(A monk with deep prayer from the Old Russikon tells father Sophronius about his childhood)
His family was very poor and lived in a village from Russia (at the end of the XIXth century); his father had died, the eldest brother bore the burden of the family; the youngest son (maybe the youngest child) was sick all the time, but he wanted to become a monk.
The eldest brother told him: “Stay with us.” “They won’t accept you at the monastery – there you must work.” “You are sick all the time”…”Stay with us”…
But they were so poor that they could not take care of him anymore.
The mother went to the church with the child, stood before the icon of the Holy Mother of God and stretched the arms holding the child towards Her:
“See, Holy Mother”…”I cannot take care of him anymore.” “I give him to you.” “From now on he is your son.” “I pray, Kind Lady, take him in your care.”
That night the boy had a dream with a shining, glorious, magnificent Lady. He knew She is an empress, but he also knew she was his mother…
The empress gave him a small bundle, a kerchief with something wrapped in it and told him: “Go to the Emperor and give Him these.”
The boy went. He entered a great, wide hall, full of lights. At its end, the Emperor sat on the throne, surrounded by noblemen, servants, soldiers.
The boy made a few steps forward but overwhelmed by fear fell down on his knees with his face to the ground.
The Emperor said to someone from those around Him:
“Go and take his bundle and see what’s in it.”
The servant opened it.
“Two broken hearts!”
The Emperor stood up and said to the boy:
“Then you are my son!”
And the child woke up.
Since that day he’s never been sick again.