People Wearing Headphones Walk Past And No One Cares About Pascha

Archpriest Alexei Uminsky tells a short, but instructive story about the question that a homeless man asked him on Pascha.

A few years ago, on the day of Pascha, I went to congratulate my spiritual father who served nearby, in the neighbouring church, on the feast of Christ’s Resurrection.  We sat down to a Paschal meal and then I went along on other business.

That year Pascha was early, but spring had already come, all the snow had melted, the sun was shining brightly, it was getting hot.  I was walking along on that quiet Moscow spring day.  It was Sunday, many people had gone to the country, Moscow was empty, evening was falling, the sun was just beginning to set.

As I came close to the church, I saw people walking past it… They all knew it was Pascha.  There were couples walking past, people wearing headphones who were chatting with beer bottles in their hands.  Not one of them so much as turned to look at the church.  Nobody cared it was Pascha.  Every one of them was oblivious to everything with their headphones on and their beer bottles in their hands.

And, there, walking a little ahead of me, I saw this homeless man.  He was carrying big dirty sacks and was covered in dirt from head to toe.  On seeing him people crossed the street, all of them looking so clean and nice.

And he walked on, walked up to the church, put his dirty things on the ground… Crossed himself and made a low bow before the doors of the church.  He then walked on.

My car was parked nearby, and the trunk was overflowing with good things, there was kulich, smoked sausage, wine that was given to me, lots of other things, whole bags of them.  I got to the car and noticed that the tramp had not gone far.  And I thought to myself, “I’ll put a few things together for him of Pascha.”

I opened the trunk and called out to him, “Hey, buddy, come here!”  He turned around, came up to me, and asked, “Do you need any help?”

Translated from the Russian by Maria Nekipelov

Since you are here…

…we do have a small request. More and more people visit Orthodoxy and the World website. However, resources for editorial are scarce. In comparison to some mass media, we do not make paid subscription. It is our deepest belief that preaching Christ for money is wrong.

Having said that, Pravmir provides daily articles from an autonomous news service, weekly wall newspaper for churches, lectorium, photos, videos, hosting and servers. Editors and translators work together towards one goal: to make our four websites possible -,, and Therefore our request for help is understandable.

For example, 5 euros a month is it a lot or little? A cup of coffee? It is not that much for a family budget, but it is a significant amount for Pravmir.

If everyone reading Pravmir could donate 5 euros a month, they would contribute greatly to our ability to spread the word of Christ, Orthodoxy, life's purpose, family and society.

Related articles
“Why Are You Sad? Have You…

Once when I was a theology student in Paris I went to my spiritual father and…

The Stone at the Center of…

Pictured above is the stone slab inside the Aedicule of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre…

Did Christ Descend Into Hell?

Dear D., Christ is risen! The huge problem here is in defining hell.  In the scripture…