|St John of Kronstadt
Claim to fame: St John of Kronstadt was an archpriest of the Russian Orthodox Church.
He was born as Ivan Ilyich Sergiyev in 1829. From 1855, he served as a priest in St. Andrew’s cathedral in Kronstadt. Here, he wholly committed himself to charity, especially for those who were remote from the church. He established a factory to provide employment for the poor, and endlessly gave away his money to the needy. traveled extensively throughout the Russian empire. He was a member of the right extremist movement Sojuz Russkogo Naroda (Alliance of the Russian people) but did not commit himself politically. He was already greatly venerated at the time he died.
Quote: “When you are praying alone, and your spirit is dejected, and you are wearied and oppressed by your loneliness, remember then, as always, that God the Trinity looks upon you with eyes brighter than the sun; also all the angels, your own Guardian Angel, and all the Saints of God. Truly they do; for they are all one in God, and where God is, there are they also. Where the sun is, thither also are directed all its rays. Try to understand what this means.”
Fun fact: John of Kronstadt is known for his experience in making common confessions. This ancient tradition was abandoned by the Church because it was replaced by the individual confession practiced today. However, with such a grand gathering of people, a common confession was the only possible option.