Marco Eissa a student of Pitirim Sorokin Syktyvkar State University, became a volunteer at the Church of Blagovchensk in the Lyaly village.

Last Sunday, April 18, the Divine Liturgy was held in the village of Lyaly of the Knyazhpogostskyi District in the Chapel of the New Martyrs and Confessors in the Komi Republic. There were locals on duty and… a medical student from Egypt.

Cross on the wrist

Marco Eissa, a student of Pitirim Sorokin Syktyvkar State University, visited the village on the Vym River for the first time. A native of North Africa, like most Christians in Egypt, belongs to the Coptic Orthodox Church.

– In my homeland, Christians are often oppressed. But I am not afraid of aggression, – says Marco Eissa and shows Ankh – a cross tattoo on the wrist.

In Egypt, Marco was appointed deacon of the Christian Church. Therefore, having come to another continent to get a degree, he does not retreat from the faith. In fact, of the 100 Egyptian students who are studying in the capital of the Komi Republic, 15 are Christians, and the rest are Muslims.

– The first church that I visited in Syktyvkar was the Holy Ascension Church. Here I helped the abbot with the development of the territory – says Marko in Russian. – Then I met Father Vladimir. He told that he was restoring the church in Lyaly. I think I should also help in its restoration.

Church’s history

We have already talked about the work on the reconstruction of the Church of Blagovchensk in the Lyaly village. The church was built in 1856, has two floors and three thrones. It was closed in 1929.

According to one of the local legends, in July 1939 the future Marshal of the Great Victory K.K. Rokossovsky allegedly spent the night in the chapel near the church. He was illegally repressed and send to Knyazhpogost. People also say that before the war, there was a holy fool in those places who said that in Seryogovo the church would be destroyed, and in Lyaly the church would survive until the Second Coming.

Now there is really no church in Seryogovo, and a church in Lyaly is being restored by the believers.

– In 2020, donated funds were used to repair most of the collapsed roof. But there is still a lot to be done, for example, to put the dome in order, – father Vladimir told.