Peter and Fevronia: the life and history of the saints
The Russian Orthodox Church does not welcome the enthusiasm of our contemporaries in Valentine’s Day. Firstly, it is not an Orthodox saint, and secondly, for many such a holiday is associated more with sin than with spiritual.
The priests ask: if you really want to celebrate the triumph of earthly love, do it not on February 14, but June 25, old style (July 8, new). On this day, we all honor the holy couple Peter and Fevronia.
There is one more date — September 3, it is connected with the transfer of the relics of the saints … But let’s take everything in order.
Life of Saints
The life story of these bright people serves as a true example of loyalty and benefactors. Of course, they lived a long time ago, so their life has acquired many legendary and even fabulous details … However, historians are convinced: such individuals really lived in Murom. Moreover, two princely couples are proposed for the candidacy of the saints:
- David and Euphrosinia, who accepted monasticism and died in 1228 (Peter and Fevronia were their church names),
- or Prince Peter and Princess Euphrosyne (14th century).
For the tale of the holy couple, we have to thank the priest Yermolai Pregreshny, famous for his literary works in the 16th century (the epoch of Ivan, later called the Terrible). He created a piercing tale of love and wisdom, decorating it with folk details.
At that time in Prince Murom reigned. At night, a serpent began to fly to his wife, taking the form of her husband. The woman became suspicious and told her husband about everything.
He asked her to find out from an uninvited guest if he could be killed. The serpent told that he was destined to die by «Petrov shoulder and Agrikov’s sword.»
Peter, the younger brother of the prince, with whom he shared a problem that was piling on his family, promised to kill the serpent. He began to pray in the temple, and the Lord told him where to find the needed sword. Armed, Peter hacked the foe.
However, the evil serpentine blood, falling on the body of the hero, left behind a lot of cruel ulcers (leprosy).
Many healers were summoned to the prince, but no one could help him. However, the main thing is that the Lord did not leave the sick.
According to his will, one of the messengers who went to Ryazan lands, to the village of Laskovoe, happened to meet young Fevronia. (There is also an opinion that the name of the village and the name of the girl were prompted by the Lord to the prince in a dream, so that the meeting of the messenger with Fevronia was not accidental — he was sent with the order to find her).
She was from a simple class — her father was a common wood beekeeper. However, the girl had the gift of healing and vision, therefore, when she asked to bring the sick prince to her, they brought him (he himself could no longer walk).
Peter promised a huge reward to a man who would return his health. But the girl answered: she doesn’t need rewards, she says, but it’s not worth a simple girl to heal the prince himself — but the princely bride can.
Let him marry her!
The prince immediately gave such a word, although not intending to restrain him.
Fevronia picked up the usual bread sourdough, blew on it and ordered Peter to wash with this “drug” in the bath, after treating the whole body, except for the only place. The washed body was healed, and Peter went back home … But the only scab was left on his skin, from which the infection spread again throughout his body.
If you want, you do not want, the prince had to go back to the young medicate again!
This time he was not a goof, but he really took a smart girl as his wife and brought her to Murom.
When Paul died, Peter became the ruler of the city. He was a good prince and had authority among the boyars.
However, the “court ladies” did not like to obey the commoner, and they began to weave intrigues in order to survive from the city of an objectionable princess.
The boyar grumbling reached the point that Fevronia once said: take your property and get out of Murom! She replied to this: mine is only my beloved spouse, I don’t need anything more …
After these words, the boyars joined their wives, hoping that if Fevronia left with Peter, one of them would become the ruler of Murom. Very soon it happened that way: not wanting to watch the clouds gathering over his beloved spouse, Prince Peter went with her into voluntary exile.
However, they did not have time to sail away, as the ambassadors caught up with them: the boyars «gnawed» for power, some died, and those that survived asked with all their heart to forgive them. The princely couple returned to the city and wisely reigned for many years.
The last days
In old age, both accepted monasticism. Peter was named brother David, and they began to call Fevronia sister Euphrosinia.
They lived in different monasteries, but they constantly corresponded (perhaps that is why they were depicted on the monument with a pair of pigeons in their hands, although at that time these birds were not yet “postmen”).
Both prayed for the Lord to call them to him on the same day. The pair even prepared a common coffin, with a partition in the center.
And so it happened: on June 25, 1228, they were found dead in their cells. True, the monks did not want to bury their brother and sister in one coffin, considering it a violation of the commandments of faith.
However, in the morning they were surprised to find that the bodies of David and Euphrosinia lay nearby! Realizing that this is the providence of the Lord, the monks held a funeral as the noble couple bequeathed.
They rested near the cathedral church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin.
Reverence after death
Peter and Fevronia canonized for 300 years after their repose.
The modern church considers saints patrons of the family.
The inhabitants of Murom declared July 8 not only the day of remembrance of the saints, but also the day of their city. On this day, hundreds of pilgrims flock to the Holy Trinity Convent to worship the relics of the saints.
Many say that they are miraculous — help to heal diseases.
How to pray to St. Peter and Fevronia?
If they pray for health to Saint Panteleimon, and for good grades — to Naum, then they fall to this heavenly couple, praying for happy love, marriage, and reconciliation with their spouse (spouse). How to do this will prompt these prayers:
Many serious articles and books have been written about these saints. But for the youngest pilgrims they shoot cartoons.
In 2017, the last of them went wide. True, it is long (painted for cinemas), so the script is full of artistic conjectures, a little deviating from the canonical legend.
We offer your children a short 10-minute cartoon from which it will become clear to you and the kids, why is it that these saints are honored in Murom and all of Russia? It is clean and bright, you will enjoy viewing: