Nun Theodosia-Zorica Lațcu from Vladimirești Monastery

She was born in Mezotur, Hungary, in the family of the lawyer Ion Lațcu, who later moved to Brașov after the War of Rebellion. Between 1924 and 1928 she attended the elementary school and between 1928 and 1936 the “Princess Elena” high school, both in Brașov. Determined by her literary talent and encouraged by her family, the young Zorica Lațcu attended the Faculty of Philology, Classical Section, at the University of Cluj.

In the autumn of 1940, when the north-west of Transylvania was ceded, she returned to Brasov, but was called to take up a position as a preparator in the faculty where she had studied. She taught alongside great Romanian professors, wrote poetry and published in the magazine “Gândirea”, with themes inspired by Greek mythology. He became closer and closer to the religious world, which he discovered through poetry, writing verses with a mystical vibration.

In 1944, his first book of poems, entitled “The White Island”, was published in Sibiu by Dacia Traiană. He continued to write profound religious poetry, published by Bishop Nicolae Colan of Cluj, in volumes such as “Osana lumii” (1948) and “Poemele iubirii”, published by the Craiova publishing house “Ramuri”. His literary and mystical creation is marked by a Christian life, which was emphasised by his spiritual mentor, Father Arsenie Boca, Confessor of Transylvania.

Under the guidance of this father, the young poet entered the gates of the Vladimirești Monastery on 5 May 1948. For two years she underwent spiritual trials and on 8 October 1950 she was ordained a monk with the name “Theodosia”. During her monastic life she was a member of the board of the monastery and wrote mystical poetry inspired by her chosen life. As part of the measures taken by the political regime against the Vladimirești Monastery, Mother Theodosia twice went to see Patriarch Justinian. It was in the midst of the events that marked the Vladimir Monastery in the mid-1950s. On 30 March 1955, following a raid, Mother Theodosia was arrested by the Securitate together with other residents. For a month she was interrogated by the security police in Galați, four or five times a day. She was humiliated, beaten and brought to a medical condition that required urgent hospitalisation. She received superficial medical care, which did not cure her, and in February 1956 the Security Service transferred her to the prison hospital at Văcărești. From there, Mother Theodosia was to appear as a witness in the trial of the “heads of the Vladimiresti monastery”. However, the Văcărești prison said that she was “not transportable”. She was taken to hospital for medical tests, but Mother Theodosia is very ill. Her condition led the Constanta Military Court to release her on 9 August 1956 on the grounds of illness. She lived with a nun in a convent in Gurguiești, near Măxineni, Jud. Brăila.

A year later, she was summoned to court again, accused of “public agitation” for possessing “forbidden writings”. However, in application of Decree 421/1955, she was amnestied by sentence 136 of 6 June 1957 of the Bucharest Military Tribunal. She lived in forced exile and it was not until 1970 that she was able to return to her childhood home in Brașov. Despite serious health problems, she continued to devote herself to mystical literary creation. In February 1990, she returned to the Vladimirești Monastery and on 8 August 1990, she became a saint.

(Adrian Nicolae Petcu – Lumina Newspaper)

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