Americans renounce US citizenship to pursue destiny in Russia http://bit.ly/JbZ9VK
The wicked shall do wickedly and none of the wicked shall understand; but those who are wise shall understand.
Daniel 12, 10
There exists over a century’s worth of ridiculous articles, books and films slandering the Orthodox elder, prophet and new martyr Gregory Rasputin. These hundreds of works are based on atrocious vilification and blatant lies, for the purposes of self-justification, which initially permitted the illegal seizure of power in Russia, and later of sexual titillation and lurid sensationalism in order to satisfy money-grubbing greed. As an example, one relatively recent work, claiming authority!, ‘The Last (sic) Word’, written by the Soviet playwright, Edvard Radzinsky and published in 2000 in this country, is just more pulp fiction mascarading as pseudo-scientific history. It too was duly translated into various Western languages to titillate those who want more salacious, tabloid-style stories and earn the publishers and author millions.
However, since 2000, serious works in Russian, the untranslated seven volumes by Sergey Fomin and the untranslated studies by Alexander Bokhanov, Yury Rassulin, Igor Evsin, Tatiana Mironova and Oleg Platonov, all serious historians and researchers, have disproved the conscious and unconscious slanders against Gregory Rasputin-Novy. The figure of St Gregory the New, venerated by the holy elder Nikolai (Guryanov), has now emerged and we are able to establish the details of his martyrdom. In this we have been helped, strangely enough, by two English writers, Andrew Cook (1), an investigative journalist, and Dr Richard Cullen, a former expert in forensics with the Metropolitan Police (2), who have both exposed the involvement of British spies in the torture and murder.
Although both non-Russian speakers and so both naively and ignorantly repeating the absurd background slanders against St Gregory, their interest has mainly been in official British involvement and the details of his appalling torture and murder, carried out by a ruthless British spy with the help of decadent Russian traitors. And that is new. Thanks to their investigations, we now know almost exactly how in the last hours of his life on earth Gregory Rasputin was tortured, who tortured and killed him and why. In reality, the first murder of the so-called ‘Russian Revolution’ was committed by a British secret agent. Let us sum up the still unchallenged and perhaps definitive findings of Cook and Cullen about Gregory’s last hours on earth in Petrograd, today’s Saint Petersburg.
According to eyewitnesses, Gregory was picked up from his flat at 64 Gorokhovaya Street in the then capital by the fabulously rich, Oxford-educated Prince Felix Yusupov around midnight on 16/29 – 17/30 December 1916. He left with him in a car driven by another plotter, the Polish Dr Stanislav Lazovert. He was taken to the Yusupov Moyka Place, having been enticed to a meeting in a basement dining room there, chosen as it was virtually soundproof and would muffle any noise. Apart from Prince Yusupov, a bisexual transvestite and occultist, also present were Grand Duke Dmitri Romanov, also a notorious and amoral loose liver (later known for a relationship with Coco Chanel), a vulgar, anti-Semitic politician called Vladimir Purishkevich, an army officer and friend of Yusupov called Sergey Sukhotin and a British spy called Oswald Rayner.
Rayner had been a close friend of Yusupov in Oxford in 1909. He had studied modern languages at Oriel College from 1907-10 and Yusupov had studied Fine Art for four years from 1909-1913 at nearby University College, where he had taken drugs. They may have been involved in a homosexual sex affair with each other, as is common in the British Establishment and is today the pride of its secret services (3). After Oxford Rayner was eventually to become one of four British spies working for the SIS (4) in Petrograd. The others were the head of the SIS in Petrograd, Samuel Hoare (later a discredited, Fascist-appeasing Conservative politician, who became known as Sir Samuel and Viscount Templewood), who was a friend of the equally unscrupulous Purishkevich, and two lesser British agents, John Scale and Stephen Alley, also involved in the plot to murder Gregory.
Once at the Yusupov Palace after midnight on Saturday 17/30 December, Gregory was given wine to drink and plied with cakes laced with tiny amounts of potassium cyanide. The dose was incompetently administered according to the study by Alexander Bokhanov and so weak that Gregory suffered at most a minor headache and stomach-ache. So he was tortured by the professional sadist Rayner, leading to ‘a slow, lingering and painful death’ (5) in the basement room. Firstly, he was attached with a garrotte around his neck, either seated or else spread-eagled against a wall (5). His face and body were then beaten with a cosh, with which his genitals were also crushed, which must have been agonizing. He was also knifed in the left side and at some point his right eyeball was gouged out, an injury probably caused by Yusupov’s shoe.
After these tortures, carried out at about 2.30 am and in any case not later than 4.00 am on Saturday 17/30 December, Gregory was shot three times. This was done at point blank range, from less than eight inches (20 cm). One shot went through his stomach and liver and the other was fired from behind the kidney. These were fired from two different weapons, possibly from a Browning by Yusupov and a Sauvage by Purishkevich (Grand Duke Dmitry swore an oath that he had not killed Gregory). These wounds did not stop Gregory from trying to make the sign of the cross (the fingers of his right hand were set in this pose) before a fatal third shot, from a .455 Webley, standard British issue, a smaller calibre weapon than those used for the first two shots, was fired at point blank range into his forehead. This killed the prophet Gregory outright. It was the feast day of the holy prophet Daniel, a quotation from whose book (Dan 5, 30) was later found in the house where the Tsar and his family and servants were martyred eighteen months later.
Gergory’s body was covered in a cloth, variously described as a curtain or a robe, the legs and arms tied with rope and then wrapped in Gregory’s beaver fur coat, which could not be disposed off otherwise. It was taken by the driver Lazovert, Rayner and probably other conspirators, either British spies or else Sukhotin, through the secluded rear entrance of the Palace and bundled into a car, no doubt the same one as before. This was driven to the nearby Bolshoy Petrovsky Bridge near Krestovsky island, where the body was thrown into a large ice hole, no doubt reconnoitred beforehand, in the Malaya Nevka river, which flows into the Gulf of Finland. On being thrown into the river, the body bounced off the fourth bridge support, which further injured the head, and an overshoe fell off onto the ice. The flow of the water should have carried the body away, ensuring that it disappeared for ever. It did not.
That it did not, that no weights were attached to the body and that human blood was found on the parapet of the bridge and an overshoe on the ice were all basic mistakes of the conspirators. In reality, thanks to the finding of the blood, the overshoe and the bad choice of site, the body was recovered by the river bank just two days later, on the morning of Monday 19 December 2016/1 January 2017, only some seventy yards from where it had been thrown in. In Western countries it was New Year’s Day 1917. Meanwhile, Purishkevich and Romanov stayed in the Palace, toasting one another, and cleared up the mess, also shooting a Palace dog. This was done so that the corpse of the dog would explain away the noise of the first three shots that had killed Gregory, in case they had been heard and any possible traces of blood. All the above is a reconstruction from the Russian autopsy and modern forensic investigation of evidence and photographs of the corpse.
All of this had been a carefully and cynically planned conspiracy, with everything being prepared beforehand over several weeks, if not months. After the murder, Yusupov and Purishkevich both lied about what had happened in their conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. Both of them had prepared fictionalized and dramatized stories in self-justification. These fabrications were related soon after the events, carefully concealing any British involvement, which would have ruined relations between Great Britain and Russia. So why was Gregory murdered? The classic excuse was because Great Britain feared that Gregory was advising the Tsar to conclude a separate peace with Germany. This of course was pure propaganda in order to justify the British murder and later coup d’etat. Gregory had no political influence over the Tsar, who had totally ignored Gregory’s request not to enter into the War in 1914. And in any case, the Tsar had never had any intention of concluding such a peace, as the British full well knew.
The real reason for the murder was that Gregory stood in the way of the overthrow of the Tsar and his replacement by Anglophile traitors from the House of Romanov, like the Grand Duke Dmitry who as a Romanov guaranteed immunity from prosecution for the murder, supported by equally treacherous masonic politicians in the Duma. Great Britain’s interest in murdering Gregory was that with the Tsar at the head of the re-equipped and reinvigorated Russian Army, Russian victory was guaranteed in 1917. Such a victory, from a British viewpoint, had to be stopped. Triumphant Russian troops liberating Berlin and Vienna from tyrants, the consequent control of all Central and Eastern Europe freed from Prussian and Austro-Hungarian tyranny by Imperial Russia, the long-awaited restoration of Poland, once most of its territory had been freed from them, and the Russian liberation of Constantinople and control of the Dardanelles (as perfidious Britain had agreed to on paper), were not in British imperialist interests.
This is why Britain freed the evil Trotsky from a Canadian concentration camp in April 1917 (6) and sent him back to Russia, as later Germany sent back Lenin and others, and why the anti-Christian and pro-Bolshevik (7) British Prime Minister Lloyd George had openly greeted the overthrow of the Christian Emperor (6) as the attainment of ‘one of our war aims’. (It was similarly acclaimed in France and the USA, which, opportunistically seizing its chance, entered the War immediately after the coup d’etat in Russia, which US citizens had helped finance). Indeed, according to the French ambassador, Paleologue, and many others, the overthrow had been carefully plotted by aristocratic Russian traitors together with the British ambassador, Buchanan, at the British Embassy in Petrograd.
The conspirators all believed that if Gregory, the ‘Friend’ of the Tsar and Tsarina, could be removed, then they could persuade the Tsar to abdicate and Russian domination of the Continent could be prevented. This had been exactly prophesied by Gregory and of course it is exactly what happened, for two months later the Tsar was overthrown in a plot, orchestrated by cowardly generals, treacherous politicians and deceitful Romanovs. This would extend the bloodletting of the First World War from three years to four and a half, costing directly millions more lives, not to mention tens of millions of lives later under the Soviet Bolsheviks and the German Fascists, who would never have come to power without the coup d’etat against the Russian Emperor.
In reality, the liberation of Eastern and Central Europe was achieved not by the Christian Russian Empire in 1917, but in 1945 by the atheistic Soviet Union, the Frankenstein monster of Lenin and Stalin created by the meddling, anti-Christian West. The torture and murder of Gregory Rasputin-Novy and all that followed lies like an impermeable bloodstain on the British Establishment which ordered and carried out his execution, a crime only recently exposed and which has never been officially admitted, let alone expiated. In the Great Reckoning that is to come, it would be well if the British Establishment made a beginning to its repentance now.
1. To Kill Rasputin, Andrew Cook, 2005
2. Rasputin, The Role of Britain’s Secret Service in His Torture and Murder by Richard Cullen, 2010
3. See for example: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/mi5-named-uks-most-lgbt-friendly-employer-in-annual-stonewall-ranking-a6820261.html
4. The SIS (Special Intelligence Service is the British agency that does the dirty work (torture and murder) for MI5 and MI6. It still exists and is active. One of its ex-agents, a South African, told me in private conversation in 2012 that it commits up to 100 murders per year.
5. Cullen, P. 197
7. See for example: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Lloyd_George#Prime_Minister_.281916.E2.80.931922.29
Answers to Questions from Recent Conversations and Correspondence
Q: When did you first become conscious of the Russian Orthodox Church?
A: My introduction to the Orthodox Church was through the local saints of England in my native north Essex, notably St Edmund, but also St Albright (Ethelbert), St Cedd, St Botolph and St Osyth. However, as regards the Russian Orthodox Church as such, my first encounter was almost fifty years ago, just after my 12th birthday, in August 1968. As a result of that revelation, I began teaching myself Russian in October of that year in Colchester because I already knew that the Russian Orthodox Church is my spiritual home. However, I had to wait nearly another seven years until I could take part in Russian Orthodox life, as in those days (it is not much better now) there were so few Russian churches anywhere. I only managed to visit any Russian churches in 1973.
Q: Which part of the Russian Church did you join?
A: Having been told by two of its members that the Church Outside Russia (ROCOR) would not allow me to join it because I was English (I had no idea at that time that my great-grandmother was Russian, I only discovered that distant link much later), I had no alternative but to join the Moscow Patriarchate. They may have been many things in those distant days, but at least they were not racists.
Q: What was your path to the priesthood after that?
A: A very hard one. First of all, since I could not live and work in Russia on account of the Cold War at that time, for my first job I went to live and work in Greece. I thought that was the next best alternative. After a year there and visiting the then Yugoslavia and Bulgaria, I understood that the Balkan Churches were no solution to the need for a Local Orthodox Church in the West. They were all inward-looking, culturally very narrow and hopelessly nationalistic. Later, contacts with Romanians and Georgians told me the same about them and in the Romanian case there is the huge problem of simony. So, with Russia closed off, in 1979 with the blessing of Metr Antony (Bloom) I went to study at the St Sergius Theological Institute in Paris, which I had in my ignorance imagined to be a Russian Orthodox seminary.
Q: What was it in fact?
A: It was the remains of a Russian Orthodox seminary mingled with an institute of philosophy and, frankly, of heresy. It openly preached modernism or Renovationism, which is Protestant-based, and is therefore not even remotely interesting to someone coming from a country like England with a Protestant culture, so alien to me. One English priest, rather harshly, called St Serge a Methodist Sunday School. Very harsh, but there was some truth in it.
Q: Why did you not think of going to Jordanville in the USA?
A: For the same reason as before. I was repeatedly told by members of ROCOR that they only took Russians. Remember in those days there was no internet, no advice, you had to make your own way, you went by what local representatives told you, even if it was incorrect.
Q: What happened next?
A: In 1982 I was offered the priesthood by the Moscow Patriarchate on terms which I can only describe as scandalous. I walked out, never to return, and enquired again at the Church Outside Russia. I got the same answer as in 1974, though I noted that this time there were actually a few ex-Anglicans in a separate branch of ROCOR in England. However, these rather eccentric conservative Anglicans seemed to have no interest in the Russian Orthodox Church, but only in being anti-Anglican and they had a huge interest in fanatical Greek Orthodox sects. Never having been Anglican and having lived in Greece, I had no interest in either. This was all the more frustrating since ROCOR had just canonized the New Martyrs and Confessors and naturally I had their icons and venerated them. Nevertheless, in 1983, I decided to emigrate to France and join my wife’s jurisdiction, the Paris Jurisdiction.
Q: Wasn’t that foolhardy? I mean you already knew about the problem of modernism there?
A: What you have to understand is that in Paris in 1981 they had elected a new Archbishop. Under the very elderly and saintly old one, renovationists had come to the fore, taking advantage of his old age, but the new Archbishop promised us personally that he would sweep them away and return his jurisdiction to Orthodoxy and canonical Russian practice. So this was a time of great promise and even excitement. Patriarch Dimitrios of Constantinople even said at the time that the Paris Jurisdiction would be returned to the Russian Church as soon as it was free. So, with hope in a promising future, in January 1985 I was ordained deacon there.
Q: What happened next?
A: in May 1985 I was offered the priesthood providing that I would become a freemason. I refused, scandalized. Then we became witnesses to the complete takeover of the jurisdiction by renovationists. The new Archbishop ordained them one by one, completely breaking his promise – not because he was a liar, but because he was weak. It was the same problem as Metr Evlogy, the first Paris Jurisdiction ruling bishop; he had never wanted to leave the Russian Church, but he was a weak man surrounded by powerful laymen, mainly freemasons and those who had betrayed the Tsar and organized the February Revolution. It was the end of the possibility that that jurisdiction would ever return to the freed, restored and reunited Russian Church. But I only understood that the meaning of that bitter disappointment afterwards.
Q: Why did you not leave such a masonic group?
A: Not all by far were freemasons and I felt that I had to labour on until God’s will for me should be revealed.
Q: When was that?
A: Without doubt it was in summer 1988 when the Paris Jurisdiction celebrated the millennium of the Baptism of Rus. Instead of inviting the Russian bishops in Western Europe to the Cathedral on Rue Daru in Paris and returning to the Russian Church in unity, they railed against the Russian Church and invited the Roman Catholic Cardinal of Paris. I was not only scandalized but spiritually distraught. I was an eyewitness to treason and apostasy. It was the last straw. They preferred heresy to Orthodoxy.
Soon after, I met Archbishop Antony of Geneva of ROCOR, who told me that he would be happy to receive me and that I had no need whatsoever to labour on in such anti-canonical conditions. I jumped at the opportunity. 17 people left with me, including a priest. So we all joined the Church Outside Russia in January 1989. That was a transforming moment because previously I had only known the Church Outside Russia in England. On the other hand, Vladyka Antony, heir to Vladyka John of Shanghai, though traditional, was not racist or fanatical, but missionary-minded. He lived in a different world from the fanatics in England and we freely concelebrated with other Orthodox.
I remember him telling me about the extremists who were trying to take control of ROCOR in New York. He said: ‘But there’s nowhere else to go’. I have not the slightest doubt that he would have returned to Russia, if he had had the chance. I also remember conversations with him about Metr Antony of Kiev (Archbp Antony came from Kiev), whom he had known well in Belgrade and whose name he had taken. He was the real ROCOR. Real Russian Orthodox. At last. It had taken me 20 years to get to that point! 20 years of facing illusions, lies, broken promises and corruption. You would think it would have been easy, but nothing of the sort. All hell was against the Russian Orthodox Church, a sure sign of truth.
Q: What happened next?
A: Well, I was at last living as a proper Russian Orthodox. Nearly three years later, in December 1991 I was ordained priest for the new ROCOR parish in Lisbon in Portugal.
Q: What was your attitude to the Moscow Patriarchate?
A: We were all just impatiently waiting for it to become politically free and free of renovationism. That happened officially with the Jubilee Council in Moscow in 2000.
Q: So why didn’t the Church Outside Russia join up with the Patriarchate straightaway in 2000?
A: It is one thing to proclaim the truth at a Council, but another for the decisions of that Council to be implemented. For example, after that I can still remember how at the London Patriarchal Cathedral they refused to put up icons of the New Martyrs and also, incidentally, they refused to sell the books of Fr Seraphim (Rose) or anything traditional. Priests and people coming from Russia were persecuted by the renovationists because they were ‘too’ traditional. We had to wait for the Patriarchate to free itself from such Renovationism.
Also, it must be said, we had to wait until the fanatical elements that had done so much harm to ROCOR since they had started infiltrating the Church in the mid-sixties had left us. When the extremists did finally leave, almost at the same time, there was a huge sigh of relief, because then we could get on with being Orthodox. So it was we had to wait until 2007.
Q: How do you know that people are free of Renovationism?
A: Easy: The yardstick is veneration for the New Martyrs, especially the Imperial Martyrs. The renovationists hate them.
Q: How do you know that people are free of sectarian fanaticism of the sort you describe as having infiltrated ROCOR?
A: Easy: The yardstick is the willingness to concelebrate with other Orthodox Christians.
Q: What is going to happen in the future? At present there are countries like England where there are two parallel jurisdictions of the Russian Church, one dependent on Moscow, the other dependent on the Church Outside Russia?
A: According to the 2007 agreement, where there are two parallel jurisdictions, ROCOR should, in time, absorb the Patriarchal jurisdiction. This will probably take a generation, so that no-one will be under any pressure and everything will take place naturally, organically. However, in reality, already nine years have passed and we can see that in certain areas, like North America and Australasia, ROCOR will indeed clearly take over responsibility for those territories, whereas in other areas the Patriarchate will take over, as in South America, not to mention South-East Asia. The problem comes in the mixed area of Western Europe, including the British Isles and Ireland. In this area, only time will tell, clearly it is the more competent of the two that will take responsibility.
For the moment we shall lead parallel lives. There is in any case so much to do. I could start 12 parishes tomorrow, if I had the money to buy buildings and get candidates for the priesthood ordained. The state of Orthodox infrastructure and the general pastoral situation here are so appalling as to be scandalous; no wonder so many Orthodox lapse or become Roman Catholic or Protestant. All we pastors meet with is indifference. Those in authority should hang their heads in shame. Why is there not a church, our own property in every town over 100,000? This should have been done a generation ago. For example the teeming millions of London only have two small churches!
Colchester is the 50th largest town in England (and incidentally the 500th largest in Western Europe). It has a church that belongs to us. But want about the other 49 larger ones? Only five of them have their own churches: London, Manchester, Nottingham, Norwich, Birkenhead-Liverpool. That is a scandal. There is no missionary vision at all. Birmingham is the second largest city in the UK with a population of two million. And where do the faithful of the Patriarchate have ten liturgies a year on Saturdays (that’s all the priest can manage)? In the Ukrainian Uniat chapel. The next time you hear some naïve Orthodox boasting about his Church, tell him that. Orthodox should be ashamed of themselves.
Q: So is there competition between the two parts of the Russian Church locally?
A: No, not at all. It all depends on who has the priests and the buildings. A concrete example. I was asked to visit a prison in Cambridgeshire. Now, since there is no ROCOR presence in Cambridgeshire (because through incompetence it refused to set anything up there in the 1980s), I gave the prison authorities the references of the Patriarchal priest who lives in Cambridgeshire. On the other hand, when there was question of the Patriarchate setting something up in Norfolk (it had lost what it had had there a few years before, also through incompetence), but knowing that ROCOR had a presence there dating back to 1966, it was referred to me. So here is a territorial division. Now, where there is a double jurisdiction, as in London (the only case), something will have to be sorted out. But, as you can see, that will be as a result of competence. Only time can settle such matters. The more competent part, the more spiritual part of the Russian Church will prevail and form a united jurisdiction.
Q: So there is no rigid territorial division in Western Europe?
A: No, nobody wants to impose such a system. Let everything be done freely, let the people choose. Though, having said that, we can observe a tendency for ROCOR to dominate in the English-speaking world. Canada, the USA and Australasia are clear examples. For example, with Archbishop Mark of ROCOR retiring to Germany and the ROCOR Diocese of the British Isles and Ireland being taken over by Metr Hilarion of New York, we can even talk about a sort of ROCOR Brexit. Metr Hilarion will in fact be Metropolitan of New England and Old England. That is an exceptional event, historically speaking, and may be significant, a turning-point.
So it is possible that in a generation from now ROCOR will only exist in the English-speaking world, but will unite all Russian Orthodox there. ROCOR will become ROCA – the Russian Orthodox Church in the Anglosphere. That is one quite organic and natural possible scenario, a united Russian Orthodox Metropolia for the Anglosphere, the English-speaking world. The Patriarchate will look after everything else in various Metropolias, in Latin America, in Alaska, in Western Europe, in Asia etc.
Q: So Western Europe would completely go to the Patriarchate?
A: That is the way that things are developing at the moment. All the young bishops and all the dynamism in the Russian Church there is Patriarchal. ROCOR only has three ageing bishops and is not opening any new churches.
Q: Is there a difference between ROCOR churches and Patriarchal churches?
A: I think there is a small one, in general. Strangely enough, ROCOR is at one and the same time more Russian, but also more local, more integrated. We have done the translations, we print in English, we speak the local languages and know the local laws, we were born here. At the same time, however, we are utterly faithful to the best of the Tsar’s Russia, never having endured the Soviet period and Renovationism. ‘To quote the saintly Metr Laurus: ‘We are for the purity of Holy Orthodoxy’. We are Imperial priests and people.
Q: What about your own relations with the Russian Church inside Russia?
A: We are very close to all those who are Churched in Russia and they feel close to us. For example, in Moscow one of the closest friends of ROCOR has always been Bishop Tikhon (Shevkunov), whom some have even suggested will be the next Patriarch. (Bp Tikhon has been in the news recently, since he outraged the British Establishment by inviting students from Eton College to experience Christianity in Russia; not something the atheist Establishment likes). In general, those who especially venerate the New Martyrs and Confessors at once feel at home in ROCOR. I have this nearly every Sunday. People from different parts of Russia, from the Ukraine, from Moldova and elsewhere say that they feel at home, whatever the language, the atmosphere is like at home. In my native town of Colchester, that is a great thing that we have such an oasis of Orthodoxy.
Q: Who are the unChurched in Russia?
A: You find all sorts of people. There are those on the right hand side who mingle superstition with Orthodoxy, for instance, those ritualists who think that holy water is more important than holy communion, who mix in pharisaic sectarianism, puritanism and judgementalism, or, on the other hand, those on the left hand side, who mix in Soviet nationalism, love of the tyrant Stalin, or modernism. But all that is superficial, the majority make their way to the Church sooner or later. You do not waste time on the convert fringes of the Church – otherwise you might end up thinking that that is the Church! A terrible delusion!
Q: Why have you stayed faithful to the Russian Church despite all the difficulties that you have faced over nearly fifty years?
A: Because the Russian Orthodox Church is the Invincible Power. History since 1917 proves it. The gates of hell have not prevailed – and shall not prevail – despite all the enemies and traitors, both external and internal, we have faced. Judas betrayed, but the other apostles triumphed. So tragedy becomes joy. The stone that was rejected is become the headstone of the corner. Thou hast conquered, O Galilean!
As one US commentator has put it: ‘Two generations ago President Kennedy decided to put American men on the moon; today President Obama has decided to put American men into women’s restrooms’. In just two generations the Western world has gone from at least a cultural recognition of Christian values through indifference to active and hostile persecution. The last bastion of Christianity in the world today, under attack from the Western world for its adherence to Christianity and vigorous defence of Christian values, is Russia. With a Western-inspired civil war on its doorstep, as every day Christians are massacred in the Ukraine by the US-installed Fascist junta in Kiev, and surrounded by NATO forces threatening war, the battle for Christ is on:
From Recent Correspondence on Modernism
Q: What is modernism?
A: Modernism, often called renovationism in Russian, is merely secularization, that is desacralization, under the camouflage of the word ‘modern’.
Q: How did you encounter modernism in the Orthodox Church?
A: Between 1973 and 1980, I met a great many modernists: Intellectuals and pseudo-intellectuals. First the Parisians living in England, then those in France itself, where Paris was the source of all the problems. In France in 1985 I also encountered freemasonry among such ‘Orthodox’ modernists. It was very widespread among them then and perhaps still is.
Q: So you met modernism very soon?
A: Yes, it was actually presented to me as the norm, as real Orthodoxy!
Q: But you rejected it?
A: I was seeking the source of the sacred, not the secular! So I instinctively and automatically felt that modernist Orthodoxy was a fake, not the real thing, but I also knew that from experience, my own and through having observed Church life, the real thing, in Russia.
Q: Which modernists did you meet?
A: The well-known names: in England, Nicholas Zernov, the then Fr Basil Osborne, Metr Antony Bloom, Fr Lev Gillet, Fr Sergei Hackel, Fr Nicholas Behr, and in France Fr Boris Bobrinsky, Fr Elie Melia, Olivier Clement, Elisabeth Behr-Sigel, Nikita Struve, Konstantin Andronikov, Fr Jean-Claude Roberti, Fr Jean Gueit, Fr Alexander Schmemann and many other lesser known names who simply followed the fashion that they set, including those active in Syndesmos.
I have to say that these figures are nearly all departed now, part of a generation that was deeply compromised by modernism. Indeed, I also met many who had personally known well those who had led modernism in the previous generation, for example Archbishop John (Shakhovskoy), Fr Nikolay Afanasyev, the former Marxists Fr Sergius Bulgakov and Berdyayev, Fr Paul Florensky, Yevdokimov, Fedotov, Zander, Zenkovsky, or Mother Maria Skobtsova. Many of them had relatives who disagreed with them completely.
Q: I notice that you have not mentioned two well-known members of modernist clergy in England.
A: There are two well-known exceptions because they are lesser, more subtle figures in modernism, shall we say, semi-modernist, that is, modernist under the cloak of traditional. One dead, one still alive, they belong to the ‘spiritual’ school of modernism, which is still popular and they are revered by naïve newcomers and all the Tradition-less.
It is important to distinguish between the different grades of modernism, from the primitive to the sophisticated. For example, I have seen Archbishop Basil (Krivoshein) mentioned as a modernist. I can see where that comes from (his interest in St Simeon the New Theologian and his ecumenical contacts), but he cannot be compared to the above.
Q: Why are such ‘moderate modernists’ revered?
A: As they say, in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.
Q: Did you meet Metr John Zizioulas?
A: Not then. I only met him about eight years ago.
Q: And Fr John Meyendorff?
A: No, I never met him, but he was among the more moderate, except on fasting.
Q: What was your reaction to all these figures?
A: I instinctively knew that they were wrong but at the time I could not explain why, because I did not have the tools or arguments from experience and from theological study to answer them. For example, I understood that their philosophy was characterized by pride, they all thought that they knew better than the Church. They were above the Church. And this pride was characterized by intellectual fantasies, the result of a lack of rootedness in reality and spiritual reality, the Tradition. And the characteristic of this was their inability to provide spiritual food. They fed the brain – to the point of their books and talks giving you headaches – but they were incapable of feeding your soul, leaving you dry.
Q: Why were there, and why are there still, so many modernists in the Orthodox Diaspora?
A: There were and are so many – relatively speaking – they are in fact very few, they just make a lot of noise – in the Diaspora because these people encountered the West directly and never having had any roots in the Tradition, they wanted to mix their superficial Orthodoxy with Western culture. Uprooted from an Orthodox context and denying monastic life, they did not want the spiritual purity of Holy Orthodoxy, but compromise, they wanted to swim with the Western tide. That is why all modernists are essentially ecumenists and secularists. They try to conform the Church to the world, instead of conforming themselves (the world) to the Church.
Q: And why was Paris the centre of modernism?
A: Paris was where the French-speaking aristocrats and intellectuals from Saint Petersburg who had carried out the Revolution under Western influence and with Western backing had chosen exile. A great many of them were freemasons, some, like Yusupov, had been very interested in the occult and hypnotism. Paris was the place of their exile, where they were called to repentance. In other words, this is where the most spiritually decadent Russians, nominal Orthodox, highly protestantized, in the sense of secularized, went to live.
There were two groups. First, there were left-wingers, like Bulgakov, Berdyayev and Mother Maria, but most were right-wing constitutionalists or republicans who wanted either the British model or else the French model of political organization. None of them of course wanted Orthodoxy. All broke away from the Russian Church and her liturgical and canonical disciplines, in other words, they broke entirely away from the Tradition. This they did on the pretext of seeking ‘freedom and creativity’! The saddest thing was that they did not understand repentance.
Q: Why did they not simply become Protestants or Uniats – that would have been honest?
A: Because they were pretentious, which is a disease of intellectuals. They wanted to be different and lord it over others through their ‘exotic’ differences. If they had simply been Protestants or Uniats, no Western-Establishment figures or ecumenists would even have looked at them, they would have lost their exotic tag and been forgotten as immigrants. But by setting up a Westernized branch of Orthodoxy, they attracted attention and admiration. In other words, they, or rather their descendants, were courted by those who wanted to destroy the very Soviet Russia which they had themselves created in 1917, in order to replace it with the sort of degutted Russia they did briefly create in the 1990s until the revival in 2000. For secularist Western Establishments they were all ‘useful idiots’.
Of course, these modernists were peddling a fake Orthodoxy, but Anglicans and others knew no better and gave these semi-Orthodox a false authority by buying their books and listening to their talks. If you say modernist things with a Russian accent, you are suddenly exotic and interesting. Some of these émigrés even faked Russian accents to sound more Russian! There was a lot of acting going on in order to hoodwink simple people, even hypnotism. If you look, you will see that almost all their books were bought and read either by Non-Orthodox or else by converts who knew no better.
Q: Why do so many intellectuals fall into modernism?
A: Because they live uprooted lives in their heads, and not their hearts. So they are prey to fantasies. If you are an intellectual type, you must have a strong spiritual or ascetic life to balance it out. For example St Justin (Popovich) was an intellectual, but it did not, forgive the pun, go to his head. So anyone can become a saint, even an intellectual, but such saintliness exists despite intellectualism, not because of it.
Q: What is the antidote to modernism?
A: First of all, let me say that the antidote is not the censorious condemnation and ritualism of the pharisees. That also comes from hardness and dryness of heart, lack of compassion. It fails to take account of the need for pastoral dispensation, true ‘ikonomia’. The first victims of modernism are the modernists themselves.
The antidote to modernism can never be in another ism, but in the Church. And that antidote is in seeking spiritual food, not intellectual food, and spiritual food comes from holiness, which comes from asceticism, which is exactly what the modernists reject. That is why they dislike people going to the sources in Eastern Europe and Russia, especially Mt Athos. In true Protestant style, modernists hate anything that is beyond the rational, mysterious. What can be more ‘irrational’ and mysterious than holiness? They lack the sense of the sacred.
Holiness is one of the four characteristics of the Church, which they reject, since they reject the Church. For them the Church is not One – there are many ‘Churches’; the Church is not Holy (which is why they desacralize everything), but to be reformed; the Church is not Catholic (in the Orthodox sense of being the same everywhere and at all times), because the modernists reject everything outside their 20th century mental ghetto; and the Church is not Apostolic, because they reject the Faith of the Apostles, the inherited Tradition. The antidote to modernism is in holiness, that is, in the saints.
Q: But some of these modernists were much interested in saints?
A: You have hit the nail on the head – ‘interested’ in saints. Interested in saints – how very fashionable! They were interested in the outward events in the lives of saints, but not in becoming saints. They intellectualized or externalized everything, making it abstract, into a philosophy – they did not live the Faith. Theirs is an outward or Uniat attitude to the Faith, which is of course why many of them had sympathies with Uniatism, like Solovyov did. They loved to talk about ‘techniques’, techniques of icon-painting, techniques of Church singing, techniques of celebration etc. These techniques they analyzed constantly. They spoke about hagiography – but did not want holiness. They spoke, they wrote, but they did not do, they did not fast and pray and there is no holiness without fasting and prayer.
Q: Do you think that modernism has a future?
A: Yes and no. Most of the well-known names of modernists belong to those who have died in the last 75 years, many in the last 25 years. And modernism is strangely old-fashioned in the present post-modernist world, which is characterized by cynicism. The only answer to cynicism is faith, not half-faith and half-faith is what modernism is: Halfodoxy instead of Orthodoxy. In that sense modernism is over because it has no answer to post-modernism, which it created. And yet it is not over.
For example, I remember the words of Metr Antony Bloom, when real Orthodox started coming to his church in London around the year 2000. They were naturally, like the rest of us had been decades before, very shocked by what they saw. He said that it would take fifty years to convert these people to Orthodoxy (that is, to his Bloomism). In other words, the truth is that it will take fifty years to convert the modernists to Orthodoxy. There is still the hangover from the past and it will take time for the vestiges of modernism to die out. In that sense, modernism is not over.
Q: Some would be shocked by your listing of Mother Maria Skobtsova as a modernist. She was canonized by the Rue Daru group with the blessing of the Patriarch of Constantinople.
A: As you know, that top-down canonization was controversial and you would be hard put to find a single icon of her even in any Greek Church in the world, let alone in others. In other words, her canonization was purely local and actually very political. Veneration for her simply does not exist in most of the Orthodox world, given her very strange life and anti-Orthodox writings. Having said that, however, we must say that in her concentration camp death, she, like millions of others, must have cleansed herself.
Q: So is she a saint?
A: I would say that her destiny has not been revealed to us. Let us remain silent. We do not know. We simply do not know the measure of her repentance in Ravensbruck. It may well have been deep and complete, as surely it was for millions of others. In the hour of death, people become realistic, which is why the memory of death is ascetically so important. Here we have a vital point. There is no place for personal dislike, still less hatred, for these individuals. Like the rest of us, they made their mistakes, it may be that many of them repented before the end, though of course the damage was done by then. We should pray for all of them. Some of them had good hearts – they were poisoned by their heads.
For instance, I remember Fr Alexander Schmemann, He was a charming and interesting man – though of course we agreed on nothing. But I still pray for him. Or there was Elisabeth Behr-Sigel the feminist Protestant pastor. She said appalling things about ROCOR, which just showed how ignorant she was of Orthodoxy. But I prayed for her when she died. Even though modernists persecuted us and slandered us, it is important to pray for them, not only does it help them, but it helps us too, it stops our hearts from growing hard. We must always pray for our enemies. We are Christians.
What is disturbing is that those who canonized Mother Maria canonized her not for her sacrificial death, but for her anti-Church musings – and that is not to venerate her, but to malign her. When people die, we should try to remember only the good things about them. Personally, I think her writings should be made secret because they are shameful, the fruit of someone who had not yet been converted from being a Social Revolutionary.
Q: What form does modernism take today?
A: Modernism now tends to have a more philosophical, ‘spiritual’ form, in any possible way so as to blur the clear and dogmatic. This is very cunning, as we have seen with the new documents for the Crete meeting next June (if it takes place). For example, in Greece, you have the case of the philosopher Yannaras, in Russia you have the case of the Kochetkovite sect, in Finland you have a very active group, including clergy, though they are so extreme that they are very isolated, even having abandoned Orthodox Easter. They go back to the notorious Archbishop Herman (Aav), and that continued through Archbishop Paul, Archbishop Leo and now Metr Ambrose. But this is purely modern Lutheranism.
Q: What are the themes of these modernists?
A: On the one hand, there are still the crude renovationist practices taken from 1920s Russia, where such modernism more or less died out under Stalin. Such practices include letting laypeople do the proskomidia in the middle of the church and generally desacralizing the services, which is an abandonment of the priesthood. Remember that modernism, as I said, is essentially secularization, the opposite of sacralization. So first it had to destroy the sacral Emperor (the Tsar), then their next task was to destroy the priesthood – equally sacral. Linked with this destruction of the priesthood are the many divorced and remarried priests among the modernists, the uncanonically ordained and all the anti-liturgical practices, which include shortening the services and introducing the so-called ‘new’ or Roman Catholic calendar, which has always been the first stage in falling away from Orthodoxy.
On the other hand, today, as a result of the tide of secularization or desacralization that the modernists have never been able to resist and even welcome, the latest fad among them is pushing to introduce female priests and homosexual marriage into the Church. The latter movement is strong in some of the parishes in Finland, which are basically Lutheran with icons. Of course, whenever there are homosexual clergy, that push is even stronger because there is self-interest, self-justification.
Q: Where is modernism in general strongest today?
A: Although there are the debased remnants in Europe in the ever smaller Paris Jurisdiction (all the big intellectuals are dead), and there are still those in the USA as well as in Finland, now there is a group of people connected with Fr George Kochetkov in Russia. The disgraced Protodeacon Andrei Kurayev is among them, and the murdered Uniat Fr Alexander Men still has a few disciples. Then there is the provocateur Fr George Mitrofanov, as well as Fr Alexei Uminsky. However, I think they were all stronger in the 1990s than today. They too are figures from the past and I think they will die out, like the others. Now we are in the 21st century, it is time to grow up.
Q: Given this continued modernism, aren’t you pessimistic about the future?
A: As regards modernism, our Christian life is a combat, a struggle, it always has been and always will be. We will fight these anti-dogmatic currents, just as we combated the old modernism. Thus, we, like all Orthodox, combat and reject the absurd documents prepared for the meeting in Crete in June. However, Christians are always optimists because however grim the situation is now, Christ will triumph at the end of history.
St Laurence of Chernigov (+ 1950) said:
When a little freedom comes and they open and restore churches and monasteries, then all sorts of false teachings will appear; demons and secret atheists (Catholics, Uniats, self-ordained Ukrainians and others) will take up arms and fight against the Orthodox Church of Rus, its unity and its catholicity with ferocity. A Godless government will support the heretics and so they will take away churches from the Orthodox and slaughter the faithful. Then a Metropolitan of Kiev (unworthy of the name) together with like-minded bishops and priests will shake the Russian Church to the core. His iniquity will frighten and amaze the whole world. He himself will go off to eternal perdition like Judas. However, all these slanders of the evil one and false teachings will disappear in Russia and there will be a united Russian Orthodox Church.
Elder Jonah of Odessa (+ 2012) said:
Troubles in a country smaller than Russia will come a year after my death. The troubles will continue for two years, after which a Russian Tsar will appear. The first Easter will be full of blood, the second of hunger and the third of victory.
Elder Gregory of Docheiariou, the Holy Mountain (21 March 2015)
Every Ukrainian must understand that if he wants blessings on his country, then you must kick out the Americans. Let Ukrainians rely on their brothers in the faith and in blood, the Russians. If you allow American interference in Ukrainian affairs, then your country will never recover. There is no need to kill your neighbour… how is this possible, brother killing brother? Today, we watch these developments with great pain. Docheiariou Monastery sends up many prayers to succour the Ukrainian people, to whom we as a monastery are very grateful.
As a result of the atheist and materialist philosophies which came out of the so-called ‘Enlightenment’ (in truth, ‘Endarkenment’), most of the 20th century was wasted. The appalling human and material waste took place in huge and extremely costly genocidal wars between rival European imperialisms and then between Capitalist atheism and Communist atheism. These conflicts reached their apogee in the Second World War between neo-pagan Nazism and neo-pagan Communism, between rival imperialisms in North Africa and the Pacific with nuclear holocaust and then in the stand-off and proxy conflicts between East and West in the Cold War, with its potential to obliterate all humanity in MAD (Mutually Assured Destruction).
At that time the Church and the last faithful Christians, representing the only Third Way between these rival neo-paganisms, were squeezed and oppressed between Communist atheism and Capitalist atheism. The former ideology held captive the larger Orthodox Churches of Eastern Europe, most notably the Patriarchate of Moscow, the latter ideology held captive the smaller Greek-speaking Orthodox Churches, most notably the tiny Patriarchate of Constantinople. Apart from the millions of martyrs of whom the world was not worthy, there were few who were free, but they included those who have come to be recognized as great saints, like St Nicholas of Zhicha, St John of Shanghai and St Justin of Chelije and St Paisius of Athos.
After the fall of Soviet atheism at the very end of 1991, Capitalist atheism stood triumphant and sought to globalize its imperialism unchallenged, seeking the world hegemony necessary to prepare for the enthronement and coming reign of Antichrist. Having defeated Communism, in its triumphalism it considered that now only the Islamic world needed to be crushed for the final victory of Zionism. However, the last faithful Christians in the various Local Orthodox Churches did not lose hope. Encouraged and inspired by the examples of the New Martyrs and Confessors throughout the Orthodox world, a turning-point came in 2007 with the long-awaited reuniting of the Russian Orthodox Church in Moscow, the capital of the Russian Federation.
Under the influence of the Church of All the Russias, the world’s largest and most multinational Local Church, the citizens of the Russian Federation have become conscious of the situation and have in the last few years been choosing sides. Some mainly older people, with a twisted nostalgia for the mass murderers Lenin and Stalin, look for their country to become a Soviet Union 2 and so fall back into atheist persecution of the spiritual and fail once more. Others, so-called ‘liberals’, want the Russian Federation to abandon its millennial identity and become a Western vassal-state of atheist neocons and traitors and so fall into the same spiritual impurity, selfish exploitation, consumerist self-indulgence and inevitable failure as the Western world.
However, ever more citizens in the Russian Federation are looking to the Third Way, the path of repentance and return to its historic identity and destiny. This is the path of becoming once more the Third Rome, the Christian Empire, the bulwark and centre of the whole Church and all the spiritual forces in the world, the centre of Resistance to Antichrist, Who has made the West into his blinded pawn. Currently a Satanic war against the Church is being waged – and we should make no mistake – this is the Third World War. Amid the catastrophes in Syria, Serbia, Montenegro, Romania, Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Georgia, Moldova and the bloody, anti-Ukrainian NATO puppet-show in Kiev come the words of a Metropolitan of the Patriarchate of Antioch.
On 1 February, the sixth anniversary of the enthronement of His Holiness Kyrill, Patriarch of Moscow and All the Russias, the representative of the Patriarchate of Antioch in Russia, Metropolitan Niphon of Philippopolis, was present at the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow, built and then rebuilt to commemorate the victory over Western atheism. He said: ‘The meaning of today’s feast for the Orthodox world is in the care of Your Holiness for the unity of Universal Orthodoxy. Your open-ended dialogue during Your Patriarchal visits to the ancient Patriarchates emphasizes a Pan-Orthodox response to today’s challenges, in which religion is being squeezed out of human life and moral values are being subjected to radical revision’.
After the Liturgy on that day, at a meal in honour of the Patriarch at the Cathedral, surrounded by dignitaries, the Arab Orthodox Metropolitan, representing a land where people still speak Aramaic, the language spoken by Christ, spoke. He asserted that the Patriarch’s activities resounded throughout the world and witnessed to the fact that his visits outside Russia were deeply significant for the various Local Churches and their peoples. He added: ‘Seeing, sensing and living Your care for the strengthening of the unity of all Orthodox and Universal Orthodoxy we, the representatives of the Orthodox Churches at Your throne, are witnesses that the day of Your enthronement as Patriarch of Moscow became an epoch-making event and great feast’.
As the brutish and Satanic NATO aggression against the peoples of the Ukraine continues, the heroic Bishop Longin (Zhara) of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church has called on the people not to surrender their children as cannon fodder for the oligarch junta in Kiev. Bishop Longin is famous as the founder of the Monastery of Bachensk, where hundreds of orphans are looked after, 200 of whom have been adopted personally by this energetic bishop. He has said:
‘I ask of you just one thing: to unite and not surrender your children to death. Our Orthodox Faith does not allow us to kill one another. For the sake of political interests, for the sake of those who are defending their businesses and who are defending their high positions, they want to kill our people who live at peace with faith in God. My kith and kin, you do not have the right to shoot and kill. God gives life and God takes away. The rulers of the Ukraine have said: ‘The Orthodox Faith is the greatest enemy of the Ukraine’. This is what strangers ordered them to say and in their blindness those strangers cannot reconcile themselves with the truth.
How can we pick up a gun and shoot at the image of God? Like us, he too has a mother, a wife, children. Why are they forcing us to fight against our will? …There are already thousands and tens of thousands of dead, but they only speak of hundreds. I do not give you my blessing to go to war. We call you to peace. About 10,000 soldiers have died and their mothers do not even know that they are dead. I am not being political, it is just painful for me because this is not a war against an enemy, this is a war among our own.
…The United States wants to see Orthodox killing each other, shooting each other, while they eat, drink and make merry, rejoicing at the bloodshed in our holy land…Europe, of which the Holy Fathers said: ‘Do not worship the beast’…Now they are standing to one side and rejoicing at our spilled Orthodox blood.
We all feel that we are standing on the brink of a Third World War. That is why I am calling on you: Repent! And we shall not surrender our children to death!
At the holy Liturgy I will never commemorate the cursed leaders of our State – those unbelievers who do not have the fear of God, who sit in their armchairs and point and order: ‘Kill!’ I pray for just one thing: If Thou still canst, O Lord, enlighten them for they are overwhelmed by the darkness and filled with poison. They no longer need anything except the bloodshed which brings them satisfaction. Satanists! They are servants of Satan! If they do not stop themselves, then God will stop them and then there will be many sorrows!’
Following the questions and answers published on 23 November, we now publish further questions and answers resulting from them.
Q: Does anyone try and stop you from writing?
A: Oh yes, two or three anonymous individuals, probably from both extreme left and extreme right (interestingly, their views are identical – the extremes always meet) try censorship. The fact that, aggressively and dictatorially, they try to impose their censorship on free expression means that they are wrong. If they wish to read what they agree with, they can turn to any of the conformist, secularist media; why do they try and censor those who are Orthodox Christians and so think otherwise?
As they say of those on the extreme left: ‘There is no-one as intolerant as a liberal’. As regards those on the extreme right, they are by definition illiberal. I ignore extremists, especially anonymous ones, because they are motivated not by love but by hatred. Interestingly, earlier this month I met in London one who had not been anonymous and had tried to silence me some years ago. He has completely changed his life and apologized for what he had asked me to do six years ago. People change, people mature with experience. Give them time for repentance. We do not repeat their intolerance, but show patience.
Q: You said in the first questions and answers that some old calendarists are concerned by the possible 2016 All-Orthodox meeting. But when you compare the piety of old calendarists to new calendarists, can’t you support the former?
A: An example. Last month a Greek woman (dressed in jeans and of course without any head covering) came from London to visit our Church. The first question she asked me was: ‘Why aren’t there any pews?’ (!). Such is the result of decades of modernism in the Patriarchate of Constantinople in the diaspora. But why would I compare an unchurched person from a new calendar Church with an old calendarist convert? You cannot justify your schism by comparing yourself with someone who is unChurched and whose Church attendance consists of 20 minutes per year on Easter night.
I can remember in 1977 meeting an unChurched old calendarist from an old calendarist village in northern Greece. I was not impressed. Let us compare like with like. There are devout people who live on the new calendar (because they are forced to, definitely not new calendarists) and devout people who live on the old calendar (freely, but definitely not old calendarists). And there are non-devout people who live on both calendars too.
On the subject of that possible 2016 meeting, I should also have mentioned that, apart from the dispute between Constantinople with the Czechs and Slovaks, the dispute between the Patriarchates of Antioch and Jerusalem may also prevent it from taking place. And not only that. This week the US politician Joe Biden, whose son Hunter son has conveniently landed a very well-paid job in the energy sector in the Ukraine, was again in Istanbul, discussing the Ukraine – with a Patriarchate which has no jurisdiction whatsoever there. All the notorious CIA mouthpieces of the Phanar were present at the meeting, ready to take their orders from an organization that has a history of mass murder.
Q: What could happen as a result?
A: If Biden bribes the Phanar into setting up a pro-CIA schism in the Ukraine, as the Phanar did in Estonia, then there will be a major schism, with the elite of Constantinople falling away from the Church altogether, maybe its Patriarch becoming the irrelevant departmental head of the Uniats in an obscure bureau in the Vatican. However, if such a schism occurred, only the elite would fall away, as at the Council of Florence, a few faithful bishops, new St Marks of Ephesus, most monks, parish clergy and people would remain in the Church, perhaps going under the Church of Greece. As the proverb says; ‘A fish rots from the head’.
Q: Is bribery a realistic option?
A: Yes. Remember that the former US ambassador in Kiev, John Herbst, already set up the Agathangel schism in Odessa. Divide and rule is Washington’s motto and even if it costs a few tens of millions of dollars, they don’t care. They just print the money off in Washington and call it ‘quantitative easing’. Remember that it cost them $5 billion, as Victoria Nuland admitted, just to set up the current lame duck regime in Kiev. With $17 trillion dollars of debt (and that is how the Soviet Union was defeated – the US could go into massive debt, but the USSR could not), that is a drop in the ocean.
Q: What could happen if Constantinople fell away?
A: In such a case the remaining faithful Local Churches could hold a real and free Council in the New Jerusalem Monastery outside Moscow. This Monastery is almost ready for this. I have been there. From there the Orthodox Truth could be proclaimed in its integrity to the whole world, which would then see the essential, underlying unity of the Church, free of CIA manipulations. In such a case we could expect the Local Churches concerned to drop their compromises, such as the new calendar, and return to the fullness of Orthodoxy. Possibly the Patriarchate of Moscow could, as three-quarters of the Orthodox Church, become the first Patriarchate in the diptychs. That would be a necessary update to the reality of the Church today. Certainly, that would completely change the state of several Local Churches from CIA control and nationalist stagnation to missionary dynamism.
Q: How will Antichrist come to power?
A: There are two techniques for establishing Antichrist’s New World Order, that is, for obtaining the Global Dictatorship of the One World Government.
First of all, you can bribe naïve leaders and organize paid mobs of the unemployed and criminals to create riots in order to overthrow the legitimate government (called a ‘regime’ by the US-run Western media which duly demonize the legitimate government). This is politely known as ‘regime-change’, which is also the aim of Western sanctions. This is what has been tried unsuccessfully in Moscow and more recently in Hong Kong, but successfully in Kiev – a technique that had been well-practised in what the CIA-paid media dubbed ‘the Arab Spring’, a series of catastrophes which has cost hundreds of thousands of lives so far.
I think Washington may soon try the same technique of ‘regime-change’ in Kishinev (where it has banned all parties except pro-EU ones – the Kiev scenario again), Belgrade, Prague and Budapest – capitals of three countries whose leaders are now valiantly resisting US and EU bribery, bullying and threats for being independent. Of course, this does not happen in Tokyo, Berlin, Paris and London, because there the regimes (often elected with less than 30% of the popular vote) are only vassals, heads of US vassal states. Where the selected elite (who call us ‘plebs’) are already in your pocket, you do not have to unseat it – you already control the country
The second technique is to use the media, including the social media, to demonize a government and then to bomb its country back to the Stone Age. This is the Iraq/Afghanistan/Libya scenario. Once you have bombed the country to smithereens and unleashed interminable tribal infighting, you are then free to plunder its natural resources, so dividing and ruling, because, again, you already control the country.
Q: In the first questions and answers you mentioned the fact that there was support in the Russian Church for Kerensky after the 1917 Revolution. How do you explain that?
A: Apart from the naïve, ignorant and deluded, there were treacherous renovationists. They had been infiltrating the Russian Church since the early 1900s. Think of the twice married Fr George Gapon who led the 1905 protest and soon after hanged himself. These people wanted a socialist Orthodoxy! The 1920s renovationist schism under heretics like the renovationist Vvedensky and the Paris schism in the emigration did not come from nowhere – the highly politicized elements responsible for these schisms had long ago infiltrated the Church. Such self-deluded individuals call the Patriarch Antichrist or Judas and still dare to take communion. Such blasphemy burns them alive, as it did the Old Ritualists. Believe me, I have seen it happen. Such individuals always end up outside the Church, embittered through their self-delusion and hatred and often commit suicide.
Q: Are there still renovationists in the Russian Church?
A: There are still a few here and there, but very, very few and they are dying out. Most have left the Church, though some have joined Constantinople.
Q: You seem to overlook the role of Catholicism. Surely it, and not Orthodoxy, could save the West?
A: The West has categorically rejected Catholicism. And here I do not only mean the Protestant West, which has directly become atheist. I also mean the once Catholic countries of Europe. In Europe Catholicism is in freefall, even in a country like Poland, where the number of those practising Catholicism has halved in the last 25 years. Why?
It is because Catholicism is part of the problem, not part of the solution. Catholicism is the father of Protestantism, which is the father of the modern atheist West. No new pope, even if he is a master of PR, is thoroughly anti-Orthodox and pro-Uniat, was voted in by Washington and has the CIA-backed Western media behind him, can change anything. It is 1,000 years too late.
Q: What do you mean by Catholicism as part of the problem?
A: Historically, the West has degenerated from Christ (Orthodoxy) to Feudalism (Catholicism), then to Democracy (Protestantism) and so to Antichrist (Post-Protestantism). We can see this in many examples. For example, feudalism appeared in England very suddenly, in 1066. It simply did not exist here before. In other words, feudalism is the socio-political and economic result of Catholicism. Or, to take another example from today, the present genocide in Catholic Mexico (100,000 dead in the last twelve months, it is said) is being caused by feudal drug-traffickers, who are holed up on their castle-ranches, and pay serfs to work for them. (Of course, the drug-traffickers only exist because a section of the US population takes drugs. Otherwise they would go out of business).
As regards Russia, serfdom, that is feudalism, was only introduced in the 18th century by Western and Westernized rulers like Peter I and Catherine II. Significantly, they are praised to the skies and called ‘the Great’ by both Western and Soviet historians. Why? Because they both represented feudal empires. The West used feudalism to maintain its colonial empires and the Soviets reintroduced feudalism to maintain their empire. For what was Stalinist collectivization if not refeudalization? Take the land from the people and slaughter those who resist, that is refeudalization.
The West hates the fact that Western-introduced serfdom was abolished only after a century and a half in Russia, whereas in the West it lasted for centuries. In Russia, Orthodoxy defeated serfdom and Russian Orthodox have always opposed and destroyed slavery, freeing slaves. However, in the West the ruling Catholic ideology was inherently feudal so it could not be defeated, it could only degenerate into Protestantism, the next step to Antichrist.
Similarly, we can see the example of Western democracy in Russia, which only lasted for seven months in 1917. Why? Because for Western democracy, as it is called, to exist, you must have a Protestant mentality. This why it never worked elsewhere and cannot be imposed elsewhere, where it is always accompanied by massive corruption, as in France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Poland, Latin America, South Vietnam, Japan, Thailand – or the Ukraine. From Western democracy in Russia, it was only one step to Antichrist, that is, to Bolshevism. True, this so-called Western democracy has lasted much longer in the West, where Protestantism existed, but even here we can see that today it too is degenerating, as Protestantism has been rejected. Even in the Estonian capital they are now selling off the main Lutheran church because it has gone bankrupt.
Western democracy has outlived its purpose, which was to overthrow Christian monarchs. With that done, Antichrist has been readying himself to take over from the secular presidents, prime ministers and chancellors who replaced the Christian monarchs. We saw this with Napoleon and Hitler, who replaced Christian leaders and were both prefigurations of Antichrist and both invaded Russia, just as the US is trying to invade Russia today.
We can see this today in the replacement of democracy and its degeneration in Western countries, which are quite freely introducing ever more Fascist legislation, with selective assassinations by the secret services, censorship of the media, militarization of the police, arrest without charge, deprivation of citizens of their passports, refusing them the right to live where they want, surveillance of their every movement through camera networks and State spying on e-mails and phone calls etc.
Q: Does Orthodox Russia have friends in the West?
A: Yes. Apart from the local Russian Orthodox and Orthodox allies of other nationalities, there are still minorities in the West who have a sense of national tradition, sovereignty and identity. All of them support Russia in some way. The enemy is the cosmopolitan Brussels/Berlin bureaucrat who takes his orders from Washington and has only contempt for real Europeans and our patriotism. There is in preparation an alliance between Orthodox Russia and healthy ‘sovereignist’ forces in at present enslaved Western Europe.
Q: What chance is there of the return of an Orthodox Emperor, a Tsar, who could protect all Orthodox worldwide from Western bullying and so delay the rule of Antichrist?
A: The Church can work in any political system and survive, as history proves, but our ideal is a Christian State, which incarnates the values of the Church, creating a Christian Civilization. If that exists, Antichrist cannot come. Our situation since 1917 has been abnormal; there has been no Christian Emperor, no Tsar, and so the Local Churches have been swayed this way and that way by secular political forces, whether Communist or Capitalist, Atheist or Mammonist, however the end has not yet come. The question is whether we are to return to normality, the Christian Empire, or whether we are to continue on the path towards Antichrist.
Thus, the last nearly 100 years have been quite exceptional, all should have ended in 1917, but we have been granted further time by the mercy of God. Nevertheless, it is still a stark case of the path to the Apocalypse or the path to the Restoration. But there are reasons for thinking that Restoration is still possible because of the sacrifices of the New Martyrs and Confessors during the first generation after 1917, on which the whole rebirth of the Russian Church has been founded.
Since the long and slow process of overthrowing Antichrist in Russia, which effectively began in 1941 with the first Nazi invasion (the second Nazi invasion being in the Ukraine in 2014) and the revival of the Church inside Russia, we have begun to see the three different stages in the restoration of the Church. These are: Orthodoxy; the People; Sovereignty. They come in the opposite order to what we would expect, Orthodoxy, Sovereignty and the People, because we are putting history into reverse.
First of all, we have seen the process of restoration of Orthodoxy, with the end of outward persecution by Communism and the end of inward persecution by renovationism. This first stage in this process is ongoing, but is almost at an end now. The outward persecution by the Communists has ended. And both the renovationists who were supported by the Phanar and the Bolsheviks in the 1920s and who were still active in the Diaspora until recently, and the neo-renovationists who came to prominence inside Russia in the 1990s and 2000s (with the support of the old Diaspora renovationists), have literally been dying out. The latter were rejected outright by Patriarch Alexei II and elders like Fr John Krestyankin and have been defeated. That is why the last ones are so aggressive. The re-establishment and reassertion of Orthodoxy inside the Russian Orthodox Church is clear. Only a few treacherous individuals inside Russia and in the Diaspora are still resisting – but they are living in the past, irrelevant.
The second stage in the process is the revival of the People as a believing force. This stage is ongoing, but has very far to go. The missionary witness of the Church to the masses has scarcely begun, but at least it has begun. Only when the Church has been allowed to go out into the whole world by Divine Providence and preach the authentic Gospel, which has been so compromised by Catholicism, Protestantism and Modernism, can we move on to the third stage. Already, however, there has been the first political emigration after 1917, which brought Orthodoxy to countries which previously knew nothing of it, and since the collapse of the Soviet Union there has been a second economic emigration, far larger than before. All this is the Providential opportunity to witness.
Only when people have been Churched, when they are ready for the new Orthodox Emperor, the Tsar, can that restoration occur. In other words, there can be no restoration of the Sovereign Christian Empire until the baptized masses want it, until they have repented in preparation for it. Only repentance can bring restoration. And we are still far from this – though I must say we are much closer than even five years ago, let alone twenty-five years ago, when all this was still only a dream.
For Russia has now begun to play the role of the country which restrains or withholds the movement towards Antichrist. That is why the forces of this world are so aggressively attacking Russia at the moment, trying through so-called sanctions to punish Her. The most ruthlessly logical and consistently anti-Christian Western elitists like Brzezinski in the US and Bildt in Sweden have publicly declared that the West must destroy the Russian Orthodox Church (in order to hasten the arrival of Antichrist – though they are so delusional that they do not even believe in Antichrist).
Q: If that repentance or process of Churching happens, who will the new Emperor be?
A: We do not and cannot know. That is in God’s hands or rather in the hands of the Mother of God, for since the forced and forged abdication of 1917 the Empire has been in the hands of the Sovereign Mother of God. Our task is to repent, not to argue about possible candidates. God will choose the right candidate for us and it will be plain to all Churched Orthodox that this is the right choice.
Q: What do you think from an Orthodox viewpoint of the recent G-20 meeting in Brisbane, where much was made of the war in the Ukraine.
A: In Brisbane Western politicians – not world leaders, as they pretentiously call themselves – made much of the civil war in the Ukraine. This was because they caused it and are continuing it. At Brisbane a clear message was given to the Western bullies by the free world, led by Russia: If the West continues to destabilize, overthrow democracy by bribing mobs and destroy the sovereignty of the Ukraine, then Russia will extend its sanctions against the Western world, possibly closing Russian air space to it. The Obamas, Bidens, Camerons, Hollandes and Merkels of the West face self-imposed isolation.
The Russian Federation, the Eurasian Economic Union, China, India, much of Latin America, nearly one half of the world, are working towards a new world order and will not tolerate arrogant Western bullying. That has already caused so much bloodshed and chaos in genocidal bombing, invasion and occupation of Yugoslavia, Iraq and Afghanistan and in CIA-organized ‘coloured revolutions’ in Libya, Syria and the Ukraine. Libya was the last straw, but even now there are aggressive individuals in the US, whose minds are so power-crazed that they openly talk of starting a Third World War against Russia and China.
Q: Do you think there is any hope that heads of some countries in the European Union will speak out against this US-centred bullying?
A: The EU has more or less become an island off the western coast of the USA, in other words, a US colony or ‘protectorate’, in effect its next state, and is governed by puppets and economic thugs, as we saw in Greece and Spain. The US has isolated Europe from its own roots and its own interests. Until the Paris-Berlin-Moscow axis is restored, as in the early 1900s, there is no hope for Europe. Remarkably, however, the leaders of some small countries in the EU have protested, notably the leaders of Hungary and the Czech Republic. They have of course been condemned for that by the US-run EU media.
Q: What about the leaders of once Orthodox countries like Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania and Non-EU Serbia and Montenegro?
A: Apart from Serbia, where Orthodoxy is still to some extent a political force, the elites of all those countries have betrayed the Orthodox Faith and their own peoples. We can expect nothing of such elites. They can only think of payments from Brussels into their Swiss bank accounts.
Q: When you say ‘the US has isolated Europe’, what do you mean by the US?
A: The US means the plutocratic financiers, industrialists and arms-merchants who saw their opportunity and immigrated to the US from Europe, from where they had already financed slavery, over 200 years ago and now run the US. I do not of course mean the American people. Until the end of the 1950s there was still among many ordinary Americans a small-town, Bible-based culture, however deficient and partial. That has been more or less destroyed by the plutocrats and is lamented by such popular American singers as Don McClean and Johnny Cash in nostalgic songs like American Pie and Family Bible. Americans were the first victims of the plutocrats, the first victims of the ‘US’, as we saw already in the US Civil War. There is nothing that Satan loves more than wars where brother kills brother, whether in the US or the Ukraine.
Q: Has not Russia suffered from the Western sanctions imposed because of the Ukraine?
A: There are naturally problems resulting from them, but the main result of Western bullying because of Russia’s protection of the Ukraine, so-called ‘sanctions’, has been for Russians to refind their identity. Providentially, the Ukraine, the cradle of Russian Orthodoxy, is preparing Russia for the future, preparing it to overcome the confusion and decadent westernization of the last 25 years, to realize that Russia has its own identity, path and role. If the Western elite really wants to start a Third World War, it must now realize that Russians will no longer simply lie down and agree to lose that War, their country and, above all, their Christian Faith to Mammon.
This is the same situation as in the thirteenth century when the Mongols invaded Russia. Until then Russians had been divided; everything changed afterwards as they found unity against the common enemy and petty squabbles were forgotten. So today Russia was divided before the Western invasion of the Ukraine, now it is finding unity once more. Today’s extraordinary consensus of national unity around President Putin has not existed in Russia for exactly 100 years, since the First World War, when Russia also united against aggressive Western enemies.
Q: To move on, there has been talk recently of the forthcoming All-Orthodox Council in 2016 and much worry has been expressed about it. Do you share in those worries?
A: No. To worry about this is really to show a lack of faith in Divine Providence and in the Church, which is not a mere human institution, but a Divino-human organism. First of all, nobody knows if there will be a Council, let alone whether one is forthcoming; remember that ‘man proposes but God disposes’. True, a meeting of several Orthodox bishops is planned in two years’ time, but a meeting is not in itself a Council. And no-one knows with the situation between Constantinople and the Czechs and Slovaks if even that meeting will take place. And who knows who the Patriarch of Constantinople will be in two years’ time.
Even if a meeting does take place and politics takes over, it will remain an ineffectual without any consensus. However, if a ‘Council’ takes place, why should that be bad? Surely a Council – rather than a mere meeting – will proclaim the Church and our Orthodox Faith to the whole world, anathematizing all isms, atheism, consumerism, ecumenism, globalism etc. How can that be bad? Remember that only canonical Orthodox will attend, those of disputed canonicity like the OCA, those in schisms, as in the Ukraine, Macedonia, Montenegro and Estonia, those in sects like the old calendarists, as well as heterodox, will not take part.
Q: So why do some worry?
A: I think that those who are worried, for example old calendarists, have a psychological and not theological motivation. They are really just seeking to justify their schisms. For example, they point to the decadence inside the Patriarchate of Constantinople but then forget that Mt Athos and many faithful clergy and people outside the convert fringes are under that Patriarchate. The old calendarists want a Pharisee-like, black and white world, in which they are white and everyone else is black. Such a world does not exist and has never existed. The wheat has always grown alongside the tares. Look at the twelve apostles: most of them betrayed Christ, one did not even repent, but still eleven of them became saints. Old calendarist criticisms are psychologically-motivated self-justification.
Q: But we know there are many real problems between the Local Churches, for example there is the problem of the new calendar.
A: I can recall reading the words of St Justin (Popovich) in the 1970s who denounced the concept of a Council then because the vast majority of Orthodox were living under the yoke of Communism. Then he was right of course, but now the situation is quite different. Today most Orthodox, some 85% of all, are free. True there are some 15% who are not free, who live under what may be called ‘CIA Churches’, but they are a small minority.
Who knows, if this meeting does take place and does become a Council, this may mean that the new calendar hierarchies will repent and return to the Orthodox calendar, giving up the Roman Catholic calendar. Mt Athos gave up that calendar decades ago and now the Polish Church has done so. Others will surely follow. And remember too that the CIA Churches, subject to all manner of Uniatizing and Protestantizing manipulations, are mainly small and their senior representatives elderly. Most of the free Local Churches are young and follow the Tradition. Time is on our side.
Q: What do you mean by ‘CIA Churches’?
A: Those whose leaders are appointed by the CIA, or bribed by the EU and masonic circles, which amounts to the same thing.
Q: What is the role of the Russian Church among the other Local Churches?
A: As three-quarters of the whole Church, we have a special responsibility: our vision, mission and task are prophetic. Our vision, mission and task are resistance and delaying tactics in order to oppose the coming of Antichrist, towards whom the world has been hurtling for the last hundred years and especially for the last fifty years. You remember how Reagan called the Soviet Union ‘the evil empire’? Well, where did the demons who had entered the Russian Empire by 1917, tipped the balance against it and created that evil empire go? They did not disappear back to hell, but, seeing their battle largely lost in Russia, they went to infest the West, where, tragedy of tragedies, they were shown no resistance and even made welcome.
Here is the message of Russia to the West: After 1917 demons took over in Russia but we eventually fought them off because of the prayers of the New Martyrs and Confessors, because of the strength of the Orthodox Faith and Orthodox culture. Russia says to the West: Follow our example, return to the Orthodox Christ and you too can shake off the demons. But of course the West is so blinded by its towering racial and nationalistic pride that it cannot even see that is being tormented by demons. Indeed, it does not even believe in demons and it rejects the sweetness of the Resurrection of Christ, Whom it considers to be an ‘uneducated Asiatic’.
Q: To say that the Russian Church’s role is to oppose the coming of Antichrist is a very serious statement, with many implications.
A: Yes, it is very serious because it means that the Russian Orthodox Church is a sort of litmus test. The world can be divided into two parts, on the one hand those who are with us, our friends, those who are also resisting and delaying the coming of Antichrist, and, on the other hand, those who resist the Russian Church and, consciously or, more usually, unconsciously, are working for Antichrist’s coming. Those who unconscious and naively think they are working for ‘freedom, democracy and humanity’ etc are pawns in Antichrist’s game. They would be shocked if they realized it and then they would repent.
In that respect the Pussy Riot incident, so completely and so obviously stage-managed by the West, was highly symbolic. There we clearly saw who is for Antichrist and who is against. Those who supported Pussy Riot, words which are simple code for the sex and violence of modern Western ‘culture’, including fifth columnist, nominally Orthodox intellectuals, some of them even clergy, modernist heterodox, the Western media and so-called human rights activists, are all working for Antichrist.
Q: You say that to resist and delay Antichrist is the task of the Russian Church. But what practically can the Russian Church do that the other Local Churches cannot?
A: The Russian Church alone is able, when the time is ripe, to set up the infrastructure for Metropolias in the Americas, Asia, Australasia and Western Europe and also help the Patriarchate of Alexandria to become the true Church of Africa and stop being a Greek colony run by the EU-controlled Greek Foreign Ministry in Athens. The other Local Churches are too small, too weak, too nationalistic and, in the cases of the CIA Churches, too unfree, to do this.
Q: This sounds like papism, setting up a worldwide Church?
A: Not at all. Papism is about empire-building and centralization, which, true, has become the ethos of many in the modern Patriarchate of Constantinople and also in its time affected careerist, nationalistic State appointees in the Russian Church before the Revolution. Today the Russian Church is about setting up Metropolias as foundations for new Local Churches, as has already happened in Poland and the Czech Lands and Slovakia, and as is under way in Japan and China. These countries are parts of its canonical territory, but will remain so only for as long as the Churches there are too small to gain autocephaly.
The aim is not empire-building, which is centralization, but decentralization, through laying the foundations for and then establishing new autocephalous Local Churches, as His Holiness Patriarch Alexey II said in 2003 when speaking of a future Metropolia in Western Europe. We have as our model not the manmade, papist, unionist, filioquist, rationalist god of Western philosophers, but the real Christian God of the Holy Trinity revealed in all Power and Glory in the New Testament, unity in diversity.
Q: Do you think that other territories will be added to the canonical territory of Rus apart from China and Japan?
A: Certainly. I think that eventually in Europe Hungary may be added, and outside Europe in South-East Asia, with the Russian Orthodox missions already there, Thailand and Laos, and I think perhaps one day Iran too.
Q: So the rest of the world, except for Africa and the other territories in the jurisdiction of the other 13 canonical Local Churches, can be covered by the Church Outside Russia (ROCOR)?
A: Yes. The Church Outside Russia actually means the Church Outside Rus, outside the Russian lands. And Rus at present only covers lands of the former Soviet Union – except for Georgia – including the Ukraine, Estonia and so on, and, as we have said, China and Japan. ROCOR can cover the rest, except those countries that form the canonical territories of other Local Churches.
Q: But those countries ‘outside Rus’ often have Orthodox populations which are under other Local Churches. So how can they come under ROCOR?
A: They cannot ‘come under’ ROCOR, I said, ‘can be covered by ROCOR’, not ‘come under’. ROCOR is the Church Outside Rus. Unlike the Church inside Rus, which has a canonical territory, the Church Outside Rus has no canonical territory. However, we do have a shared territory, a territory which we can cover, and where we can have a canonical flock.
Q: What do you mean by canonical flock?
A: All those of all nationalities who live outside the canonical territory of Rus and freely belong to and confess the Russian Orthodox Church and Tradition. And at present nobody, including the US and EU elite, can stop us from belonging to ROCOR.
Q: With such a definition, where does the ‘Orthodox Church in America’, the OCA, come? That after all is in North America, on a territory covered by ROCOR, and the OCA was founded through the Russian Church.
A: I don’t know where the OCA comes. You must ask its members. The OCA was a temporary Cold War creation of Soviet times, largely made up not of descendants of subjects of the Russian Empire, but of descendants of subjects of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. For nearly 45 years now its canonicity has been disputed and it has been torn by internal dissensions. Like all conglomerates, its different parts are torn in different directions.
I think that instead of sitting between two (and sometimes more than two) chairs, one day it will split apart, with a small majority, especially but not only in Alaska, ‘Russian America’, returning to the Russian Church and spiritual freedom and integrity, and a large minority, under the influence of sectarian American nationalism and possibly under the direct influence of the US administration, going off to liberal, ecumenistic convert groups, the US-run Patriarchate of Constantinople and some to the Uniats.
Q: And what about the Paris Jurisdiction? It claims to be ‘of the Russian Tradition’. Where does that fit into such a definition?
A: It too left the Russian Church and therefore our affairs do not concern it. As regards its claim, as someone in Paris said to me earlier this year, although the Paris Jurisdiction may claim to be ‘of the Russian Tradition’, the Russian Tradition has not even ‘stayed overnight’ in most of its communities. When you live, as some do, on the Roman Catholic calendar, want the Roman Catholic Easter, have no iconostasis, wear Greek vestments, abbreviate the Liturgy, give communion to Roman Catholics, write against and condemn the Russian Church, refuse to venerate Her martyrs and belong to Her, what sort of ‘Russian Tradition’ is that? That is Uniatism, not Orthodoxy. Apart from in a few last outposts, that claim is a fiction.
Thus, it is very interesting to think back before 2007, before ROCOR and the Church inside Russia entered into canonical communion with one another. Then the Paris Jurisdiction – and its members who colonized the OCA in North America – used to condemn ROCOR as ‘a sect’ for not concelebrating with the Church inside Russia because ROCOR considered that the bishops of the Church inside Russia were not free and therefore could not act canonically. However, as soon as freedom came and ROCOR and the Church inside Russia did start concelebrating, the masonic ethos of the propaganda of the Paris swung around 180 degrees. Then representatives of the Paris Jurisdiction started condemning ROCOR precisely for concelebrating with the Church inside Russia, which they then said was not free!
So they went from criticizing ROCOR for being anti-Moscow to criticizing ROCOR for being pro-Moscow, never recognizing the transformation and liberation of Moscow. It is clear that the point of view of those who control the Paris Jurisdiction is mere self-justification, which is the same psychology for all extremists, whether for the Paris new calendarists or for the Greek old calendarists. In other words, their views are a political manipulation, conditioned by anti-Russian Western political propaganda, whether sent out to manipulate weak hearts and irrational minds by the CIA or by the Vatican, and has nothing to do with spiritual values.
Q: What was it that brought ROCOR and the Church inside Russia into canonical communion?
A: The August 2000 Jubilee Council of the Church inside Russia, which met all three conditions of ROCOR, the canonization of the New Martyrs, the condemnation of collusion with the atheist State, known as sergianism, and the complete rejection of the branch theory, known as ecumenism.
Q: In that case why did ROCOR not enter into communion with the Church inside Russia straightaway in 2000?
A: Very simply because it is one thing to proclaim something at a Council, but quite another to put it into practice. For example, even after the Jubilee Council, at the London Cathedral belonging to the Church inside Russia they still refused to put up icons of the New Martyrs, on the pretext that they had no space on their bare white walls! They also forbade the sale of books written by Fr Seraphim Rose, which were at that time so popular inside Russia. In England ROCOR had to wait for the death of one individual in 2004 and then the departure of other modernists in 2006 to the Paris Jurisdiction before a new Orthodox bishop could be sent from Russia, a bishop chosen on ROCOR’s recommendation, and so we could have local unity.
Many representatives of the Church inside Russia but who lived in the West had been betraying the Russian Church and Tradition for decades, they were compromised. This is partly why ROCOR was so popular. I can remember nearly forty years ago when on a Sunday 600 Russian emigres would be standing in the ROCOR Cathedral in London and at the Patriarchal Cathedral there would be perhaps 200, over half of whom were naïve Non-Russians and visitors who knew no better. In Brussels and Paris the Patriarchal churches were also no more than house chapels. Russians and those who knew the Tradition did not go there.
Remember how, just before the Church Outside Russia and the Church inside Russia entered into communion with one another, in 2006 a small convert part of the foreign representation of the Church inside Russia in England and France abandoned Her. Why did this betrayal of the Church which, ironically, was just about to be reunited, take place? Because of two local personality cults, mainly among unintegrated converts, who placed those peculiar cults above the Russian Church and unity with Her. The individualistic mantra of cults and cultishness came before the Church of Christ.
The manipulative leaders of the naïve and misinformed who left had been doing a disservice to the Church inside Russia for decades while Moscow, paralysed by an illegitimate, militant atheist regime, had been able to do nothing about it. The lesson we learn from this is that those who are not integrated into Church life, but have their own agendas, always disintegrate. Interestingly, those who left in England were ardently supported by a rabidly Russophobic British press and, naturally, the State-run BBC.
In other words, locally, it took years for the decisions of the Jubilee Council to be implemented. There were similar situations in other parts of the Church inside Russia, where Soviet-minded individuals and their followers had to leave the scene for the decisions of that Council to be implemented. That is why fundamentally it took seven years for us to progress.
Q: But that was not the only reason for seven years’ delay. ROCOR too had committed faults on its part too, didn’t it?
A: Of course, individuals in ROCOR and in the ROCOR hierarchy had made their mistakes too. This mistake was the confusion between the Soviet Union and Russia. Emigres who had been mere children before the Revolution or who had been born outside Russia or who had been born inside the Soviet Union before 1945 and been cruelly persecuted for the Faith, often could not tell the difference between the post-Stalinist Soviet Union and Russia. In reality, despite the anti-Russian Bolshevik ideology, imported from the West, the Soviet Union had kept much of Orthodox culture.
1917 was not a light switch when the light went off – there was continuity. The victory over Fascism in the Second World War, the education and medical system, the reflexes of justice for the poor and for the Third World, the qualities of generosity, hospitality and mercifulness – they were not Soviet, they are Russian, and come from the Orthodox world view and Orthodox reflexes. On the other hand, the materialistic philosophy of the Soviet Union, the vicious persecution of the Church, the Gulag, all that was of course profoundly evil, satanic. Communism was Orthodoxy without God, just as Mammonism is Protestantism without God.
The mistakes made by some in ROCOR were why the ROCOR hierarchs and those of the Church inside Russia asked each other forgiveness before 2007. Being human, we all make mistakes. No-one is perfect. As a result of mutually asking one another for forgiveness, since 2007 the Church inside Russia has become ever more ‘de-Sovietized’ and ROCOR has become ever more ‘de-ghettoized’, more open and more international. Both parts have benefited enormously, making great strides forward. To ask for forgiveness is always beneficial, creative and dynamic. God gave us all grace for repentance.
The failure of the Paris Jurisdiction to admit its mistakes, unlike the two parts of the Russian Church inside and outside Russia which admitted theirs, is precisely the essential problem of those who control the Paris Jurisdiction. This is due to the unrepentant arrogance usual for intellectuals. In Paris the heirs of those who caused the Revolution through treachery in 1917 are still justifying themselves and their ancestors. For those who are in control in Paris are the heirs of the degradation of the Westernized Russian intelligentsia before the Revolution and their mercilessness. For example, the sins of individual representatives in the Church inside Russia were the sins of political hostages, not of free men. And if you refuse to recognize the repentance of such, you make yourself like the elder brother of the prodigal son, a merciless mountain of towering pride, refusing to take part in the banquet of the loving Father.
Q: So you distinguish between those who ‘control the Paris Jurisdiction’ and its members?
A: Of course. I have been an eyewitness of the process of return of many from the Paris Jurisdiction to both parts of the Russian Church since the 1980s. Sadly, the process of Uniatization that began there, above all from 1981 on, and which I personally tried to combat, has gone much further since then. I personally know of eight priests and deacons and four parishes which have returned from the Paris Jurisdiction since the late 1980s, when they saw through the betrayal of those in control and understood their underlying lack of love for the Russian Church.
Q: Why did Uniatization speed up there from 1981 on?
A: The disintegration of the Paris Jurisdiction began in 1981 after the repose of the ever-memorable Archbishop George (Tarasov), the last Archbishop who had been an adult before the Revolution, indeed a Russian pilot on the Western Front in the First World War. Those who returned after that to the Russian Church in order to keep their integrity, despite the slander that they faced, had realized that the Paris Jurisdiction would not return en masse as a group to the Russian Church, understanding that there were forces in it which were profoundly politicized and Russophobic, the very forces which proudly claim to be ‘apolitical!’ In fact, they are not apolitical, but simply disincarnate, ‘useful’ only to the enemies of the Church, such as the Vatican and Western spy agencies. Indeed, one of those who was in control in the Paris Jurisdiction in the 1980s has recently been proved to have been a senior agent of the French Secret Services. The exodus from there has been such that there are now only two ageing priests left in the Paris Jurisdiction who were brought up in ROCOR and so have a sense of the Tradition
Those of the Paris Jurisdiction who have now departed this life, Metr Evlogy and Vladimir, Archbishops George (Tarasov) and Sergiy (Konovalov), Bishops Methodius (Kulmann), Roman (Zolotov) and Alexander (Tian-Shansky), Protopresbyter Alexei Knyazev, Archpriests Alexander Rehbinder and Igor Vernik and a mass of others, clergy and people, would have returned to the Russian Church, if they were now alive. Some of these people I knew personally and I am convinced that they would be outraged by the attitude of those who refuse to return to the Russian Church today, 25 years on after the fall of the Berlin Wall.
A: Constantinople had for them only ever been a temporary refuge. It had always been their intention to return to the Russian Church, once She was free, just like us in ROCOR. Today there is no spiritual justification for staying in what is largely not just a Non-Russian, but an anti-Russian jurisdiction. And what is left of that jurisdiction? By and large, apart from a few unintegrated converts in each of a few dozen temporary premises and tiny chapels scattered across France and in neighbouring countries, there are only Rue Daru, mainly populated by those from the ex-Soviet Union, a tragically bankrupt St Sergius Institute, some four small Russian chapels in Paris, two convert groups in Paris, the crumbling church in Biarritz, which undemocratically has not been allowed to return to the Russian Church, and the convent in Bussy. Perhaps 5,000 people in all, and most of them arrivals from the former Soviet Union who have nowhere else to go. Since the 1980s the vital forces have left the Paris Jurisdiction. One priest who left, dear Fr Nikolai Soldatenkov, even took out Russian nationality, partly in order to be able to leave.
Q: Can you give other examples of those you mentioned above who you think would have returned to the Russian Church by now?
A: Yes. Take Metr Evlogy – he himself repented and returned, on paper, to the Russian Church twice, in 1934 and 1945, but was prevented by the freemasons in the Paris Jurisdiction from actually doing so. In the 1960s and 1970s both Bishop Methodius (Kulmann) and Protopresbyter Alexei Knyazev actively tried to return to the Russian Church and suffered for their efforts. As for Bishop Roman (Zolotov), he was a Cossack by family – we had no doubts about him. As for dear Fr Igor Vernik I remember how he used to support the Russian football team against the French football team! And Archpriest Alexander Rehbinder refused to move to the USA in the 1950s because he knew that his many children would lose the Faith in the land of mammon. Archbishop Sergiy (Konovalov), whom I knew when he was a priest, was about to persuade the whole Paris Jurisdiction to move to the Church inside Russia when he died. His Holiness Patriarch Alexey II had hoped that his jurisdiction would become the foundation stone of an autonomous Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Western Europe.
Q: Let us get back to ROCOR. Why did only 95% of ROCOR enter into communion with the Church inside Russia in 2007? What about the other 5%?
A: When I left Moscow after my second visit to Soviet Russia in 1976, I promised myself as a Russian Orthodox layman that I would not return until the Russian Church was free from an atheist leader and regime. And indeed when I did return, thirty-one years later, in 2007, it was to the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, where I concelebrated as a priest of the Church Outside Russia, together with a great many others, with his Holiness Patriarch Alexei II and in the presence of the Orthodox President of the Russian Federation. When in 2007 some 95% of the Church Outside Russia (ROCOR) and the by then free Patriarchal Church inside Russia entered into communion with one another, true, some 5% of ROCOR did not follow precisely because they were in denial of the huge changes in Russia between 1976 and 2007. Some simply abandoned the Church, but others fell away into pro-CIA, schismatic sects based in the Ukraine, Russia and Greece. Why?
Firstly, there were the naïve idealists and the good-hearted but misinformed who were hoodwinked and have mainly since returned. Secondly, there were those who put personal grudges against individual ROCOR bishops, who had misunderstood their non-integrated convert ideas, above their own salvation. Thirdly, there were those who were on an ego trip, seeking a career. And finally, there was most of the 5% or so who left and have not since returned, who did so because they were politically-minded, as they were anti-Communist rather than pro-Orthodox. Among them were some extremists who had consciously and freely sided with Hitler in the 1940s.
It must be said that many of the ringleaders here were actually employees of the CIA or the Canadian Secret Service, just as there was at least one case of an employee of the French Secret Services in the Paris Jurisdiction. So politics and salaries paid by Western spy services, presented by the ringleaders as ‘freedom’ and an ‘apolitical stance’, were the real reason for their schisms. When Communism fell, such people had no further reason to frequent the Church, as for them the Church had mainly been only an expression of nationalistic anti-Communism. They ended up being anti-Russian, as they had not understood that anti-Soviet could also mean anti-Russian. They were unable to discern the Russian through the fog of the Soviet.
This was because fundamentally they had little loyalty to the real Russian Orthodox Church and her international ideal of Holy Rus, but rather to narrow-minded political nationalism. Their behaviour had always been the greatest discouragement to Non-Russians joining the Church. Many of us who came to the Church seeking bread were indeed actually told to go away by them and in no uncertain terms, in other words, we were given stones. As one ROCOR bishop, speaking of one well-known to me ROCOR parish in the 1980s, told me recently, ‘those people were not Christians’. As is usual, their lack of love towards others ended up by driving them themselves to leave the Church in 2007 and even before, starting in the 1990s. Today we are still here in the Church; they are the ones who have abandoned Her.
Q: To come back to the idea of a Metropolia for Western Europe that you mentioned above, how important is that concept for Western Europe itself?
A: It is vital. I know that I am about to give an absurd example because it touches such a tiny detail, but I have to tell you it because it is symbolic of the degeneration of Europe. Two weeks a Russian woman in Germany wrote to me and told me that for many Germans a woman wearing a skirt is seen either as a Russian or else as a prostitute. What I am saying through this perhaps ridiculous symbol is that even the culture of Christian vestiges that was alive in Europe 50 years ago in the normal way that people dressed then is now dead.
Young Western people whose souls are at least still alive today turn to strange subcultures or even Islam and even fight for Islamic State, since that counters the spiritually empty West of today. Their disaffection and alienation are so great that even such bizarre and lethal choices seem more logical to them than the deathly conformist consumerism, hellish vampires, aliens, monsters, drugs, drink, sex, obesity, depression, mental illness and suicide that is the modern West. Europe has zombified and infantilized itself by accepting Americanization, it has been robbed and stripped naked of its own culture and is on the point of spiritual death. Europe is the man who went down from Jerusalem to Jericho was robbed and left for dead. Only a Good Samaritan, one from outside the West but still linked with its roots and understanding it, can save Europe; no false priests can do anything for it, for they pass by on the other side.
How can Europe be regenerated without the Church and Her prophetic vision? It is not possible. Europe desperately needs to be raised up from the deathly spiritual filth of its vulgar, fleshly, bread and circuses consumerism, the tyranny of its Babylonian culture of death, the fruit of its thousand-year apostasy, to the vision of spiritual beauty, to spiritual purity and the culture of the soul, to the nobility of human destiny, to the heavenly Jerusalem, which are offered by the Russian Orthodox Church. We are talking here about salvation, about life and death.
Now I am reminded here of the events of 200 years ago, on 11 April 1814. This was when liberating Russian Orthodox troops celebrated Easter Night on the Place de la Concorde in Paris, where a field church had been set up. Having defeated Napoleon, who had taken a burned-out Moscow only some 18 months before, Tsar Alexander I stood in that great square, where the King of France had been beheaded less than a generation before, in 1792, and where the crowned Napoleon had stood in 1804 in front of a five-pointed red star, and heard thousands of Russian troops answering the priests’ ‘Christ is Risen!’ with the words ‘Truly He is Risen!’ This was the spiritual victory over the degenerate heart of atheist Europe which followed the physical victory over atheist Europe. This spiritual victory needs to be repeated in today’s atheist Europe. Otherwise geriatric Europe will go under completely, swept away by its own atheism and the tide of Islamic immigration.
Q: Why instead of subcultures and Islam do Western young people not choose Orthodoxy, when Orthodoxy is at the roots of the West, in its first millennium?
A: Firstly, because modern Western people have been cut off from those roots, their own history has been concealed from them, they can often mentally go no further back than 1945, let alone 1,000 years. And secondly because it is so difficult to find authentic Orthodoxy in Western Europe.
Q: Which countries would a Metropolia in Europe consist of?
A: Only those in Western Europe. Slovenia and Croatia already come under the Serbian Church. The Baltic States already come under the Russian Church. Poland and the Czech Lands and Slovakia already have their own autocephalous Churches. As for Hungary, given the fact that its first faith came in the tenth century from the East and not from Rome, then to my mind it too should one day have its own Local Church, just like Poland and the Czech Lands and Slovakia, which also originally received their faith from the East. Even today Hungarian Catholicism, as in certain neighbouring countries, is coloured by Orthodox values and, for example, the veneration of icons.
Twenty Western European countries are left, all post-Roman Catholic or post-Protestant, and where the Russian Church, in one or both its parts, is already present. They are: Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland; Ireland, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland, Austria; Portugal, Spain, France, Italy. They, together with the tiny Andorra, Liechtenstein and San Marino, would form the territory of this Metropolia.
A: Why can’t those countries have individual Local Churches?
Q: That is a hopelessly insular, narrow and nationalistic idea. It is the sort of thing that narrow, nationalistic ex-Anglicans dream of. Western Europe is a whole and individual countries in it are far too small to have their own Local Churches. Western Europe was the territory of a single Orthodox Patriarchate. We will never divide it. A Russian Orthodox Metropolia in Europe is the foundation for the restoration of the single, historic Local Church on this territory. We wish to keep that historic unity. Here in Sweden, for instance, you have two great saints, St Olaf and St Anna, and they are precisely part of the whole history of Europe, not narrow, nationalistic symbols, cut off from the rest, but linked in their cases with England and Russia
Q: What is the realistic hope for the foundation of such a Metropolia?
A: Officially today there are said to be 7,000,000 Russian Orthodox in Western Europe. That is far more than the four ancient Greek Orthodox Patriarchates of Constantinople, Antioch, Alexandria and Jerusalem combined, more than the Georgian, Polish, Cypriot and Czechoslovak Orthodox Churches put together, let alone the 30,000-100,000 who make up the OCA. Yet the infrastructure for us is pathetic. We still do not have the new Cathedral in Paris and we really need a large, purpose-built Cathedral in central London.
Altogether in Western Europe I doubt whether there are even 200 church buildings and 200 priests for these 7,000,000 Russian Orthodox. That is scandalous; at most one church and one priest for every 35,000 people! As I have said many times before, we need a huge church-building and infrastructure programme across a network of at least 500 cities and towns in Western Europe. Today, wherever you go in Western Europe, even in small towns, the flood of immigration has been such that you will meet at least one Russian Orthodox. Provision has to be made. Let every Western European town and city of over 100,000 have its own full-time bilingual Russian Orthodox church and let there be at least chapels elsewhere, so that nobody, whatever their origin and native language, is more than 50 kilometres from their own bilingual Russian Orthodox church and centre.
Q: Who is to blame for the present situation?
A: First and foremost, we are ourselves to blame for this situation. We have to make our own Church. The Church works from the grassroots. We should never blame others for this. However, it is true that if we can first show that we are motivated, then we can attract the attention of the hierarchy. Then we can attract help from above and, in terms of our Russian Orthodox world, that means help from Moscow. Economic refugees and their children, who make up the bulk of the 7,000,000, are by definition not the wealthiest people in the world. And how are Western Europeans, already Russian Orthodox or potentially Russian Orthodox, to be integrated into the Russian Orthodox Church in Europe, if there are so few churches, so few centres of Church culture?
Q: How do you see such a Metropolia?
A: For nearly a decade now I have belonged to an informal group of Russian Orthodox priests in some major towns and cities in Western Europe. We look at Western Europe as a whole, we want to draw the Orthodox Cross over Europe. We have a love of and an attachment to the Russian Orthodox Tradition but also a knowledge of local languages and local heterodox culture. We want to create bilingual oases of a Russian Orthodox Europe, where all can feel at home.
This is the opposite of the policy of the Paris Jurisdiction, which suffers from a lack of love of and a lack of knowledge of the Russian Orthodox Tradition, but instead an attachment to local languages and local heterodox culture. However, you cannot be Orthodox and at the same time have an attachment to heterodox culture. This is not Local Orthodoxy. Local Orthodoxy is created by integration into the Orthodox Faith, not by integration into heterodox culture, which disintegrates. The latter is salt that has lost its savour. Local Orthodoxy cannot grow by being attached to heterodoxy.
Q: What does this mean in practical terms?
A: All my adult life I have fought for the unity of the Russian Orthodox Church, Who is a mother gathering her chicks, like Jerusalem. I see a time, though it may still be far off, when there will be a Russian Orthodox Metropolia in Europe, whose church buildings and infrastructure will initially be financed from Russia, but whose clergy will be paid entirely locally by the faithful, thus remaining free and independent. But we need to form a grassroots Europe-wide Russian Orthodox Brotherhood or Russian Orthodox Union, blessed by our local bishops, to advance this process.
Q: You still have not answered my question: what is the realistic hope for such a Metropolia?
A: I have answered it, but here is my answer more directly. It is in a new consciousness, both here Europe-wide and in Moscow, at the grassroots and at the level of the hierarchy, a consciousness of the international calling of the Russian Orthodox Church. Here our Europe-wide unity is vital. And what is that unity based on? Our unity is based on our love for the Russian Church, just as disunity is in a lack of love for Her. We should have a patriotism for the Church, which by principle of the Incarnation spreads to every country inasmuch as that country is part of the Church.
In other words, Holy Rus is to be made global. For this we need spiritual purity, the pre-revolutionary Church purified – we must not forget that the pre-revolutionary Church had careerist traitors in Her who supported Kerensky. We must not forget that disunity is always caused by narrowness, whether sectarian or nationalist, as today in the Ukraine, Macedonia, Montenegro and Estonia. Disunity is caused by the primacy of fallen, human, political concerns instead of the primacy of the Faith and the lack of a coherent Russian Orthodox world view. We need unity around the Church.
Q: Who are you grateful to for this vision of Europe-wide Russian Orthodox unity that you have?
A: Four people in particular have inspired me and to them I will always be grateful. Firstly, to the ever-memorable Archpriest Lev Lebedev, whom I first met in Krasnodar in Russia in 1976, and, despite his later illness and tragedy, was one of the finest thinkers in the Russian Church; secondly to the ever-memorable Baroness Maria Rehbinder (Cattoire) of the Paris Jurisdiction, a young woman before the Revolution, a daughter of a New Martyr and a fine Russian European, whom I first met in her little flat in Passy in Paris in 1983; thirdly to the ever-memorable Archbishop Antony of Geneva of ROCOR, born in Kiev, a Belgrade disciple of the great Metr Antony of Kiev, once a priest of the Patriarchate and whom I first met in 1986 and who ordained me. And finally, to His Holiness Patriarch Kyrill, whom I met in Moscow in 2012 and who strengthened in me the understanding of the need for this Metropolia. Thank you to them all.
Archpriest Andrew Phillips
Representative of the ROCOR Missionary Department for Western Europe,
Halland, Sweden, November 2014