Tag Archives: Providence

‘’Owing to personal ambition, Patriarch Kyrill has lost the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and other Churches in the lands of ‘Holy Rus’’’.


The above are the words of my dear friend, Archbishop Victor (Bykov) of Artsyz, Vicar-Bishop of the Odessa Diocese of the UOC, on 23 July. They followed the devastation to the Transfiguration Cathedral in Odessa, which I knew so well and whose present ruinous state is so saddening. Vladyka Victor, who is a real monk, stressed that the Patriarch has repeatedly spoken about the unity of ‘Holy Rus’, which he ‘has utterly destroyed with his blessing and his actions’. ‘In my opinion you seem to have forgotten that, just as in Russia, so in Ukraine there are (were) your children, whom you consider as such, and you have blessed those who are now killing them’, wrote the Archbishop. ‘The words ‘Great Lord and Father’ do not come to my tongue when addressing you, for you are a father who has sacrificed his children to destruction and killing’. So sad and yet so true.

The problem is that the Patriarch has lost not only the Ukraine and Latvia, but probably also Lithuania, Estonia, Moldova, Kazakhstan, England and probably all the lands of Western Europe and indeed, probably ultimately everything outside the territory of the Russian Federation. He has transformed himself from the Patriarch of All Rus into the Patriarch of All Russia. Three letters more tacked on to the word ‘Rus’ may sound like a minor change, but in fact it is everything. A once great multinational Church is rapidly becoming a minor nationalist Church. The multinational quality of the Church of the old Russian Empire (1721-1917) and then of the Soviet Union (1917-1991) has been destroyed by ambition, which led to the twofold disease of inward corruption and outward nationalism, exactly, to the letter, as in the Patriarchate of Constantinople.

When the Soviet Union collapsed into 15 different countries at the end of 1991, the Russian Church retained the chance of being multinational. Now that has largely been lost in this wave of militant Russian nationalism. True, the temptation of national exclusivism was always there, and in every part of the Russian Church, as we know only too well from fifty years of experience inside it, but we thought that the victory of that nationalism could be avoided. Great figures in the Russian Diaspora Church like Metr Anastasy, St John of Shanghai and Archbishop Antony of Geneva thought so too. Now it all seems to be too late! The only hope now is a wave of autocephalies, which could at least keep the Russian Church as the historic head of a family of ten, with nine fully independent, canonical Autocephalous Churches forming part of the new ‘Holy Rus’.

By Divine Providence, the list of Autocephalous Churches would start with the older Polish, Czechoslovak and Northern American (formerly OCA) Churches, but now would extend to new Ukrainian, Baltic, Belarussian, Central Asian, Japanese and African Churches. As regards the Russian parishes in Moldova and Western Europe, they will probably pass to the majority Patriarchate of Romania, which, by Divine Providence, already has Autonomous Metropolias there and a flock of well over four million with a thousand parishes and ten, and soon, eleven, bishops. If those on those territories directly or indirectly under Moscow did not join into the symphony of those future Local Churches, they would become uncanonical sects. Such a situation would still leave Autonomous Churches under Moscow in Latin America, South-East Asia and China.

The ideal of ‘Holy Rus’ can survive, but not in its old administrative unity. Its unity is what Patriarch Kyrill has destroyed, as Vladyka Victor said above. ‘Holy Rus’ can no longer survive in a centralised/Sovietised form, but only in the form of a Family or Confederation of independent adults. The Autocephalous Church of Poland, once within the Russian Empire and the Russian Church, proved a century ago that this is possible. Others must now follow its example. For the Holy Spirit cannot be regulated by pieces of paper and intimidating threats, as bureaucrats and young and inexperienced neophyte bishops imagine. In the words of Christ, the only Head of the Church: The Spirit blows where it wills. And it does not blow in the direction of Moscow (or Constantinople), of corruption and nationalism, it blows in the direction of Autocephaly and freedom.





How to Deal with Disappointments – or Discovering God’s Love for Us

Life is made up of joys and disappointments, sometimes the former predominate, sometimes the latter. As popular wisdom proclaims, ‘after rain comes the sun’ and ‘there is light at the end of the tunnel’. However, disappointments are in reality our appointments with destiny, that is, through disappointments we can finally find out what God’s Will is for us. Thus, disappointments are always a recall, a wake-up call, a reality check, reminding us that our only ultimate Appointment is the inevitable one, when we shall stand before the Face of God and our whole lives will be judged in an instant by His mere presence.

Thus, disappointments in life bring many surprises. These come from Providence, which is God’s Love in human affairs despite us, whether international, national, family or personal. affairs. How acutely disappointed the Royal Martyrs or the Patriarch St Tikhon could have been, when they were rejected, persecuted, betrayed and worse. But they were not, because their disappointment led them to God’s will for them, along the path to holiness. It is almost as if we should thank God for our disappointments. Popular wisdom confirms this too, as we say ‘a blessing in disguise’ and that, ‘every cloud has a silver lining’. Glory to God for all things!


Multinational Council or Isolationist Sanhedrin?

Soon there will be a great council, called ‘holy’, but this will be precisely the Eighth (Impious) Universal Council.

St Kuksha of Odessa (+ 1964)

Now that, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and to the great relief of all faithful Orthodox worldwide, the ‘Great and Holy Pan-Orthodox Council’ has been reduced to an Inter-Greek monologue with 24 Romanians, whose presence has been ordered by the US ambassador in Bucharest, what lessons can be learned?

The first lesson is that if there is to be some meeting of all the Local Churches, then it must be carried out by consulting the faithful, listening to their wishes and talking about the issues that really matter, in an Orthodox way, rather than imposing some irrelevant top-down ‘agenda’, in a secular way, like some transnational corporation.

The second lesson is therefore that hubris and Eastern Papism are dead (was it ever alive?) and have been replaced by humility and the Holy Spirit.

The third lesson is that threats and intimidation from the US State Department, or anywhere else, do not work with free Orthodox.

The fourth lesson is that all Orthodox bishops must be invited to any Council, as is the Tradition. That half of the world’s approximately 700 Orthodox bishops present would be from the Russian Orthodox Church would be just a fact of life. After all, of the world’s 216 million Orthodox, 164 million, over 75%, belong to the multinational Russian Orthodox Church.

Therefore, the fifth lesson is that if you want to be a big Church, do not fall into flag-waving phyletism (narrow nationalism) and then you will find that other nationalities will want to be with you – over 60 nationalities make up the Russian Orthodox Church. Flag-waving phyletism is for football hooligans, not for Orthodox Christians.

The only beneficial result of the Crete meeting so far is that the Patriarchate of Constantinople has promised not to interfere in the Ukraine, unlike as it sadly did in Estonia. If we can learn the above lessons as well, perhaps this whole affair will, by the Providence of God, turn out to have been positive.

Manmade Climate Change

The doom and gloom media love an apocalyptic sensation, however false. Thus, before the Year 2000, they invented the millennium bug, then they thought of bird flu, later ebola. Inbetween them there was terrorism, financial crises, ever imminent world wars and, above all, ‘climate change’. The most recent absurd statement is that the ‘North Pole is melting’. The scenario of climate change conveniently ignores the fact that the word ‘climate’ implicitly implies change. The climate has, by definition, always changed. Those of us who remember the 1970s and how the selfsame doom and gloom merchants promised us ‘a new ice-age by 2000’ remain sceptical.

The fact is that between about 1250 and 1850 the world went through what has been called a mini ice-age, when, in this country, the River Thames froze and fairs were held on the river, the last such ‘frost fair’ being held in 1814. Only today are we returning to the climate of the 12th century and earlier. At that time, and certainly as far back as the Roman Occupation, grapes were grown as far north as Yorkshire and the climate of southern England resembled that of today’s Loire Valley in France. This mini ice-age was all due to natural climate change – which no-one would deny. However, anyone over the age of 50 in England, as in many other countries, can confirm that the climate has changed since their childhood. This has been confirmed in recent weeks by terrible flooding in small parts of Britain, in the US and many other parts of the world.

What we are talking about, however, is possible ‘manmade’ climate change. But here there is no agreement. True, a majority of ‘scientists’ believe that the emission of gases from burning fossil fuels is changing our climate, with potentially catastrophic effects. However, a minority of ‘scientists’ do not agree with them. They point out that a great many ‘scientists’ (whatever that word means) are paid by Western governments, which do not like oil-producing countries, which are Non-Western, and paid also by Western-run solar and wind power industries. Therefore their claims are not be taken seriously. Let us, however, suspend our scepticism and assume that the manmade climate change lobby is correct and that most modern climate change is manmade. After all, pollution of any form cannot be good for the air, earth and water of the planet. What is to be done?

The first thing to be done is not to hold huge conferences with thousands of delegates jetted in from all around the world where discussions generate immense amounts of ‘hot air’. The first thing to be done is not to blame governments for lack of spending on flood defences; governments are not responsible for ‘natural’ catastrophes. The first thing to be done is to get down on our knees and repent, praying to God, Who Alone can control the climate, Who Alone can avert the catastrophes of the unnatural, fallen world, and ask Him to save us. Only if we do that first, will we know what we have to do next.

The West Further Isolates Itself: Russia Faces its Eastern Destiny

US global influence outside the club of the world’s seven most insolvent nations – the now irrelevant G7 – has declined dramatically in the last few months. Firstly, there was the Western threat to bomb Syria, which failed when it was proved that the poison gas attack in Damascus had been carried out by Western-backed terrorists. Secondly, there were the bullying Western threats against the democratic and bloodless decision of Crimeans to return to Russia after the frightening Neo-Nazi coup d’etat in Kiev, which has so frightened so many other Ukrainians. Russia had already warned the tyrannical West several times that sanctions against the self-determination of the Crimea would be counterproductive and now three geopolitical shifts are afoot.

Firstly, with the United States and much of the US-controlled European Union rejecting Russia, it is turning east for business, contracts and alliances. The US-staged and funded (5 billion dollars) coup d’etat in the Ukraine has already brought Russia and China together, encouraging bilateral trade and in the future possibly marginalising the dollar. With China refusing to vote against Russia over the Crimea at the UN (it has Taiwan in mind) and suing the bankrupt Ukraine for $3 billion for a loan repayment, the Chief Economist of Russia’s largest bank has stated that ‘China’s yuan may become the third reserve currency in the future’. If such a joint, commodity-backed reserve currency bypasses the dollar, Russia will become independent of Western financial markets.

While Europe seeks alternative sources of energy, in case Russia stops gas exports to it (the imminent rise in gas prices to the Ukraine by 40% is of great concern), Russia is preparing to announce a huge natural gas supply deal with China that is apparently close after years of negotiations. If it can be signed when President Putin visits China in May, he will be able to hold it up to show that global power has shifted eastwards and that he does not even need the West for exports, so binding Russia and China in an axis. It should be noted that China has already overtaken Germany as Russia’s biggest buyer of crude oil thanks to oil supplies via the East Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline and another crossing Kazakhstan.

Secondly, as if pushing Russia into the embrace of the world’s most populous nation was not enough, there is also the second most populated country in the world, India. The Russian government has taken the time to thank it too for its understanding over the Crimea – saying that India had shown restraint and objectivity. President Putin has called the Indian Prime Minister to discuss the crisis, suggesting that there is room for Russia’s ties with traditionally non-aligned India to flourish. Russian moves to regain the Crimea were seen very favourably by the Indian Establishment, which suffered enough from British colonialism and has little time for Western bullying and patronising.

Thirdly, the neo-conservative oligarchy that governs the Western world has also managed to undermine the European Union’s once good relations with the Russian Federation. Since, as they see it, Russia stands in the way of their New World Order hegemony and so has to be destroyed, if the Eurozone has to be destroyed in the process, then that too can be done, as Victoria Nuland has so ineloquently put it. Relations between the European Union and the US are, to say the least, cool, apart from with the UK government, which alone has always played the role of poodle to the US. The elite that runs the European Union has never been so unpopular with the peoples it dictates to and it risks being rejected in the May elections.

It should be noted that China and India are the two civilisations which have always resisted Westernisation and its Frankish Catholic/Protestant filioque ethos. If China and India should draw close to Russia, it may be that Russian Orthodoxy will at last become free to play its destined role in both those countries, bringing many souls to Christ. Having in its quest for global hegemony attempted to destroy Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria, the neocon elite has in the Ukraine now declared war on the Russian Orthodox world, where it has no power to appoint masonic patriarchs, as elsewhere. In so doing, it has further isolated itself from the Church of God and is setting its Sodom against Jerusalem. That is to play with volcanic fire. Frankly, the Western elite seems to have been so blinded by its hubris that all it is doing now is re-arranging the deckchairs on the Titanic.

On the Workings of Providence

The February rejoicing of the minority junta, now in power in Kiev but thanks only to US and EU backing and drawn from non-denazified Galicia in the far west of the Ukraine, is turning into March lamentation. Having overthrown a democratic government (corrupt, but no more corrupt than those now in power and those before it) through violence and intimidation, it has been deserted by the Ukrainian Army, Navy and Air Force. The majority of the inhabitants of the Ukraine, 83% of whom are Russian-speaking according to last November’s Gallup poll, has no confidence in the junta and no loyalty to it. So they are abandoning it.

The Crimea left the Ukraine on the day of its great contemporary saint, St Luke the Bishop-Surgeon. As one resident there wrote to me yesterday, ‘Here every day is now a holiday’. In the south- west, Transcarpathia is pleading in a petition with President Putin to free it from the tyranny of the Kiev junta. The north and the south and the east want freedom, refusing to recognise the US-funded Neo-Nazis from the far west. Those who mocked in triumphalism three weeks ago did not foresee the workings of Providence. As a result of their blindness:

President Putin’s popularity has now soared to 76% according to the latest opinion poll. China and the other Non-Western countries have taken Russia’s side, accusing the meddling West of hypocrisy, especially in bomb-ravaged Iraq (1,000 dead last month alone) and Afghanistan. The Kiev junta has received no money from the bankrupt EU. There has been no NATO invasion, as their fantasists had told them. And the US is too poor to pay out the billion dollars that the junta needs every three weeks just to survive.

The bullying rhetoric of the West, with its ironic support for the artificial Stalinist and Khruschovian borders of the Soviet Ukraine, has remained just that, words without concrete actions. Sanctions have backfired and now the French government is supine after Russian threats to cancel its orders at the Saint Nazaire shipyards and the US administration is trembling, as Russia also threatens to cancel its orders for a fleet of Boeings from Seattle. As for Germany, half of its gas comes from Russia.

The main thing is that the Orthosphere is at last reviving. Orthodox Unity and Restoration are on the cards. The New World Order – the Western building of the new Tower of Babylon – has, for the moment, been put on hold. The world breathes again.