It happened in Siberia. The White Army under Kolchak was retreating.
Eugene Nikolaevich, in spite of a severe wound suffered in the First World
War, served in Kolchak's forces in the rank of first lieutenant. It was a
Entering some village, the partisans seized a peasant suspected of
collaborating with the Reds. It was decided to execute him. Eugene
Nikolaevich ordered the prisoner to be locked up.
That night, as the lieutenant was sitting alone writing out the
accusation, there came a knock at the door. He opened it and in stepped an
old man wearing a skoufia, like those worn by monks, and an old cassock.
"Mister officer," he said, "you have an arrested peasant here. Don't kill
him. He's innocent."
"And who are you?" inquired Eugene Nikolaevich.
"I am the rector of the local church, Fr. Nicholas," answered the old
man, and left.
Eugene Nikolaevich thought it over and decided to release the prisoner.
Early in the morning he ordered a sleigh to be harnessed, had the prisoner
get in, took some bread, and told the escorts: "I'm going to shoot him."
Once in the forest he untied the prisoner, gave him the bread, and said:
‘Into the woods with you, and don't cross our path again!”
Returning to the village, Eugene Nikolaevich went to the church. It
was locked. He asked a peasant walking by: "Where does Fr. Nicholas live?
.... The Reds shot him long ago," came the reply. Eugene Nikolaevich was
taken aback, but he decided to look around the church. Someone unlocked the
door for him, and he went inside. Suddenly he saw to the right an icon of
St. Nicholas and immediately recognized him as his nocturnal visitor; in the
icon the wonderworking hierarch was depicted wearing the very same skoufia.
"Novoye Russkoe Slovo"