Q: Why does ROCOR still exist? Now that the Russian Orthodox Church is One, and Metr Nikodim Rotov, whom many considered to be a heretic and so to have compromised the Church inside Russia, dead for 40 years, why continue to have two parts?
A: The purpose of ROCOR as an administrative structure has always been purely temporary. Its spiritual purpose is to be St John the Baptist in the wilderness, heralding and preaching of the coming Tsar, for which the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 was only the prelude, and then to disappear, its purpose served. Clearly, ROCOR had this purpose during the period of atheist captivity. However, as long as sections of the State (especially education, health, the mainly Western-controlled media) and sections of the population in the Russian Lands are still under corrupting atheist/Soviet influence and therefore there is still no Christian Tsar and Christian Empire based in Russia (‘Rus’), ROCOR will still exist, in some form or other, to tell the Truth and to call to repentance.
Q: Is this September’s decision by the Patriarchate of Constantinople to let widowed priests remarry canonical? And what of their decision to discuss granting some Ukrainians autocephaly in October? Could this be the moment when the Russian Patriarch talks over and becomes the real ’Oecumenical’ Patriarch?
A: Of course, this permission is not canonical! It is pure renovationism. True, some bishops in all Local Churches (as well as among the old calendarists) have always allowed some priests to remarry in such circumstances, turning a blind eye to the canons. However, these have always been exceptional and very rare acts made by economy. What is new here is that Constantinople has decided to do this systematically. This means that in trying to act papally, it has once again canonically cut itself off from the other thirteen Local Churches.
As regards a Ukrainian autocephaly, that would also be an utterly uncanonical act, made under US financial pressure ($15 million has been mentioned as the bribe). So much so that the Constantinople clerical elite would thus fall altogether away from communion with the Church, something that it has been threatening to do since 1925, if not since the fifteenth century. Some would say, ‘Good riddance’, that this might clear the air at long last. But perhaps the situation is not as bad as some say. The Constantinople elite may stand like a lemming on the cliff, but it has not yet jumped. Therefore, we will not push it.
As for the Russian Church taking over as the first among equals in the Church, it would first have to prove itself worthy and competent to do this. This means that all the bishops, and not just some, would have to become real missionaries and pastors, unlike many in other Local Churches too. They would also have to stop behaving like feudal lords and treat priests properly, instead of expelling them from parishes where they are loved, and stop treating Non-Russian priests and people as second-class citizens, instead of persecuting them, learning how to apologize.
Q: In the light of revelations this month about the murderers of the Skripals, what would you reply to the accusers of the Russian secret services?
A: No-one murdered the Skripals, though someone did attempt to murder them. Clearly, the crime was carried out by people who wanted to incriminate Russia. After all, it occurred just before the Russian World Cup and Russian elections, in which the Western candidate, a CIA recruit with immense Western financial backing, got only 5% of the vote. Had Russians wanted to murder the Skripals, a professional hitman from London could have been hired for the right sum. Pictures of two men walking along a road in Salisbury – no-one knows who they were – MI5 agents? – prove nothing. And the rare poison allegedly used, not kept anywhere in Russia today and the product of a country that ceased to exist 27 years ago, is kept just 8 miles from Salisbury at Porton Down. This is one of the most dreadful chemical weapons producers in the world and why the UN has not shut it down long ago remains a mystery. Also professional assassins would not then have thrown away the bottle used for the poison into a litter bin in a park in Salisbury!
Clearly, the criminals wanted it to be found so as to incriminate someone else. In any case, why would Russia want to kill a retired British spy, who had already served a jail term in Russia and then been released, together with his daughter, who lived safely in Moscow? And both of them, recovered from their illness, whatever it was, but now under State censorship D-notices, have since been kidnapped by MI5 and disappeared. Who knows what MI5 has done with them? I see no reason why we should believe anything issued by the British Establishment, which has a centuries-old history of systematic lying, perfidious cunning and bloody assassination from the Norman Conquest, when it began, to Cromwell, from Ireland to Iraq and the other 180 countries it has invaded for no reason other than lust for power and riches. That is why a very large number of British people do not believe a single word of the Establishment about the Skripal case.
Q: You seem to admire contemporary Russia, but why? It is so corrupt!
A: I would agree with you about contemporary Russia, but then I do not admire it, just as I do not admire the contemporary West, which is also so corrupt. I admire contemporary Orthodox Russia – about 5% of the whole, quite unlike the rest of contemporary Russia – hopefully the leaven to leaven the lump, but God knows.
Contemporary Non-Orthodox Russia is the hangover from the drunken depravity of the Soviet Union. Every bad thing about it, abortion, divorce, pollution, corruption, statues of and places named after murderous Soviet monsters, usually not even Russians, like Lenin and Stalin, and trained in Western Europe, is the direct result of the Soviet Union. As I have said so many times before, the restoration of Orthodox Russia has only just begun. There is far to go.
Q: Why is it important to venerate the Western saints?
A: Artificially cutting itself off from Eurasia, the Western European tip of the Eurasian Continent and its overseas colonies in North America have produced all sorts of things, from Gothic architecture to siege technology, from scholastic philosophy to the modern novel, from the spinning jenny to the latest mobile phone, from heavy artillery to the cluster bomb. However, the West has never produced a faith. It has only ever adopted and twisted Asian faiths and spiritual philosophies, deforming them into artificial, State-run religions. Roman Catholicism and Anglicanism are classic examples of such manmade religions, with a man, pope or king, that is, humanism, at their centre. Let us recall that Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam and nationalist Judaism and Shintoism are all Asian. Even the other continents (the Americas, Africa and Oceania) produced at least animism and then adopted superior Asian faiths with fervour. But not the West.
In other words, Western Europe alone has produced no faith apart from materialist and humanist idolatry. Indeed, the West, living in its parallel universe to the rest of the world, has always destroyed faiths, conquering and erasing all religious civilizations by organized violence (crusades, colonialism, consumerist materialism), whether in the Americas, Oceania, China, India or Russia (in 1917) and Greece (imposing the Western, Non-Christian calendar and modernism after losing its protection in 1917). This organized violence, even though today it may be economic violence or mocking political correctness (censorship) and be called ‘sanctions’, is its only ideology. Our love of the Western saints is to challenge that ideology, to show that there was once a true West and it did have genuine faith – Orthodox Christianity.
Q: What are the consequences of the Protestant rejection of the Mother of God?
A: The Mother of God represents the Incarnation. Without her God could never have become man. Therefore, when Protestants refuse to venerate her and even blaspheme against her, they reject the consequences of the Incarnation. For most of them, Christianity is therefore just a God-slot hobby, something to do on Sunday morning and does not impinge on any way on the rest of life, on politics, economics etc, which are affairs of the pagan State, but is just a private matter.
Q: In your view, why were monarchies overthrown by revolutions?
A: All the destroyed monarchies, Charles I in England, Louis XVI in France and Nicholas II in the Empire, were overthrown by the rich (aristocrats/merchants or oligarchs/businessmen as we would say nowadays) who stole or seized power for themselves, wanting to get even richer and even more powerful. The new regimes, under the lying propaganda camouflage of ‘freedom and democracy’ which the naïve believed in, was and is based on lies and theft, that is, on ‘kleptocracy’, the rule of thieves. Democracy has always been a myth for the naive. This is why ‘democracy’ is inherently hypocritical and constantly produces corruption scandals, both financial and moral.
Q: There are those who say that we should not write anything new, only repeating what has been said before, in case we say something wrong. What do you think?
A: This is an extremist viewpoint of people who are negative and insecure ‘converts’, who have never moved on from that early state of mind. It is interesting that in Russia, for example, in the 1990s, beneath the wave of tens of millions of converts, they reprinted massively, but that since the Year 2000 approximately, they have moved on and have produced a huge amount of original and creative works, far greater than anything before.
Q: My Ukrainian wife says that playing cards are satanic. Is this really true? Where is the harm?
A: I think it depends on what you are doing with the cards. If you are playing for money or playing as an addiction, it is satanic. If, on the other hand, you are playing Snap with the children, that is a very different story. As so often, it is not what you do, but why you do it.
Q: Should we fly the Union Jack?
A: If at church, then there should be no flags of any sort. As for the Union Jack, originating in the 17th century, it is a symbol of exploitation and imperialism. It is as alien and contradictory as is the expression ‘British Orthodoxy’. Just like ‘Soviet Orthodoxy’, you cannot have something that cannot exist, something that is a contradiction in terms. Personally, like many others, when asked my nationality, I always reply ‘English’. By all means fly a flag at home, but the Cross of St George, which is also the Standard of Jerusalem, of the Resurrection of Christ.