Soon I'll be setting off to the Solovetsky Islands in the White Sea, a 3000km pilgrimage.
The idea came from something I posted on my LEL blog back in 2009. And it was years before (2000 I think), that an article, written by Paul Adriaensen in a Flemish bee magazine, first caught my eye.
It described St Zozimus and St Sabatius who, in 1429, founded one of the biggest monasteries in Russia. Since then, I kept coming across snippets of information on the topic. Especially their depiction on icons was intriguing. Very often the two monks are presented together, and often with a reference to bees. Both, but more so St Zozimus, are seen as protectors of beekeepers.
The more I found out, the more I was drawn to the Solovetsky Islands. The islands are now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The monastery is shown on the 500 rubles banknote. The area has a troubled history, being the site of the first gulag prison camp.
Religion and history were my worst subjects at school. This pilgrimage is about religion and history.
Friends and colleagues have wanted to express support. It wasn't my intention to raise funds, but Bees for Development (BfD) would certainly welcome a donation. BfD make a huge impact on beepkeers' livelihoods in the developing world. Thank you!
PayPal Donation - no registration required - do add a 'Note to Seller' with a reference me or this trip.
I'll tweet using #stzozi, along this 4 week journey. Follow me, tweet me.
3 months ago