Jordanville, NY, January 30, 2011
On December 18, 1987, on the eve of the feast day of St Nicholas, Natalia became a novice. This lay the foundation for St Elizabeth Skete. On December, 1993, on the eve of the feast day of the Kursk-Root Icon of the Mother of God, Vladyka Laurus tonsured her a nun with the name Ioanna, in honor of St John (Maximovich). Mother Ioanna continued her work as a seminary teacher and writer of articles.
On January 19, 2011, after a bout of sickness, Mother Ioanna peacefully reposed in the Lord on the feast day of the Epiphany. Eternal memory to her!
Mother Ioanna was born Natalia Sergeevna Markova in Kiev on September 24, 1918, during the terrible years of the Civil War, to the family of a pilot and eminent officer of the White Army. Forced to flee Russia, Natalia Sergeevna and her mother settled in a displaced-persons camp near Alexandria, Egypt, where the future Mother Ioanna spent her early childhood.
In 1920, the Markov family was reunited and they moved to Belgrade, where Natalia began her studies in Russian school. Graduating with a medical degree from Belgrade University, Natalia spent the wartime years as a doctor in the German labor colonies. Here she met her future husband, Dmitry Pomazansky, son of Protopresbyter Michael Pomazansky. They worked together in an American field hospital. In 1948, they moved to the US. After four years in New York City, they moved to Burlington, VT.
At the end of the 1950’s, after many years of work in American hospitals and laboratories, Natalia began teaching German and Russian at St Michael’s College in Vermont. She earned a Master’s Degree from Middlebury College and began to do research work and translations. Upon retirement in 1984, she moved to Jordanville, NY.