St. Tikhon (a.d. 1865-1925) was born in a village near Pskov, Russia. He was very bright and entered the Theological Academy in St. Petersburg when just 19. He was very knowledgeable and was jokingly referred to by his classmates as “the patriarch.” Tonsured a monk at 26, he was then made the Bishop of Liublin, Poland when just 32, but was transferred to America within a year to become the Bishop of the Aleutians and Alaska in 1898.
St. Tikhon worked hard for nine years to overcome ethnic and language barriers to make the Faith accessible to all. At that time all of the various ethnic groups, whether Greek, Serbian, Rou-manian, Albanian, Carpatho-Russian, Antiochian, or Russian, were under the omophor of the bishops of the Russian Diocese, who served each according to its needs and in its own language and customs. St. Tikhon also reached out to converts and blessed English translations of the Divine Services and Sacraments. He was called back to Russia in 1907, and elected the Patriarch in 1917 after the fall of the Russian monarchy. Terribly persecuted by the Communists, he remained faithful until he died of exhaustion in a.d. 1925.
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