Father Alexander. How it began

 Little children who suffer – is a call! It’s God’s question: “How should we act here?” In this action lies our real answer.
Fr. Alexander Men

Our ministry in the hospital began under the spiritual guidance of the famous Orthodox priest Fr. Alexander Men. He first came here in 1989  with a small group of his parishioners. Our history dates from the very day on which he made his appeal: “On Sunday, right after the service, all who want to help at the hospital are welcome to come”.

In those days there was no such practice, so what Fr. Alexander did was really brave. However as we have come to know, the priest understood where he was going. Thus we became one of the first Russian Church charity services working in hospitals.

Those six months Fr. Alexander managed to spend with us on that path laid the foundation of our future work, which we’ve been standing on ever since. And we’re answering God’s question how we can.


End of 1989 – Father Alexander Men and the first charity group come to RCCH.

Early 1990 – Father Alexander baptizes children at the hospital

Spring of 1990 – The first children’s burial service at the Church of the Presentation of Jesus at the Temple in Novaya Derevnya.

September 9, 1990 – The tragic loss of Father Alexander.

Autumn of 19901993 – Priest Vladimir Lapshin and other disciples of Father Alexander visit the hospital

Spring of 1992 – A new volunteer,  George Chistyakov, joins

November, 1993 – Father George Chistyakov is the spiritual guide of the hospital community

Easter 1994 – Opening of Church of the Intercession of the Holy Virgin in RCCH

1995 – Support of the hospital in buying equipment, repair work

1997 – The first wedding ceremony of former patients in the hospital church

1997 –  Regional Social Charity Foundation to Help Seriously Ill and Disadvantaged Children is registered

1998 – We set up a website (www.deti.msk.ru) to raise funds for children’s treatment

1999-2001 – Russian-French seminars on charity, medicine and ethical issues

September, 2004–December, 2005 – Our charity group provides help for the children of Beslan

2005 – The group leader Lina Saltykova is “The Honoured Worker of the RCCH”

2005 – We start a special program to help seriously ill orphans called You are not alone

2006 – We open  House of Hope – for children with cancer and their parents, first of its kind

June 22, 2007 – Father George passes away

2009 – Lyudmila Ulitskaya’s book about the hospital ministry When a Man Went to Hospital is published

2009 – We open At Dunno’s rehabilitation center for sick orphans


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