Monthly Archives: May 2024

A Russian Tragedy of Errors

 

Introduction: Three Fragments of the Church

After the overthrow of the Tsar by traitors in the so-called ‘Revolution’ of 1917, and the ensuing substitution of the Russian Empire for the Soviet Union, parts of the Russian Orthodox Church broke away from it. Although divisions of tiny, temporary ‘catacomb’ church communities formed inside the USSR, divisions were nowhere so obvious as outside the USSR, where there was the political freedom to choose which part of the Church to belong to.

The anti-Soviet Russian emigration split into two warring groups, one quite independent of the rest of the Orthodox Church, the other under the British-controlled and, after British bankruptcy from 1948 on the US-controlled, Patriarchate of Constantinople (1). In any case, both groups were independent of the vast majority of the Russian Church, which was under the enslaved and enhostaged administration of the 99% of the Church inside the Soviet Union. Why did these divisions develop?

  1. The Moscow Patriarchate: Bride of Christ or Concubine of the State?

Like all other Churches the Russian Orthodox Church has had a long history of both dependence on and independence from the State. In this respect, people may think of the independence from the State of St Nil of Sora (1508) and the Transvolgan Non-Possessors (1), of Metropolitan Philip of Moscow (murdered in 1569 on the orders of the centralising Tsar Ivan IV) and of the Old Ritualist schism of the 1660s, which was largely created by reaction to the persecution of the centralising State, which demanded absurd ritual conformity. By 1917 some 10% of the Russian population were declaring that they were Old Ritualists, thus showing the strength of opposition to the centralist State. All the above showed independence from the nationalist State, and many showed faithfulness to Orthodox Tradition, placing the Holy Spirit above corruption.

Under the imperialist Emperor Peter I (‘the Great’) (+ 1725), the Russian Orthodox Patriarchate was abolished and replaced by a Protestant-style Minister of Religion. Soon after this there began the persecution of monastic life, when some two-thirds of monasteries were closed by the German Empress Catherine I (‘the Great’) (+ 1796). Nevertheless, the Church continued to live, under the great St Paisius (Velichkovsky), forced into exile in Romania, and in the Russian Lands, in Sarov and Optina, where new saints appeared, and in Kronstadt, where there began the eucharistic revival, and elsewhere. The grace of the Holy Spirit was active and the deadly bureaucrats of the State apparatus did not manage to quench it, despite their best efforts. They were opposed by Tsar Nicholas II, who, despised and mocked by the bureaucrats in cassocks, had such great saints as Seraphim of Sarov canonised.

However, during this Imperial period most Russian Orthodox omitted to take communion more than once a year and lead an active life of prayer and fasting. Church life became largely an empty ritual, an exercise in ritualism. Here is why the Soviet atheists (most of them, like Stalin, were also ritually Orthodox) came to power: there was no Orthodox conscience and so spiritual resistance to the myths and practices of atheism. Under the Soviet regime, which unsurprisingly admired the imperialist Peter I as their centralising model, the Church was run by the Secret Police. Therefore, the enslaved Church hierarchy of the time adopted a subservient pro-State policy called ‘Sergianism’, in order to ensure its survival. Sergianism was massively rejected by the politically free emigration: hence the divisions. Meanwhile, inside the Soviet Union, ordinary bishops, priests, monastics and faithful people were martyred in their hundreds of thousands.

The remnants of these State-subservient attitudes are still very present in the Russian Church today. For instance, churches in towns and cities usually have professional choirs (if parishioners want to sing, they are forbidden, as in the Russian church in Chiswick, a suburb of London, for example), which reduces the church to a ritualist theatre with a choir to listen to. For example, many ordinary Orthodox in Russia today reproach the Church which appears to be run like a business, the main interest seeming to be profit. Also the centralised hierarchy in Moscow actively opposes clergy who have dissident political opinions from the State about the Special Military Operation in the Ukraine. This only creates more scandals.

This centralisation has led to those parts of the Church in independent countries outside the Russian Federation wanting to break away from the centralised control of Moscow. This is for national reasons, for example, there is resistance to the Moscow centralisation on the part of Non-Russians in the Ukraine, Moldova, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and elsewhere. They all seek Church independence and devolution. However, there are also cases of sectarian and schismatic groups which break away from central authority for purely political, right-wing reasons, both inside the Russian Federation, but also outside it, above all in the highly Americanised ROCOR (see below).

  1. ROCOR: Orthodox or Right-Wing?

In 2007 we all at last managed to get the New York-based ROCOR (the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia) to rejoin the post-Soviet Moscow Patriarchate. Otherwise, it would have become a schismatic sect, out of communion with the rest of the Orthodox Church. When it reunited with Moscow, it lost some 5% of its 300 parishes. These 5% were extremists who really wanted to be in schism, out of communion with everyone, claiming like pharisees to be ‘True Russian Orthodox Churches’. There were then, and perhaps still are, about four of these tiny squabbling sects, formed in 2007, all cursing each other.

After the wonderful God-sent opportunity of reunion with the bulk of the reviving Russian Orthodox Church and life-giving canonical communion with it for a decade between 2007 and 2017, very sadly, the ROCOR authorities gradually lapsed back into their sectarian temptations from before 2007. Step by step these sectarians took control of ROCOR’s New York Synod in an internal coup d’etat, effectively isolating its ill but charismatic Metropolitan, rejecting all his decisions and using his electronic signature to justify their very strange and deeply uncanonical decisions.

Very sadly, the extremists had learned nothing from being in communion with the Mother-Church for ten years. They had simply camouflaged and justified their pharisaical, schismatic and sectarian tendencies behind their alleged unity with the Moscow Patriarchate. Today ROCOR is out of full communion with Moscow, and so its second state is worse than its first. Instead of Orthodoxy, it has espoused the sectarian American right-wingery of woman-despising ‘Orthobros’ and Trumpism, totally confusing Divine Orthodoxy with mere human conservatism and its lust for money and power.

This pharisaical state of schism and fanatical sectarianism was encouraged by deluded Non-Russian neophytes, who want to be more royalist than the King, more Russian Orthodox than real Russian Orthodox. In reality, these Lutheran and Calvinist sectarians have ended up outside full communion with the Moscow Patriarchate, the King they betrayed. They have painted themselves into their own corner, apparently feeling very comfortable in their isolation. Thus, they have renounced their own saints, who were internationally-minded, not isolated, and concelebrated with and gathered together all Orthodox. These include St John of Shanghai and Western Europe, whom the US right-wingers so cruelly suspended and persecuted, leading to his premature death in 1966.

Some suspect that the new ROCOR division has been encouraged by the CIA, of whose largesse ROCOR was a well-known recipient for a generation between 1966 and 1991, when the Soviet Union finally collapsed. As participants in the San Francisco ROCOR Council in 2006 we all know that the CIA virulently opposed the ROCOR reunion with Moscow in 2007 and from 2017 on tried to censor and then close this anti-CIA (and anti-FSB and anti-MI5) Orthodox England site through an amateur agent. For a few months he succeeded, causing an international scandal and making ROCOR a laughing-stock among the other Local Churches. Perhaps money exchanged hands here too.

  1. Paris: Orthodox or Left-Wing?

The second part of the Russian emigration which split away from the enslaved Church authorities in Soviet Moscow was the group founded by Saint Petersburg aristocrats and intellectuals and centred in Paris. (Some of them spoke better French than Russian; all spoke fluent French). Originally less than a third of the size of the now US-centred ROCOR, today it is called the Archdiocese of Western Europe of the Russian Tradition. In reality it is very small outside France, as it is practically forbidden to expand elsewhere, and now has only some sixty parishes.

In 2019 it too at last rejoined the post-Soviet Moscow Patriarchate, leaving behind in Constantinople, to our open relief, its masonic and modernist wing with its uncanonical practices, losing not 5% of its parishes, clergy and people, as with ROCOR, but over 40% of its parishes, clergy and people. If ROCOR had lost 40% of its body, then it would have remained in full communion with the Moscow Patriarchate after 2017. Too much of the pharisaical, ‘onetruechurchist’, sectarian and schismatic had remained in ROCOR, thus poisoning its potential. Conversely, the much smaller Paris Archdiocese not only remained in communion, but also, to its credit and unlike ROCOR, remained politically free of Moscow centralisation.

Conclusion: Disloyalty to the Testament of the Tsar

In the history of the last generation of pre-Revolutionary Russia under the last Emperor, it is clear that right-wing extremists played as negative a role as left-wing extremists. For example, plotting together, they murdered the Tsar’s adviser, Gregory Rasputin, who was helping him bring the Old Ritualists back into the Church. But this treacherous extremism can above all be seen in the ensuing history of the tragic Civil War between ‘Reds’ and ‘Whites’. Then both sides committed awful atrocities, as described in any history of that dreadful war, where brother killed brother.

Sadly, just like the Reds, most of the Whites did not support the Tsar: it is reckoned that only 10% of them did so. They were the only real Whites. Most simply wanted their land, property and wealth back from the Marxists. Many ‘Whites’ were quite as openly atheistic as the Reds. As a Russian patriot and real Orthodox, the Sovereign Tsar stood above both Reds and Whites, above and outside the vulgar extremes of both left and right, above and outside their centralisation and nationalism. This is his Testament. This is our heritage. Under him there would have been no tragic war between Russian and American-proxy Ukrainians today.

Notes:

  1. https://orthodoxwiki.org/Maximus_V_of_Constantinople
  2. It is interesting that the enemies of the Non-Possessors accused them of stealing money! Nothing has changed. We know of a very greedy bishop in England today who accused a Non-Possessor priest, who subsidised his parish from his own money, of exactly the same thing! Of course, the bishop never apologised.

 

The Tsar is Alive! Eternal Rus

 In this (the defence of defenceless civilians by President Putin after the illegal NATO bombing of Libya in 2011) we see continuity with the foreign policy of Emperor Nicholas II. Today, in our fearful and unpredictable century, when Russia stands on the threshold of menacing trials, let us hope that, according to the testament of Nicholas II, ‘with deep faith in the rightness of our cause and humble hope in All-Powerful Providence’ we will be able to overcome and once more find our country strong in God and Truth.

Petr V. Multatuli, The Foreign Policy of Emperor Nicholas II, p.786, (Moscow 2012)

 

In the 1970s and 1980s I was able to meet many White Russian emigres who had been adults before the Russian Revolution. They knew exactly what the real old Russia had been like, both the good and the bad – unlike the second generation who often nostalgically idealised what they had not known. Their version was a fairy tale, a Disneyland Old Russia. It was a fantasy born from their politically hostile attitude to the Soviet regime, which was the reality then, and from the defensive inferiority complex of the children of immigrants. In reality, when we look at and compare Imperial Russia, the Soviet Union and the Russian Federation, one thing clearly stands out: Continuity.

Today President Putin is undeniably very popular, to an extent that Western politicians can only dream of. At least 80% of the Russian population approve of him and those who disagree with him will still tell you that there is no alternative – all the others are worse. In this way he is quite unlike those Soviet and post-Soviet leaders who were disliked or even detested. It can be said that the present Russian President is a Tsar without the title – indeed, even the Russian emblem is the double-headed eagle and the flag is that of the Tsars.

It is a Western propaganda narrative, invented for self-justification and to raise money for its aggressive forever wars, that President Putin wants to restore the Soviet Union. The President has more than once made it crystal clear that: ‘He who does not regret the Soviet Union has no heart, but he who wants to restore it has no brain’. What is his aim then? He knows with all rational Russians that both the Russian Empire and the Soviet Empire are lost to the history books and will not be restored. Nevertheless, the threefold East Slav lands – the Russian Federation, the Ukraine (whatever its future borders and name) and Belarus, which are being united as a ’Union State’, will still form by far the largest country on earth, with nearly 12% of the world’s land area. President Putin’s aim in other words is national, to unite Eastern Slavdom.

The Russian Federation by itself has the largest economy in Europe and is set to become the fourth largest economy in the world, although with less than 2.5% of the world population. This is neither the Russian Empire, nor the Soviet Empire, but it is the ‘Empire of Rus’. Rus is what would probably have been formed under Tsar Nicholas, who, if he had not been murdered in 1918, would perhaps have died naturally in the 1940s, when he would have been in his 70s. (Without his murder in 1918, there would not have been a Second World War). With Poland, Finland, Bessarabia, the Baltics, Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan and the five Central Asian stans given independence if they wished, probably the Russian Empire of 1917 would have turned into the Empire of Rus by 1945, as it has done now.

Just as Russia was ruled by Tsar Nicholas, but with an advisory ‘Council of Ministers’, so today Russia is ruled by one man, but with a ‘Security Council’. Just as Tsar Nicholas was a great reformer, promoting eleven reforms – the sale of alcohol, monetary affairs, education, the peasantry, the legal system, the government, religious tolerance, civil freedom, agrarian affairs, the military and healthcare, promoting free medicine and social justice, so beloved by Tsarevich Alexei, President Putin has also been a great reformer. Tsar Nicholas successfully fought off the Western invasion until 1917, when he was betrayed to the West by unpatriotic and disloyal generals, politicians and aristocrats.

Here President Putin learned from history. Tsar Nicholas was brought down by the parasitic class, called aristocrats, who under their Western sponsors meddled and betrayed the Tsar. President Putin has been able to stop the parasitic class, now called oligarchs, from meddling in Western-sponsored politics and treachery. As a result, Russia is today successfully fighting off the current Western invasion. With the disloyal and unpatriotic in exile, President Putin no longer needs aggressive but degenerate Western Europe. Today Russia does not need the decadent West with its LGBT, for Russia is itself the repository of traditional Western values, as the new Orthodox Minister of Defence, Andrei Belousov, has declared.

Just as over four generations ago Tsar Nicholas tried to help the former Ottoman Balkans unite, forming a ‘Balkan Union’ against local chauvinism, and help the Austro-Hungarian Empire decentralise, there is now hope that Russia through BRICS can help South-Eastern Europe, the now independent lands of the former Ottoman and Habsburg Empires. However, perhaps the greatest resemblance between Tsar Nicholas and President Putin is in the Window to Asia, the ‘Great Asian Programme’, which Tsar Nicholas opened. The Tsar began with the Trans-Siberian Railway and the President has successfully begun again, building the Russian alliance with the new Imperial China of ‘Emperor’ Xi.

The first Window was closed by the British, which armed and financed the Western vassal Japan to the teeth, so that it would treacherously attack Russia without warning in 1904. Now the Window is open once more. For the painstaking construction of BRICS, to a great extent the work of Russia, resurrects the whole foreign policy of Tsar Nicholas, whose aim was co-operation, not confrontation. It was the ‘White Tsar’, anti-colonialist to the core, who opposed the British in their horrifying genocide in the Boer War in South Africa, who defended Ethiopia, Egypt, Morocco, Palestine, Syria, Armenia, Persia, Afghanistan, Tibet (forcing the British invaders to leave), Thailand, and above all China, and would have helped India, had it been possible, to resist Western colonialism.

And now many of those countries have joined or wish to join BRICS. From the martyred Tsar Nicholas II to President Putin, this is Eternal Rus. It fights not only for its own re-creation, but also for the freedom of the whole world from the West, the ideology that the West calls ‘Globalism’. It fights for peace, stability and balance against Western conquest, occupation, plunder, pillaging and dismemberment for the purposes of divide and rule. Today Russia fights for this through the New World Order of Sovereignty and Patriotism. Tsar Nicholas is alive and President Putin is completing the work which he began, but which was interrupted by internal treachery, sponsored by external enemies.

Resisting Episcopal Corruption

Given the depths of decadence among certain parts of the Orthodox episcopate today, many ask the questions: What is a clergyman to do if his bishop acts immorally? Can he just leave him? And why does a bishop so rarely get punished by his fellow-bishops, if he has committed financial crimes or been sexually immoral? For example, there is the recent case of ex-Metropolitan Joseph of the Antiochian jurisdiction in the USA, who until recently had got away with long-term financial ‘extractions’ and sexual immorality, for which he would have been defrocked decades ago if he had been a priest. Why are some bishops apparently above the law and why do they appear to operate as a sort of mafia, allowing each other shameless injustice with impunity?

First of all, when talking about ‘clergymen’ in this context, we must distinguish between ‘servants of the church’ (readers and subdeacons) and ‘servants of the sacred’ (deacons and priests). The former can leave a bishop, as in this respect they are as free as laymen to go to another church. Deacons and priests are another matter, as they are bound to be obedient to the Church – which of course is not at all the same as obedience to a rogue-bishop.

In order to avoid the danger that a deacon or a priest who wishes to leave a bishop may be slandering an innocent bishop, his reception by another bishop depends on whether the immorality of the accused bishop is public knowledge, on whether other bishops know about it (they tend to know a lot about one another – it is a small world). In such a case they will therefore be quite prepared to ignore the guilty bishop’s disingenuous protests, however absurd, which will come once they have received an innocent and slandered priest without a letter of release. (This only happens after the guilty bishop has deliberately refused to issue a letter of release (wrongly called a letter of ‘canonical’ release) to the receiving bishop).

For example, a bishop may want to sodomise a priest (as happened in Moldova and Latvia a few years ago), he may want you to become a freemason (as happened in France in the 1980s), or he may want to commit adultery with your wife (as happened in England some decades ago). Or a bishop could be without a seminary education, poorly trained, ignorant of the basics of liturgics and Church history, may be trying through threats to take your money, church property, vestments and utensils from you, he may openly have a ‘boyfriend’ as his ‘wife’, whose Facebook pages are full of photos of the two lovers, or he may even be a foreign agent who works for the enemy of all Orthodox. Naturally, no accusation against such a bishop will be sufficient, if there is no proof, unless it is a matter of common knowledge among other bishops that he regularly commits such sins. This is not unreasonable. Slander must at all costs be avoided.

However, all this only hits a different level if the bishop in question is publicly (‘bareheadedly’, as the canon says) preaching heresy or has initiated a public schism with another canonical part of the Church. In other words, if he fanatically hates others to the point of heresy or schism, then any number of bishops will receive clergy without a letter of release from the guilty party. No letter of release is needed, as the bishop in question is clearly and publicly discredited and guilty of schism or heresy. In this case, there are plenty of honest and moral bishops who will receive you, even if the guilty bishop refuses to issue a letter of release (only in order then to accuse the departed clergy of ‘disobedience’!). His potential letter of release is irrelevant, as he is the guilty one and everyone knows it and mocks the guilty – even if behind his back.

Your second question concerns injustice: ‘One law for bishops, another law for others’, and ‘Do as I say, not as I do’. Such guilty bishops are not punished or defrocked simply because of politics, of the political power they and their corrupted colleagues have. For instance, the homosexual movement has brought into the Church administration pathologically ill homosexuals, and to a lesser extent bisexuals and, thank God, rarely, pedophiles. Whether repressed or not, they form gay mafias, called in the US ‘lavender mafias’, and persecute both monastics and married clergy, of whom latter they are jealous because they lead normal lives. Such individuals literally pervert the administration of the Church.

You should not be afraid of such bishops. Rather you should be afraid for them, as the guilty face terrible and inevitable judgement at the Last and Dread Judgement. As regards human judgement, even here justice will come in time, the truth will out – it always does come out. The Church is always cleansed sooner or later. The lives of St John of Kronstadt (persecuted by jealous Russian bishops) and St Nectarios of Aegina (persecuted by jealous Greek bishops) prove this. However, this is a constant in Church history: Read the lives of St Basil the Great and St John Chrysostom. In the words of a very senior Constantinople cleric in a recent private conversation: ‘We just have to be patient and wait for the toilet to flush’. Or in the far more eloquent words of the Russian poet, Vladimir Dixon (1900-1929): ‘God has reserves of glory for inglorious times’.

A universal God has been declared! An examination for Orthodoxy

https://spzh.live/en/chelovek-i-cerkovy/80170-a-universal-god-has-been-declared-an-examination-for-orthodoxy

12 May 04:19

1473

A sermon on Anti-Pascha Sunday.

The time of trials is given to us to understand who we are. And not only we but also those who lead, guide and teach us how to live. This applies primarily to the Church because God will judge those on the outside (1 Corinthians 5:13).

As a priest I have experienced in my life the entire period of the recent history of the Church, starting from its revival in the territory of the former USSR and ending with what we have now. But now all Local Churches are undergoing examination, including those whom no upheavals have particularly touched until this time. The spirit of the new “wonderful” world, which is gradually beginning to enter its earthly possessions, offers each of them two options: to serve it or to be gradually destroyed.

The words of Christ that “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” apply to the entire Church rather than its individual local branches. Where is the Church of St Genevieve, St Patrick of Armagh or St David of Menevia now?

Just a few decades ago, we had an unprecedented Orthodox boom. Huge editions of patristic books were published. And when the Internet entered society, hundreds of preachers began to teach people around the clock what an Orthodox Christian should be like. Teachers of faith of all kinds have been talking about Christ for almost forty years, but only a small part of them could show Him by their own example. After all, speaking and teaching about God is much easier than following Him.

Thus, we have built an Orthodoxy which externally looks fine but the strength of this structure can only be tested by an earthquake.

I remember a time when a hundred and fifty children could be baptised in a church per day. Where are these 30-40-year-old sons and daughters of God now? Are they living a spiritual life? Do they go to church or even know where it is?

The Lord has looked at us for decades and patiently awaited fruits. But now is the time for harvest. How many ascetics have grown in monasteries, righteous people in parish churches, and hierarchs in eparchial administrations during this time? I don’t know, only God knows.

Orthodox exams are taking place all over the world now. Each Local Orthodox Church is taking them. The best, privileged, one might say, position is held by those Orthodox who are openly hunted: those who are outlawed, persecuted in the media, lied against and slandered. Such a Church simply has no way out: nothing is left for it but to be crucified with Christ.

The worst position is occupied by those Local Churches that have turned from the brides of Christ into State concubines. Of course, they did not immediately decide on this adultery. It happened gradually, step by step. At first, it was necessary to make small concessions, and then to descend lower and lower.

All these processes vividly manifested themselves during the coronavirus period when, for the sake of fear, it was allowed to believe that physical death could settle in the Chalice, which is given to us as the source of eternal Life. Therefore, commune with disposable spoons, don’t trust God, trust the WHO. And do not let people go to services, close the churches for Easter and do not celebrate liturgies. And those who did not obey and did not want to violate their priestly oath received hefty fines.

All this was approved by the priesthood, which obediently adapted to the requirements of the state authority. The next step is to recognise the schismatics, then to start blessing non-traditional LGBT marriages, and so on.

There are also those who at the official level have rejected Christ and the Gospel, replacing them with national ideology and military-political doctrine. The clergy who disagree with this are banned or even imprisoned. But can all these bans be seriously considered canonically justified if they come from people who have become servants of Caesar instead of God, essentially betraying their soul to the devil?

And in recent times, among the faithful, a special type has appeared – “couch ascetics of piety”. They destroy all the “enemy filth” day and night with the machine-gun burst of their comments on the Internet. Their religion is anger. They do not understand that the only thing a person needs in this world is to learn to love the Lord and all people with all their soul.

All we need is to immerse our spirit in God and remain in Him forever. Neither in politics, nor in war, nor in Internet news, but in God. But only a few are capable of hearing this.

Judgment is approaching. Weeds have grown and multiplied all over the Earth. In the Church of Christ, there are more and more propagandists, political officers and simply opportunists. what do they direct the zeal of their flock? To hate sinners! That’s their main goal. The essence of their faith is war with global evil. But they do not see stubbornly that they are this very evil.

The Gospel calls us to be clothed in Christ, to become a renewed person. “No, this is not true,” teach modern preachers, you should kill other people “for the sake of Christ” – this is what we bless and inspire you to do. And yet the first Christians also lived in very difficult times. But for some reason, they did not care at all about the political situation of their empire; nor did they worry about either external or internal enemies.

They were worried only about one thing – whether their name was written in the Book of Life or not.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Situation of the Orthodox Church in Britain in 2024

Introduction: The Apostasy of Non-Orthodoxy

In the last fifty years the situation of Protestantism and Catholicism in Britain has changed radically. That transformation can be summed up by one word – apostasy. In modern Britain once predominant Protestant sects, including religious organisations like the Church of England, the Church of Scotland and the Church of Wales, the Methodist Church etc are rapidly disappearing. The covid period, when clergy voluntarily closed their churches, all too often it would seem through cowardice, was a disaster. Many people who were closed out then have not returned. Statistically those Protestant groups are predicted to disappear by 2060. As they were founded at earliest in the sixteenth century, they will have lasted at most 500 years. Their members have simply lost their faith. Why go to church, when its leaders preach the same secularism as everyone else and are afraid of covid?

For the moment, discredited Protestantism survives almost only among Pentecostal African immigrants and in faddish happy-clappy groups. Elsewhere, it would seem that, as one commentator has put it, the Gospel has been replaced by ‘The Guardian’. In other words, faith has been swept away by the tidal wave of secularism and wokeism, imposed from the USA: anything goes. Little wonder that some people look to Islam, whose Muslims actually believe in something. Meanwhile, pedophile-undermined Catholicism, led by a politician Pope who scandalises many faithful Catholics, has since the modernism of the 1960s also been fast collapsing. In Britain Catholicism is now populated essentially by Poles, Portuguese, Filippinos, Hungarians etc. Given this apostasy, where could the few native people in Britain who still actually believe in Christ-God look to go to church?

Orthodox Christianity

There remains the option of the Orthodox Church, also composed essentially of immigrants, and some of whose bishops are just as politically-minded and so just as secular as Non-Orthodox leaders. Over the last two generations since I have been active in the Orthodox Church, the situation of Orthodox Christianity in Britain has been transformed. Once consisting of a small number of elderly, highly politicised and often aristocratic White Russians, based in London, a few very closed Serbs and other Slavs exiled here after 1945, and large numbers of modest Greek Cypriots, living in north and east London or running restaurants in seaside resorts, today’s situation is very different. As the older generations of Orthodox immigrants have simply died out, leaving little trace, new waves of immigration have followed.

Over the last fifty years the population of Orthodox in Britain has gradually tripled from 220,000 to 670,000, to one in a hundred, mainly because of twenty-first century immigration. However, in large parts of the country, there is still no choice as to which Orthodox church to attend, since Orthodox churches are still few and far between. But in larger cities, above all in London, there is a choice of churches. What is the difference between them? Of Orthodox groups we do not include here the quite small groups of Serbs, Bulgarians, Georgians and Ukrainians, as these groups are almost always closed, mononational, and generally do not welcome native people as members. However, this still leaves four groups, which native British people could attend. These are:

The Greeks

A generation ago this was by far the largest Orthodox group in Britain. It is composed in fact not of Greeks, but above all of Greek-Cypriots. The clergy of this group, including bishops, was once notorious for sending away any English enquirers, often quite rudely, and telling them to ‘join the Church of England’, in a curious mixture of racism and syncretism. Only in recent years, faced with the possibility of dying out, has it changed. Now under Greek-American control, it realises that in order to survive and keep its young people or to attract others, it must use English in its services and stop pretending to be just some form of Greek nationalist Protestantism. It has also for political reasons accepted small groups of Ukrainians, a few Russians and some English people and has a large multinational convent or monastery, with largely Romanian nuns. With an excellent infrastructure of church properties, wisely and very cheaply amassed in the 1950s and 1960s, and still for the moment with more priests than any other Orthodox group, it has great opportunities.

However, many feel that the opening to English has come much, much too late. This group has already been destroyed by its Greek nationalism and racist imperialism, which revolts most Orthodox. Also the last thirty years when it should have made the transition to English have been wasted. The result: the Protestant Church of England has dozens of Non-Greek-speaking, but ethnic Greek clergy! Unable to speak Greek, these descendants of immigrants left for well-paid jobs with free housing in the Protestant Church of England, using a language which they spoke and understood. As a result, most of the Greek clergy in the Greek Church are elderly and many of its parishes are clearly dying out. In many parishes the only children are Romanian, the old people are all Greek Cypriots, who after sixty years here often still speak poor English. Their assimilated descendants have long since left the Church. Why should they attend the foreign Church of their great-grandparents, whose main article of faith appears to be waving Greek and Cypriot flags? They have learned that Christ was not Greek; apparently, most have not.

The Romanians

This is by far the largest, most welcoming and most dynamic Orthodox group in Britain today, with over 450,000 Romanians and Romanian-speaking Moldovans, average age about 35, not including children. The vast majority have arrived here in the last twenty years. However, the Romanian Church, made up almost uniquely of these recent and modest immigrants has very poor infrastructure, with only 70 parishes, not much better than that of the relatively few canonical Russians. The result is that many Romanians frequent other Orthodox churches (there is nowhere else to go in the absence of their own church – although when a Romanian church does open, they leave the church they used to attend). There are also some very overworked priests, some doing a thousand baptisms a year, up to 20 at a time and hundreds of confessions per week. However, the help of the Romanian ambassador has recently enabled us to obtain a bishop for Romanian Orthodox in this country, who is to be appointed next month.

His Cathedral in Edmonton, North London, bought last December, will be ready later this year. There is great potential here, but only if the Romanian Church can avoid the errors of the Russians, all repeated by the Greeks. Avoiding this error means keeping the masses of young people in the Church, despite the fact that they will inevitably end up speaking better English than Romanian and be assimilated. The error of flag-waving Russian and Greek nationalism and politics must not develop into flag-waving Romanian nationalism and politics. That would be just as irrelevant to the assimilated descendants of Romanian and Moldovan immigrants, as Russian and Greek nationalism was to the assimilated descendants of Russian and Greek immigrants. Waving a foreign flag is of no interest to those who feel more British than Romanian, Greek or Russian and have little interest in the old country. Christ was not Greek, but he was not Russian or Romanian either.

The (Canonical) Russians

The Moscow Russians were once well-known among Anglicans for their famous émigré bishop and missionary, Antony Bloom. He knew how to talk to Anglicans, some indeed thought him rather Anglican, and certainly his presence developed into a controversial personality cult. Son of an atheist diplomat from the Tsar’s Russia and of the sister of the composer Scriabin, he was a very talented man, who created a small, multinational, though rather elitist, diocese. However, he died twenty years ago, in the past. Most Russians here never knew him. Under the present wave of Russian nationalism, the remains of his diocese are tending to resemble a national ghetto. The present Russian diocese appears to have rejected a lot of Ukrainians and treated Moldovans badly, exactly as it has done some English people. Today, this group exists only in the embassy area of west London and in a number of chapels outside London. Outside the capital most of its clergy, who knew Metropolitan Antony Bloom, are dying out. Despite recent bright prospects, today its future is in serious doubt. But perhaps changes in Moscow will soon be under way.

(There is also a former émigré group of Russians, known as ROCOR (Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia). This now numbers fewer than 1,000, perhaps only 500. Having rejected its traditional Russian roots, gone into schism in 2021 and as a result lost over half of its already small diocese, this tiny Trump-voting, US-based and US-cultured cult has tried to attract others. Having seen its original Russian émigré base die out or leave it for non-schismatic churches, they have attracted mainly right-wing, sectarian-minded English people, including Anglo-Catholics of an unusual orientation. Having seen its original Russian émigré base die out, it is trying to recruit Ukrainian refugees unsuccessfully, as they reject anything that is called Russian and psychologically normal Ukrainians do not wish to frequent a sect anyway. The schismatic ROCOR appears to have no future, since it has cut itself off from the Church).

The Antiochians

Critics call the Antiochians ‘Angliochians’, as they seem to be largely composed of ex-Anglicans. Probably with fewer than 2,000 laypeople, and many of these visiting Romanians with nowhere else to go, the mainly ex-Anglican clergy under the Patriarchate of Antioch (in fact of Damascus in Syria) are few, elderly and often do not know how to celebrate the services. Some of these appear to be more anti-Anglican rather than Orthodox.

However, in defence, we must say that, apart from a few recent converts who have pathological chips on their shoulders, members of this group are sincere, well-intentioned and have made great sacrifices to enter this Arab Patriarchate. The mere fact of their existence is a witness to their faith and zeal, despite the discouragement of Greeks and Russians alike. Hence those who declare that ‘Anti-och’ is for those who are ‘anti-Russian and anti-Greek’.

Conclusion: Disenfranchising the Franks

For the few remaining Christians in Britain, Orthodox Christianity probably represents a step that culturally goes too far, it is too radical. For Orthodox Christianity is the millennial opposite of Secularism, whose ancestor is Protestantism, whose ancestor is Catholicism. All are cut from the same secular block. Catholicism is secular because it wanted to control the world, making the Pope of Rome into a Super-King, an Emperor of the world, higher than all rulers. Protestantism was secular because it subjected itself to secular rulers and so to worldliness, for example, in England it was an invention of the rulers Henry VIII and Elizabeth I.

For this reason, to join the Orthodox Church is an act that disenfranchises, that is, ‘defranks’ the Norman-imposed Frankish Establishment, depriving them of their freedom, privileges and self-appointed right to tyrannise the people. Only if you have understood this and wish to reject this inherent secularism, would you wish to belong to the Orthodox Church. It is the only logical solution, if you want something that is not inherently and institutionally compromised by Secularism. If you have not understood this, you will remain somewhere inbetween, in what is now the no-man’s land, outside Orthodoxy Christianity. However, surely a no-man’s land is not the best place to be at a time when the fiercest spiritual warfare is raging from the trenches in the anti-Christian modern world all around us?

 

 

 

The Collapse of the Western World and the Rise of Africa

A Short Summary for Young People, Kinshasa, 15 May 2049

Chapter One: When the Western Domination of the World Started and Ended

The present e-book is intended as background reading for secondary school pupils as part of the Free Africa Studies program website. It is being posted on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the end of the millennial domination of the world by the Western world, which lasted from 1014 AD to 2014 AD. The toppling of the West which set out on its final losing path of hubris in Kiev in 2014 led finally to our freedom from economic and financial colonialism and the present prosperity of our Africa.

That millennial domination can be traced back to the internal imperialist expansion inside Western Europe under the Frankish so-called ‘Emperor’ Karl the Tall (‘Charlemagne’) (+ 814). This was a first and failed trial of what finally and successfully came to power 200 years later. This movement spread from its Frankish heartland between the Rivers Loire and Rhine in all directions of the compass. Like an abscess bursting, its plundering barbarianism spread to Moravia, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Sicily, Italy, Spain, England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and Scandinavia, especially from 1014 on. It was then that the German Emperor Henry II had insisted that his heretical creed be sung in Rome and so fell away from the Church.

This conquest of Western Europe culminated in the late eleventh-century ‘crusade’, that is, the organised violent onslaught of North-Western Europe against West Asia, North Africa. In 1204 this led to the looting of the Christian Capital in New Rome (Constantinople), and then to the attempt to conquer Eastern Europe, in what later became western Ukraine and north-west Russia. Western Europe could simply not tolerate the existence of any other Civilisation alongside it, as we long-enslaved Africans know only too well.

Some 400 years after this, expansionism outside Europe received a great boost thanks to technological developments. From the last years of the fifteenth century on, these developments enabled transoceanic explorers such as Columbus (+ 1506), Magellan (+ 1521), da Gama (+ 1524) and Cortes (+ 1547) to sail overseas. Here they began to subjugate, colonise and ruthlessly exploit what to them were ‘New Worlds’ – the Americas, Africa, India and East Asia, so enslaving our peoples.

After centuries of further struggles and wars, a climax came another 400 years later. For after spreading its domination to Africa, Asia and the New Worlds of the Americas, Australia and the Pacific, Japan and China, in 1914 the Western European elites turned in on themselves again. They wanted to do again to native Europeans what they had already done to the native peoples of their overseas colonies, enslaving them, maiming them and slaughtering them.

The first act of the suicidal Great European War broke out in 1914, the second act broke out one generation later in 1939 and the third act broke out exactly four generations, 100 years, after the first, in 2014. Each outbreak was linked with a city on the borderlands of Western Europe, successively moving further east, from Sarajevo to Warsaw and finally to Kiev. The wars broke out in areas which had been notorious for committing injustices: Austro-Hungary for its mistreatment of Slavs; Belgium for its mistreatment of the Congo; Poland for its mistreatment of Non-Poles; Kiev for its mistreatment of Non-Ukrainians. However, none involved was innocent.

The 1914 European War led to the Anglo-American, or rather, Americo-Anglan, domination of Europe, after London and New York had schemed to bring down the Russian Empire in 1917 and fratricidally murder its Tsar; the 1939 European War led to the bankrupting of London and the USA’s occupation of Western Europe from 1945 on and the replacement of the British Empire by the American Empire; the 2014 European War, at first hidden, but which became obvious to all in 2022, fought by the USA and its Western European NATO vassals against the Ukraine and Russia, led to the fall of the USA.

As a result of this third and final act in the Great European War, victorious Russia became free and finally cast off its 300-year-old Western yoke. This was composed of the threefold yoke of Feudal enserfment, Capitalist exploitation and Marxist tyranny. Thus, Russia finally restored its Tsar, of whom it had been deprived. At the same time the other civilisations of the Non-Western world allied themselves and took up their rightful places in today’s, then the new, multipolar world.

After Western Europe had been co-opted into the enslavement of the US project, which consisted of the imaginary self-delusion and wishful thinking of ‘narratives’ of the Western virtual world. Once it had been abandoned by the bankrupt USA, it was forced to return to its first millennium roots and identity. This act of catharsis meant abandoning its arrogance, perversion and debauchery, its so-called ‘European values’ of the second millennium, which came more and more to resemble satanism, as was seen in the 2024 Eurovision song contest.

Within two years of the end of the anti-Russian war in south-west Russia and the Ukraine, NATO, disarmed by Russia, broke up. The first to leave was the USA. Without that NATO had no more direction. Other countries withdrew, firstly Hungary and Slovakia, then Turkey, Slovenia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria, Greece and Cyprus. Others followed. After this the EU collapsed, with Hungary, Slovakia and Austria all joining BRICS, together with Non-EU Serbia and the NATO protectorates around it, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro and Albania. Next came Poland, Finland and finally Germany. Game over.

Meanwhile, the USA had collapsed in bankruptcy, disorder and civil strife. These are the subjects of Chapter Two, ‘The Dewesternising of Europe’, and Chapter Three: ‘The Collapse of the USA’, of this e-book, which deal with the collapse of NATO and the EU. Succeeding chapters deal with the effects of the Western collapse in the many countries of Africa and the revival of African values.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The People’s Church: 2008-2024

Foreword: Our Faith

I was born in Colchester in Eastern England. We Eastern English are renowned for our independence, straightforwardness, reliability and pragmatism. We are also bluff and good-natured, but are suspicious of newcomers and always test them to see what they are made of. That is why we are often underestimated. However, we can also be lyrical and poetic beneath our great skies, among our woods and fields, and on our coasts. We have no ideology – for the Gospels are not an ideology, but life itself – and we live by the motto: ‘Tell the truth and shame the devil’. This truth-telling can be seen in the victory of our great national hero, champion and patron saint, our martyred last King, St Edmund of East Anglia (+ 869). He told the heathen the truth, even though they did not like it. He was not afraid. We do the same.

Our love of the truth is why we always resisted the secularism of the recent past. This consisted of the liberal, modernist and syncretist ideology of indifference, that there is no truth, that all faiths are the same. This relativisation was a purely political manipulation of globalists, a pan-heresy, as St Justin described it, as it maintained that truth and lies, light and darkness, are equal. This was obviously untrue and was promoted only by those whose souls had been bought and paid for by the secularist politics of this world. Equally, however, we resist the post-modernist extreme, the nonsense that only one tiny sect possesses the truth and that all others are ‘satanic’. This very primitive and narrow ideology is clearly the fruit of sad and broken individuals with psychological, not to say, pathological problems of pride and broken childhoods. In history it belongs to the heresy known as Donatism.

Thus, truth-telling makes us unpopular and controversial among the elites of all persuasions. This is because the one thing they hate is the truth, for the truth undermines their grasp on power and riches. That is why they hated Christ. That is why we have one great strength: we know that the Truth always wins, however long it takes. With Christ it took three days. Because we are sinners, it takes us much longer, but our victory through Christ, Who is ‘the Way, the Truth and the Life’, is still inevitable. This is our Faith.

The Beginnings

In 2008 I stood in the largest church in my native town, the future City of Colchester, and looked towards our second church, a small chapel. Both were empty, but they both now belonged to us, after eleven years of prayerful patience. Our monocled master had given his blessing for us to buy the property, but he told me I was mad. The main church, at 6,500 square feet, was ‘too big’ (much bigger than his own, which was a problem for him) and he gave us not a penny of help or any support. We just heard disheartening criticisms which came from his personal despair.

But I had a vision and said that with God’s help we shall fill this church and then need a bigger one. People mocked, especially him. But after 16 years, we have got to that point. Looking back, I can see three periods: The first period, one of foundation, went from our first service in December 2008 up to 2016. The first liturgy then was attended by only 35 people, however the number of those attending gradually increased to about 120 regular parishioners, becoming more multinational. We were becoming the local church.

Our second period, one of consolidation, went from 2015 to 2020. In that time, we doubled in size to about 250 regular parishioners and set up new parishes in Norwich and just outside Cambridge for those who were coming to us from such great distances. The third period, of protection, began in 2020 with covid, when the wolf attempted to close us for the first time. We never closed. This period, which is one of protecting the flock from the jealous wolves, even though they may mask themselves as shepherds, is far from over. Like the much-persecuted St John (+ 1966) before us, we shall always protect our flock from the wolves.

An Elitist Sect or the People’s Faith

Then we heard the young and inexperienced neophyte without seminary training, publicly in church declaring to us who were of many nationalities that the Greek Patriarch Bartholomew was ‘satanic’ and that he ‘disliked Romanians and only half-liked Moldovans’. Now we do not agree with several personal opinions and actions of Patriarch Bartholomew (like a lot of his bishops, priests and people, including the monks of Mt Athos, who are very good people who our dear friends and completely agree with us on these subjects), but we would never, never call him ‘satanic’. He may have an all too human weakness for money, like many bishops in another Local Church and we can name quite a few of them, including the one who called him ‘satanic’. The pot calling the kettle black. There are a dozen or so Greek parishes in London, all attended by 200-300 every Sunday of the year. We respect them. As for the single small church of that young convert, people flee its ‘police-state’, sectarian and schismatic nature. We know many of the refugees who have at last seen through it, as they now come to us.

His words were incredible. We were all horrified. A stunned silence fell on us as we heard his awful views. As for the racism of this Non-European newcomer, a new ‘Orthobro’, but not an Orthodox and certainly not a Christian, not just towards the many pious Greeks, who carry out dozens of baptisms and chrismations of Non-Greeks in this country every few months, but also towards the mass of very pious and honourable Romanians and Moldovans, as well as to English people who practised the Orthodox Faith before he was even born, we were absolutely appalled. And this alien individual was supported by his colleagues in distant America, where they do not understand Europe and despise us. It was clear that the young and very aggressive ideological son of NATO, who, like the rest of the American elite, claimed to be exceptional and able to impose its imperialism on us, had rejected all possibilities of helping to build the Local Church.

Helping to build a Local Church has always been the aim of our lives, as we are neither psychopathic ideologues, nor narrow racists, but shepherds, and so we welcome all the sheep without political or racial distinction to our church, as Christ commanded us to do. (Have you not read the last words of St Matthew’s Gospel? We do not send people away because they are not rich enough or are not effete enough). On the other hand, he had chosen the path of isolationism and sectarianism, cutting himself off from communion with all, even from his own Russian Church, and punishing all who disagreed with him. This was his practice of what he considered to be ‘punishing’ or, with the typically American Protestant mentality, ‘sanctioning’ us, so revealing his Lutheran/Calvinist witch-hunting mentality.  His actions said: ‘You dare disagree with me? Then I hate you and I will punish you’.

Our Struggle for Truth

In reality, he punished himself through his uncanonical and schismatic actions and destroyed his own already tiny diocese, the only remaining meaning of whose existence since 2007 had precisely been to contribute towards building Local Churches – our own aim. His act was an act of suicide. Since we left him, we have doubled our income and are now intending to buy a house for a third priest and pay him a salary. We have a candidate. At that time, we faced the choice of belonging to a weirdy-beardy sect of converts, or of belonging to a mass faith, to an elitist sectarian religious ghetto, which had usurped and replaced its legitimate head and forged his signature, or to the faith of the people. Filled with narcissism, and so jealousy, and so hatred, after forging its own head’s signature, sidelining him and creating its own Metropolitan, the group expelled all the senior clergy who know the Tradition and replaced them with itself and others who also have no heart and only an extremist ideology.

This was clearly not the way forward. They had committed spiritual and so moral suicide (loss of faith always ends in suicide) and destroyed their once immense potential. They had created an irrelevant and narrow sect, a fake Church, in full view of the broad and deep Orthodox world, to the wonder of men and angels alike. We faced the refusal, for purely political and suicidal reasons, of the canonical but once again captive (only the captors have changed from Soviet atheists to centralising State nationalists) Russian Orthodox Church (the ‘Sourozh Diocese’) to receive us on 10 May 2021. Next we faced the brute political force used to make the Western European Archdiocese of the Russian Church, where we had sought refuge from persecution, abandon us, and so abandon the cause of a Local Orthodox Church of Western Europe in the Russian Church, in February 2022. Where would we go after fifty years?

As so often in history before, those who should not have been distracted by politics, did just that and so forgot about the salvation of souls. Thus, in the history of the wealthy Capital of Saint Petersburg, spiritual leadership went from the mighty bishops of this world to a widow turned tramp, St Ksenia, and to a provincial pastor, despised by his jealous bishops and hated by the aristocrats who wanted to kill him, St John of Kronstadt. Following the political captivity and so marginalisation of the now isolated two main Local Churches, who would take over the spiritual leadership of the Orthodox peoples? We would go to the centre where are the other fourteen Local Churches, to the astounding churchmen in the singing mountains of Carpatho-Russia and on the sunshone banks of the Jordan, of martyred Damascus and martyred Bachneny, of Tirana and Tbilisi, of Iasi and Warsaw, of Brno and Belgrade, of Budapest and Rila, of Kiev and Limassol, of Athos and Jerusalem. We would go to the living fountains of piety where God directed us to go.

Our Romanian Orthodox Church Home

The negotiations that took place on the very next day, 16 February 2022, with our friend Metropolitan Joseph, whom we had known for nearly 25 years, took four hours. All our churches and all our clergy (except for one new convert reader who naively fell to the sect) and literally 99% of our people transferred to the Romanian Orthodox Church, keeping everything as it was before. All this took place just eight days before the latest phase of the US proxy war against the Ukraine and Russia was triggered on 24 February 2022.

This passage to the Romanian Orthodox Church was entirely providential, as in this way we could remain outside politics, remaining multinational, keeping Moldovans, Romanians, Russians, Ukrainians and everyone else together, remaining on the old calendar, but also free to do services on the new calendar for all who wished. And what will happen if the British Establishment bans the Russian Church completely? The equally Russophobic Establishment in Latvia has already done that and it may happen in Estonia. It could happen here. Perhaps all will join the Romanian Church? Providentially we will still be here for all the Russians who are really Orthodox, who are not flag-waving nationalists or centralising ideologues. Others may not be allowed to remain here to care for them pastorally. We shall still be here.

On Palm Sunday 2024 we once more saw that our church building is too small. Nearly 100 people were standing outside, as the church can only take 500 people. Some 150 of these people were children. As for our overflow parish in Little Abington outside Cambridge, it was packed with 100 people, including more refugees from the schismatic Russians in Chiswick. Here then we face a new dilemma. With several seminary-trained laymen and excellent singers in the parish, we have to look seriously at setting up more new churches. After Norwich and Cambridge, we are now looking at Harlow and Southend. And then we still have to buy permanent premises for our growing Felixstowe Orthodox community. And permanent premises for the communities in Coventry, Wisbech and York? We have seminary-trained candidates for the priesthood. They can be ordained. After all we are the People’s Church.

The People’s Church: The Church They Tried to Close, Announced is Closed, and Which ‘is Now Empty and Where No-one Goes’!

In retrospect, we can cope with so many people because we had slowly been moving towards this point for years, ever since the repose of the ever-memorable Archbishop Antony of Geneva, the successor to St John, who had established a multinational Archdiocese. However, after him, they dismantled this. I can remember exactly twenty years ago how we were told the following by those who left us in 2021:

‘We do not like other Orthodox because they have divorces, which we don’t have’. (My answer: Of course you don’t have divorces, because you have not had a single wedding for 25 years, because you are all so old, let alone have baptisms). ‘We do not like other Orthodox, they do different services in the same church at the same time. In one corner of the church one priest is doing a baptism, in another corner a second priest is doing a memorial service’. (My answer: What ignorance! This is perfectly normal. A church that is not doing this is dying out, it is underused).

‘We don’t like their church. It’s too noisy because there are too many children there’. (My answer: Yes, it can be noisy in church because there are lots of children. Children are life. It’s not like your church, where everyone is aged over 65. As a result of your dislike of children, your church is dying out’). And they even continued, quite shockingly: ‘Our church is like a glass of clean water; theirs is a glass of dirty water’. (My answer: Why are so many of your clergy being defrocked for moral reasons then? Remember your ‘Very Reverend’ Archimandrite Antony Grabbe, the protected son, who stole six million dollars and debauched nuns? Your view is in any case phariseeism). Obviously, we would never belong to this alien American sect of newcomers, when they ordered its formation and final fall in 2021.

Our Easter Message

How do we cope with so many people? For years I have been going to Kiev and bringing back what we need and reserves in heavy suitcases. We use bigger chalices (we have five of them), we have four stands for confession, use bigger and more utensils. We have the blessing from our Metropolitan for our deacons to give communion in order to cut down on the time taken by 200-400 communions. We are ready. Later this year we will have our own bishop in his new Cathedral in North London. For many years my niece used to work at St Paul’s Cathedral. I used to say that one day we would need that church, built according to the legend there where the Apostle of the Gentiles preached all those years ago, as we will be able to fill it. They laughed at me then, but that day is coming.

As for two calendars, we cope with them quite simply because we are pastors, not insecure, sectarian ‘onetruechurch’ ideologues, who tell lies about others. We do exactly like the ever-memorable Archbishop Antony of Geneva of the old Russian Church did, for he was the successor of St John of Western Europe. He too was obliged to leave Kiev. He had many old calendar Russian parishes, but his biggest parish in France was the Romanian new calendar parish. (Just like the Moscow Patriarchate which has new calendar parishes in Austria and Bulgaria, for example). Our Metropolitan Joseph has the same attitude, because he too is a pastor, not an ideologist, and so accepts both calendars for the fixed feasts and concelebrates with all. We clergy all agree to look after our people. People follow the example set by the clergy and accept each other and different customs.

There are people who keep the fast as strictly as possible (they examine the ingredients of all the food they buy as closely as possible), but they hate their neighbour as much as possible. Such people are not ours. Our Easter Message is quite simple. At the Last Judgement we shall be judged only on whether we showed love for others or hatred for others through the actions of our hearts. Our friend the Romanian priest who did 800 confessions in one week, staying at church from 7 am to 7 pm every day and who washed the feet of twelve parishioners on Holy Thursday, shows the way. Christ, the Son of God become man, the only Knower of hearts, showed the greatest love of all, allowing himself to be crucified out of love, so that He could offer all victory over death and the Resurrection of salvation. We follow Him and always will do. The wolves of this world have lost. Our values ​​are humanity, mercy and compassion. Together with the thousand voices of Easter Night again we say: Christ is Risen!

Archpriest Andrew Phillips,

City of Colchester, England,

Eastertide 2024