikolayevsk Protopriest Fr. Gregory Sinitsky's separation from him. Vladyka Procopius told the Christians in Nikolayevsk that he was in correspondence with Metropolitan Peter.

However, it appears that Archbishop Procopius eventually joined the True Orthodox Church, for it is known that at the beginning of the spring of 1932 he was in Alma-Ata, where, with the Catacom Bishop Ambrose (Polyansky) of Zhitomir, he raised Igumen Theogenes to the rank of archimandrite. In May 28, 1935 he was in Tashkent on his way to Turtkul, accompanied by the Josephite Protopriest Fr. John Sadovsky. He was shot in 1937.

(Sources: M.E. Gubonin, Akty Svyateishego Patriarkha Tikhona, Moscow: St. Tikhon's Theological Institute, 1994, pp. 887-88, 989; Protopresbyter Michael Polsky, Noviye Mucheniki Rossijskiye, part 2, 1957, p. 128; Russkiye Pravoslavnye Ierarkhi, Paris: YMCA Press, 1986, p. 62; Lev Regelson, Tragediya Russkoj Tserkvi, 1917-1945, Moscow: Krutitskoye patriarsheye podvorye, 1996, p. 537; Krest na Krasnom Obryve, Moscow, 1996, p. 107; Ikh Stradaniyami Ochistitsa Rus', Moscow, 1996, p. 74; Pravoslavnaya Rus' N 14( 1587), July 15/28, 1997, p. 7; M.V. Shkarovsky, "Istinno-Pravoslavniye khristiane na Ukraine", Pravoslavnaya Zhizn', 48, N 10 (586), October, 1998, pp. 28, 29)

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