How did a holy monk from freezing Russia influence the Imperial House of a tropical country like Brazil?
A transcript, in English, is included below . . .
The story of how Saint Sava Storojevski crossed paths with the chronicles of our tropical country began with an incredible incident during the war of 1812.
Prince Eugene Beauharnais, Napoleon's stepson, Viceroy of Italy, was a general of Napoleon's troops and he participated in military operations against Russia during the War of 1812. On that occasion he occupied the rooms in the Storojevski monastery, and his soldiers began to plunder, not even sparing the temples and sacred icons.
One night, the prince laid down and fell asleep. In a dream, he saw a venerable elder enter the room and say to him:
"Do not allow your army to plunder the monastery. If you do my bidding, God will have mercy on you and you will return to your country safe and sound. And your descendants will serve Russia."
General Eugene Beauharnais woke up in total astonishment. The dream seemed very real. Then he went to the church, where he saw an icon with the face of the monk Savva, whom he recognized as his night guest. He then followed the elder's advice. The French did not plunder the monastery. As a result, Eugene Beauharnais was one of the very few French generals who remained alive in that war, and was not injured in any of the subsequent battles.
And the story has an unusual ending. In 1839, Beauharnais' son, Maximilian, Duke of Lechitenberg, arrived in Russia. He, together with the Russian imperial family, visited the monastery. They venerated of the relics of the monk Savva, as promised to his father. In the same year, he proposed to Princess Maria Nikolaevna, daughter of the Russian emperor Nicholas I. After the wedding, the bride and groom settled in St. Petersburg. Thus his descendants served Russia, as was predicted by Saint Savva.
Due to the events of 1917, Duke Maximilian's family had to go abroad. His children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren now live in France, Germany, the USA, Belgium and Australia. They are all Orthodox and have Russian names. And the monk Savva is revered as their patron.
But what is the relationship between these notable events and the Brazilian imperial family?
Prince Eugene Beauharnais, who received the grace of Saint Savva, was the father of Lady Amelia, the second wife of the emperor D. Pedro I and Empress Consort of the Empire of Brazil from 1829 to 1834. Therefore, part of this beautiful miracle of the cold Russian land came to warm our tropical lands.
May the prayers of Saint Savva bring peace and prosperity to our Brazilian homeland. We need it.
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