Repose of the Holy Right-believing Princess Anna of Kashin

The Holy Right-believing Princess Anna of Kashin, a daughter of the Rostov prince Demetrius Borisovich, in 1294 became the wife of the holy Great Prince Michael Yaroslavich of Tver, who was murdered by the Mongol-Tatars of the Horde in 1318, (November 22). After the death of her husband, Anna withdrew into Tver’s Sophia monastery and accepted tonsure with the name Euphrosyne. Later, she transferred to the Kashin Dormition monastery, and became a schemanun with the name Anna. She fell asleep in the Lord on October 2, 1338.

St Anna’s sons also imitated their father’s steadfast confession of faith in Christ. Demetrius Mikhailovich (“Dread Eyes”) was murdered at the Horde on September 15, 1325; and later, Alexander Mikhailovich, Prince of Tver, was murdered together with his son Theodore on October 29, 1339.

Miracles at St Anna’s grave began in 1611, during the siege of Kashin by Polish and Lithuanian forces. There was also a great fire in the city which died down without doing much damage. The saint, dressed in the monastic schema, appeared to Gerasimus, a gravely ill warden of the Dormition cathedral. She promised that he would recover, but complained, “People show no respect for my tomb. They ignore it and my memory! Do you not know that I am supplicating the Lord and His Mother to deliver the city from the foe, and that you be spared many hardships and evils?” She ordered him to tell the clergy to look after her tomb, and to light a candle there before the icon of Christ Not-Made-By-Hands.

At the Council of 1649 it was decided to uncover her relics for general veneration and to glorify the holy Princess Anna as a saint. But in 1677 Patriarch Joachim proposed to the Moscow Council that her veneration throughout Russia should be discontinued because of the Old Believers Schism, which made use of the name of St Anna of Kashin for its own purposes. When she was buried her hand had been positioned to make the Sign of the Cross with two fingers, rather than three. However, the memory of St Anna, who had received a crown of glory from Christ, could not be erased by decree. People continued to love and venerate her, and many miracles took place at her tomb.

On June 12, 1909 her second glorification took place, and her universally observed Feast day was established. Her Life describes her as a model of spiritual beauty and chastity, and an example to future generations.