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Testimony of servant of God Larisa S, Japan




The date of my Baptism was planned in advance: the evening of September the 7th. Due to my limited stay in Canada (several days only), right after my arrival and short adaptation (after my 14 hrs. flight to Toronto etc.) Father Oleg started getting me prepared for Baptism. After the Saturday evening service we said special prayers and made necessary preparations. After having said good-bye to the other Brothers and Sisters, we started our way to the place for the Baptism, just the four of us, Father Oleg, Mother Galina, Brother Michael and myself. Evening was the time chosen to avoid unnecessary curiosity. A deserted park, on a shore of Lake Ontario within a park lane was the site.

Even though, the evening was very quiet and warm after the day time heat I was worried about the chill of the water or so to say "technical matters": full immersing of me, a grown-up? My consolation was that I was not afraid of the water, could dive and fully immerse. In reply to my questions, Father Oleg smiled and told me that just the month before he had baptised quite a tall young man, therefore my concerns were unnecessary and "technical part" I'd learn soon by myself.

We came to the shore. I must admit that I saw the lake for the first time and was impressed by its dimensions. Mother Galina pointed out to me that the opposite shore was absolutely invisible and even though there was no wind at all, quiet waves were surfing the shore: like a sea! I looked to the left: far away I saw the bursting lights of the evening Toronto. At our feet was an endless lake and above our heads - beautiful sky without a single cloud.

Father Oleg was already standing in the water and gave us a sign to begin the Mystery. Mother Galina and Brother Michael remained standing on the shore within several meters of us (the shore was very flat) and I entered the water (it wasn't cold at all) and stood to the left from Father Oleg.

It became dark and using a flashlight he started reading the prayers for Baptism. Trying to overcome some kind of childish carelessness and attain a necessary condition to follow the prayer, I raised my head and looked at the sky.

My attention was captured by strange clouds in the shape of regular diamonds, slightly stretched from one side. Before I looked away, they rapidly started to form some kind of an image or a line. (As I suppose, I was the only one to witness the very beginning, since Mother Galina and Brother Michael started shouting from the shore considerably later when they saw the whole image).

The color of those clouds was not whitish or gray as it usually happens but had an emerald-turquoise shade. A thought popped up in my head - what could it be? - it was the first time in my life I had seen such clouds and a very strange feeling spread through my whole being. I lowered my head immediately to turn my attention to Father's prayer and never raised it again until the Baptism was over, despite loud exclamations from Mother Galina and Brother Michael who had noticed the image of an Angel in the sky and tried to draw our attention.

Hearing the exclamations I thought about those diamond-shaped clouds but I was already listening to the Father Oleg as well as he went on reading and performing the Mystery of Baptism without a minor distraction.

We came out back to the shore, he finished his reading, put on a Crucifix on me and we started our way to the car.

I can't explain what was happening to me but I could not raise my head even though I heard excited exclamations of Mother Galina and Michael and knew for sure that there really was an image. I dared to look at the sky only by turning around when everyone was already walking back. Right there in the sky above the lake I saw a symmetrical image of an Angel spreading across the whole sky. More truly to say it was the Angel-Cherub with open wings. The lower part already started vanishing and disappeared, and his wings and the head were vanishing from bottom to top right before my eyes.

"Nobody will believe, nobody will believe WHAT happened!" - loudly exclaimed Michael. Mother Galina was also impressively surprised by such an unexpected appearance and unexpected disappearance of the image.

Only Father Oleg, who was tired, was walking silently, perhaps thanking the Lord deep inside.

I was quiet also, under the impression of the Baptism, trying to comprehend the events which had happened then to me and around us.

After the Sunday morning service we shared with others what had happened to us the night before. Sister Natasha was upset that she was not able to come with us. It probably was more interesting to those who were not with us that evening. I felt slightly awkward.

This is the first time I am telling about that event (I only told my husband about it). To tell the truth, it is pretty hard for me to talk and remember that sign. I almost did not talk to anyone about it, even to Father Oleg, as the remembrance brings up disturbing emotions.

It seems the Divine meaning of the above sign is being made known to me only now, after I was asked to write the present testimony.

Up until the moment of my true Baptism (after my numerous griefs, after my useless search for the truth in ROCA and my pseudo Baptism in the MP, (forgive me, Father Nickolay) I did not have any doubts about the path I had chosen, about everything Father Oleg was preaching. All I had was faith and gratitude to the Lord, Who in a divine manner cares about all of us - guilty and unworthy, like me - and Who sent me to a true pastor.

I fear that someone could mistakenly think that the above event could have something to do with me. Secondly - I am not sure that my chaotic description of what happened could be persuasive to anyone. Forgive me.

I am sure that I had absolutely no influence on the sign appearing. I was only its witness and experience now what I must experience - exclusive realization of my own unworthiness and pettiness.

I also know that the Lord has given Father Oleg many other signs besides the one I witnessed.

Blessed is the Lord Who always remembers us by His immense love and incomprehensibility. For everything He does and everything what happens to us - Glory to God unto all the ages!
Amen.



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Fr. Oleg Molenko