An Extraordinary Peace: St Seraphim, Flame of Sarov

An Extraordinary Peace: St Seraphim, Flame of Sarov
Archimandrite Lazarus (Moore)

In this newly-available reprint of his classic work, Archimandrite Lazarus exposes the reader to a depth of spiritual beauty far beyond anything that most of us know in our day-to-day lives. Yet, with simple clarity, he is able to present this in a way that is accessible to all, irrespective of their own stage of spiritual growth. As I read the book, I came to realise that this is perhaps reflective of the spirit of St Seraphim as much as it is due to the labours of Father Lazarus.

The first chapter tells a little of the early life of St Seraphim and perhaps strays a little into the tedium of historicity and precision of dates. However, it quickly makes the transition into the real substance of the work. Drawing heavily on the sayings of St Seraphim himself, the book draws the reader into a world that overturns everyday reality, and time after time challenges the expectations based on it, as the astounding story is told of the faith, humility, and ascetic struggles of St Seraphim, recounted in the written accounts of many of those who had the great privilege of knowing this extraordinary man of God during his earthly life. Fr Lazarus’ own humble approach to the task of recounting the Saint’s life allows the accounts to speak for themselves, as indeed they in turn allow the astounding wisdom of the clairvoyant Fr Seraphim to shine through, no doubt benefitting the reader today almost as much as those who sat at the feet of this great spiritual father.

This is essential reading for anybody seeking a better appreciation of the ascetic labours of those who give up everything for the love of Christ, and while being caught up in the beauty of St Seraphim’s life, the reader should not expect to remain free from the discomfort of introspection that An Extraordinary Peace ironically evokes.

-A review of mine, from the Winter-Spring edition of Orthodox News, published by the St George Orthodox Information Service, from where copies of this book may be purchased.

3 responses:

Elizabeth @ The Garden Window said...

Thank you, Michael. This will go on my reading list :-)

Thank you also for the clarification on the "other topic" from the "other place"; I thought this might well be the case, and assure you of my fervent prayers for you at this time.

May God grant you Many Years !!

Ian Climacus said...

Another book to add to my ever-increasing list. Thank you for the wonderful review.

And harking back to a post weeks ago, I finally heard the "Funeral Evlogitaria" as part of our Saturday of the Souls service; exceptionally moving.

Michael said...

Thank you, both. :-)

I'm sorry to make you part with more money. I think you'll find it well worth it, though.

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