St. John Kochurov

The Proclamation of the Holy Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church on the Canonization of Archpriest John Kochurov (1871-1917)

November 29 - December 2, 1994
St. Daniel's Monastery, Moscow, Russia

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit!

Cognizant of Her unbroken connection with the synaxis of the new martyrs of Russia, the Russian Orthodox Church continues to glorify individually those who, during the persecutions to which the Orthodox Church in Russia was subjected, through their righteous lives and martyrs' death, manifested the highest ideal given to the Church of Christ by the Holy Apostle Paul: "For if we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord" (Rom 14:8).

The first clergyman of the Russian Orthodox Church whom Our Lord Jesus Christ made worthy of bearing a martyr's crown in the twentieth century from the hands of the godless Bolshevik authorities, the first murdered Russian Orthodox priest, about whom the Holy Confessor Patriarch Tikhon said: "Adorned with a martyr's crown, the reposed pastor now stands before the throne of God among the chosen faithful of Christ's flock," was destined to be the zealous parish priest, and inspired witness "even unto death" (Rev 12:11) of Christ's Truth - Archpriest John Kochurov, who met a martyr's death at the hands of apostates and fighters of God on October 31, 1917, in Tsarskoye Selo.

The Holy Council, having examined the zealous service and martyr's death of Archpriest John Kochurov, is convinced of the holiness of his deeds and hereby decrees:

1. That Archpriest John Kochurov, killed in Tsarskoye Selo by persecutors of the Church of Christ on October 31, 1917, be numbered among the hieromartyrs for Church-wide veneration.

2. That the righteous remains of Hieromartyr John, buried in Tsarkoye Selo, henceforth be considered holy relics and be left to the care of God's mercy, until such time as they may be uncovered.

3. That the service to Hieromartyr John, following this, the day of his glorification, be the general service for martyrs and that a blessing is given for the composition of a special service to him.

4. That the memory of Hieromartyr John be celebrated on October 31 according to the Julian Calendar.

5. That the memory of Hieromartyr John be included in the synaxis of the new martyrs and confessors of Russia.

6. That an icon for veneration of the newly-glorified Hieromartyr John be written according to the Decree of the Seventh Ecumenical Council.

7. That the life of Hieromartyr John be published for the edification of the Church's faithful in piety.

8. That, on behalf of the Holy Council, the great and grace-filled joy of the glorification of the new hieromartyr of Russia be announced to the flock of All Rus'.

9. That the name of the newly-glorified hieromartyr be made known to the Primates of the sister Orthodox Churches for inclusion in their calendars.
Through the intercessions and prayers of Hieromartyr John, may the Lord strengthen the faith of all the faithful of the Russian Orthodox Church and bestow His blessing upon them. Amen.

+ ALEKSY
Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia
And the Members of the Holy Synod