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19217"The Way of St. Innocent" expedition

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  • Nina Tkachuk Dimas
    Feb 7, 2014
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      "The Way of St. Innocent" Expedition will go through Siberia and the Far East to Alaska
       
      Moscow.  Regions of Siberia, the Far East and the U.S. states of Alaska, California and Hawaii will be part of the "The Way of St. Innocent" expedition which will take place in 2014-2017, respectively.  It will repeat the route of the  outstanding missionary of the XIX century bishop Innocent (Benjamin), who went down in history as the educator of the peoples of Siberia and the Far East, the Aleutian Islands and North America.
       
      The organizing committee of the project, initiated by the Irkutsk Region Governor Sergei Eroschenko, Regional Development Minister Igor Slyunyaev agreed to lead it.  This was decided at a meeting in Moscow, reported in the press service of the regional government.
       
       "An idea that was born in the land of Irkutsk, found support in Yakutia, Amur and the Sakhalin regions, Khabarovsk, Kamchatka and the Trans-Baikal territories, Chukotka Autonomous District, as well as in the U.S. state of Alaska, where the honor the great Russian Orthodox missionary and scholar, researcher of the nature, Ethnography and languages ​​of the peoples of Siberia and Alaska, "- said Sergey Eroschenko.
       
       In 2014, events in honor of St. Innocent place in the Trans-Baikal region, Yakutia, Amur Region, in 2015 - in Khabarovsk Krai, Kamchatka and Chukotka Autonomous District, in 2016 - in the Sakhalin region, in 2017 - in Irkutsk area and in the U.S. - Alaska, California, Hawaii.
       
      At each point of the route there will be conferences, prayers, readings.  In the home village of St. Innocent, in the Anga Kachug district of Irkutsk region, in 2015, a spiritual and educational center is scheduled to open.  In 2017, which will mark the 220th anniversary of the saint, the expedition will end in Moscow. Here there will be a meeting of the Russian Geographical Society , dedicated to the memorable date, and in Christ the Savior Cathedral a solemn service. 
       
      Bishop Innocent (Veniaminov, 1797-1868) built churches, schools in Russia and America , and himself  taught many children to read and write. In addition, he introduced the practice of mass vaccination against smallpox.  In 1977 he was glorified among the saints of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Orthodox Church in America as an apostle to Siberia and America.
       
      The Irkutsk region's project, "The Way of St. Innocent", is being considered by the Ministry of Regional Development of the Russian Federation to the inclusion in the federal target program "Strengthening of the Russian nation and ethnic and cultural development of the peoples of Russia." 90% of the funds for its implementation will be allocated from the federal budget and 10% - from the regional.