Category Archives: The Orthodox Church

The Anti-Orthodox War Continues

The elderly Archbishop of Athens and Greek Patriarch of Alexandria have both been threatened by the Greek Foreign Ministry, which is in turn a puppet of the US State Department: Either recognize the Ukrainian schismatics or else you will be sacked and your funds cut off. Essentially, this is the same threat as was made eighteen months ago to the Greek Patriarch of Constantinople who also gave way. Sadly, there are some for whom money is more important than the canons. Nothing new there. There are plenty of careerists in the Church and there always have been. Little wonder that a canonical Ukrainian Metropolitan has likened the Patriarch of Alexandria to Judas:

(https://russian-faith.com/alexandria-patriarch-like-judas-n2545)

 Now the new and aggressive Trump-backed Greek Archbishop in the USA, Elpidiforos, has met Metropolitan Tikhon, leader of the Russian-founded Orthodox Church in America, and threatened him too: submit to me or else.

Who is next in line? Most believe the Patriarch of Jerusalem – also a colonial appointee of the Greek Foreign Ministry. Then perhaps the Archbishop of Cyprus. Clearly, there will also be pressure on the Greek-run Church of Albania and the Church of Romania, whose Patriarch was also appointed by the US ambassador in Bucharest, especially if the State Department can persuade NATO to invade Moldova and bring it by force under Romanian rule. Perhaps the Churches of Serbia and Georgia will also come under pressure from their US ambassadors.

The US policy is transparent: the Orthodox Church must be brought into line with Western Secularism, as was the Vatican in the 1960s. Clearly, the USA is run by atheists. But the US atheist elite has never yet heard about how the atheist Soviet Union fell in one night: Here today, gone tomorrow. Have they not read of the fate of Babylon? MENE, MENE, TEKEL, PARSIN…Belshazzar’s feast is coming to an end. You have been warned.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Centre Can Hold Because of the Cleansing of the Church

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,

The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere

The ceremony of innocence is drowned;

William Yeats, The Second Coming

 

All three groups of Russian Orthodox émigrés have now been cleansed off their extremes:

In 2006 the Patriarchate of Moscow suffered schism in Great Britain and France as the vestiges of old-fashioned modernism and ecumenism finally cast themselves off. Those who adhered to their Russophobic cultural prejudices and desire to dilute Orthodoxy into just another department of Western Establishment ideology left the Russian Orthodox Church for the pseudo-Orthodox US-run Phanariot group in Turkey. The Church was cleansed of those who had no love for the New Martyrs and Confessors of the Christian Empire of Orthodox Civilization and preferred compromised Western secularism to the fullness of the Church of God.

In 2007 ROCOR, the Church Outside Russia, in turn at last lost its censorious, sectarian fringes in tiny schisms to various strange and extremist sects which justify phariseeism. The Church was cleansed.

Now, in 2019, the Rue Daru Archdiocese (the former ‘Paris Jurisdiction’) has lost its extremists, in fact rather a large minority of modernist marginals. Why has it taken so long? Because this was the group most deeply infected by extremism, in this case, of the ‘liberal’ kind, so well-known for its intolerance and terrorist witch-hunts against faithful Orthodox over the decades. As a result, many had already left, even decades ago, persecuted by modernists and freemasons in the group. The minority dissidents, who prefer to celebrate Parisian philosophers who died 60-80 years ago rather than the Saints of God, will now fully merge with the US-run Turkish group in the Phanar (if they have not already done so).

Many of this dissident group are in England. There is also one parish in Brussels that has left for the Romanian Church (its Russophobic priest had already been suspended by the Turkish group a few years back, so he could not return there) and some parishes in France which still remain undecided. However, the fact is that Church has been cleansed, with the Orthodox returning to the Russian Church, the extremists falling away. Moreover, many in Paris who had left in disgust that the Church there was not commemorating the Orthodox Patriarch Kyrill, the leader of the Orthodox world, already returned last Sunday to congratulate Archbishop Jean, who was in tears of joy, on his final decision.

As perhaps the only priest who had suffered from ‘the blood-dimmed tide’ of all three groups of aggressive, troll-like extremists, I cannot but rejoice with our brothers and sisters who have at last escaped the clutches of the Phanariots. The plot of the Phanar to hand over St Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Paris to Ukrainian schismatics and rededicate it to apostate traitors and mass-murderers like the robber of souls, Andrei Bobola or Josaphat, has failed.

Meanwhile, the Phanar’s incoherent and schismatic head, Patriarch Bartholomew, yesterday met Pope Francis and the head of the Ukrainian Uniats in Rome to discuss merging the Uniats with his tiny and failed OCU organization in the Ukraine. A joint Phanariot-Papist Galician Synagogue of Fascist Ukrainian xenophobes may soon be formed there, uniting all haters of the Church of God. It will be financed by the State Department in Washington, which has already sent out its ambassadors in the Balkans to bully and bribe Local Churches into recognizing the Galician Synagogue. In this they failed.

The centre can hold – because only extremes fall apart, and this is how the Church is cleansed. Glory to God for His Providence, for the evil inflicted by the Phanariots has had the reverse effect. The Orthodox have been strengthened, being cleansed from the pseudo-Orthodox fringes who have fallen away.

 

 

Can the Russian Orthodox Church Convert Russian Society and the Russian State, Renew the Local Orthodox Churches and Bring the Western World to Repentance?

At the turning of the tide

Hope and Truth abide.

Introduction

The list of three tasks set out above is ultra-ambitious and all-encompassing. Indeed, these tasks, to be undertaken by a Church which is still barely recovering from seventy-five years of the most vicious atheist persecution in world history, will bring many to laughter.

For example, regarding the task of converting Russian Society and the Russian State, most would probably say that no such things even exist yet; there are only a post-atheist Society and a post-atheist State. Moreover, both are marked by an extraordinarily incompetent, centralized bureaucracy, corruption and the immorality of atheism. The task of converting them seems absurd. As regards renewing the Orthodox Churches, the answer must surely be virtually impossible and in any case perhaps it is the Russian Church which needs to be renewed by other Local Churches. And as for bringing the Western world to repentance after its thousand-year apostasy from authentic Christianity, this surely is so impossible that it is senseless even to think about it.

However, the dismissal of these tasks as fantasy, seeming to be humanly impossible, needs re-examining in the light of one fact: Man proposes, but God disposes. After all, given the extraordinary and unexpected disappearance, almost overnight, of the atheist Superpower that was the Soviet Union and the beginning of the revival of the Church there since then, perhaps there are chances that something very unexpected can also occur in all these domains.

Converting Post-Soviet Society and the Post-Soviet State

100 years have passed since the ruthless Civil War which followed the betrayal of Orthodox Russia by the elite of generals, aristocrats and intellectuals in February 1917 and the Bolshevik takeover from their incompetence in October 1917. Over thirty years have passed since the atheist Empire controlled by the corrupt Bolshevik elite started to fall apart. Bolshevism, an import from Germany, totally failed, and the Soviet Union went bankrupt (in every sense). What have the alternatives proposed since then been?

The first proposal was to parrot Western liberal capitalism and secularism. This was adopted almost immediately by those who had claimed to be Communists. Many of them became rich overnight, as the nomenklatura became an oligarchy. They were supported by the mob, who, with their typically Russian inferiority complex vis a vis the West, imagined that the new Western Consumerism would be wonderful, the ‘bright future’ promised by Communism but not delivered. And indeed the mass of secular Russians, in especially vulgar ways, duly aped everything bad in the West, like so many chimpanzees rewarded for their treachery with Western bananas.

The second proposal was Orthodoxy and over a hundred million citizens of the ex-Soviet Union were swiftly baptized. Only a few million old-fashioned atheists resisted, quoting such discredited theorists and fantasists as Marx and Darwin – who were already discredited and old-fashioned 100 years ago! However, a real criticism was made by some: this was that since Orthodoxy had already been tried before the Revolution and had been found wanting, hence the Revolution, why repeat it?

Of course, this was nonsense. The whole point is precisely that Orthodoxy had NOT been tried before the Revolution, at least by the masses who had only been nominally Orthodox, formally baptised. In particular, the so-called ‘Orthodox’ academies of theology and seminaries, with their careerist students looking for well-paid jobs in the civil service, had been hotbeds of atheism before 1917. Indeed, one former seminarian and ‘cradle-Orthodox’ (whatever that means) later came to be known as Joseph Stalin. The fact is that the masses of nominal Orthodox before the Revolution after 1917 followed the elite and deserted the Church, going along with atheism and the persecution of the Church.

Today, we are in a similar situation, with an elite mainly anti-Church and the masses unsure which way to go: Western secularism with its expensive playthings, baubles, gadgets and Hollywood tinsel, or the fullness of Christianity in Russian Orthodoxy. It is commonly agreed that only 3% (about 5 million) of the 164 million members of the Russian Orthodox Church actually practise Orthodoxy to the letter, even though about 80% of the total population are baptised. In Ekaterinburg last year, on the centenary of the martyrdom of the Imperial Family, only 100,000 (0.06%) of the Orthodox population took part in the midnight pilgrimage to Ganina Yama. Among fringe Orthodox, clergy and laity, we can meet corruption through money, alcoholism, ritualism, phariseeism, praise for Stalinism or for Western liberalism, and every deviation inbetween. There are even those who propose an amalgam between ‘Red and White’, suggesting that atheism and anti-Bolshevism unite under the standard of xenophobia!

In today’s Russian Federation abortion is twice as high as even the abysmally high rates in Western countries (true, it has halved in the last thirty years, but only because contraception is starting to be used). Divorce is still just as high as in the USA because, like American materialism, Soviet materialism destroyed family life. Naïve Western converts to Orthodoxy, who have no idea of reality and the profound secularism of the mass of Russians, point out that the churches are full. But of course they are full: they, and priests, are so pitifully few in number (one for every 7,000 people!) that they cannot be anything other than full. In the UK, with less than half the population of the Russian Federation, there are two and a half times as many churches.

Some will say that I am being over-critical. After all, over 30,000 New Martyrs have been canonized in the last 25 years (far more than the 8,000 canonized by the Church Outside Russia 38 years ago). Over 100 million have been baptised, over 100 Metropolias have been created, the number of bishops has gone up from 40 to 400, the number of priests is heading for 40,000 from 6,000 30 years ago (and most of those were then in the Ukraine), people now take communion regularly, not as in the grim old days of the corrupt practice before the Revolution (unfortunately a practice until quite recently preserved in the Church Outside Russia), when communion once a year was considered the norm.

Some over-optimists even say that today the Russian Orthodox Church has reached the level of the Church before the Revolution. This of course is not at all true – there were over twice as many churches and priests then, proportionate to the then population, as now. However, that is not the point: the point is that the Church needs in any case to be even better than the decapitated and State-ritualized Church of before the Revolution. This had been rejected by the vast mass of the aristocracy and intellectual elite. If the pre-Revolutionary Church is restored as it was, the Church will simply be incapable of preventing another Revolution.

Pre-Revolutionary culture, the summit of Russian culture, has still to be restored. And that can only be done when Russian Society is permeated by an Orthodox culture which today it is not. As for the Russian State, it cannot be converted until Russian Society has been converted; otherwise there will just be mere hypocrisy (as in the Russian State before the Revolution). In a country where the State, like the media and the educational and medical systems, are dominated by practical, if not ideological and sometimes very aggressive, atheism, as seen in their corruption and immorality, there remains much to be done.

Real parishes have to be created (they do not exist) as local communities, where all can go and become members of the Orthodox family, belonging, not merely passing through as if in a railway station. Financial transparency, as is about to be implemented only in the Pskov Metropolia, must become the norm. The Russian Orthodox Church needs 130,000 new churches, 130,000 new priests and 1300 new bishops! Our Orthodox Revolution has only just begun! Only then shall we be able to say that Russian Society and consequently the Russian State have been converted. There is very, very, very far to go in order to recover from the dread consequences of the Soviet nightmare and the pathetic aping of Western money-money-money Capitalism which has patterned the last generation of life in the Russian Federation.

Renewing the Local Orthodox Churches

The Western calendar has over the last 95 years taken control of some 20% of the Orthodox world – Constantinople (except Mt Athos), Antioch, Alexandria, Greece, Cyprus, Romania, Bulgaria and Czechoslovakia and Albania have all been infected. Only those in the 80% of the Churches of Jerusalem, Russia, Serbia, Georgia and Poland have remained faithful. Now many will say: So what? The fact is that though the calendar in itself may not be so important, it is a symbol. Once you have adopted the Western calendar, you have adopted the Western mentality. You are heading for the exit door of the Church. That is just a fact. As an example, of the fourteen Local Churches, one has even more or less completely fallen away, both theologically and therefore practically, from Orthodoxy, that is, the US puppet Church in Constantinople (Istanbul). And that is precisely the Church that, after a £100,000 bribe from the Anglicans nearly 100 years ago, introduced the Western calendar, so liturgically senseless from an Orthodox viewpoint. It has now reached the exit door, amid scandal after scandal.

There is worse to come. Playing the nationalist card of flattering the local chauvinists, the Western world is now trying its devil’s best to dismantle the Russian Orthodox Church, especially in Estonia and the Ukraine, but if possible in the Baltics, Belarus and Moldova also. The same tactic has been adopted against the Serbian Orthodox Church in Montenegro and Macedonia. Attacks have also been made against the Churches of Antioch, Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria and Romania. Can the Russian Orthodox Church, supporting and supported by, the best elements in the other Local Churches, win? Only if first, Russian Society and the Russian State have been converted. Ever since the Ukrainian crisis, we have been at a critical turning-point, living on a knife edge. Something has to change. We cannot go on like this much longer. This is make or break time for the Church of God. Either we shall live on, even by the grace of God prospering, or else the end of the world really is coming and this is it.

Bringing the Western World to Repentance

The Western world presents a sorry picture of spiritual emptiness and spiritual and therefore moral degeneracy. Its few remaining believers cannot even stand up for Christ, but sit down in their churches, as if paralysed (a spiritual disease that over the last 40 years has taken hold of the Greek and Arab Churches). Herded into inferiority-complex conformism, the puppet states of Western Europe are controlled by the US-run EU and NATO. Thus, symbolically, in Eurovision, which takes place not even in Europe, but in the US-financed Asian colony of Israel, Europeans, including supposed Orthodox Europeans, sing identically absurd and pointless songs in American English, not even in their own languages. And as for the crazed, trigger-happy, though bankrupt, US cowboy himself, obsessed by his control-freakery, seeking worldwide dominion and armed to the teeth with everything that technology can provide, he plans to destroy Russia, Turkey, China, North Korea, Venezuela, Syria, Cuba and Iran. Apocalypse awaits.

Conclusion

And therefore, we say that it is now or never. Either Orthodox of all nationalities renounce our false selves and start converting ourselves and the Societies and States around us, so standing up and witnessing to Christ before the Western atheist elites, or else we shall be annihilated by them. Then we shall be swallowed up by the Western sea-monster like Jonah, only without Jonah’s faith and therefore swallowed up forever and so disappearing from the face of the earth. The choice is ours.

 

My Life, the Last Battle and the New Orthodox World (N.O.W.)

‘Tell the people: Although I have died, I am alive.’

St John of Shanghai

Foreword: The War

Forty-five years ago I was told by one who could have known better that, as I had been waiting for years to join the Orthodox Church, I now faced a choice: I could either join the Greek Church of Constantinople or the Church of Russia; it was all the same. But only to him was it all the same, as, in spite of, or rather because of, his great intellect, he was spiritually confused. He lived in an alien compromise, washing his hands before the critical choice. I joined the Russian Church because, since the age of twelve, I had known through revelations to my soul that my destiny was most definitely in the Russian Orthodox Church. However crippled it may have been after 1917, I was destined to share in that agony, indeed, although it seemed foolishness to the Jews and to the Greeks alike, only by sharing in that agony could I hope to find my own salvation. I sensed even then that what he had told me was somehow untrue. At best it could only have been a delusion. It was not all the same – and recent very sad events have shown this to all absolutely clearly. Let me explain:

The Church is not to be found in a people who believe that it is a chosen people. Many Hebrews believed that they were the chosen people, but they stoned the prophets and crucified the Son of God. To this day many of their descendants reject Christ, some considering themselves superior to the rest of humanity. Then the Western European elite came to believe in their ‘exceptionalism’ (that is, their claim that they too were above God) too, all in order to justify their organized barbaric aggression. So a thousand years after Christ, they too fell away from the Church, rejecting the Holy Spirit and seizing control of the Church in the West in order to justify their conquistador power-grab. So, like pirates, they began persecuting us ordinary Christians and conquering the rest of the world by fire and the sword. Then their secularist descendants, in turn the Portuguese, Spanish, French, British, German and finally American elites, did exactly the same, demanding world hegemony (‘globalism’), also rejecting Christ because they consider themselves superior to the rest of humanity. (Hence their anti-Semitism: the other ‘chosen people’, the Jews, were rivals to them, therefore they had to be eliminated). In the Church there has now come the turn of certain Greeks, telling us that only they are Christians, that God speaks only Greek, and, as one very well-known Cypriot archimandrite told me, even that their pagan ancestors had prepared the way for Christ! Many Russians fell victim to the same delusion, in the same way believing in themselves instead of believing in God, taking communion only once a year. So they lost everything and overthrew the God-appointed Christian Emperor in 1917. Only through the blood of the New Martyrs and the tears and sweat of the New Confessors did repentance eventually begin to come to them.

All these ‘chosen peoples’ failed to understand that salvation comes only from the Heavenly Jerusalem of the Church of Christ through the Mercy of God and the Holy Spirit – not from some earthly ‘Jewish Rome’ of some mythical ‘chosen people’. For this reason, once I had chosen the Russian Church, I was to spend the rest of my life at war, in tireless battles, in unceasing strife, in the trenches, on the Western Front, fighting for real Christianity, for the real Russian Orthodox Church, together, of course, with many others. We all fought against the narrow-minded, nationalist delusions and impurities of those who had lost the big picture, who could not see the wood for the trees. They told us that only Russians could be Orthodox, that only their own exclusive little fragments of the great Imperial Orthodoxy, which had not undergone the blood, tears and sweat of others, could be right, that God’s Church needed ‘saving’ or ‘reforming’ (naturally, by themselves!). Some of them even persecuted and took to court as a common criminal the greatest saint among them all, St John of Shanghai. Little wonder that the Lord sent me to a military Church. I never sought any of this; it was all imposed on me. My soul would have died had I not taken part in this spiritual warfare. My life has been unceasing warfare in four battles, all fought beneath the Protecting Veil, which my patron-saint saw and which is the only reason why I am still alive.

Three Battles

My first battle was to take part in the struggle to help free that small part of the Russian Church Diaspora in England, which was dependent on Moscow, from spiritual impurity. After nine years, by 1983, I realized that I would fail in this. It was a task quite beyond me, with my very feeble abilities and from my modest, provincial, rural background; the enemies were invested with the strength of a personality cult, with all the authority of men and their city establishments, they had no time for a ploughman’s grandson. I was knocking my head against brick walls. So I left into exile, seeing my limitations. I understood that it would take far-reaching political changes inside Russia and indeed the departures or deaths of some outside Russia before this battle could be won (I did not know then that this would mean twenty-four years). Victory was inevitable, but only God Who created time, could in time bring the victory. My battle had been premature. By myself I could do nothing. It was good for me to know this.

My second battle was to take part in the struggle to help free that small part of the Russian Church Diaspora, which was dependent on Constantinople (Rue Daru), from spiritual impurity. I fought in Paris and thought that this battle was winnable. It was – almost. However, after six years in 1988 there came a turning-point when I saw that I would fail in this battle too. The intrigues of freemasons in high places meant that I could not help win this battle – all my friends were in low places. I knew then that this Paris group would eventually (I did not know then that this would mean thirty years) disappear into spiritual irrelevance. Those who had betrayed the Tsar and made him and his Family into martyrs had also betrayed the Church. So I left, having understood that here too it would take far-reaching political changes inside Russia and indeed the departures or deaths of some outside Russia before the battle to bring even a part of this group home to the Russian Church could be won. Victory was inevitable, but only God Who created time, could with time bring the victory. My battle had been premature. By myself I could do nothing. It was good for me to know this.

My third battle from the first day of 1989 onwards was to take part in the struggle to help free that part of the Russian Church Diaspora, which was dependent on New York (ROCOR), from spiritual impurity. Here there was a much greater chance of success, for the contaminating Protestant disease of ‘super-correctness’ (as another disciple of St John of Shanghai called it), with its ignorance, phariseeism, extremism, sectarianism, old calendarism, psychological (not theological) deviations of convertitis and Cold War money, had many opponents in the USA itself and even more in Western Europe where I was fighting on the Front. And above all, my Diocesan Archbishop supported me and I supported him. The ever-memorable Archbishop Antony of Geneva, a spiritual son of and the European successor to St John of Shanghai, was in effect the first real Orthodox bishop I had met. We had an identical understanding of the Church. By myself I could do nothing, but now I was far from being alone; I was simply one of very many, a little cog in a large machine. I did not know then that this struggle would take eighteen years, for only in 2007 did the Church win the day. I was taking part in our first victory, together with millions of others, in the Church of the New Martyrs and Confessors, to which I had always belonged in spirit. Only geography had ever divided us.

After the Three Battles

Once this battle, in which I had played only a tiny role, eventually from my provincial home-town, had been won by the many, especially by the bishops who had been inspired by the grace of God, I knew that the two other houses of cards where I had earlier lost the day would fall in their turn. I just did not know that it would take another twelve years. Between 2007 and today, in 2019, I have seen both these first lost battles won. History won them. What I knew in the past, that they would be won only in God’s own time, has come to pass. What we have fought long and hard for has been obtained. Thus, we now at last have for our Diocese of the British Isles and Ireland a bishop, pleaded for during over four decades. He is Orthodox, understanding the local language and people, not phyletist, venerating the local saints and not denying them, missionary-minded like us, encouraging us and not destroying us, not under the control of laypeople, in good health, and who will be resident here in just a few weeks from now.

Secondly, the Russian Orthodox Exarchate of Western Europe, awaited for over three decades, was at last established in Paris only a few weeks ago. This means that our House will be built on rock, not on sand, and that the ‘Euro-Orthodox’ fantasy of the Paris Brotherhood is now dead. The future Local Church of Western Europe will be authentically Orthodox. For what we have sought for and fought for since 1988 now is. There is now a real Orthodox Exarchate for Western Europe, with many regional dioceses and young bishops, hundreds of parishes and several monasteries, venerating the local saints and not denying them, the foundation of the new Local Church. Led by Metropolitan John in Paris, who bears the name of our missionary father in Christ, St John of (Shanghai and) Western Europe and so continues in the tradition of Archbishop Antony of Geneva, it will of course need much more time to develop. It consists of the generally newer Russian Orthodox parishes of Western Europe, in many dioceses and with many bishops. However, alongside it and complementing it, also stand the two (Western European and German) dioceses of ROCOR, with their five bishops, two of them younger and active. This consists of the generally older, more integrated, Russian Orthodox parishes of Western Europe, a few of them until recently under Constantinople, but now at last come home. The two parts need each other and hopefully their bishops will meet regularly in order to help each other in their own joint Synod.

However, in this Year of the Lord, 2019, there is the last mystical battle (last for me) in the series of mystical battles in this Hundred Years’ War, which for a century has so deformed Church structures in the Diaspora. This battle is also against spiritual impurity, against masonic ecumenist and modernist intrigues. However, this last battle is the battle inside the Russian Lands, inside historic Rus’; it is therefore not a local battle for English, French and American Rus’ in London, Paris and New York, for part of the small Russian Diaspora, it is a general battle which concerns the whole Church. This is taking place today in the Ukraine, but it affects all. For the Church is the mystical centre of the world and it is the Ukraine which is now the mystical centre of the Church. And this is why we have come here now, sent to fight from the Western Front to the Eastern Front. All will stand or fall by their attitude to what is happening in the Ukraine today, to this battle between Christ and Satan. Whose side are you on?

The Fourth Battle

The internal administrative centre of the false Orthodoxy against which I fought in all our four battles, was formed in Istanbul a century ago. It came into being only because of the long-planned overthrow of the restraining protection of Imperial Tsardom. However, the Western disease which had overthrown the Christian Emperor and so the Christian Empire and then brought that centre into being had already infected Russia and elsewhere before that. For the disease contaminated all nationalities, including many in the Russian Lands and from there in the Diaspora. The disease came to be called renovationism and the renovationists were keenly supported from Istanbul. Today it has become crystal clear that the whole of the supposed Orthodox world has now to side either with real Orthodoxy or else against real Orthodoxy. The time of reckoning has come; the time of compromise is over. No-one can stand by any longer with the indifference and conceit of Pilate. Even though this battle is of exactly the same nature as the series of three battles which we fought in the Diaspora before this one, now it is not the Diaspora, but the Ukraine which is the sword that divides. The battlefield has changed to the Ukraine, but the battle is the same one; it is the battle for spiritual purity, for canonicity, for real Orthodoxy.

Gradually, over the last two months, one Local Church after another has decided to side with spiritual purity, canonicity and real Orthodoxy and so support Metr Onufry and the Church of God of the Ukraine. The rest of the Russian Church with ROCOR was the first to support him wholeheartedly. The Local Churches of Serbia, Bulgaria, Antioch, Poland, the Czech Lands and Slovakia, Cyprus, and unofficial but spiritually free (= non-political) voices in the Churches of Greece, Jerusalem, Alexandria and Georgia, followed. So far, thirteen out of eighteen Athonite monasteries have joined us. And a few days ago the episcopate of the basically Carpatho-Russian OCA (Orthodox Church in America), which had dithered for several weeks and where some had for years even been threatening to desert the Church for Istanbul, decided the same. This is their spiritual victory and our very great comfort after decades of spiritual slumber, of wandering far from the Church with American phyletist delusions. It means that the little OCA is maturing, at last deciding to accept its destiny, abandoning its eccentric spiritual isolation and so finding its positive identity by returning to its roots under St Tikhon. Inspired by the breath of new life, it can at last begin to play a significant and fulfilling role as one of the component parts of the future, united, much larger, multinational Russian Orthodox Churches of the three continents of the New World, of the Americas and Oceania.

This leaves the episcopates of only two Local Churches, the large Romanian and the tiny Albanian, not politically free and sitting on the fence, paralysed like Pontius Pilate ‘for fear of the Jews’. They are silent, neither supporting nor rejecting, awaiting instructions from above on whether to support the petty nationalism of the phyletist schism of Constantinople or not. The false church in the Ukraine, founded by the US-backed separatists in Kiev, is officially under a certain Sergei Dumenko. He is actually a Vatican- and US-approved puppet-layman, therefore both pro-Uniat and pro-LGBT, and not a metropolitan, His false church has been seen to be without grace, without sacraments, without the Holy Spirit. His church is that of ‘the Ukrainian god’, as one Ukrainian minister has put it. His enthronement in Kiev six days ago was ignored by all the Local Churches. His so-called ‘Church’ is only a regime-manipulated charade of empty rituals, just another small ultra-nationalist organization – an absurd anachronism in this global world. It is supported by teams of police-backed Nazi bandits who intimidate and beat up Christians, because Nazis have no concept of the meaning of the word ‘Christian’. And these anti-Christian men of violence are directly supported by an alien and corrupt political regime in Kiev, supported by alien and corrupt regimes elsewhere, and, to their eternal shame, by Greek ‘bishops’ in Istanbul.

Afterword: The Victory

The decadent, self-appointed, Paris-School ‘theologians’ from the past slip away one by one. With them their secularizing ideologies from the past, Ecumenism (anti-Orthodoxy; against the Father), Modernism (anti-Sovereignty; against the Son) and Liberalism (anti-People; against the Holy Spirit), slip away into spiritual irrelevance. Their books of intellectual fantasy-philosophy are ready for the dust of forgotten library shelves. Those who frustrated, wasted, impeded and persecuted us for so many decades are leaving the stage and we are beginning to see the future clearly now. For the New Orthodox World (N.O.W.) is taking shape. The New Orthodox World (NOW) is led not by anachronisms, relics from the past in cities of empires which have not existed for centuries, but by vibrant and missionary multinational Local Churches, Autonomous Churches and Exarchates worldwide. These are not narrow and corrupted nationalist museums for State rituals, flag-waving and cultural nostalgia or the playthings of disincarnate but very aggressive, politicized and politically correct, liberal intellectuals, but living organisms, cleansed to prepare us all to meet the King before He returns in all His glory. And in the New Orthodox World, NOW, there is the Heavenly Jerusalem of the Church of Christ, awaiting Him and resisting the Enemy of Mankind, who comes before Christ in order to create disunity, disorder and distress among us.

The death-threat which I received three years ago, sent me because the pen is indeed mightier than the sword, did not stop me or deter me for a single second. In a dream, come to me after receiving that death-threat, I opened my front door and saw an agent on my doorstep. He at once fired his revolver at me, but the bullet rebounded off my priest’s cross, killing him instead of me. He fell to the ground and his corpse was dragged away to a waiting car by his colleague, who in fear and astonishment uttered powerless curses. I left and hid in a secret and remote place where I could not be found. I was rescued by the prayers of one who long, long ago had also taken refuge in such a place and I was taken to a faraway land. I have never paid any attention to dreams, especially such dramatic ones, but I remembered this one. However, I only really understood its meaning and symbolism on my first day here. It means that, like all of us, I will die when God decides, not when men decide, for though man proposes, God disposes. It means that the bullet rebounds, for if men want to kill the truth, they kill only themselves (exactly as they have done for the last one hundred and five years, with their atheist wars, one after another). And those who try to kill the Church in the Ukraine are committing spiritual suicide; indeed, their death-bearing bullet has already lethally rebounded onto themselves.

Victory has been ours in the Diaspora, because we have been willing to die for the Church of God and our enemies have not – because they are inherently attached to this world and so fear death which is of this world. Victory is ours in the Ukraine, because we are willing to die for the Church of God and our enemies are not – because they are inherently attached to this world and so fear death which is of this world. This is why we shall win this last battle now – because we do not fear death, for we believe and we know that Christ is the Life-Giving God, Who rose from the dead and freed the captives in hell. They, however, have only heard of the Risen Christ as a theory and symbolic myth for their heads. They believe it not in their hearts. Therefore their heads, like their lives, are full of the philosophies and works of death. But we do believe and we know and we tremble in awe before the Living God, Who is the Great God, Who works wonders and Who is with us, so that none is against us. Let the dead bury the dead. As for us, we shall not die, but live, and we shall declare the works of the Lord. The Lord is our Enlightenment and our Saviour, whom then shall we fear?

Archpriest Andrew Phillips

Kiev, 1-8 February 2019

 

 

 

 

Four Ecclesiologies

There used to be three ecclesiologies (teachings as to what the Church is), but last month we saw the birth of a fourth. What are these ecclesiologies?

  1. Orthodox Ecclesiology (‘Christianity’)

This is the ecclesiology of the Holy Trinity, Unity in Diversity. It is the ecclesiology of the Family of Churches, which together form the Body of Christ, of which obviously Christ is the Head. In practical, that is, incarnational terms, this results in the existence of a family of Churches, like those described by the Apostle Paul in his letters to the Corinthians, the Ephesians, the Thessalonians, the Philippians, the Romans etc. Their differences and problems are regulated by Councils. Indeed, this conciliarity, in theology and history called Catholicity, is one of the four basic signs of the Church, together with Oneness, Holiness and Apostolicity. Therefore, a ‘Church’ which does not have this Catholicity is not the Church, certainly not the fullness of the Church, as it is deficient in one of the Church’s four essential qualities.

  1. Papal Ecclesiology (‘Papocaesarism’)

Papal or Roman Catholic ecclesiology asserts that the Church is centralist and imperialist. There is only one Pope, Who as the Vicar of Christ is the Head of the Church. This is the ecclesiology of centralism, which cannot survive without the Pope, Who is Infallible, as He is the source of the Holy Spirit on earth. This is the ecclesiology of the Crusader, the Inquisitor and the Conquistador.

  1. Protestant Ecclesiology (‘Caesaropapism’)

As a reaction to centralist Papism, this says that you can make your own church, everyone is a pope, everyone is the head of their own church: ‘Make it up as you go along: we are all popes now’. If you disagree, you go off and start your own church. Inevitably, and from the very start, this leads to small, weak and divided groups being taken over by States, kings, princes, presidents and politicians, a process known as erastianism, whereby the State controls the Church. Inevitably, and from the very start, this has led to State Churches, phenomena like the Church of England, the Church of Scotland, the Church of Norway. These are all State-controlled organizations, which inevitably end up adapting their doctrines to the demands of the secular State.

  1. Phanariot Ecclesiology (‘Eastern Papism’)

This power-grabbing ecclesiology, which has been a century in the making in the Diaspora has just now been born in all its fullness in the Ukraine. It is in effect not Orthodox ecclesiology, but a mixture of Roman Catholic and Protestant ecclesiologies, Papocaesarism and Caesaropapism. On the one hand, it is centralizing Papism: all must be gathered together under the Patriarch of Constantinople, who is the ‘Eastern Pope’ (not ‘Western Pope’). On the other hand, it gives what it calls ‘autocephaly’, in reality only a diminished autocephaly or minor measure of independence, to any Church within any nationalist organization or ‘State’ – even though that ‘State’ may be new, temporary, artificial and tyrannical or even already have an authentic Orthodox Church on its territory.

In other words, this new imperialist/nationalist ecclesiology is a combination of the worst of both the Papal and the Protestant worlds. It is a pastiche of authentic Trinitarian Orthodox ecclesiology. On the one hand, it is centralizing, able to exploit its new ‘churches’ as subservient cash cows. On the other hand, it provides a measure of independence to pseudo-autocephalous entities, but no protection for them from the local dictatorship, even in dogmatic questions. For the local ‘State’ can demand and force changes in doctrines in accordance with its own demands, which subordinate Christ to its nationalism. Thus, Phanariot ecclesiology does not affirm Local Churches, it only affirms, Protestant-style, the right of ‘States’ to have their own ‘Churches’. In other words, it merely uses Protestant-style nationalism to increase its own power base. Therefore, this is a double heresy.

 

 

The Orthodox Church: 220 million Faithful and over 1,000 Bishops

The Orthodox Church is a family of Local Churches, just like the Churches of the Galatians, the Ephesians, the Romans, the Thessalonians, the Colossians etc, as described in the letters written to them by the holy Apostle Paul. Each of the Local Orthodox Churches has a main administrative figure, a chief bishop known as a Patriarch, or in the case of smaller Churches, a Metropolitan or Archbishop. However, the Church as a whole has no earthly head, because the head of the Orthodox Church is our Lord Jesus Christ. His authority is expressed in the Orthodox Church through the Holy Spirit as revealed particularly through Church Councils and the saints. Below you will find details of the Orthodox Churches and their approximate sizes, totalling: Bishops: 1,023. Priests: 79,592. Parishes: 71,993. Monasteries: 2,988. Faithful: 220,000,000.

Russia: Bishops: 419. Priests: 40,000. Parishes: 36,878. Monasteries: 1.000. Faithful: 164,011,000

This is the only real multinational Orthodox Church and accounts for 75% of all Orthodox. It cares for Orthodox living on canonical Russian Orthodox territory, spread over one fifth of the planet (the former Soviet Union except for Georgia, plus China and Japan) and peopled by over 62 nationalities. These territories include the Russian Federation, the Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Transcarpathia (the main part of Carpatho-Russia), Kazakhstan, Central Asia and the Baltic Republics. The Russian Church also includes the self-governing New-York-based Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (mainly in the three continents of the Americas and Oceania), the Japanese Orthodox Church and the Chinese Orthodox Church, as well as Exarchates for Paris and Western Europe and Singapore and South-East Asia.

Romania: Bishops: 57. Priests: 15, 513. Parishes: 13,527. Monasteries: 637. Faithful: 18,800,000

Also known as the Patriarchate of Bucharest, apart from in Romania there are also many Romanian parishes in the Diaspora, especially in Western Europe.

Serbia: Bishops: 53. Priests: 3.000. Parishes: 2,974. Monasteries: 204. Faithful: 8,000,000

The canonical territory of the Patriarchate of Belgrade covers Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia, Croatia and Slovenia. There are also many parishes in the Serbian Diaspora.

Greece: Bishops: 108. Priests: 9,117. Parishes: 8,000. Monasteries: 598. Faithful: 8,000,000

Under the Archbishop of Athens, this Church cares for all Orthodox in Greece.

Constantinople: Bishops: 131. Priests: 5, 935. Parishes: 3,196. Monasteries: 148. Faithful: 5,250,000

This includes Greek Orthodox in Istanbul (about 1,000), those on Greek islands such as Crete and Rhodes (700,000), and above all the Greek Diaspora in the Americas, Western Europe and Australia. There are also twenty-four parishes in Finland and small groups of other Non-Greek Orthodox, mainly Ukrainian, elsewhere. It has 58 titular bishops.

Bulgaria: Bishops: 29. Priests: 1,500. Parishes: 2,600. Monasteries: 120. Faithful: 4,500,000

The Patriarchate of Sofia covers Bulgaria and a number of churches in the Diaspora.

Georgia: Bishops: 47. Priests: 1,100. Parishes: 550. Monasteries: 172. Faithful: 3,500,000

The Patriarchate of Tbilisi covers Georgia and a small Georgian Diaspora.

Antioch: Bishops: 44. Priests: 408. Parishes: 496. Monasteries: 32. Faithful: 3,000,000

The canonical territory of the Arab Patriarch, who lives in Damascus, includes Syria, the Lebanon and Iraq.

Alexandria: Bishops: 45. Priests: 500. Parishes: 1,000. Monasteries: 3. Faithful: 3,000,000

Although for historical reasons its Patriarch is a Greek and his appointment is in the care of the Greek government, this Patriarchate is in Egypt. It also cares for St Catherine’s Monastery on Mt Sinai, but most of its faithful are Africans in over 54 African countries.

Cyprus: Bishops: 18. Priests: 600. Parishes: 628. Monasteries: 28. Faithful: 650,000

Under an Archbishop, this Church cares for all Greek Orthodox in Cyprus.

Poland: Bishops: 12. Priests: 420. Parishes: 237. Monasteries: 13. Faithful: 600,000

Under the Metropolitan of Warsaw, this Church cares for Orthodox of all origins who live mainly in eastern Poland.

Albania: Bishops: 8. Priests: 154. Parishes: 909. Monasteries: 1. Faithful: 200,000

Under the Archbishop of Tirana, this Church cares for Orthodox in southern Albania, most of whom are of Greek origin.

The Czech Lands and Slovakia: Bishops: 7. Priests: 197. Parishes: 240. Monasteries: 4. Faithful: 170,000

Led by a Metropolitan, this Church cares for Carpatho-Russian, Slovak and Czech Orthodox, as well as large numbers of Ukrainian Orthodox immigrants.

Jerusalem: Bishops: 25. Priests: 50. Parishes: 50. Monasteries: 25. Faithful: 130,000

Although its Patriarch is a Greek and his appointment is in the care of the Greek government, the flock consists of Palestinian Orthodox in Palestine and the Jordan.

OCA: Bishops: 20. Priests: 1,098. Parishes: 699. Monasteries: 3. Faithful: 90,000

Not recognized by all Orthodox, this group is composed mainly of the descendants of Slav immigrants from the old Austro-Hungarian Empire to North America, especially to Pennsylvania.

 

 

Who Are Orthodox Christians?

For nearly two thousand years we Orthodox Christians have been on Christ’s critical mission of salvation — our own salvation from sin and death and so that of the rest of mankind, of all living things, and indeed of the whole planet. We believe that the world can still be saved from self-destruction, spiritual, moral, political, social, military, and today ecological, chemical, bacteriological and nuclear. For nearly a thousand years this chaotic self-destruction has been the ever-accelerating agenda of greedy Western terrorism, which has been asset-stripping the Non-Western world, even more after its ‘World Wars’ of the last century.

Since the end of the World War in 1945 this terrorism has become ever more relentless and ferocious, using ever more barbaric technologies, massacring millions. The relentless Western military machine has been leaving its bloody traces in genocides all around the world, from all over South America to Korea, from the Congo to Haiti, from Guatemala to Iran, from Vietnam to Cambodia, from Italy to Belgium, from Rwanda to Serbia, from Iraq to Myanmar, from Afghanistan to all of Africa, from Syria to the Ukraine, from Libya to Yemen. This war is part of the war between Good and Evil, which affects all peoples and each one of us.

However, we believe in self-sacrificing service for our common goal of the salvation of the soul. We believe in the final victory over the war-creating enemy of mankind, Satan, who rejoices in death as he is the prince of death. This is the victory of the Church and Her Master, Christ, now and forever. For He is coming again as the Just Judge to judge all the nations and each one of us. Our nationality is Orthodox Christian, our flag is the flag of God, our faith and hope are the certain knowledge that Christ the Son of God and King of Love will win. It is this knowledge that gives us the strength to go on in the struggle for salvation.

On Cleaning Up the Mess After the Phanar

After the falling away of the see of Constantinople from the Orthodox Church and today’s Tomos, we are starting to see how the fashionable tendencies it has long represented are also being rejected. These are freemasonry, modernism, renovationism and dreamy, pseudo-theological intellectualism (philosophy). Thus, this ideology of semi-Orthodox intellectuals, both clerical and lay, is at last being rejected, also in Moscow and Saint Petersburg where they mainly live. This is because such tendencies are now clearly associated with the uncanonical ecclesiastical invasion of the Ukraine by the US-run Phanariots.

Thus, Orthodoxy is at last being cleansed from generations of Protestant-style, modernist philosophers, especially Russians, from Solovyov to Bulgakov, from Berdyayev to Afanasyev, from Schmemann to Yannaras, from Clement to Zizioulas. For it is their ideologies which have led directly to Ukrainian autocephalism. They are what leads directly to the break-up of the Orthodox Church, as Brzezinski and his heirs in today’s US State Department, like Hitler before them, so much desire in their ‘divide and rule’ policy. For the heresy against the Church preached by the modernists is not a theory, it leads to the destruction of the Church.

Nationalist ‘Churches’ in the EU and the USA, in Belarus and Moldova, and anywhere else, is what the modernists and their US sponsors want. This is what Poroshenko and the Phanariots have created in the Ukraine. But the faithful there do not attend their conventicles. Why? Because they give no faith, no spiritual food, they are dead. This nationalism is associated with crude Russophobia. This is cultivated by the phyletists only because they reject the obvious numerical predominance, multinational nature, piety and faithfulness to the Tradition of the Russian Orthodox Church. They want power for themselves.

Lacking humility, they cannot accept the reality of Church life. Russophobia is only their self-justification for this. Of course, we are not talking here about the promotion of some sort of Soviet imperialism or Russian nationalism, which we, like all Russian Orthodox, also naturally wholly reject. We are talking about the rejection of Orthodoxy itself, which has been kept so faithfully precisely by the Russian Church above all. This is why the eight undecided Local Churches (outside the Russian, Serbian Bulgarian, Antiochian, Polish and Czechoslovak Churches) will sooner or later have to choose who they are with: Christ or Belial?

Will the other Local Churches (essentially Greek, apart from the US-influenced Romanian and Georgian Churches) side with the Phanariot modernists or will they remain faithful? In other words, will they recognize the Poroshenko-Phanariot pocket ‘Church’, under US pressure, or will they recognize the faithful and canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church under the Confessor Metropolitan Onufry? If they choose the to do the latter, then the US will form Macedonian and Montenegrin ‘Orthodox Churches’ and many more. ‘Divide and rule’ is after all the Protestant disease which the Americans understand and spread so well.

Just like the former see of Rome, the see of Constantinople is now ceasing to be an Orthodox Church. The process of apostasy is the same: Hildebrand and Bartholomew. Gathering to itself a motley group of freemasons, LGBT activists, schismatics, phyletists, dissidents, ecumenists, modernists and Russophobes, it wars with the spiritual enemies of Orthodoxy, whose last bastion is the Russian Orthodox Church. Their greatest fear is the resurrection of the Imperial, that is, multinational, Church of Rus, of New Jerusalem, of the Orthodox world, of the Orthosphere, of Orthodox Civilization. Their hearts are elsewhere.

Orthodox Civilization stands for everything that is not petty and provincial, that is not Ukrainian-style nationalist ‘Churches’, without spiritual life and monasticism, which wave flags and chant to their Caesars like the Jews of old: ‘Glory to the Ukraine’, ‘Glory to the EU’ and ‘Glory to the USA’, instead of ‘Glory to God’. The support of US/EU globalism and liberalism for petty nationalism is only because nationalism is defenceless before their Eurosodom and Gomerika. What is the way ahead? The clearest course of action is to summon a Church Council, like that in Moscow in 1948, held to condemn ecumenism.

Such a Council might not initially gather all the Local Churches, some of which are still fence-sitting ‘for fear of the Jews’. However, its decisions, like those of other Local Councils in the past, the Palamite Councils, for example, could easily come to be accepted in due course by the whole Church. The agenda would have to include:

  1. The condemnation of the absurd US-recommended, State-run ‘Unifying Council’ (sic), held in Kiev on 15 December 2018, and of its decisions.
  2. The condemnation of the century of ecclesiological heresies, canonical crimes and modernist liturgical aberrations of the Phanar (all of which were present at its Crete meeting in 2016).
  3. In the light of Constantinople’s apostasy, the long-overdue review of the archaic Church Diptychs.
  4. In the light of Constantinople’s apostasy, the discussion of the future close co-operation of the six Local Churches (the Churches of Russia, Greece, Romania, Serbia, Bulgaria and Georgia) directly concerned by the Diaspora.
  5. The condemnation of worldly phyletism and Protestant autocephalism (Schmemannism) and the formulation of the ecclesiological principles for the granting of Autonomy within a Local Church and, above all, for the granting of Autocephaly by all the Local Churches together, thus cleansing the Church of secular nationalism.

 

 

 

A Bulgarian Hierarch Speaks Out Regarding the Phanariot Crisis in the Ukraine

Metropolitan Daniil of Vididn to glasove.com: The assembly in Ukraine is uncanonical 

Source: glasove.com

“I will answer you in the words of one of the archbishops of the canonical Church, with which he responded to the invitation of Patriarch Bartholomew to attend this assembly: I am firmly convinced and confess that I remain faithful to the One Orthodox Church, and my presence at this council contradicts the first Psalm of David, which reads as follows, “Blessed is the man that hath not walked in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stood in the way of sinners, nor sat in the seat of the pestilent. But his will is rather in the law of the Lord, and in His law will he meditate day and night.” What could be the outcome of a council that is convened in violation of the canonical order and involving persons outside the Church? In my opinion, this Council will not heal the division among the faithful people in Ukraine, but will deepen it. In this whole mournful situation there is a comforting thing – the desire of Orthodox people in this country to preserve the unity of the Holy Orthodox Church, and that this finds a response and support across the entire Orthodox world.”

This is what Metropolitan Daniel of Vidin says in an interview for glasove.com on the occasion of the assembly on December 15 in Ukraine convened by the Patriarch of Constantinople. The date for its conducting was announced by President Petro Poroshenko, who informed that an autocephalous local Orthodox church in Ukraine would be established at the assembly. Poroshenko said the council would approve its statutes and choose a primate to obtain from the Ecumenical Patriarch tomos (testimony) of the autocephaly.

Why is the position of the Holy Synod of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church concerning the schism crisis in Ukraine being protracted?

The Holy Synod is a collective, conciliar body of governing, and decisions are taken by a majority, in accordance with the Statutes of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church. Considering this question, the Holy Synod appointed a commission to examine more thoroughly all documents related to the Church crisis in Ukraine and only then to come up with an opinion. At the discussions during the synodal sessions, there were metropolitans, including myself, who wanted a position to be expressed, but as I already said, the Holy Synod is a collective body. At the same time, everyone bears a personal responsibility for his own voice, both before God and before God’s people. Why do we think we need to express a position? Because the Church is one and conciliar, as we confess in the Symbol of the Faith. In this sense, the dispute in Ukraine is not just a dispute between two local Orthodox churches. It affects the entire Orthodox Church.

What is your personal opinion on this question and why do you think it affects the entire Orthodox Church?

This affects the whole Orthodox Church because inter-Orthodox relations are affected. It violates the millennial Canon Law of the Church, one of the basic principles of which is the principle of the boundaries of Church jurisdiction. These limits are clearly defined and generally recognized. Each autocephalous Church has the right to self-governance within its boundaries and does not have the right to extend their jurisdiction in other local Churches. Here we will list only rule 2 of the Second Ecumenical Council, and rule 8 of the Third Ecumenical Council, which prohibits the individual local Orthodox Churches to extend their jurisdiction beyond the bounds of their area.

In your opinion, has Patriarch Bartholomew crossed the limits of his jurisdiction?

We definitely deem so. Since his Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew has been at the lead of the Constantinople Patriarchy, (i.e. from 1991 until now), he has always acknowledged that the Ukrainian Orthodox Church is under the jurisdiction of the Moscow Patriarchate in an indisputable way, with a number of letters and documents endorsed with his signature. Now he suddenly states that the Kiev Metropolis was never given under the full jurisdiction of the Moscow Patriarchate.

It is pointed out that in the famous document of 1686, by which the Constantinople Church entitles the Moscow Patriarch to ordain the metropolitan of the Kiev Metropolis, there was a requirement that the name of the Patriarch of Constantinople be commemorated. And this also is considered as a sign of recognition of the jurisdiction of the Patriarch of Constantinople over the Kiev Metropolis. It is another question how legitimate these claims are, but they are only declared today – three hundred years after the act in question was issued.

At the same time, the Church rules define periods of limitation for disputes over the right to jurisdiction over certain territories. For example, rule 133 of the Carthaginian Council sets a three-year statute of limitation. If a Bishop believes that another Bishop has entered a part of its territory, he has three years to file a claim. Rule 17 of the Fourth Ecumenical Council and rule 25 of the Fifth-Sixth Ecumenical Council provide a limitation period of 30 years in which disputes over jurisdiction over certain parishes can be settled. And in our case, a few centuries have passed.

In terms of Canon Law, these disputes are inadmissible. Here’s an example: in 1917 The Patriarch of Constantinople, German V, writes the following to the bishop of the Georgian Church after its self-proclamation for autocephalous: “I do not know and cannot know a self-contained Georgian Church, since for more than one hundred years, the Orthodox Georgians have been under the rule of the Russian Church. Your separation and formation of an autocephalous Church is only possible with the consent of your church with the Russian one (…) We cannot interfere in your internal Church matters, but advise you fatherly, to listen to the voice of your pastor, and in this way to bring this issue into the river-bed of the salvific Church canons.”

The claim of the Patriarch of Constantinople that his rights are infringed, (as the Kiev Metropolitan does not commemorate his name during Divine Services), is untenable, but is used as a formal occasion for the document from 1686 to be repealed. But this situation has not been contested for 300 years.

For three centuries the Orthodox people in Ukraine have lived in complete unity and have been an integral part of the Russian Orthodox Church. Since then, Kiev Metropolitans have been members of the Holy Synod of the Russian Church, and have elected, and have had the right to be elected as Patriarchs.

During all these 300 years, the Ukrainian believers have recognized Moscow’s Patriarch as their spiritual primate. Can someone after some 300 years come from outside and say: I am your father? Who’s going to follow him and who’s going to believe him? How can one proclaim himself as the spiritual father of a people, when the people know, remember, and honor the fathers who have begotten and brought them up in the faith? The sacred canons are categorical in this regard.

But for the people outside, it is not clear why Ukraine, after being an independent country, does not have its own independent Church?

Let’s first see what the Orthodox people and their canonical hierarchs in Ukraine say, because that is essential. The hierarchal council, convened by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in reference to these events on November 13th of this year, in which 83 hierarchs participated, expressed an explicit position against the encroachment of the Constantinople Patriarchy into her canonical boundaries, as it stated that “the Ukrainian Orthodox Church is self-governed, endowed with all the rights of independence and autonomy that are today necessary for the fruitful service of God and of the people of Ukraine.”

The Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) has over 12,000 parishes, which is more than the two schismatic groups, (the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Kiev Patriarchate (UOC KP) and the so-called Autocephalous Ukrainian Orthodox Church), combined.

Therefore, in his letters to the Bulgarian Patriarch and to the primates of the other local Churches, Metropolitan Onuphry correctly expresses his perplexity as to why no one takes into consideration the appeal of thousands of members of the UOC to Patriarch Bartholomew asking autocephaly for these schismatic groups not to be granted.

Why is the voice of a group of people being taken into consideration selectively before the voice of the canonical Church and its flock? Indeed, all canonized saints of the twentieth century in Ukraine urge their spiritual children to preserve sacred the unity of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church with the Russian one.

Let’s look at another side of the issue. Who are those who insist on autocephaly? The state authorities first of all. As Metropolitan Onuphry rightly notes, the authorities only hear the voices of those groups that burn Churches, profess nationalism, call for hatred, and cry “death to Moscow.” Why are their voices and demands for autocephaly the only ones to be heard?

It is obvious that these same state authorities are preparing to take matters into their own hands. Why is the opinion of the only recognized canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church not taken into account? What makes the opinion of groups whose leaders have been deprived from their spiritual dignity and excommunicated from the Church more trustworthy?

Could an analogy be made with the schism in the Bulgarian Orthodox Church 20 years ago?

Yes, to a great extent. As the schism in the Bulgarian Orthodox Church was inspired and supported by the state authority, the same is happening in Ukraine. In our country, the schism was overcome, thanks to the Orthodox Council of 1998, convened at the initiative of the BOC in Sofia.

At that time, the Ecumenical Patriarch acted quite differently compared to today. Can we talk about a double standard?

Actually, at the 1998 council, the Ecumenical Patriarch posed the question of the resignation of Patriarch Maxim, but then our predecessors, (hierarchs with spiritual experience and valor), opposed him and said, “We have called you here to heal the schism, not to deepen it.” So the parallel between the schism in our country and the one in Ukraine is completely relevant.

At the moment, the UOC MP is in the same position as the BOC was then. In our country the schismatics also tried to rob the Church’s identity, to despoil shrines, to usurp property of which they were not entitled. And most grievously, destroying their moral appearance, and killing the people’s faith. Because we know how they ended, and what their deeds in the faith were. The same is happening in Ukraine.

In 1992, the former Metropolitan of Kiev, Philaret, was deprived of his dignity for his falling into schism and due to proven moral transgressions in personal aspects, and later excommunicated by the Church. So his removal was laid down legitimately, for good reasons due to a number of canonical violations. And in its decision from October 11th, in complete contradiction with the sacred Canons, the Patriarchate of Constantinople restored that man.

Finally, what should be the position of the BOC in your opinion?

Three metropolitans of the Holy Synod came out with a statement on the situation in Ukraine, in which, proceeding from the experience of the Pan-Orthodox council from 1998, which overcame the schism in our country, we proposed in this case to proceed in the same way and for the matter to be offered for a Pan-Orthodox discussion.

For a Pan-Orthodox council to be convened?

This can happen in different ways. First, resuming the dialogue between the Patriarchate of Constantinople and the Russian Orthodox Church, in view of the ROC’s decision to end Eucharistic communion with the Patriarchate of Constantinople. The resumption of dialogue between the two churches, with the participation of representatives of the rest of the local churches, is a way the wound in Ukraine can be healed. In the end, any decision concerning the Local Orthodox Churches cannot be accepted and permanent without their consent and support.

A “unification council”, convened by the Patriarch of Constantinople will be held on December 15th in Kiev. What do you think will be the result of it? 

I will answer you in the words of one of the archbishops of the canonical Church, with which he responded to the invitation of Patriarch Bartholomew to attend this assembly: “I am firmly convinced and confess that I remain faithful to the One Orthodox Church, and my presence at this council contradicts the first Psalm of David, which reads as follows, “Blessed is the man that hath not walked in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stood in the way of sinners, nor sat in the seat of the pestilent. But his will is rather in the law of the Lord, and in His law will he meditate day and night.”

What could be the outcome of a council that is convened in violation of the canonical order and involving persons outside the Church? In my opinion, this Council will not heal the division among the faithful people in Ukraine, but will deepen it. In this whole mournful situation there is a comforting thing – the desire of Orthodox people in this country to preserve the unity of the Holy Orthodox Church, and that this finds a response and support across the entire Orthodox world.”

Is there a political pressure on the Synod of BOC to tilt the scales for one or another solution – from the Russian or American side? Or, from the side of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, which expresses certain interests?

I can categorically say that during the discussions in the Holy Synod, the Metropolitans express their own views. So the debates and decisions are made on the basis of the conceptions and conscience of each of the hierarchs.

This is not a direct answer. Is there any political pressure, in your opinion? From the Russian side or from the Americans (through the Bulgarian government), which is in fact the instigator of the actions of the Ecumenical Patriarch?

I can only testify for myself. I can categorically state that nobody has put any pressure on me. In view of the progress of the situation, at this time, it is necessary for all Orthodox Christians to increase our prayers for the preservation of the unity of the Holy Orthodox Church in Ukraine, and in the whole world.

Interviewer: Yavor Dachkov

 

Buffoonery and Shame

The new ‘Metropolitan’ of the graceless State Church in the Ukraine, the US ‘divide and rule’ stooge ‘Epifanij’ Dumenko, ordained by a defrocked and anathematized married bandit ‘Patriarch’ from whom he accepts his orders, awaits his papers in Istanbul on 6 January. He has already promised to force the faithful to adopt the papist calendar and then unite with the Uniats, like the Phanar and the Vatican. All this has cost the US taxpayer, who loves freedom and democracy, a bribe of $25 million to set up this farce. But the new Poroshenko nationalist ‘Church’ duly exists with several hundred adherents and at least two church buildings which imitate the rites of the Orthodox Church.

In the city of Vinnitsa in central Ukraine, civil servants paid by the Poroshenko regime, have been told that they must, by Sunday rota, attend the only church under Dumenko there, as it has been deserted by the faithful. Other faithful are being ‘interviewed’ by the dreaded CIA-trained Kiev Secret Police, the SBU, to find out why they refuse to attend. Poroshenko, the founder of a nationalist Church by bloodshed, is indeed worthy of the bloodthirsty tyrant Henry VIII. Thirty years ago, under the Ukrainian Communist Party, if you went to church, you lost your job. Today, under the Ukrainian Fascist Party, if you do not go to the ‘right’ church, you will lose your job. How times change!

Just today the Ukrainian Parliament has ordered the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to change its name to ‘The Russian Orthodox Church in the Ukraine’. This means that all the over 12,000 churches must be re-registered – which will give the Kiev regime the chance to take them away from the faithful. Persecution is intensifying under US aegis. Perhaps the Ukrainian Parliament could also order the Patriarchate of Constantinople to change its name to ‘The Patriarchate of Istanbul’? And perhaps, in reply, in Moscow a Synod could change the name of the Patriarchate of Moscow, which is associated with the Soviet period, to ‘The Patriarchate of New Jerusalem and All Rus’?

However, there is a serious side to all this provincial buffoonery, which is worthy only of a Balkan farce. The clownish attempt by Istanbul to kidnap the faithful of the Russian Orthodox Church because it has virtually no flock of its own has an alternative. If it wanted faithful for its fictitious empire, why did it not set out to convert Turks – or any of the other 7.5 billion people in the world who are not Orthodox, rather than concentrate on the 216 million who are? Of course, in fairness, we must ask the same question of the 13 canonical Orthodox Churches (there are no longer 14). Why are they not also engaged in mission with the 7.5 billion? This is the real shame.