On February 22, members of St. Michael’s Congregation in St. Petersburg teamed up for a subbotnik (volunteer action on a Saturday) to give an overhaul to the church’s library. Admittedly, an unusual activity in our day and age when people are getting rid of printed books. Despite the common trend, however, the people of St. Michael’s decided to breathe a new life into their collection of literature!
This happened after several years of inactivity not by choice but necessity. Prior to the overhaul in February, there was a long correspondence with librarian Yulia Nikolayeva, now working at the congregation in Zelenogorsk, who provided friendly instructions. And the work began! Gathered in the dining hall, 13 women and 1 composed man had no idea what amount of work they would have to do: during the next 6 hours they had to carry packages of books from one place to another, systematize them, and dust them and the bookcases. They worked as a team and with enthusiasm and they got a lot done!
Teamwork unites people and work for the good of the congregation is also inspiring as a godly work! The church members are inspired to continue their meticulous work with their books. While most of the books are theological in character, the church’s collection can cater to different tastes and ages. But before library pass no. 1 can be issued, there is a lot of work to do. “Nothing can replace books. With all the latest discoveries, the new types of data storage media, let us not hurry to say goodbye to the book,” advised linguist Dmitri Likhachov. Interested in self-education and spiritual growth, we can only agree with him.