Voices from Russia

Sunday, 19 October 2014

19 October 2014. 1,000 Years of St Olav!

00 King St Olav II of Norway and Stefan Uros III of Decani Nemanjić 01. 19.10.14.

Right-Believing Kings St Olav II Haraldsson of Norway and Stefan Uroš III Dečanski Nemanjić of Serbia

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00 King St Olav II of Norway 06. 19.10.14.

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00 King St Olav II of Norway 05. 19.10.14.

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00 King St Olav II of Norway 01. 19.10.14.

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00 King St Olav II of Norway 04. 19.10.14.

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00 King St Olav II of Norway 03. 19.10.14.

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00 King St Olav II of Norway 02. 19.10.14.

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It’s been 1,000 years… a full millennium… since the Baptism of Right-Believing King St Olav II Haraldsson of Norway in Rouen. He baptised and enlightened his people, stopping endemic civil strife, but he died in battle in 1030 fighting rebellious nobles. A year later, in 1031, the Church canonised him “with the agreement of the whole Norwegian people”. In his homeland, people call him “the eternal king”. He’s amongst the last of the Western European Orthodox saints and there are churches in Russia dedicated to St Olav, notably in Novgorod and in Staraya Ladoga, where he lived for several years. There’s another link with Orthodoxy and Norway… the most loyal soldiers in Constantinople New Rome were the Varangian Guard, who served from the 10th to the 14th centuries… who came from England, the Nordic countries, and Russia. Most of them fell in battle in the Fourth Crusade fighting the papist invaders. This unit lost its mostly Nordic character after that event.

Raise a glass and cheer, Norskis… it’s your day!

BMD

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