Monthly Archives: January 2018

Why is he more successful than me?

Here is a question that we sometimes hear. Immediately, it suggests jealousy. Why else would someone ask such a question, if they were not jealous of someone else? Jealousy is a terrible thing because it if you are jealous, it not only makes others feel bad, but it also makes you feel bad. But, if we think about it, what a strange question it is.

Whatever do we mean by success? Does it mean having a lot of money, a big house and a fancy car? If it does, I am not interested. After all, Christ did not have any of those things. As a matter of fact, he did not have any money, or a house or a car.

I think that a much more interesting question is: Why is he happier than me? I find this question interesting because it seems to me that happiness is much more important than success. Why?

Well, first of all, only a few people are ever going to be rich and have big houses and fancy cars. That is just a fact of life. Secondly, I have met such people and none of them seemed particularly happy to me. For example, I know a lady who is a millionaire. She is miserable. And I will tell you an English saying: she is so miserable that she is ‘as miserable as sin’. That’s a saying that we should think about. Oh, I’m sure that there are some people who are rich and ‘successful’ who are also happy. It is just that I have never met any of them.

On the other hand, I know a lot of people who are happy, but they are not rich and successful. They have very ordinary jobs, most of them rent a house or a flat, some of them don’t even have a car. So they are not really ‘successful’. So what makes them happy? It can’t be their age, because they are all ages, between 9 months and 90 years, it can’t be that they are men or women because they are both, it can’t be their nationality because they come from many different countries and it can’t be because they are married or single because they are both. So what is happiness?

Well, I’ve thought a lot about it and I have come to this conclusion. It seems to me that they are happy because they are content with what they have. They are content with it because they say to themselves: ‘This is what I have and I am going to make the best of it’.

For instance, I often visit people in prison. Now that is not a place where you want to be. I say this to the prisoners: ‘You are in a bad place. So how are you going to survive? You’re going to survive by making the best of it, by using prison as an opportunity to find good and do good. Prison’s your opportunity to prepare the rest of your life for after you get out. It’s a university of life’.

Life is what we make of it. We all know that there are good things and bad things in life. All we have to do to be happy is to look for the good things. We should not even make success into our aim. We should make being contented with what we have inside us and what we can do with it into our aim. Then we shall be happy. But if we spend our lives wanting more things, more money, bigger houses, fancier cars, bigger TVs, newer smartphones and tablets so that we can be happy, then all that will happen is that we will never be happy, because we will always be wanting more money, a bigger house, a fancier car, a bigger TV, a newer smartphone and tablet and so we shall never be satisfied, never content.

One of the worst things for this nowadays is the way that some people use Facebook. Because a lot of people use it to show off and bully others, to show how popular it seems that they are, how many likes they have, how many friends they have, how many holidays they have etc. For them, all of life is a competition and they are the winners. That makes others jealous or even depressed.

I will tell you something about Facebook:

Most, and probably all the people, who show off on Facebook are not happy. They are not ‘winners’, they are what is called ‘losers’. If you are happy, content, you do not need to show off or bully. You keep yourself to yourself, living your life (and not someone else’s) from day to day. And that for me is success.

On the Coming Christian Empire

The Christian Empire is not new. It existed for some 1,600 years, starting and ending with a saint, going from St Constantine I to St Nicholas II. The Empire unites all generations of Orthodox Christians, as it is our past, present and future. We serve the same Sovereign Orthodox Empire, whether it was called New Rome or was and will be called the Third Rome, Holy Rus. As for the treasonous and perverted aberrations that temporarily replaced the Third Rome just over 100 years ago, we value in them only what they inherited from the Third Rome, knowing that they were and are only passing, exceptional phenomena.

As for us, we are already looking ahead, to what is to come, the new Sovereign Orthodox Empire, the reborn Third Rome. All conscious Orthodox Christians who are not earthbound by petty and primitive politics, are members of this Empire. We all serve Her, each in our own way, above manmade nationalities, provincial customs and passing administrative structures. The Sovereign Orthodox Empire is the Universal Empire for all who confess the Orthodox Faith, regardless of whether we live inside the geographical frontiers of the Coming Empire or outside them, as faithful witnesses to the Universal Orthodox Faith.

Whatever our situation, we are all soldiers of the Empire, we are all Imperial Orthodox. Together we are preparing the way for the Coming Empire, like the Forerunner, as St John the Baptist proclaimed of old: ‘Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand…the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight…But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Saducees come to his baptism, he said to them, O generation of vipers, who has warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance…And now also the axe is laid to the root of the trees…’

These trees that do not bear fruit are deformations alien to the Empire. The first one is imperialism. This is what drove all ancient and modern pagan empires, from the Persian to the Roman, from Charlemagne’s Empire to the Portuguese, Spanish, French, British, Soviet and American Empires. Their aim has always been to enslave and exploit their vassals in asset-stripping operations. The second one is nationalism. This is the divisive spirit which says that ‘our race and language are better than yours’. This is a racist notion which always results in wars. Both these aberrations have at times poisoned the life of the Empire.

The spirit of the Sovereign Orthodox Empire is founded on the Church which is One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic. She is One because She is the Universal Orthodox Church, Which already unites so many nationalities and languages all over the world. She is Holy because She unites all the saints, from those of Jerusalem and Egypt to those of Old Europe and 20th century Russia. She is Catholic because our Faith is the same in all places and at all times, it is the Faith of the Seven Councils. She is Apostolic because She goes back to the Apostles, who were inspired by the Holy Spirit, as we too are called to be. So be it, O Lord.

 

Four Proverbs for Church Life

Coincidence is God’s way of remaining anonymous

Einstein

The truth will out

This proverb recalls the Old Testament ‘Your sin will find you out’ (Num. 32, 33) and the New Testament, ‘For there is nothing covered that shall not be revealed; neither hid that shall not be known’ (Lk 12, 2). Sooner or later your sins will be known. These are terrifying words for all of us sinners.

The chickens come home to roost

This recalls that actions always have consequences, that if you commit or allow injustices, you will have to pay for them sooner or later.

It is shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted

When you let a situation degenerate for a few years, let alone for two or three decades, any action you take is too little, too late. You will have to pay for your negligence and lack of love.

Fine words butter no parsnips

This rather old-fashioned proverb is similar in meaning to ’Actions speak louder than words’. No number of words about ‘love’ etc will help, if your actions do not match up to your words and repair the damage done.

St John and What is Above Conservative and Liberal

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.

Einstein

There is nothing new in being conservative and being liberal. Some by nature will always prefer the old, others the new, some will always be pessimistic, others optimistic, some will always be negative, others positive, some will always be closed, others open, some will always be individual, others social, some will always be introverted, others extroverted, some will always be cautious, others visionary, some will always be literal, others allegorical, some will always be passive, others active, some will always be turned to the past, others to the future, some will always be turned to the Divine, others to the human.

In the time of Christ there were Pharisees (fundamentalist conservatives) and Saducees (syncretistic liberals). The former detested it when good was done on the Sabbath day, the latter rejected the Resurrection and miracles. After Christ there were Monophysite conservatives who saw Christ as God alone and liberal Arians who saw Christ as man alone. Then there was the literal school of Antioch and the allegorical school of Alexandria. Later, in Catholicism, there were liberal Scholastics and conservative Scholastics, and in Protestantism there were doom and gloom Calvinists and liberal protestors who rejected all authority.

In our own times, the Roman Catholic and Protestant worlds have long been much divided between conservative and liberal. This has become particularly clear in recent years with the appearance of the question of attitudes to homosexuality, but it has in fact been clear since the 1960s. It is a sad fact that such a division has also appeared in the Orthodox Churches, most obviously in the USA. Here there are old calendarist sects and new calendarist sects, even though the latter often infiltrate and hide behind the Church. They all claim to be Orthodox but, out of communion with the Church of the Tradition, they are not.

Even inside the Church, there are dioceses (‘jurisdictions’) of Local Churches that attract conservative Roman Catholics and Protestants and others that attract liberal Roman Catholics and Protestants. However, the conservatives are shocked when they learn that Orthodox have as a norm married priests, as well as allowing Church divorce, Church remarriage and allowing non-abortive contraception. The liberals are shocked by standing for long services, fasting, prayer rules, modest dress and saints’ names. All of them forget one thing and, if they do not recall it, they too will eventually find themselves outside the Church.

What they forget is the Spiritual. And the source of the Spiritual is the Holy Spirit, which unites both conservative and liberal, as it is beyond, higher than, both of them. We can see this in the life of St John of Shanghai. The ecumenist liberals hated his asceticism, the source of the grace he acquired, his love of the services, the saints, in a word, his love of Orthodox Tradition. Anti-missionary conservatives hated his missionary work, his consciousness that the Tradition of the Holy Spirit is for the whole world. That is why they, clergy and laity, nationalists, right-wing politicians and CIA agents, put him on trial – and lost.

As for us, we follow St John and the Tradition of the Holy Spirit, Holiness. Our spiritual father, Archbishop Antony of Geneva, was the spiritual son of St John (who was born in the same year as my grandfather) and so we are St John’s spiritual grandchildren. Many forget that St John was Archbishop of Western Europe (1951-1962), for far longer than he was Archbishop of San Francisco. Here in Western Europe he is our patron saint. He stands far above the anti-missionaries and nationalists, the intellectuals and modernists. He stands far above petty conservatism and liberalism, for he was and is inspired by the Holy Spirit.

It is on this basis alone that we can look forward to building an Orthodox Metropolia of Western Europe and from there a new Local Church. No Local Church can be built without the urge to acquire the Holy Spirit, that is, without the search for holiness. The quest for holiness means monastic and ascetic life, fasting, prayer and almsgiving, repentance, that is, confession and communion, and the veneration of the saints, including the local saints, who acquired the Holy Spirit.  And so we come back to St John of Shanghai, who all over Europe rejected both the ghettoes of the Pharisees and the Halfodoxy of the modernists.

 

The Mystical Meaning of the Establishment of a Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Europe (ROME)

‘Yes, it is Europe, from the Atlantic to the Urals, it is Europe, all of Europe, which will decide the fate of the world’.

President Charles de Gaulle, 22 November 1959

Introduction: Holy Rus

Having accepted the Orthodox Christian Church and Faith, Rus, the Russian Lands, became known as ’Holy’, for, alone out of all  other lands, holiness was its ideal. As a reward for being faithful to holiness, the Lord gave the Russian Lands immense territories, as far as the Pacific and even beyond, with great natural wealth and, above all, holy men and women. Indeed, after the final spiritual and physical fall of the Second Rome in 1453, its successor was this Holy Rus, the Third Rome, the last bastion of Universal Uncompromised Christianity. This last Christian Empire was called on to restrain the spread of global evil which has prepared the coming of Antichrist. For this reason, the Russian Lands have had many enemies. Some coveted her lands and resources, others wanted to destroy her Church and Faith, but always first by destroying her Sovereign Monarchy (Samoderzhavie, deliberately misleadingly translated by anti-Christians as ‘autocracy’).

The Overthrow of Holy Rus

Thus, nearly 200 years ago, Tsar Nicholas I (1796-1855) tried to cleanse and restore the Sovereign Monarchy of the atheist tyranny of anti-Christian absolutism, with which it had been stained by its enemies in the century before. He also knew that serfdom, introduced as such by the same Westernized absolutists in the same century, was not Christian, and began preparing its abolition. However, from 1908 on, the British elite began planning to overthrow the Sovereign Monarchy and replace it with a Protestant-style Constitution, thus enabling it to dismember and exploit the Christian Empire. From 1911 on, Germany similarly began planning to destroy the Russian Lands and colonize them. From 1915 on, the financial centres of Britain and Germany and of the USA began plotting against the Sovereign Monarchy, financing masonic liberals and atheist revolutionary allies to disrupt the Empire’s infrastructure and distribution system.

The Fall and Rising Again of Holy Rus

Indeed, by the early 20th century the Christian Faith had much weakened in the Russian Lands and with it the mystical sense of awe before the Lord’s Anointed, the Christian Emperor. ‘Treason and cowardice and deceit’ were all around, as Tsar Nicholas wrote in March 1917. And so, Christ-like, he went to his Gethsemane and then to his Golgotha, accepting God’s Will. As those who had risen against the God-given Tsar had risen against God, so the Christian Empire fell through apostasy. Without the Orthodox Faith, there could be no Sovereign Monarchy. However, the Lord had destined the Russian Lands to be the last bastion of Universal Christianity in the time of general apostasy before Antichrist. Thus, He has begun restoring the Russian Orthodox Church, which is called on to preserve the purity of the Faith before the Second Coming, in order to lead the repentant remnant of mankind to Christ, thus meeting the mission of the Third Rome.

The Russian Role in Restoring a Sovereign Europe

In 1959 the French statesman President De Gaulle had spoken of a united Europe from the Atlantic to the Urals, seeing Europe as an alliance of independent, sovereign states. He was right in that he fundamentally rejected a supranational character for Europe as ‘a supranational Europe is a Europe under American command’, a ‘Europe of the Americans’. Indeed, on 15 May 1962 he clearly declared that ‘there cannot be any Europe other than that of (nation) states, apart from in myths, fiction and parades’, which is precisely the present EU. However, he was wrong in that he identified such a Confederation of Sovereign States stretching only as far as the Urals: it must stretch to the Pacific. And here is the mystical meaning of the establishment of a Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Europe. It means that the still for the moment Tsarless Third Rome may stretch from the Atlantic to the Pacific, uniting East and West, overcoming Europe’s self-imposed isolation.

Russia and Europe

The pure Christian roots of Western Europe can still redirect it to salvation from its present apostasy. But these roots have been conserved ecclesially only by the Russian Orthodox Church, which stretches to the Pacific and even across it. It is a mistake to try and isolate the culture of Europe, in the extreme western corner of Northern Eurasia, from its roots in Christ. The European attempt to isolate and nationalize Christ from Asia, to claim Him for itself, first resulted in the deformations of Rome and Geneva. Then apostate Europeans replaced Christ with anti-European ‘European values’. Among others, Austria, Hungary, the Czech Lands, Slovakia and Poland are now resisting this attempt. However, spiritually they can do little without Russian Orthodox support. Before the great European suicide of 1914-1918, there was hope that Paris-Berlin-Saint Petersburg could be united. Now, 100 years after the First War ended, we have the same hope again.

The Self-Annihilation of Europe

Today European peoples face their spiritual annihilation, imposed on them by the two-edged sword of the choice of the atheist European elite. On the one hand, there is its self-imposed abortion holocaust (2-3 million European children slaughtered each year for decades). On the other hand, there is its self-imposed, massive Muslim immigration of cheap labour, which will result in a generation’s time in large parts of Western Europe being peopled by a 25% Muslim population. Since renouncing the fullness of Christ’s Church 1,000 years ago, Europe has fallen prey to a host of self-imposed isms, from Catholicism to Protestantism, from Secularism to Communism, from Fascism to Capitalism, from Atheism to Globalism. Obsessed by its barbaric pagan past, whether Roman or Germanic, it renounced the Holy Spirit. It has forgotten the glory of its saints, its holiness, which blossomed in Europe for the first millennium and then dried up.

The Repentance of Europe

Only by appealing to the glory of these, its own saints, and repenting and returning to the Church and Faith in which they gained their holiness, the grace of the Holy Spirit, can Europe be saved. Western Europe must renounce its self-isolation that it so fatefully chose in 1054 and tragically repeated in 1914. Otherwise it will disappear into the abyss of its suicidal isolation. In order to do this, it must make its peace with the remains of the Christian Empire in the Russian Lands. Western Europe has continually attempted to destroy this Empire, most notably in the four multinational invasions that it so aggressively and barbarically launched against it in the space of only 130 years between 1812 and 1941. In order to do this, it must repent for continually attempting to undermine its Faith and Sovereign Monarchy and commit genocide against its Peoples and those of other Orthodox Christian lands. This is going on right now, from Kosovo to the Ukraine.

Conclusion: The Salvation of Europe

The mystical meaning of a Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Europe is the opportunity for salvation, the return to the Church of God of the living souls of those Europeans still spiritually sensitive and not yet zombified by EU bread and US circuses. A Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Europe (ROME) (not just in Europe) is, in the words of its former Patriarch, the foundation of a future Local Church, which will be reborn, as soon as Europe is worthy of it. It can gather together not only the Orthodox of all nationalities who already live and pray in Western Europe now, but also can gather together all the saints of Europe, those who lived and prayed here in the distant past, and their descendants. All this is in order to prepare for the future. This will be a Europe cleansed of its atheism and of its spiritually impure institutions, polluted by their refusal to accept the Holy Spirit Who proceeds from the Father. This will be a Europe that can seek – and find – holiness, the Spirit of God.

 

 

 

Possible Forms for the Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Europe (ROME)

The Russian Orthodox Church from Moscow now has six active bishops in Western Europe: Archbishop Simon of Brussels and Belgium; Archbishop Elisei of the Hague and the Netherlands; Bishop Nestor of Paris, France, Spain and Portugal; Bishop Tikhon of Podolsk for Germany; Bishop Antony of Italy, Austria and Hungary; Bishop Matvei for the British Isles and Ireland. The Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (ROCOR) has only three bishops. Moreover, one of them, the elderly Archbishop Mark, may retire to Mt Athos, as he already expressed the desire several times over the last two years, leaving only two ROCOR bishops in Western Europe.

We know that one day a Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Europe will be formed, though we do not know when or who will be the Metropolitan. Nobody knows what the future will bring, but perhaps it could be something like this: The Paris-born ROCOR Archbishop Michael (Donskov – formerly of Geneva) could become Metropolitan of Paris and Western Europe. The ROCOR Archbishop Agapit of Stuttgart could look after the 50 ROCOR parishes in Germany, Austria and Denmark. Then ROCOR could appoint deans for its parishes in shared territories such as Switzerland, under the supervision of the Metropolitan, who would in any case care for the ROCOR parishes in France and Benelux.

In such a case, the much younger Bishop Nestor of Paris could become bishop at the restored Cathedral in Nice, remaining the closest advisor and then successor to Metropolitan Michael. From Moscow it would be necessary to appoint three more bishops: one in Vienna for historic Austria-Hungary, leaving Bishop Antony to look after the 70 or so parishes in Italy; one in Madrid for Spain and Portugal, leaving Bishop Nestor to look after France; and one for Scandinavia, perhaps in Helsinki, where there is a desperate need for a missionary bishop of the Russian Orthodox Tradition, looking after the many Russians in Finland, as also in Sweden, Norway and Iceland.

This would create a Metropolia of eleven bishops, nine from Moscow and two, including the Metropolitan, from ROCOR. Of course, there are many practical and financial problems and many points here may be quite, quite unrealistic. Only those in charge can see the big picture. There are also many variations. For example, in the British Isles and Ireland if Moscow blessed it, ROCOR could permanently appoint a bishop from the USA to look after all the parishes there. Or, in the case of a retirement, the Netherlands Diocese could take over parishes in northern Belgium, those in southern Belgium joining the French diocese. But not as we will, or imagine, but as God wills.

Archpriest Andrew Phillips M.A. (Oxon), Cert. Theology (Paris)

Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (ROCOR)

Member of the ROCOR/Patriarchal Commission for the Diaspora

Representative for Western Europe of the ROCOR Missionary Department

Member of the Ecclesiastical Court of the ROCOR Diocese of the British Isles

Member of the Theological Committee of the Orthodox Bishops in the British Isles

 

The 11th Century Scramble for Europe and 21st Century Globalization

Eight centuries before the 19th century European ‘scramble for Africa’ (the rush with which Western European elites invaded and conquered Africa for purposes of exploitation), there took place the scramble for Europe, the same process of legalized plunder. This happened between 1050 and 1250, the year 1050 being an endpoint in a 300-year long process of degeneration and so a launch-pad for what had been unknown before in the vast part of Europe – feudalism. The process was led by the Franks, a people whose name means ‘the free’, for all whom they encountered became their slaves. From 1050 on the Franks created a new institutional and cultural uniformity in the first ‘European Union’.

This process can therefore be called ’the Frankization of Europe’. It was a process that had begun in the Carolingian heartland of what is now western Germany and north-eastern France. From here in the 11th century, this spread southwards to Italy and northwards to Scandinavia, in 1066 it was carried by its Norman shock-troops westwards to England and later to Wales, Scotland and Ireland, then southwards to Spain and later carried by Teutonic shock troops eastwards to the Slav Lands and Hungary. By the end of the 11th century the process had reached beyond Europe to the Holy Land. This was the beginning of what is now called ‘globalization’, which merely means the scramble for the world.

Thus, the ordinary people of Europe were the first victims, and not the bearers, of Frankish expansion, trampled down beneath the alien castle-building cavalry elite. The Crusades are the best example of this papally-orchestrated war of conquest, fought in the name of God and profit, expanding Frankish religion and trade. This is also what is happening today, the expansion of the Frankish/Western religion of political correctness (including sodomy) and its asset-stripping business. Vigour, boldness, brutality and greed, this was what made up the Faustian brew of the Frankish conqueror, just as it does today. By the late Middle Ages 80% of Europe’s rulers were Franks; today they belong to the ‘Davos elite’.

In the late 11th century the Welsh bishop, Rhygyfarch (1057-1099), witnessed to the ‘gratuitously cruel’ Norman conquest of south Wales and wrote his lament: ‘The people and the priests are despised by the words, hearts and deeds of the Frenchmen. They burden us with taxes and consume our possessions. One of them, however lowly he may be, makes a hundred natives tremble with his command and terrifies them with his look. Alas, our fall, alas our deep sorrow’. Similarly, but this time in support of conquest and not lamenting it, in the 1090s the Frankish monk and historian Guibert of Nogent wrote of the Crusades that ‘God has instituted holy war’. He could have written ‘jihad’.

So began the myth of the ‘Free World’, which means the world enslaved by the Franks. So was born the myth of freedom and democracy, that is, of the anti-social individualism (narcissistic selfishness) of modern times. It can be heard in the imperialist anthem ‘Rule Britannia’, which proclaims that upper-class Britons will ‘never, never, never be slaves’, yet theirs was an empire founded on slavery, or at best, wage-slavery. So was born the chosen people myth, of Aryans, Nazis and, in the USA, of WASPS and ‘American exceptionalism’. BBC Establishment propaganda still insists on ‘the international community’ – the same myth of ‘the West is best’ and ‘the West against the rest’, which is today called the G7 and the New World Order.

However, today, after a thousand years of the sanctification of warfare, of the Western delusion of self-justification, of the militarization and monetarization of society, of institutionalized Western terrorism (‘shock and awe’), the myth is coming to an end. God is not on the side of Western, or anyone else’s, greed and terrorism. The lies of a thousand years have their consequences and will have to be paid for. It is called retribution. The vassal states of American feudalism, from Western Europe to Japan, from South Korea to New Zealand will not forever be held in subjugation by their lords. And this is the future history of the twenty-first century, the terrible yet redeeming story of which is now being written.