Tag Archives: The Future

Now that We Have Moved on from the Near-Forgotten Meeting in Crete

Nearly a year ago there took place in Crete a meeting of a select minority of the 650 or so Orthodox bishops in the world. Called by one of the bishops of the Patriarchate of Constantinople who took part in it but who, like many others present, refused to sign documents from it, ‘John’s show’ (referring to the elderly and ill Metr John Zizioulas whose old-fashioned philosophy was behind it all), Crete was useful in preparing for a future Orthodox Council. We now know how we are going to express the Orthodox Truth regarding the questions under discussion in a Conciliar manner – in a very different way from the secular-humanist, imposition by committee, way seen in Crete, in other words in the spirit and language of the Church Fathers. With this ecumenistic meeting now largely forgotten, the Orthodox world has already moved on.

Thus, the multinational Russian Orthodox Church, 75% of the whole Orthodox world and not present at the irrelevant Crete meeting, with a flock of millions in Western Europe – 100 large parishes in Germany, 70 in Italy, a new Cathedral in the centre of Paris and a seminary and several dozens of parishes in other countries – is moving to set up a Metropolia there. This will unite Russian Orthodox of all nationalities and all languages in Continental Western Europe. No doubt, with time the Russian Orthodox Church will do the same in South America and also reclaim Alaska, setting up a Metropolia there. Thus, it will stretch from Portugal to Alaska, covering three continents. With further time, as the ever-memorable Patriarch Alexei I stated some fourteen years ago regarding Western Europe, such Metropolias will become new Autocephalous Churches.

Given this, what will become of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (ROCOR), whose headquarters are in New York? Led by the Patriarch of All the Russias, with 12 bishops, plus two retired and two more recently received from the Slav-based, Cold War-founded organization known as the Orthodox Church in America (OCA), its destiny seems to be clear. It is to become the single and united Church of all the many Russian Orthodox of all nationalities in the English-speaking world. From the USA to Canada, from Australia to New Zealand, from Great Britain to Ireland, and countries dependent on them (ranging from Haiti to Costa Rica, from Mexico to Puerto Rico, from Indonesia to South Korea as well as others), all Russian Orthodox there are to unite. Let us forget the irrelevant past and help to build the future!

Orthodox Christianity in the British Isles and Ireland: Seven Orthodox Churches, Nine Dioceses, One Deanery, Four Choices

Introduction

Every Christian denomination in every country of the world is divided into dioceses and parishes which reflect the geographical area where they are located. Moreover, there may also be internal, sociological divisions. For example, in the town where I live there are several parishes of the C of E (Church of England), but two of these parishes refuse to talk to each other because their views and patterns of worship are utterly different, one is ‘Anglo-Catholic’, elderly and wealthy, the other is ‘happy-clappy’, middle-aged and financially modest. There are also two Baptist churches which refuse to talk to one another, because one is strict, the other is liberal.

In the cities there is a similar situation in Roman Catholic parishes, which can have completely different tendencies (Polish/Irish/liberal/ traditional/‘charismatic’…) and also in monasteries, which belong to different orders. Nowadays, larger Roman Catholic parishes have masses at different times for different ethnic groups in different languages and with different Roman Catholic rites, Polish, Syro-Malabar, Greek-Catholic Ukrainian etc. There is often very little communication between these diverse groups. What is the situation regarding the Orthodox Church in this country? What sort of divisions are there here?

Seven Local Churches and Ten Groups

Of the fourteen Local Churches that make up the worldwide Orthodox Church only seven are represented outside their home countries. In the British Isles and Ireland these seven Churches have nine dioceses and one deanery. These are the following: the Serbian, Bulgarian, Romanian, Georgian, Constantinople (two dioceses, Greek and Ukrainian, and one deanery, Paris), Antiochian and Russian (two dioceses, Sourozh and the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia). These nine dioceses and one deanery are not territorial, but are superimposed on one another on the same territory. However, even so there is often little communication between them, as each caters for its own ethnic group. Of these ten groups, the first six, the Serbian, Bulgarian, Romanian, Georgian and the big Greek and the tiny Ukrainian nationalist dioceses of the Church of Constantinople, are largely concerned only with their own ethnic members.

Thus, the above generally appear not to observe the Gospel commandment of Matthew 28, that we are to go out into all the world and teach and baptize all. For example, although a small minority of parishes in the big Greek-speaking Diocese of the Church of Constantinople, mainly Cypriot by ethnicity, do sometimes accept English people, generally these people are Hellenized or even come from a Hellenophile public school background. Moreover, its archbishops, who must have Greek or Cypriot nationality, usually impose Greek names on any they may ordain, such as Kallistos instead of Timothy, Meletios instead of Peter, Aristobulos instead of Alban, and imposes names like Athanasios, Panteleimon and Eleutherios on others. This leaves four choices to the majority of native English speakers who are interested in trying to live according to the teachings of the Orthodox Church without having to change their name and national identity.

Four Choices

The first two of these choices, the Parisian and the Antiochian, appear to cater for two specific small English sociological groups, whereas the last two groups are both part of the Russian Orthodox Church. These are at once sociologically much broader as regards the range of English and other local people within them, but those people sometimes have a Russian connection and they are in a majority Russian Church.

1. The Paris Deanery (also called the Exarchate)

This is a very small Deanery belonging to a Diocese under an elderly and sick French bishop, received and ordained into the Church in 1974, based in Paris under the ‘Greek’ (Constantinople) Church. It has virtually no property of its own. Founded in Paris in the 1920s by anti-monarchist Saint Petersburg aristocrats, who had tried but failed to seize power from the Tsar, it had a small parish in London until 1945. However, in 2006 the group was refounded in this country after a noisy, aggressive and unfriendly divorce from the Russian Orthodox Sourozh Diocese (see below) and it strongly dislikes the Russian Orthodox Church as it is. In 2006 it was 300 strong, out of a then total of about 300,000 Orthodox in the UK, so it represented about one in a thousand Orthodox. Despite its tiny size, in 2006 its foundation was strongly supported by the Russophobic bastions of the British Establishment, the Church of England, the BBC, The Times, The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph. It is known for its attachment to the arts, philosophy and intellectualism and ordains easily, providing that the candidates come from ‘the right background’.

It tends to cater for rather elderly, upper-middle class Establishment figures – which is why it belongs to the Western-run Church of Constantinople, which uses the Roman Catholic calendar for the fixed feasts, and not the independently-run Russian Orthodox Church. It is thus rather politicized and its perhaps clubby, county-town members tend to support the elitist Liberal Democrats. Its members, often in groups as small as five or ten, may, like their founder, be attracted to spiritual techniques, such as Buddhism, Sufi Islam, yoga or what is called ‘the Jesus Prayer’ (= noetic prayer in Orthodox language). It is not incarnate in any Local Orthodox Church and mixes different practices and customs, also introducing ‘creative’ customs of its own. Some of its more effete members quite unrealistically call their tiny Deanery ‘The Orthodox Church in Britain’, despite the fact that it is dwarfed by nine much more proletarian Orthodox Dioceses. This is rather like some members of the ‘Orthodox Church in America’, a US Orthodox group with a huge title which the Deanery much admires, but which is also dwarfed by others, numbering only some 30,000 out of 3,000,000 Orthodox in North America.

2. The Antiochian (Arab) Diocese

This very small ethnic ‘British Orthodox’ group, originally 300 in number, was founded as a Deanery as recently as 1996 by and for dissident Anglicans. They came from backgrounds as diverse as conservative Evangelicalism, moralistic Puritanism and charismatic Anglo-Catholicism, but all were dissatisfied with Anglicanism. Having since then converted only a few other Anglicans and apparently (??) without much interest in Non-Anglicans, its ex-Anglican clergy sometimes rely on Romanians to fill their churches. The group is known for its missionary zeal and sincerity, providing pastoral care where other Dioceses have failed to do so, but is also known for its lack of knowledge, pastoral and liturgical, and lack of realism. It has little property of its own. In 2016 this Deanery, which uses the Roman Catholic calendar for the fixed feasts, became a Diocese and the first task of its new Arab bishop, without an Arab base and tradition, is in his own words to teach his clergy how to celebrate the services and so enter the mainstream. In the past it has ordained very easily, providing that its candidates are Anglican vicars. This, however, may be changing.

3. The Sourozh Diocese (also incorrectly called the Patriarchal Diocese) of the Russian Orthodox Church

Directly under the control of the Russian Orthodox Church in Moscow, this Diocese has existed for 55 years. It has had a varied history, having been marked by tendencies of liberal modernism as well as Soviet patriotism under its former bishop and founder, the late Metropolitan Antony Bloom of Paris, with his unique personality cult and curious personal views. After his death most of his closest followers, mainly ex-Anglicans, left to found the Paris Deanery (see above) and now the Sourozh Diocese seems to be more and more for the many ethnic Russian immigrants who have settled in this country over the last 20 years. However, there are exceptions and it still has some very active English groups (as well as dying traces of a Bloomite past), though most of its English clergy are now elderly.

4. ROCOR, the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (also incorrectly called ROCA or ‘the Church Abroad’)

This Diocese of the British Isles and Ireland of the Church Outside Russia is one of many dioceses under a Synod of fifteen Russian Orthodox bishops (three of them retired) centred in New York. It was originally founded in 1920 by Patriarch Tikhon of Moscow for White Russian émigrés exiled throughout the world. Self-governing and only indirectly under the Russian Orthodox Church in Moscow, with which it has excellent relations, ROCOR, once worldwide, is now dominant only in the English-speaking world, especially in the USA and Australia. It has seen many of its ethnically very closed parishes in South America and continental Western Europe shut or else dissolve into the more missionary-minded local dioceses of the rest of the Russian Orthodox Church, centred in Moscow. However, in the English-speaking world it is the voice of Russian Orthodoxy and its missionary-minded Canadian Metropolitan, formerly Archbishop of Australia and New Zealand, is, symbolically, the head of dioceses in New England and ‘Old’ England.

The local Diocese has a chequered history, with various incarnations. These range from noble White Russian roots, which especially after 1945 were infected by unpleasant, very right-wing and nationalistic anti-Communism and a generation after that by equally unattractive Anglo-Catholic sectarianism. The latter movement even tried to prise the Diocese from its faithfulness to Russian Orthodoxy. However, these generational nightmare incarnations thankfully died out with the end of the Cold War, quit the Church or else were pushed to the margins, where as relics they have almost disappeared. Over the new generation, after decades of neglect and nearly dying out in the early 1990s, this Diocese has been returning to its White Russian roots, understood as faithfulness, in Russian or in English, to the Orthodox Tradition, which has so much revived among Russians. Today’s ROCOR mission is to spread the Orthodox Faith and values of the reviving multinational Christian Empire of Holy Russia here and throughout the English-speaking world, as well as in its missions from South America to Western Europe, Haiti to Hawaii, Pakistan to South Korea, Costa Rica to Indonesia, and Nepal to the Philippines.

The EU is Finished and the Third World War Has Started, Says Cypriot Metropolitan

Metropolitan Neofitos of the Church of Cyprus has said that 2017-18 mark the end of the EU project, that the EU party is over. This is according to the website AgionOros.ru. He explained:

‘We can see that the EU is collapsing, there remains only the German Europe of the strong, with which we Cypriots have nothing in common. Unfortunately, we have bet on the wrong horse. The alienation of Europe from Orthodoxy had moral consequences, they have legalized debauchery, idolatry and deified the flesh’. The Metropolitan further quoted the great Serbian saint, Nikolai Velimirovich, who wrote decades ago that ‘the tragedy of Europe is that it has rejected the Kingdom of Eternal Life’.

He added that: ‘The Third World War started six years ago in Syria. This was the prophecy of that man of God Metropolitan Antonios (Kompos) (1920-2005). Shortly before his repose, he said: ‘When the disaster starts in Syria, pray. Everything will start from there, from Syria’’.

The Last 100 Years: Revelation 8 and 9

There will be a terrible revolution in Russia…But the Lord will have mercy on Russia and will lead her through sufferings to great glory.

Prophecy of St Seraphim of Sarov, as related to the future Fr Nicholas Gibbes and believed in by Tsar Nicholas II

The Lord will restore Russia and it will become great once more and be the strongest bastion in the world for the future struggle with Antichrist himself and all his hordes.
St Seraphim of Sofia

When your sufferings are over….peoples will come to thy light and kings to the shining light rising up above thee.

St John of Shanghai

Such are the statements of three of the witnesses to the future of the Church Outside Russia. They, like all other Church people in the Russian emigration, Archbishop Theophan Bystrov, Fr Konstantin Zaytsev, Professor I. M. Andreyev, Bishop Nektary Kontsevich, Archbishop Averky Taushev, Bishop Mitrofan Znosko-Borovsky, Fr Seraphim Rose and many others, knew that the essential mission of the Church Outside Russia has always been to restore him who restrains now (2 Thess 2, 7) by repenting for the conditions that resulted in the ‘treachery, cowardice and deceit’ which overthrew the Lord’s Anointed in 1917.

The Balfour Statement made by bankrupt Britain in 1917 and the subsequent US foundation of Zionist Israel in 1948, the inevitable wars that followed, the capture of Jerusalem by the Zionist State in 1966, the instability caused a generation later, exactly as was predicted, by the imperialist invasion of Iraq in 1991 (the so-called ‘Gulf War’) and the results, especially the anti-Islamic war of greed, carried out by Western weapons of mass destruction, to steal Iraqi oil and gas in 2003, have caused wars and instability in Egypt, Libya, Syria and the Yemen, satanic terrorism and the mass migration of the wretched to Western Europe.

The whole of the Muslim world, much of it arbitrarily created by Britain and France some 100 years ago (sometimes with the help of chemical weapons), some much more recently, is in turmoil. From Bosnia to Kosovo, from Nigeria to Turkey, from Morocco to Uzbekistan, from Libya to Egypt, from the Sudan to Somalia, from Afghanistan to Iraq, from Saudi Arabia to Pakistan, from Bangladesh to Indonesia, there is today a powder keg, spilling over through the land between the rivers to the whole world. As is written in the Book of Revelation: Loose the four angels that are bound in the great river Euphrates (Rev. 9, 14).

We live in pre-apocalyptic times. The 53 million ‘beautiful babies’ slaughtered by US Presidents since 1970 scream it, as do the 2,000 slaughtered under President Trump’s watch today, as do the tens of millions of such babies in Western Europe. We all know it, as we have lived in these pre-apocalyptic times for exactly 100 years, ever since the diabolical export of Western materialism became the State ideology of the anti-Christian Bolshevik Soviet Union. When in 1917 the immoral British Prime Minister Lloyd George rejoiced at the British-engineered fall of the last Christian Emperor, he was rejoicing at his own fall.

The fall by betrayal of the Soviet Union three generations later was celebrated by the Western world as some sort of victory. That too was a mistake of hubris, for the West was in fact celebrating the downfall of its own materialistic ideology. Communism, crassly inefficient because State-run, was only a variation of the Western ideology of the far more efficient private-run Capitalism. If you see the fall of Communist materialism, you will inevitably, within a generation or two, find yourself seeing the fall of your own Capitalist materialism.

We will shortly celebrate the Resurrection of Christ over suffering and death, His triumph over Satan and the spoiling of Satan’s hellish kingdom. Now Orthodox of all races must come together in order to prepare to meet God’s chosen, the coming Orthodox Emperor, who will come among us before Antichrist appears openly in the Western lands, which are preparing through their institutional vice to greet him. The coming Emperor will cleanse as much of the earth as wishes to be cleansed before the end. Let us make ready to receive him. All is being prepared now, all conscious Orthodox Christians have become forerunners in these prophetic times.

Towards the Post-Western New World Order

Since the dissolution of the failed Marxist experiment of the Soviet Union in the last days of 1991, the US elite has had its quarter of a century of fame. As ‘the only Super-Power’, it barged its way into the internal affairs of many countries, creating havoc either directly or through its NATO terrorist wing, in ex-Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, the Middle East, North Africa, Eastern Europe, the Ukraine, Syria and the Yemen, or else economically and politically. In a word, the slogan ‘let’s bomb them back into the Stone Age’ went to the heads of the neocon elite, infected by the hubris of the absurd ideology of dependence called ‘The West is Best’ with its power craze for universal control.

Now the whole world has seen the results of its terroristic ‘we shall bomb them into democracy’, as today in Mosul. With seventy years of CIA ‘regime changes’, corrupt puppet regimes and rigged elections, in Latin America, Asia and all over Western Europe, especially in Italy, France and Eastern Europe, and its recent history of hacking into other countries’ computer systems, the world has seen its double standards and spiritual and moral bankruptcy. Many are now abandoning the Western fantasy, recognizing that different countries have different identities and need independence from the ‘one size fits all’ West. In other words, we are moving to a post-Western New World Order.

Here there is a challenge for the neocon-founded European Union especially. Deserted by the Brexit British and by the new American administration, which praises Brexit and sees the EU and Cold War vestige NATO as urgently needing reform, and rejected by hundreds of millions of Europeans, the old EU elite will have to abandon its neocon New World Order, launched by Bush Senior a generation ago. This was invented, as explained by the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, at the International Security Conference in Munich last weekend, by an elite group of Western States in order for them to dominate the rest of the world, to create dependent vassal nations worldwide.

In other words, the present new Cold War, aggressively launched by transnational arms merchants and failed ideologues like Clinton, Blair, Bush and Obama, just like the old Cold War, must come to an end. A bankrupt United States and puppet European Union simply cannot afford the bloody games and arrogant meddling of yesterday’s men. Not so much peace at any price, but peace for economic and human survival. The terroristic, anti-international neocon class and its paid media hacks, ironically calling themselves ‘the international community’, is being forced to opt for peace, freedom and justice. This is the post-Western New World Order. We welcome it.

Archbishop Mark is Relieved as Ruling Bishop of the Diocese of the British Isles and Ireland of the Church Outside Russia

On 8 December 2016 the Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia finally relieved Archbishop Mark as ruling bishop of the Diocese of the British Isles and Ireland. In his letter, which he asked to be circulated, Archbishop Mark asked forgiveness of all for what he had said and done over the years that had hurt and aggravated his flock. He particularly regretted that his lack of pastoral oversight made two monastic communities in England turn their backs on him.

The First Hierarch of the Church, the Most Reverend Metropolitan Hilarion, is for the moment the new ruling bishop. The Diocese thus becomes stavropegic, as it had requested, and thus begins a new and dynamic period in its life.

President Putin and the Empire

The Empire’s debt casino is unsustainable and the ruling oligarchy sees war as the only way to salvage their hegemony

by Sergey Glazyev

Originally appeared on Lenta.ru.

The author is a prominent economist, advisor to the Russian President on regional economic integration, and the mind behind the Eurasian Economic Union

Is there any reason to expect the lifting of American sanctions?
The sanctions are an element of the hybrid war that the US is waging against us. They are doing this not because they do not like Russia’s ‘annexation’ of the Crimea, but because of the objective and subjective interests of the American establishment.

The US is losing its hegemony: it is already producing fewer products and exporting fewer technologies than China. China is also catching up with America in the number of scientists and engineers, and many innovative Chinese technologies are capturing world markets. China’s development rate is five times that of the US. The international system of economic entities recently set up in China exemplify the new world economic order.

The economic entities that dominate in the US, serving a financial oligarchy, have destabilized the American monetary and financial system, which defaults about twice a year. The causes of the global financial crisis of 2008 have not disappeared and the American debt bubble — financial pyramids composed of derivatives and the national debt —are still growing.

According to systems theory, this process cannot continue indefinitely. The American oligarchy is desperate to get rid of its debt burden, which is why it is conducting a hybrid war, not only against Russia, but against Europe and the Middle East.

As always happens in a changing world economic order, the country that is losing its leadership tries to unleash a world war for control over the periphery. Since Americans consider the former Soviet space to be their financial and economic periphery, they are trying to gain control over it.

The American political establishment has been brought up on the chimeras of nineteenth century geopoliticians. American students study basic English and German geopolitical ideas of that time in political science classes. The main question back then was how to ruin the Russian Empire, and they still look at the world through the eyes of the XIX century ‘hawks’, when Great Britain tried to save its hegemony in the First World War, then lost its colonial empire after the Second World War.

This is what American geopoliticians study in the State Department and the White House, continuing to look at the world through the prism of both the Cold War and British confrontations with Russia and Germany in the nineteenth century, and now the US is unleashing another world war.

The combination of the objective problems of the American financial oligarchy, and the strange mindset of American geopoliticians threatens a world conflict. This has nothing to do with the Crimea. Any reason will do.

We need to act in terms of the contradictions leading the US to an aggressive stance fraught with the risk of a hybrid war with the whole world. They have chosen Russia as their main objective, and the Ukraine, occupied by them, as their main means of destruction.
To survive under these conditions, maintain our sovereignty and develop our economy, we need to build a broad anti-military coalition, pursue our priority development strategy, recover our financial and economic sovereignty and pursue Eurasian integration.

To prevent war, we need to realize the president’s goal of a common development area from Lisbon to Vladivostok. It is very important to convince our European partners as well as our partners in the Far East and in the South that we need to cooperate, not by blackmailing or threatening them, but through mutually beneficial projects, joining our economic potential while respecting the sovereignty of each state.

Can we mend relations with the EU and how?

To mend cooperation with the European Union, we need to restore its sovereignty. The sight of European politicians among the crowd of Nazis at Euromaidan showed how much European political culture has degraded. The EU leaders are not independent; they are US puppets.

The American media dominate Europe’s political space, embedding anti-Russian chimeras into people’ consciousness, intimidating them with a so-called Russian threat. Their politicians are forced to go with the media line provided by Washington in order to win votes. This has lead to the catastrophe we are watching today in Brussels and other European cities, which are gripped with fear as governments fail to provide security.

Unfortunately, the sovereignty of Europe cannot be restored just by booting up social consciousness. The problems did not appear out of the blue; they are the result of the European political class abandoning its national interest. Europe is facing a very difficult period of transition, during which it is not yet a partner, but Washington’s shadow.

Europeans have lost their sense of direction. They live in a mosaic, a fragmentary world that has no shared relationships. But life will force them back to reality, and I believe that eventually European democratic traditions and humanism will prevail.

A Protestant and an Orthodox

JAMES HUDSON TAYLOR 1889

James Hudson Taylor (1832 – 1905), born in Barnsley, was one of the foremost Protestant missionaries to China and spent 51 years in China, where he died. He was known for his sensitivity to Chinese culture and zeal for evangelism. He was able to preach in Mandarin, Chaozhou and the Wu dialects of Shanghai and Ningbo. He also wore native Chinese clothing. Primarily because of his campaign against the opium trade, Taylor has been referred to as one of the most significant Europeans to visit China in the 19th century. Preaching in Britain, he described a future national spiritual awakening in Russia:

“I saw a great war that encompasses the world. I saw this war recede then start again, actually being two wars. After this I saw much unrest and revolts that will affect many nations. I saw in some places spiritual awakenings. In Russia I saw a general, all-encompassing national spiritual awakening, so great that there could never be another like it. From Russia I saw the awakening spread to many European countries. Then I saw an all-out awakening, followed by the coming of Christ.”

MOTHER BARBARA PROPHECY 1911

Before the 1917 Revolution, a young aristocratic woman (later to become Mother Barbara, Abbess of the Church of St Mary Magdalen on the Mount of Olives under ROCOR) and her father visited a holy man, Fr Aristocles. He prophesied:

“Europe will be laid waste and Germany divided in two, France will just be nothing. Italy will be judged by natural disasters. Great Britain will lose her Empire and colonies and be on the verge of collapse. America will feed the world, but finally collapse.

An evil will soon befall Russia. Wherever this evil comes, rivers of blood will flow. It is not of the Russian soul, but an imposition on the Russian soul. It is a spirit from hell. Finally, Russia will be free… from out of Russia believers will go forth and turn many nations to God.”