Biography of Anna Zolkina (Sister Hyacinth, OP)

Born into a peasant family in 1901. In the beginning of the 1920s she was a student in the Physics and Mathematics Department of Moscow University and an unofficial collaborator of the Polish Red Cross. She converted to Catholicism. In 1923 she joined the Abrikosova community of Dominican Sisters and took the name Sr. Giatsinta (Hyacinth). November 23, 1923 – arrested in connection with a case against Russian Catholics. May 18, 1924 – sentenced under Article 66 of the Criminal Code of the RSFSR to three years’ exile [OGPU Collegium]. She was released so that she could care for the ailing Sr. Catherine Galkina; she kept the library of the Abrikosova community. In 1926 she became acquainted with Bishop Pius Neveu and thanks to him she was able to constantly help the convicted Abrikosova Dominican Sisters who had been sent to the Solovetsky Special Purpose Camp or exiled to Siberia. She worked with Fr. Sergey Soloviev; she kept his manuscripts and correspondence; and she attended illegal Masses that Fr. Sergey said in parishioners’ apartments. February 6, 1931 – arrested in Moscow in connection with the case again Fr. Sergey Soloviev and others. August 18, 1931 – sentenced under Articles 58-6, 58-10 and 58-11 of the Criminal Code of the RSFSR to three years in corrective labor camps [Special Board, OGPU Collegium]. Sent to the Mariinsk section of Siblag, whence she was released in July 1934, but restricted from living in the six major cities and the borderland regions. She lived in Bryansk region and worked as a caretaker in an orphanage. In June 1941 she and all the orphans were evacuated to Yelets where, at the end of 1941, she was again arrested and sentenced to five years in corrective labor camps. Sent to the camps. Fate thereafter unknown. From the recollections of Anatolia Nowicka: “At the interrogation of Sr. Hyacinth there were ten young students of the GPU School for Investigators under the supervision of the main investigator. They took an active role in the course of the interrogation; they mocked religion and they badgered Sister for an answer to the question as to how she, a young woman, could live without a man, and whether she “was sleeping with Bishop Neveu.” After this question, she – a completely healthy person – suffered a serious attack of hysteria. Thus was repeated one of the usual, despicable methods of the GPU: to create by means of threats and actions against the psyche and the body of the imprisoned person a heinous provocation against serious clergy who were respected by everyone.” Sources: GARF, f. 8409, op. 1, d. 306, l. 26-29; d. 777, l. 99; d. 819, l. 59; d. 1474, l. 21-22, 36-37; Nowicki, p. 5; Osipova (1996), p. 170; Osipova (1999), p. 331; Abrikosova et al. (1924); Soloviev et al; Sokolovskyi, p. 82; Parafiial'na gazeta, 1995, no. 64, p. 8
Variant Names:
Zolkina, Anna; Zolkina, Anna Ivanovna (Giatsinta)
Moscow (Russia); Siberia (Russia); Bri︠a︡nskai︠a︡ oblastʹ (Russia)
female; clergy and religious; fate unknown