Looking back twenty-five years on from 2020, it is difficult for the young to imagine the state of decadence into which the Church had fallen at the end of the last millennium and which lasted into the early 21st century. For over 100 years, between 1917 and 2018, the Church had been paralysed; for over 75 years by the captivity of the Russian Church to the Soviet and Post-Soviet State; for over 100 years by the captivity of the old Church of Constantinople to the Western Powers, since 1948 to the USA. Once the Russian Church had been freed, after a very long and painful wait at the end of the 20th century, we then had to wait for the liberation of the Patriarchate of Constantinople from the US-controlled Phanariots. This became a very frustrating wait, as there was an accumulation of nearly two centuries of problems to be resolved, notably in Eastern Europe and the Diaspora. Everything began to move only in 2016, with the generational change 25 years after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991.
By trying to impose its masonic policies on the Church in Crete in 2016, the Phanariot ‘Council’ there became a laughing stock. Both the Vatican and the USA realized that the Phanar had no authority in the Orthodox world, that it was not an Orthodox Vatican, as they had repeatedly been told by the Phanariots and as they had naively believed. Then, in 2018, with one last desperate throw of its dice, by threatening schism in the Ukraine the Phanariot bishops found that they could no longer concelebrate with the Russian Church. By threatening schism in the Ukraine, its assemblies of bishops in the Diaspora, already become expensive but futile talking-shops for the Phanariot fantasy of imperialism, were boycotted by the Russian Church.
The Phanar had played with fire – and was burned. One word from the then President of Turkey and the elderly Phanariot Patriarch would become a refugee. One word from the US ambassador in Athens or Ankara and he would be sacked. By the end of 2018 the position of the Phanar had become very, very fragile – its demise in the form that it had assumed since the Russian Revolution of 1917 had become inevitable. All progress has been blocked for so long, so when the Phanar, compromised by its calendar and all sorts of modernist innovations, did finally collapse like a weakened dam under the pressure of vast amounts of water, the accumulation of problems was overcome. What happened?
First of all, in 2019 the highly impoverished and corrupt Ukraine finally collapsed into its constituent parts. Most of it returned to the Russian Federation, other small parts returned to Romania and Hungary and the extreme west to Poland, only a small central-western part remaining as an independent country and returning to its historical name of Malorossiya. When this happened, and the corrupted Western world realized that it had backed a bunch of thieves and murderers all along, the structure set up by Constantinople in the Ukraine also collapsed in scandal and disgrace.
As a result, in 2020 a long-awaited Church Council was called in Moscow and the Church restructured, as of old, into Five Patriarchates, with four new Autocephalous Churches, the order of precedence of the Patriarchates reconfigured in conformity with 21st century reality. Sometimes called ‘Pentarchy Plus’, these are the same Five Patriarchates and four Churches as we have today, in 2045:
- The Patriarchate of Rus. Patriarch Tikhon II.
The canonical territory of the Patriarchate of Rus (as it was renamed, the old name of ‘Patriarchate of Moscow’ being dropped as narrow and compromised) was recognized as Eurasia, except for the territories of the Patriarchates of Antioch and Jerusalem and the Church of Europe (see below). It continued for the time being to include the autonomous Churches of Japan, China, Moldova, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania and the Exarchates of Belarus and Malorossiya. The Patriarchate of Rus was joined by the Church of Georgia, which had faced great difficulty and isolation and so also became another autonomous Church within the Patriarchate of Rus. The Patriarchate of Rus was given the immense task, with the closest co-operation of the other four Patriarchates, of organizing four new Autocephalous Churches, following the spiritual and moral collapse of the old heterodox institutions of Catholicism and Protestantism. These were in order of size:
- The Church of Europe. This included the former Autocephalous Churches of Poland and the Czech Lands and Slovakia, which were absorbed into the new Autocephalous Church of Europe. Therefore this included the territories of all the ex-Catholic/Protestant countries westwards from the borders of the Empire of Rus (as it was renamed in 2028, when the Empire was restored and Tsar Nicholas III was anointed). So it stretched from Finland and Hungary to Iceland and Portugal.
- The Church of Latin America. This included South and Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean. It used Spanish and Portuguese, with some Dutch, French and English, especially in the Caribbean.
- The Church of Anglo-America. This was composed of Canada and the USA and used English, French and some Spanish.
- The Church of Oceania. This used English and some native languages (notably Maori).
- The Patriarchate of New Constantinople. Patriarch Chrysostom.
The flock-less institution of the Patriarchate of old Constantinople was moved from Istanbul and most of its bishops retired, once they had been threatened with details of their lives being revealed. A new ‘Patriarch of New Constantinople’, the first Patriarch being a Bulgarian by nationality (in recognition for the bravery of the Church of Bulgaria in refusing to attend the 2016 meeting in Crete), the Orthodox calendar returned, and so the old calendarist schisms in Greece, Cyprus, Romania and Bulgaria overcome. The canonical territory of New Constantinople (as it was now called) was defined as that of the old autocephalous Churches of Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia (its nationalist schisms in Macedonia and Montenegro overcome), Albania, Cyprus and Greece (together with areas of Greece formerly under old Constantinople). With an Orthodox population of just over 40 million, the new Church of Constantinople, seven old Churches in one, decided that the nationalities of its Patriarchs and their sees would rotate. Thus, instead of absurd provincial rivalries (each nationality trying to build the tallest church in the Balkans), at last there began a period of Balkan and Cypriot Confederation, co-operation and prosperity, as Tsar Nicholas II had foreseen in 1912.
- The Patriarchate of Alexandria. Patriarch Moses.
The Patriarchate of Alexandria’s canonical territory remained All Africa. However, it began to be aided in its task of at last missionizing Africa by the other Patriarchates, especially the Patriarchate of Rus with its generous Imperial funds. From now on its Patriarchs became black Africans.
- The Patriarchate of Antioch. Patriarch John.
Centred in Russian-rebuilt Damascus after the Western war which had tried to destroy Syria through its puppets Saudi Arabia and Qatar (as they were then called), this Patriarchate was renewed. Its canonical territory was defined as the whole Arab world of the Middle East, outside Palestine (see below), together with Turkey.
- The Patriarchate of Jerusalem. Patriarch James.
This was now established again as the Patriarchate of the Holy Land and its canonical territory was defined as that of the lands of the Palestinians, Israel and the Jordan. Its old dispute with Antioch was overcome and its Patriarchs from now on were all to be Palestinians.
So it was after the great cleansing of the Church at the 2020 Great and Holy Council of Moscow (as it is now called) that the Church was reconfigured and the mission to the Non-Orthodox world began.
4 October 2045