25 May 2010

The Head of the House of Romanoff has Issued an Address to Her Countrymen On the Death of Her Most August Mother

The Head of the House of Romanoff has Issued an Address to Her Countrymen On the Death of Her Most August Mother

Address of the Head of the Russian Imperial House, H.I.H. Grand Duchess Maria Wladimirovna, On the Death of Her Most August Mother, H.I.H. Dowager Grand Duchess Leonida Georgievna

Dear Countrymen!

It is with enormous sorrow that I must notify you that, during the past night, the Lord called to Himself my beloved mother, Her Imperial Highness Dowager Grand Duchess Leonida Georgievna.

My mother lived a long life and witnessed many of the tragic events of the twentieth century. She was born in the Russian Empire shortly after the start of the First World War, which was a prologue to the even more horrible fratricidal Revolution and Civil War. From her childhood, she shared with her countrymen their suffering and terrible hardships, saw violent deaths and terrible grief, endured a first immigration abroad, returned to her Motherland, experienced fear and pain over the persecution and murders of her relatives and friends, and once again suffered forced exile. The fates of millions of sons and daughters of Russia, unjustly declared “enemies of the people” and executed and persecuted by the godless and inhumane totalitarian regime, was known to her first-hand, not by hearsay. The Cross of living outside her homeland was a heavy burden for her. But in all these terrible, sometimes unbearable circumstances, Grand Duchess Leonida Georgievna was always able to give joy to those around her, to support them in their difficult hours, to forgive and to ask forgiveness. She preserved inside herself Faith, Hope and Love. These spiritual qualities made her close not only to us—the members of her family—but also like a family member to the majority of those people who met her over the course of her life. In addition to all the many and significant contributions the deceased grand duchess made to the fate of the Russian Imperial House—the ideas and spiritual values which she served for more than 60 years—her main legacy will doubtless be the example she left us all of friendship, sincerity, compassion for the suffering of others, and a deep and abiding respect for human dignity.

Humbly bowing before the Will of the Most High, I ask your prayers for the repose of the soul of my most august mother, and I believe that you will now and always hold her radiant memory in your hearts.

[The original is signed by Her Imperial Highness:]

Issued in Madrid, 11/24 May 2010

The Russian version is certified as identical to the original:
A.N. Zakatov
Director of the Chancellery of Her Imperial Highness

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