Paschal Message of the Head of the Russian Imperial House, H.I.H. Grand Duchess Maria Wladimirovna, to all the Russian People on the Death of Her Most August Father, the Head of the Russian Imperial House, H.I.H. Grand Duke Wladimir Kirillovich, and Her A

Christ is Risen!

I offer my heartfelt greetings to all Our Countrymen on the Bright Feast of the Resurrection of Christ!

This year, My Family and I, and all Russians who are true to their great historical past, were struck with heavy grief. On Holy Tuesday, six days before the Bright Feast of Christ’s Resurrection, it pleased the Lord God to call unto Him My beloved Father, Grand Duke Wladimir Kirillovich, the Head of the Russian Imperial House. Humbly bowing down before the will of the Most High, I am certain that the Russian people share with Me the feeling of enormous loss.

My ever-memorable Grandfather, the Sovereign Kirill Wladimirovich, after the defeat of the White forces in the civil war, considered it His duty as the Senior Member of the House of Romanoff, to guarantee the future of the Dynasty so that at any time, whether soon or in the distant future, there would always be an Heir who in every way preserves His Russian character, is fully conscious of His rights and obligations, and always is ready to fulfill His duty. This is especially important now, when the people of our Fatherland, having cast off the Communist regime that was thrust upon them, can hope to return to their true historical path.

It was precisely in this spirit that My Grandfather and My Grandmother, the Grand Duchess Viktoria Feodorovna, raised My Father, and after Their deaths, that My Father and My Mother, Grand Duchess Leonida Georgievna, raised Me.

The great historical contribution that My Father, Grand Duke Wladimir Kirillovich, who now rests with God, made consists of the fact that, in the course of His fifty years as Head of the Russian Imperial House, He—just as Grand Prince Simeon Ioannovich bequeathed to His heirs during the days of the Tatar Yoke—never “let the candle go out.”

Having preserved this candle lit until the present day, My Father has given it to Me. And now, true to My oath, I will carry it forward.

With this Paschal address, I announce that, in complete accordance with the will of My Father and in profound recognition of the holy duty that has been laid before Me, I accept by succession, according to the inherited supreme authority that has come down to Me and that belongs to the Head of the Russian Imperial House, all of the rights and obligations that belong to Me by virtue of the Fundamental Laws of the Russian Empire and the Statute on the Imperial Family.

Following the example of My Parents, I have over the past eleven years raised My beloved Son, Grand Duke Georgii Mikhailovich in the full knowledge of His rights and obligations, so that He would be ready to fulfill the duty before Him to Our great Fatherland.

As a faithful Daughter of the Holy Orthodox Church, I turn to Her, beseeching Her blessing and support in the difficult work that has been handed to Me. I promise and swear to maintain piously the Orthodox Faith and to preserve inviolable the truth of all its doctrines.

In these present uneasy days, I will, as My ever-memorable Father declared at the end of last year, promote in every way possible every constructive aspiration of our countrymen and resolutely discourage all undertakings and ventures that are destructive for the country.

I solemnly declare that I will do this not only from a desire to occupy Our Ancestral Throne, but also out of a sense of responsibility before God and My people, a sense of responsibility that has always been My guide.

Bending My knees before the Almighty Creator, I pray the He will send Me strength for the service of My people.

(The original is signed in Her Imperial Highness’s own hand:)


Issued on Holy Pascha, 1992

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