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Alexander Schmorell
Alexander Schmorell

Alexander Schmorell

Saint of the German Resistance


232 Pages, 5 x 7

Formats: Trade Paper, EPUB, Mobipocket

Trade Paper, $17.95 (US $17.95) (CA $19.95)

Publication Date: March 2017

ISBN 9780884654216

Rights: US & CA

Holy Trinity Publications (Mar 2017)
The Printshop of St Job of Pochaev


eBook Editions Available

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Price: $17.95


At the height of World War II, a small band of students in Munich, Germany, formed a clandestine organization called the White Rose, which exposed the Nazi regime's murderous atrocities and called for its overthrow. In its first anti-Nazi tract, the group wrote, "...Nothing is so unworthy of a civilized nation as allowing itself to be 'governed' without opposition by an irresponsible clique that has yielded to base instinct..." The students risked everything to struggle against a world that had lost its moorings. Early in 1943 key members of the group were discovered and executed. Among those put to death was Alexander Schmorell, a young man of Russian birth whose family came to Germany when he was a small boy. This biography eloquently recounts the journey of an energetic and talented young man who loved life but who, deeply inspired by his Orthodox Christian faith, was willing to sacrifice it as a testimony to his faith in God that had taught him to love beauty and freedom, both of which the Nazis sought to destroy. In 2012, the Russian Orthodox Church officially recognized him as a martyr and saint. The story of Alexander's life and death is made available to English readers here for the first time, vividly illustrated with black and white photographs.


"Alexander Schmorell - Saint of the German Resistance Author: Elena Perekrestov Reviewer: Ann Lardas, Social Media Editor ?'...Nothing is so unworthy of a civilized nation as allowing itself to be 'governed' without opposition by an irresponsible clique that has yielded to base instinct...' St. Alexander Sometimes you read the lives of the saints, and they seem so... other. They belonged to royalty, or were soldiers, or lived in exotic times and places we cannot pronounce. But here is a book you can hand your college-bound teenager. Alexander Schmorell was from a mixed family, German and Russian. He was raised Orthodox and his faith informed his life. Alex and a group of friends, horrified at what the Nazi government was doing in their name, thought to enlighten their neighbors to the evil being done and seek their help in overturning the regime. They were caught, interrogated, and sentenced to death. But their lives were beautiful and informative. Alexander was the only Orthodox member of a group of friends that called themselves 'The White Rose.' He and his friends -- Hans and Sophie Scholl, Willi and Anneliese Graf and others, aided by Prof. Kurt Huber, were united in a sense of decency and outrage as they learned of the numbers of people being first incarcerated but later also slain, the growing corruption of public morals, and the empowerment of crass and cruel people over their moral and intellectual superiors. Their faith in the decency of others was such that they were convinced that, were they able to make their fellow Germans aware of what was going on, the whole country would arise and repent and change. The members of the group led the normal life of young college students in Germany in their time. Some were drafted -- Alexander got to use his Russian while stationed in the East. Others changed their major in college so they would not have to do things against their conscience. They lived with the poverty of their time with good humor and Christian patience. For example, Alexander and Hans both had terrible bicycles and each wanted a new one. But neither parts nor new bicycles were available in the wartime economy. And so they traded -- each now had, at least, a different bad bike. Their leaflets were beautiful, funny, and appealed to the reader's better angels. The writing and distribution of them required stealth and subtlety. The girls in the group would buy only so many pieces of paper and stamps in each store, for example, to deflect attention. They knew they were close to being apprehanded, and went on one last mission, after which they planned to disburse, and some planned to hide till after the war. It is worth the time it takes to listen to Matushka Elena Perekrestov's lecture to a youth retreat on the saint, but it is even better to buy the book, because you can hand it to your favorite young adult. Normal, healthy, funny, smart young people were willing to die to live as Christ taught." — Ann Lardas, St. Innocent Press

Author Biography

Elena Perekrestov holds an MA from Norwich University. A lifelong educator, she teaches at Saints Cyrill and Methodius High School (San Francisco, CA) and the Summer School of Liturgical Music at Holy Trinity Seminary (Jordanville, NY).