Monthly Archives: March 2017

The Battle for the Soul of the Anglosphere

The term Anglosphere has come to be used to mean the English world, what old people used to call the White Commonwealth and the USA. Roughly it means the UK, the USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Arguably, it could also include parts of South Africa and countries such as Ireland. The Anglospere in terms of power and finance is by far the most important part of the world, the part that others either copy or else fear, either admire or detest. Clearly, by far the most important part of this Anglosphere is the USA. Great Britain ceased being ‘Great’ a long time ago, but in fact the USA is today’s ‘Great’ Britain, as it continues the same policies as Great Britain did in its time of worldly glory, 100-200 years ago, only with all the power of modern technology.

Churchill accurately predicted that Britain would always prefer the USA (‘the ocean’) to mainland Europe. I remember a conversation in a famous French School of Management 25 years ago, when a Frenchman asked me why the UK was so ‘anti-European’ (= by which he meant anti-European Union – what he mistakenly believed to be a French project), as the UK is geographically not in Africa or Asia, but clearly in Europe. I answered simply that geography had nothing to do with it; blood is thicker than water, British people sent their Christmas cards to the USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, not to mainland Europe. At that point a German businessman in the class spoke the truth to the discomfort of the Frenchman (and also of many Englishmen), saying that for Germans of his generation Britain is simply ‘the front end of the USA’.

All this is politics, history and geography. But I mention it because it was not always so. Once the English, although politically weak and small in number, had saints and their main export was holiness. All this was over 1,000 years ago. Here then is the battle for the soul of the Anglosphere. To begin to return to that holiness or to continue as now, not just in England, but also to lead the Anglosphere gradually towards that, that is the question. A return is impossible? Probably that is so. After all, why have so few English-speaking (and also in general Western) people joined the Orthodox Church and then actually become Orthodox? Because they reject the depth of repentance vital after 1,000 years of layer after layer of heresy. Self-justification is much easier. But it is not enough to take a Greek name: being a Hellenophile is not Orthodoxy. What is necessary is the cleansing of souls that have been polluted and corrupted by an anti-Orthodox mentality and world-view and then to return to the saints.

The chances of our victory in the battle for the soul of the Anglosphere are minute. But that does not mean that some individual reparation is not possible and if many individuals were to choose this path, then surely there is still hope. Once, the Reformation, separation from Rome, led to excommunication. This led to the Tudor trading conquest of the world through pillage and tyranny. Brexit, separation from the Treaty of Rome, is leading to economic excommunication. This could lead to some new spiritual insight, some return to the holiness of the ancient past. Our God is the God of wonders.

An Autobiographical Note

Archpriest Andrew Phillips was born in 1956 into a family that has lived for centuries on the Essex-Suffolk border in the East of England. He began teaching himself Russian when he was twelve. Following early experience confirmed by reading, he was finally allowed to join the Russian Orthodox Church in 1975. After obtaining an M.A. in Russian in Oxford and working in Greece, he went on to study Russian Orthodox theology in Paris. In 1988 he wrote a first book about the Church in early England and this was followed by five other books on Orthodox themes. After many years spent serving the Russian Orthodox Church in France, Portugal and then England, as senior priest of the Diocese of the British Isles and Ireland of the Church Outside Russia he has since 2008 been rector of the multinational St John of Shanghai Orthodox Church in Colchester, which he founded. Located in his native town, this is the centre of the East of England Orthodox Church trust, which is under the Church Outside Russia and includes a church in Norwich and a community in Bury St Edmunds.

Married with six adult children, serving in one of the largest Russian Orthodox churches in Western Europe and working to establish missions from it throughout the East of England, where he travels extensively to isolated families and visits Orthodox in prisons, he also teaches, translates, broadcasts and writes for the website www.orthodoxengland.org.uk, where he especially promotes the veneration of the saints of Western Europe. His work strives to reflect in English the integral Russian Orthodox view of the world. He follows the restoration of Church life in Russia very closely and is a frequent visitor to the Russian Lands. Some of what he writes has been translated and published on websites and in booklet form in Russia and several other countries. He is a member of the Patriarchal Commission for the Diaspora, the representative for Western Europe of the Missionary Department of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia, a member of its Diocesan Ecclesiastical Court and of the Theological Committee of the Orthodox Bishops in the British Isles and Ireland.

Russian Church will include more Western saints in its calendar

Orthodoxy in the West will revive. There’ll be Orthodoxy in Britain and Ireland, in France and Germany, in Holland and Spain and in America, too! Every language and nation will have Holy Orthodoxy. This is the charge laid upon our Russian emigration for our repentance.

St John of Shanghai

Moscow, March 27, Interfax – The Russian Orthodox Patriarchate will continue to include the names of the saints venerated in the early West in its calendar.

“This process is not completed, it has only started,” said the head of the Synodal Department for External Relations, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, on the Church and the World programme on the Rossiya-24 TV channel.

As was reported, in early March the Patriarchate included in its calendar St. Patrick and 15 ancient saints glorified in the countries of Europe before the schism of 1054. St. Patrick the Enlightener of Ireland was among them. It was decided that he would be commemorated on 30 March according to the secular dating system.

According to Metropolitan Hilarion, these saints were included at the request of the many Russian Orthodox dioceses in Western Europe.

“There are also other Western saints whom I hope will also soon be included in the calendar of our Church,” said Metropolitan Hilarion.

He explained that the main criterion for including the name of the saint in the calendar is veneration of the saint in a certain locality. Besides this, this saint should have lived before the schism of 1054, “as everything that happened afterwards belongs to the separate history of the Orthodox Church and Catholicism.”

The hierarch noted that it was important that the person had not participated in struggle against Orthodoxy, “as happens with certain Western religious figures.”

He also said that he would not interpret the inclusion of Western saints in the Russian Orthodox Church calendar as a step towards drawing closer to local Church reality,” said the Metropolitan.

http://www.interfax-religion.com/?act=news&div=13661

Civil War in the USA

The division in the USA continues. On the one hand, there are the old neocons, who represent the Western military-industrial complex with its latest massacres of yet more thousands of civilians in Mosul and the Yemen and need to slander Russia as a’threat’ to justify their huge war budgets. The CIA hackers always accuse others of hacking. On the other hand, there is President Trump, no saint, but certainly a pragmatist, who wants and desperately needs to make deals with the real world, outside the ethnocentric fantasies of the neocons, for whom always ‘West is Best: Divest the Rest’.

This division is reflected in Russia. Here the Western neocon elite and its media lackeys sponsor the corrupt oligarchs and their leader Prime Minister Medvedev, opposed by President Putin, who enjoys 85% of popularity among the public. Medvedev represents the unprincipled Euro-Atlanticist cosmopolitan elite with its money, money, money ideology. But the President represents the multinational peoples that make up the Russian Federation. Medvedev is, essentially, a neocon, whereas the President represents the people. It is no coincidence that just as Medvedev’s police were arresting anti-corruption demonstrators, President Putin, in effect the leader of the Russian National Party, was meeting Marine Le Pen, the leader of the French National Party and the leading candidate in the French Presidential race. Europeans together against the Western neocon elite.

Nobody knows the future, but we pray that the lesser evil will win the day.

On the Liberation of the Three Romes

Introduction: On Reversing Historic Injustices

Life is unfair. Life is full of injustices, both for individuals and for whole nations. No doubt, many examples come to mind, both personal and from history. On a national level, only in recent times, we can think of terrorist outrages, like that a few days ago in London, but we can think also of the unjust fates of Serbia, Iraq and Syria over the last generation. Or we can think back to the unjust outcomes of the First and Second World Wars. And we can think of more distant historic injustices, like colonialism, the first example of which took place in England 950 years ago after 1066, and many other examples.

For us, however, the greatest terrorist outrage and injustice, costing the lives of tens of millions, unbalancing the whole world and causing a Second World War and then a potentially nuclear Cold War, was the coup d’etat which took place in Russia exactly 100 years ago through the treachery of its elite and overseas meddlers and destroyers. As a result, for 100 years we have been in exile, whether physical, as in the case of subjects of the former Russian Empire, or spiritual, as in the case of all other Orthodox, who have suffered because of that treason that caused the fall of that Empire, our spiritual protection.

The Liberation of the Third Rome and the Restoration of Imperial Rus

For 100 years we have fought for the righting of that injustice, carried out by overseas evildoers and internal traitors. And so we have fought for our existential rights as Christians, the possibility to be with Christ, for the restoration and liberation of that Empire, the Third Rome, the Centre, the last remaining bastion of Christianity in the world. At first, deprived of the Centre, all we could do was preach the Faith, in its integrity, and work for a worldwide, if tiny, Empire, formed of oases in the desert, and only distantly hope for the coming Tsar, in faithfulness to our motto, ‘For the Faith, the Tsar and Rus’.

However, by Divine Providence and human repentance, since 2000 the Russian Federation has largely been liberated and voices have also been raised there in support of our Civilizational values, won by spiritual warfare, the worldwide Rus that we have worked for and for the coming Tsar. Only recently, among many, many others throughout the Russian Orthodox world, Metropolitan Benjamin of Vladivostok and Bishop Mitrofan of Severomorsk and Umbinsk have spoken of the inevitability of the restoration of the monarchy in at least the Russian Federation. Bishop Mitrofan has summed up our feelings in this way:

‘The Emperor is the litmus test on the basis of which we can verify if people have been cured of the poison of the 20th century or not…it is precisely the name of Nicholas II which is the test to see to what extent people have been cured and to what extent they are still sick’. Vladyka explained why people react less violently to scoundrels like Napoleon and Hitler than to the Tsar, saying that: ‘We are speaking of sacral, mysterious matters, of the destinies of the world, whether human history is to continue or to end, will there be another who restrains evil now or will there be no-one to restrain evil?…’.

‘On this cause stands resistance to the final attack of the power of the prince of darkness over humanity….If this cause is from men, it will fail all by itself, but if it is from God, then take care that you do not become apostates….We are doing God’s work, we are withstanding and resisting, in us beats the faith that Russia does have a future, that there will be a Tsar. There will be! We feel this in our hearts and there is nothing that can be done against it because this is God’s Work. Amen’.

http://ruskline.ru/news_rl/2017/03/22/v_nas_betsya_vera_v_to_chto_u_rossii_budet_car/

Conclusion: The Liberation by the Third Rome of the Second and First Romes

If the Third Rome is restored, then its first task will be to liberate others, notably liberating the Second Rome from its fall into spiritual decadence, which has led to its disincarnate philosophizing, freemasonry, ecumenism and modernism. This we clearly saw at its 2016 meeting in Crete, which was boycotted by the Third Rome and all the spiritually free. Such liberation by the Third Rome will lead to the spiritual restoration of the Greek Orthodox world, much, but by no means all, of which has fallen so far from spiritual purity and is losing its soul to the prince of this world through Westernization.

Its second task will be to liberate the First Rome. This is a far greater task. This is not a matter of reversing the fall into spiritual impurity of a hundred years ago, but of the gradual but inevitable fall from Christ of a thousand years ago by the rejection of the Holy Spirit in favour of the things of men, of man-invented structures and ideology. However, this is the source of long-standing worldwide injustices and the world cannot survive unless they are righted. For men this is impossible, but we trust in the mercy and righteousness of the Just Judge, Who will do this Himself, if we should fail to do it in His Name.

Russia, The Russian Federation, The Soviet Union, The Russian Empire, Rus and Holy Rus

Introduction: Russia

There is considerable confusion between the various terms used to describe most of the territory of Northern Eurasia, generally known by the name of Russia. This is a very loose, geographical term. Used imprecisely, it can denote either the Russian Federation, or the Soviet Union or the Russian Empire. Thus the term ‘The Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia’ (ROCOR) was used to mean ‘The Russian Orthodox Church Outside the Russian Empire’ (although it is increasingly coming to mean ‘The Russian Orthodox Church in the Anglosphere’ (ROCA?)). Let us look at the three temporary political formations which the term ‘Russia’ can be used to cover and how the term relates to the spiritual term ‘Holy Rus’.

Three Temporary Political Formations

The Russian Federation

The Russian Federation (1991 – present) is simply the present three-quarters of the old Russian Empire and is the result of the dismemberment of the old Soviet Union a generation ago. It is a temporary and the contemporary version of the country that covers most of the territory of Northern Eurasia. Sadly, the Russian Federation inherited the sad Soviet ‘abcde’ legacy: alcoholism, (a)bortion, corruption, divorce and environmental degradation, though it is successively fighting against all of them. The Russian Federation is an intermediate State organization that will inevitably die out and, at best, be replaced by something superior or, at worst, something inferior.

The Soviet Union

The Soviet Union (1917-1991) inherited much that was good from the old Russian Empire, for example, free and high-level education and medicine, social justice, anti-colonialism. However, its disastrous, atheist, German Jewish ideology of centralist Communism was utterly genocidal from the beginning and many, many millions lost their lives in repression, torture, persecutions and artificial famines and its vicious persecutions of the Church produced millions of martyrs. Its inherent injustice and corruption led to many falling into alcoholism as the only escape from it. When it collapsed through betrayal after three generations, more of the remaining heritage of the old Russian Empire, both in territorial terms and in terms of values, was also lost.

The Russian Empire

The Russian Empire (1721-1917) covered a vast multinational Northern Eurasian territory, one sixth of the world, with at its height territory even on three continents. However, it collapsed after the betrayal of the elite of the Empire in 1917. It then developed into the tragic atheist Soviet Union which decayed three generations later, also by betrayal. The betrayal of Imperial Russia after less than 200 years was carried out by aristocrats (the ancestors of today’s oligarchs and the descendants of the medieval boyars), merchants (today’s businessmen) and bureaucrats (the ancestors of Soviet apparatchiks and later today’s corrupt officials). All these proved to be for the most part traitors and turncoats, seeking their own egoistic advantages.

Conclusion: Holy Rus

The historical term Rus means the territory of the East Slavs, which today means the Russian Federation, the Ukraine and Belarus. However, the spiritual term ‘Holy Rus’ (sometimes imprecisely translated as ‘Holy Russia’) denotes anywhere in the world where Russian Orthodoxy is confessed. This includes not only the Russian Federation, the Ukraine, Belarus, but Moldova, parts of Kazakhstan, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and communities in the USA, Canada, Australia, Japan, Germany, England, France, Argentina and scores of other countries on all five continents.

Holy Rus is our identity, that of the Christian Empire. Although this Orthodox identity encompasses different languages and locally-venerated saints, this diversity is held in unity by our faithfulness to the Russian Orthodox Tradition, Holy Rus. All temporary political formations contain spiritual impurity, none measures up to Holy Rus, not even the Russian Empire, which came closest to it. Our goal of building up the Kingdom of Heaven on earth is to build up Holy Rus and everything is measured by this criterion.

A Diocese is Reborn

Within a few weeks, the Russian Orthodox Church has gained a new diocese. This is the Diocese of the British Isles and Ireland, which is part of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (ROCOR).

For long become a tiny group of abandoned disparate parishes and orphaned, it has been reborn under His Grace Metropolitan Hilarion, whose secret is simply that he loves his flock. With many ordinations and tonsurings, we can now envisage a time when our diocese will grow enormously, with priests and parishes in Ireland north and south, in Wales, Cornwall, Scotland and in an ever increasing number of major cities and towns in England. Out with the old and in with the new.

In this way our ROCOR Diocese can further develop our identity, not just as faithful heirs to the authentic and uncompromised Russian Orthodox Tradition from pre-Revolutionary times, with our love for all the New Martyrs and Confessors, including the Imperial Martyrs, but also as faithful heirs to our local Anglo-Celtic saints and our local languages. We stand as a foundation of a future Local Church in Western Europe, for we are local, self-governing, independent, but also faithfully incarnated in the Russian Orthodox Tradition.
Thank you, Vladyko!

Three Revolutions

At this very moment much is being written and spoken about the so-called ‘Russian Revolution’ or, more accurately, Western Revolution in Russia. This is because now is precisely the hundredth anniversary of that disastrous coup d’etat when Tsar Nicholas II, the Lord’s Anointed, was betrayed and deposed by the Westernized elite of Russia in Saint Petersburg. After that tens of millions were slaughtered, dying of war, starvation, torture and repression. Such is the sin of the aristocrats, generals, merchants and half-baked intellectuals, who brought such catastrophic misfortune to all the lands and peoples of the Russian Empire and beyond it. All this repentance is unreported in the West, for the West never repents for its crimes, but justifies them. Indeed, Russian repentance for the tragedy of those events today can only be compared to the lack of repentance for the two other Western Revolutions that preceded it.

The first such Western Revolution is the 1688 English Revolution. This was an invasion of England by a huge armada of foreign ships bringing a usurping Dutch prince to England. Called ‘Glorious’ and ‘Bloodless’ by the scheming bankers and merchants, Dutch and especially English, who organized it, it was neither. Figures of one million dead throughout the British Isles and Ireland as a result of it are sometimes quoted. Certainly it brought about the subjugation not only of England and Wales, but the repression of Ireland and within twenty years the subjugation by bribery of Scotland. In England it usurped the royal house, led to the so-called ‘Industrial Revolution’, with all its cruel exploitation, and completed the parliamentary tyranny that lasts to this day. These islands have never recovered from it. And there has never been repentance for it; indeed this tragedy is, literally, glorified, and was imitated by the stupidity of ‘constitutionalist’ Russian aristocrats 100 years ago.

The second Western Revolution was the French Revolution of 1789, 101 years after the English. Never billed even by its propagandists as ‘Bloodless’, it resulted in the public guillotining of thousands, the genocide of hundreds of thousands in the Vendee (‘kill them all’) and a generation of wars that engulfed all Europe, as far as Moscow. Such was the ‘genius’ of the self-crowned ‘Emperor’ who had replaced the French kings. Two and a half million dead throughout Europe is thought to be the great ‘achievement’ of the French Revolution. This too is glorified and celebrated by today’s corrupt French State, which promotes is memory worldwide as ‘progress’. It was on the foundation of the ‘Terror’ in France that the atheists in Russia five to six generations later carried out their terror. The immoral monster Lenin is said to have been responsible for the murder of four million.

Russia today is repentant for its tragic revolution. When will England and France repent for theirs?