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TheLearningWife

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  • Saint Seraphim (Sobolev), Archbishop of Bogucharsk and Wonderworker of Sofia (+ 1950)​

    The age-old enemy of our salvation, as if sensing in advance what a powerful and implacable adversary he would have in the person of Vladyka Seraphim, tried to destroy him while still in his mother’s womb. She had an extremely difficult and painful labor, and the doctors determined it would be necessary to operate-to extract the infant piece by piece in order to save the mother’s life. At this moment she regained consciousness and, on learning of the doctor’s decision, with an oath forbade her husband to permit the murder of her child.

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    TheLearningWife
    TheLearningWife
    The next morning, at the first stroke of the church bell on December 1, 1881, she successfully gave birth without any outside help. When she saw the baby, she exclaimed, “Oh, what a serious mukhtar!” The infant was named Nicholas in honor of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, but his family sometimes called him “mukhtar,” an apparently senseless word which he disliked terribly. Years later, Bishop Nestor of Manchuria visited Vladyka Seraphim in Sofia. He presented him with a book of his memoirs, in which, in the chapter about his visit to Jerusalem, it said that the word mukhtar means “bishop” in Arabic. And so, not realizing it herself, his mother had foretold the destiny of her newborn child.
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