Saint Luke Voyno-Yasenetsky: how a famous surgeon became a bishop
This amazing saint lived an equally amazing life. At first it seems that there was a lot of paradox in the way of St. Luke, but then you realize that there was a deep meaning in all this antonymy.
Childhood and youth
Orthodox and Catholic.Valentin Voyno-Yasenetsky was born in 1877 in sunny Kerch. Mother is Orthodox, father is Catholic. But it was from a Catholic father in the future - an Orthodox saint - adopted religious heredity.
When the boy was 11, the family moved to Kiev. There he graduated from high school.
The artist and the surgeon.Another paradox may seem the choice of profession. Since childhood, Valentine dreamed of becoming an artist, but decided that he needed to serve people.
Tried to enter the medical, turned out to be legal. I realized that this is not his. He studied painting at the Munich professor, followed the life of the poor and made sketches.Understanding the importance of serving people, I entered the medical faculty of Kiev University.
But the fascination for drawing was not in vain. As the future saint Luka Voyno-Yasenetsky will write later: “From the failed artist I became an artist in anatomy and surgery.”
It will be especially noticeable in practice, operated as an artist: the scalpel held exactly like a pencil, each line is exact, all its movements, words, deeds were also distinguished by evenness and directness.
Indicative is the story of how Voyno-Yasenetsky cut paper. With the entire stack, it was necessary to cut exactly 5 sheets. And St. Luke did it. Operational movements were just as accurate.
Doctor of god
Scientific perspectives and a peasant doctor.The surprise for many was that after graduating from university he wanted to work as a local doctor. And St. Luke simply decided that it was necessary to serve people, to give a second chance for life to those who had no hopes.
He married celibacy.While working at the Kiev Military Hospital, Valentin met his sister of mercy, who was called “holy,” Anna Lanskaya.
She gave a vow not to have a family, even refused two doctors, but she responded to the offer of Voyno-Yasenetsky.They lived together for 15 years, during this time four children were born.
Then Anna Vasilyevna fell ill with tuberculosis. Husband many pulled from that world. But in this case, the will of God was not for life, but for death.
After the death of his wife Valentin has changed a lot. He constantly went to the temple, read the Holy Scriptures and even expressed his thoughts on biblical topics.
The way of the priesthood
White robe and priest's robe.When the Bishop of Tashkent invited him to be ordained, Valentin Feliksovich without hesitation became the father of Valentin.
After that, the future Saint Luke of Crimea came to the hospital in a cassock and with a cross on his chest, before each operation he baptized assistants regardless of their religion.
Family and monastic way.Perhaps God had long been preparing Voino-Yasenetsky precisely for the monastic way. The family has not become an obstacle to this. His wife died early, and the children were overseen by the operating sister, Sofia Sergeevna. Then the priesthood, after a few years - monastic tonsure and ordination as bishop.
Soviet time and the icon in the operating room.At a time when they could talk about religion only in a whisper and in the kitchen, Father Valentin openly and firmly confessed the faith.
When the icon was removed from the operating room of St. Luke, he refused to operate until it was returned to its place.
But at this time, the spouse of the party chief seriously ill. She flatly refused to be operated on by all doctors, except St. Luke of Crimea. Voyno-Yasenetsky came. And the next day they hung the icon.
Hardness in matters of faith has repeatedly manifested itself in the character of Valentine. This illustrative “Case of the Doctors”, in which Voino-Yasenetsky and the leader of the Cheka Peters were debated, can be included as an example in manuals on the art of dispute.
Peters:Tell me, pop and professor Yasenetsky-Voyno, how do you pray at night, and during the day you cut people?
Voyno-Yasenetsky:I cut people to save them, and in the name of what are you cutting people, a public prosecutor, citizen?
Peters:How do you believe in God, pop and professor Yasenetsky-Voino? Have you seen your God?
Voyno-Yasenetsky:I really did not see God, citizen public prosecutor. But I operated a lot on the brain and, opening the skull box, I never saw the mind there either. And I did not find conscience there either.
Valentin Voyno-Yasenetsky - famous scientist
Scientific discovery and signature of the bishop.But the talent of Voyno-Yasenetsky was not only in the ability to operate, but also in its innovation.
Amazingly, Saint Luke of Crimea was the author of the monographs “Regional Anesthesia” and “Essays in Purulent Surgery”. These were not dry scientific works, but guidelines for doctors that saved many lives.
Voyno-Yasenetsky, besides his own experience, studied many foreign sources. He spent a lot of time in the library, read in German and French, and the second one was specially learned from scratch.
When he began to write “Essays ...”, a strange thought came to him: on the cover of the monograph the name of the bishop will be indicated. Almost the same happened: at the time when the scientific work was ready for publication, Saint Luke was already a bishop. Here are just censorship could not miss the instructions of the priesthood on the cover of the book.
But German magazines without any problems printed articles with the signature "Bishop of Luke."
But in addition to sotho of scientific works, he also owns the greatest in theological sense treatise “Spirit, Soul and Body”.
The geography of the ministry
Stalin Prize and 11 years of exile.Schizophrenic repressive machine fully manifested in the history of St. Luke.
When no one could help, the party leaders and their relatives came to the operation to St. Luke Voino-Yasenetsky, for his contribution to medicine and “Essays on purulent surgery” he was even awarded the Stalin Prize (most of which he donated to help the children).
This is all for the surgeon Voyno-Yasenetsky. But as a priest he had to go through a lot. More than 10 years is not just imprisonment, but a long journey of many sufferings. Winter, cold, cold, lack of at least some conditions. Yeniseisk. Turukhansk. Plakhino village, 230 km above the Arctic Circle.
Crimea and the Arctic.He, who was born in sunny Kerch, had to get used not only to new climatic conditions, but also to seize all opportunities to survive. In moments of extreme exhaustion, a candle of faith lit inside was heated. God was very close, His presence was felt in everything.
And in his native Crimea, St. Luke Voyno-Yasenetsky returned in 1946. It was a time of active preaching, public speaking of one’s own opinion, and confession of faith.
last years of life
Up until 1955, he still operated, but due to problems with his eyesight, this had to be abandoned.
The one who bestowed sight is blind himself.Even the young surgeon Valentin was often approached by people with eye diseases. Without sentiment it is impossible to read the story about helping the blind and homeless.
Voyno-Yasenetsky returned sight to a beggar. After some time, a whole group of “brothers in misfortune” came to him. They led each other, holding their wands, and believed that this doctor would help them.
Also a whole family of blind people addressed the young surgeon. And six of the seven after the operation saw the beauty of God's world.
After all this, it may seem strange or even unfair to someone that St. Luke himself lost his sight and no one could help him.
But even such a loss for a true believer is not so great. The saint was ready for various trials. A loss of physical vision, compared with the spiritual, is not so great.
Everyone loves joy, and St. Luke loved suffering.It is easy to live when there are no sorrows, no tests, everything is smooth and stable.
But a person with the character of Voyno-Yasenetsky would be simply impossible.
Either a carefree life here, or the transfer of sorrows for the sake of being with Christ.“I love suffering” is the life credo and title of the autobiography of St. Luke of Crimea.
But all the trials of life only strengthened his faith. And wherever he was - even in the Arctic - people always reached out for him.
In 1961, when he retreated into eternity, many people gathered in Simferopol to honor the memory of the bishop and the surgeon.
And nowadays people from different parts of the world come to Simferopol to worship the relics of St. Luke Voyno-Yasenetsky.
During the reading of the Akathist over the shrine with the remains of the saint, many by faith receive healing. It feels special warmth and fragrance. Personal experience verified.