Standing by Zoe Karnauchova with icon Nicholas the Miracle Worker

Winter 1955, in celebration of the New Year 1956 in Samara (former Kuibyshev), there was an amazing, unexplained by science, case. Being offended at the guy, the young girl Zoya grabbed from a shelf icon Nikolai the Miracle Worker and began to circle with her around the room.

She was awash with laughter, and was not completely sober — friends invited to New Year’s Eve tried to calm her friend down and pick up the icon, but Zoya continued to dance, saying that she didn’t come. , she will dance with St. Nicholas.

The guy Nikolay whom the girl met a day before New Year, didn’t come, though promised. All the girls had cavaliers, and only Zoë was alone. It was this that caused her to go on a blasphemous act.

On requests to put the icon in place, Zoya policiously declared — “And what will happen? Let God, if he exists, punish for it.”

What happened next caused consternation among guests.

Zoë pressed the icon to her chest and froze in place as if a statue: hands and feet petrified, eyes did not blink, no breath could be heard, but the heart in her chest was beating. Shifting the girl out of place was impossible.

Friends tried to pull the icon of the miracle worker out of the girl’s hands, but nothing worked out. Frightened, they ran away from home.

In the fossilized condition Zoya Karnauchova stayed from 31.12. 1955 until May 6, 56 (128 days). The whole time doctors tried to make her feel, but it didn’t work out. Scientists compared her condition to catatonic syndrome, in which motor disorders develop.

Turning into a statue, Zoya Karnauchova continued to live. All in the district learned about the incident and tried to bypass the house of the blasphemy party, even the militia was afraid to step behind the threshold. The priests couldn’t bring the girl out of the stupor either.

On one day Seraphim Tryapochkin, archimandrite of the Russian Orthodox Church, rector of St. Nicholas Church (Rakitne village), came to Zoe, who was able to take the icon from the hands of the girl, saying that she will come to her senses at Easter.

On the third day of the Christian holiday, Zoya Karnauchova was again able to move and on the same day she died. The icon Seraphim was able to take away disappeared, and the abbot died 2 weeks later.

Unverified sources state that when Zoya was asked how she was able to live without food or water, she replied that she was fed pigeons — symbols of the Holy Spirit. Thus, she earned the forgiveness of the Lord.

The house was closely guarded, but according to the stories, the old man who could not be found was able to get inside. He asked the girl “was she tired of standing, sweetie?” and disappeared. It is believed that it was Nikolai the Wonderworker himself.

As it was known, Zoe’s mother was a very devout woman, and forbade her daughter to walk to the Christmas fast and drink liquor. But Zoë was wayward and easy on the rise.

And yet, there is no evidence to prove that the story was real. According to the documented data, it was established that people came to the house of the petrified girl, and where people — always gossip.

Someone heard one old lady say about a petrified girl, and picked up the hearing. According to check claim that nobody danced in the house, and there is some old woman living there.

One newspaper printed a rebuttal to the case, as if the whole story was made up by a woman.

On the scientific side, it was suggested that Zoya had fallen into catatonic syndrome, which caused serious complications.

In “Moscow Komsomolets” was also printed refuting information about the petrified girl: allegedly the story was made up by the landlady of the house Claudia Bologkina.

Another woman assured that there was a reveller in the house, and when Zoya was out with an icon, a nun came up to her and said that “for such blasphemy you will turn in a salt pole.”

Believe it or not is everyone’s business, but in memory of this case in Samara on Chkalov Street established a monument.

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