Biography of Valentina Sapozhnikova, OPL

Born into a lower middle class family in Podolsk in 1887. Received a post-secondary education, graduating with a double major from Moscow State University. She lived in Moscow and taught at an institute. In 1912 she converted to Catholicism and joined the Third Order of St. Dominic as an individual tertiary. She attended Mass at Nativity of the Most Holy Virgin Mary parish at the Abrikosovs’ apartment. In 1924 she joined the Soloviev community of Russian Catholics and attended the illegal Masses that Fr. Sergey said in parishioners’ apartments and prepared several Orthodox for their conversion to Catholicism. February 15, 1931 – arrested in a case against Russian Catholics (Soloviev and others). She was recognized by the investigation as the “ideological inspiration of the community.” August 18, 1931 – sentenced under Articles 58-6, 58-10 and 58-11 of the Criminal Code of the RSFSR to five years of corrective labor [Special Board, OGPU Collegium]. Sent to Siblag; released from Siblag in August 1936, but restricted from living in the twelve major cities and the borderland regions. She lived in Podolsk, where she died in 1943 (exact date of death unknown). We present excerpts from a letter she sent to Sr. Teresa Kugel, OP: “The longer it goes on, the more the cross is increased, and the more one needs to be ready for everything, even to the end. A cross such as suffering for the Lord God, for the faith, is something so great, something of which we are not worthy – and only through His mercy and His extraordinary love for us does the Lord grant it to us.” Sources: Osipova (1996), p. 197; Osipova (1999), p. 338; Soloviev et al.; Sokolovskyi, p. 182
Variant Names:
Sapozhnikova, Valentina; Sapozhnikova, Valentina Arkad'evna
Polatsk (Belarus); Moscow (Russia); Kemerovskai︠a︡ oblastʹ (Russia)
female; clergy and religious; survived