Tag Archives: The Future

The Nationalist Schism of Phanariotism and the New Future of the Church

Introduction

Nationalism is simply an attachment to the things of this world, in other words, to nation states and all the other institutions invented by men. Nationalism is sinful worldliness, as it likes some and dislikes and sometimes even hates others, for no reason other than the national identity of those in question. All this come from its pride in imagined racist superiority. In this, nationalism differs from patriotism, which is love for God’s creation, wherever it may be. This is why nationalism always compromises the Faith, because it exalts tribal pride and justifies power-grabs, whereas in reality there is good and bad everywhere.

Nationalism in the First Millennium after Christ: 33 AD to 1033 AD

Schisms and heresies are always based on pride, either on the myth of personal superiority (isms named after a person– Arianism, Lutheranism, Calvinism) or else on the myth of collective (racial) superiority (isms named after an ideology – Miaphysitism, Papism, Catholicism). This pride always invents some heretical ideology in order to justify its schism from the Church, even calling its heresy a ‘Church’.

Thus, at the time of Christ most educated Jews, scribes, pharisees and men of law, rejected the Saviour because their Faith was not in the universal Messiah. It was in an imaginary Jewish racial Messiah who would justify their tribal pride and imagined superiority and national exclusiveness. The Jews, they said, were ‘the chosen people’ and could not share with others inferior to them. So through racial pride, they rejected the Risen Christ and His Church and indeed for centuries afterwards persecuted the Church, preferring to co-operate with the pagan Roman and other Establishments rather than humbly accepting Christ.

In the fifth century Armenians, Copts and some Syrians broke away from the Church, for they wanted independence from the Greeks, regardless of Truth. They justified their nationalist breakaway with the heretical Miaphysite ideology. Small groups of other races fell in the same way to the Nestorian ideology.

Nationalism in the Second Millennium after Christ: 1033 AD to 2018AD

By the early eleventh century a new ideology had over the past two and a half centuries been worked out in parts of Western Europe, where semi-Latinized Germanic peoples claimed racial superiority because they had conquered pagan Rome. Thus, Roman Catholicism, though not at first called that, was finally born. The barbaric hordes responsible soon showed their imagined superiority by invading the source of the real Christian Faith in Jerusalem in a bloodbath in order to impose their new ideology. Their justification? This was in their new ideology with its claim that the Holy Spirit proceeds from a unique substitute for Christ, the Bishop of Rome, who just happened to be one of them. This ideology was expressed in inherent organized violence.

In the sixteenth century most of the Germanic peoples split away in protest from this Roman Catholicism, which had become far too Latinized for their taste, and founded a new racial religion, founded by the German monk Luther. One variation of this was Anglicanism, a State-founded nationalist religion which enabled the local king to remarry, kill or divorce his old wives with impunity and plunder monasteries, slaughtering tens of thousands who stood in his way.

In the twenty-first century, after a process of evolution stretching back a century, Phanariotism was born in Istanbul. This maintained that those of Greek blood are superior to other races and that the Church depends on them. Thus, EP-ism, Eastern Papism, was born, which claims that the whole world belongs to the jurisdiction of the Greek race. So global Greek nationalism, an anti-Church ideology (‘theology’) justifying their power-grab, was systematized, and the Phanariots in their turn fell away from the Church in just another in the long line of nationalist schisms.

Nationalism in the Contemporary Russian Church: 2018AD

Nationalism also exists in the contemporary Russian Church. It has two characteristics:

The first trait of this world-loving nationalist spirit is its closeness to the State. Thus, it admires the late Patriarch Sergiy. As a result it is, like the late Russian cardinal, the Sergianist Metropolitan Nikodim, close to the Vatican Church-State. And as it is philo-Catholic, it is, ironically, therefore also philo-Phanar, because that is also philo-Catholic. Infected with admiration for the State, this ideology has little time for the zeal of missionary work among other races.

The second trait of this world-loving nationalist spirit is brain-fed, rationalist intellectualism and philosophy. It despises the popular piety of the New Martyrs, of St Seraphim of Sarov and St Matrona of Moscow, of holy elders and of the common people. Power-loving rather than piety-loving, it seeks the powerbroking of ecumenism and, always conforming to intellectual fashion, it prefers the intellectual snobbery of liturgical modernism to liturgical piety.

Conclusion

With the fall of the burdensome anachronism of the Second Rome, a process that has taken several centuries in all, the duty now falls to the Russian Orthodox Church, providentially recently resurrected and now 75% of the whole, to take responsibility for all. Will it vanquish the demons of nationalism that brought both the First Rome and then, a thousand years later, the Second Rome, low? We do not know, but until those traitors to the Faith have been defeated, the Third Rome will not be ready to take up the mantle of the Church which has now been offered it and assume responsibility for urgent worldwide missionary work. Will the Third Rome and its political temptations be outbalanced by the spiritual truths of the New Jerusalem of Holy Rus? We can only hope and pray.

 

The Ecumenical Heresiarchate

It happened on the feast-day of St Andrew the Fool, the Slav who lived in Constantinople and saw the Protection of the Mother of God with his disciple Epiphanios, the future Orthodox Patriarch.

Exactly 30 years ago I can remember a conversation with the late Archbishop George (Wagner) of the Rue Daru Archdiocese of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, in which I asked him for his view on the charge of ‘Eastern Papism’ against his Patriarchate. He simply denied it, stating that it did not correspond to reality. Now we can all see quite clearly just how wrong he was. The Ecumenical Heresiarchate of all schismatics, Russians, Galicians, Macedonians, Montenegrins and sundry others, has been born. The Patriarchate of Constantinople, which for six centuries has only just survived, has committed spiritual suicide. It has lost everything by falling out of communion with everyone, apart from with its own tiny satellites.

In the Orthodox Church of 218 million (it has never been 300 million), it is now 217 million against a few hundred thousand. Already there are no more of the Constantinople episcopal assemblies in the Diaspora. Now there are those in that Patriarchate who will ask for the canonical protection of the Russian Church, not wishing to remain schismatics. The situation of Mt Athos, where many do not commemorate the heretical ecumenist Patriarch of Constantinople anyway, is not yet clear. Following the call of the Athonite Patriarch of Antioch, we can now expect a real Orthodox Council – probably in Moscow. Here the small but faithful Twelve Local Churches can decide on the future, together with their leader, the Russian Orthodox Church.

The air has at last been cleared and now we can look forward to the future, with hope that the mass of accumulated problems and injustices may now be overcome in the Diaspora and worldwide.

Pentarchy Plus: A Generation after the Great and Holy Council of Moscow a Historian Recalls the Great Cleansing and how the ‘Ukrainian Overreach’ Became a Blessing in Disguise

Looking back twenty-five years on from 2020, it is difficult for the young to imagine the state of decadence into which the Church had fallen at the end of the last millennium and which lasted into the early 21st century. For over 100 years, between 1917 and 2018, the Church had been paralysed; for over 75 years by the captivity of the Russian Church to the Soviet and Post-Soviet State; for over 100 years by the captivity of the old Church of Constantinople to the Western Powers, since 1948 to the USA. Once the Russian Church had been freed, after a very long and painful wait at the end of the 20th century, we then had to wait for the liberation of the Patriarchate of Constantinople from the US-controlled Phanariots. This became a very frustrating wait, as there was an accumulation of nearly two centuries of problems to be resolved, notably in Eastern Europe and the Diaspora. Everything began to move only in 2016, with the generational change 25 years after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991.

By trying to impose its masonic policies on the Church in Crete in 2016, the Phanariot ‘Council’ there became a laughing stock. Both the Vatican and the USA realized that the Phanar had no authority in the Orthodox world, that it was not an Orthodox Vatican, as they had repeatedly been told by the Phanariots and as they had naively believed. Then, in 2018, with one last desperate throw of its dice, by threatening schism in the Ukraine the Phanariot bishops found that they could no longer concelebrate with the Russian Church. By threatening schism in the Ukraine, its assemblies of bishops in the Diaspora, already become expensive but futile talking-shops for the Phanariot fantasy of imperialism, were boycotted by the Russian Church.

The Phanar had played with fire – and was burned. One word from the then President of Turkey and the elderly Phanariot Patriarch would become a refugee. One word from the US ambassador in Athens or Ankara and he would be sacked. By the end of 2018 the position of the Phanar had become very, very fragile – its demise in the form that it had assumed since the Russian Revolution of 1917 had become inevitable. All progress has been blocked for so long, so when the Phanar, compromised by its calendar and all sorts of modernist innovations, did finally collapse like a weakened dam under the pressure of vast amounts of water, the accumulation of problems was overcome. What happened?

First of all, in 2019 the highly impoverished and corrupt Ukraine finally collapsed into its constituent parts. Most of it returned to the Russian Federation, other small parts returned to Romania and Hungary and the extreme west to Poland, only a small central-western part remaining as an independent country and returning to its historical name of Malorossiya. When this happened, and the corrupted Western world realized that it had backed a bunch of thieves and murderers all along, the structure set up by Constantinople in the Ukraine also collapsed in scandal and disgrace.

As a result, in 2020 a long-awaited Church Council was called in Moscow and the Church restructured, as of old, into Five Patriarchates, with four new Autocephalous Churches, the order of precedence of the Patriarchates reconfigured in conformity with 21st century reality. Sometimes called ‘Pentarchy Plus’, these are the same Five Patriarchates and four Churches as we have today, in 2045:

 

  1. The Patriarchate of Rus. Patriarch Tikhon II.

The canonical territory of the Patriarchate of Rus (as it was renamed, the old name of ‘Patriarchate of Moscow’ being dropped as narrow and compromised) was recognized as Eurasia, except for the territories of the Patriarchates of Antioch and Jerusalem and the Church of Europe (see below). It continued for the time being to include the autonomous Churches of Japan, China, Moldova, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania and the Exarchates of Belarus and Malorossiya. The Patriarchate of Rus was joined by the Church of Georgia, which had faced great difficulty and isolation and so also became another autonomous Church within the Patriarchate of Rus. The Patriarchate of Rus was given the immense task, with the closest co-operation of the other four Patriarchates, of organizing four new Autocephalous Churches, following the spiritual and moral collapse of the old heterodox institutions of Catholicism and Protestantism. These were in order of size:

  1. The Church of Europe. This included the former Autocephalous Churches of Poland and the Czech Lands and Slovakia, which were absorbed into the new Autocephalous Church of Europe. Therefore this included the territories of all the ex-Catholic/Protestant countries westwards from the borders of the Empire of Rus (as it was renamed in 2028, when the Empire was restored and Tsar Nicholas III was anointed). So it stretched from Finland and Hungary to Iceland and Portugal.
  2. The Church of Latin America. This included South and Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean. It used Spanish and Portuguese, with some Dutch, French and English, especially in the Caribbean.
  3. The Church of Anglo-America. This was composed of Canada and the USA and used English, French and some Spanish.
  4. The Church of Oceania. This used English and some native languages (notably Maori).
  5. The Patriarchate of New Constantinople. Patriarch Chrysostom.

The flock-less institution of the Patriarchate of old Constantinople was moved from Istanbul and most of its bishops retired, once they had been threatened with details of their lives being revealed. A new ‘Patriarch of New Constantinople’, the first Patriarch being a Bulgarian by nationality (in recognition for the bravery of the Church of Bulgaria in refusing to attend the 2016 meeting in Crete), the Orthodox calendar returned, and so the old calendarist schisms in Greece, Cyprus, Romania and Bulgaria overcome. The canonical territory of New Constantinople (as it was now called) was defined as that of the old autocephalous Churches of Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia (its nationalist schisms in Macedonia and Montenegro overcome), Albania, Cyprus and Greece (together with areas of Greece formerly under old Constantinople). With an Orthodox population of just over 40 million, the new Church of Constantinople, seven old Churches in one, decided that the nationalities of its Patriarchs and their sees would rotate. Thus, instead of absurd provincial rivalries (each nationality trying to build the tallest church in the Balkans), at last there began a period of Balkan and Cypriot Confederation, co-operation and prosperity, as Tsar Nicholas II had foreseen in 1912.

  1. The Patriarchate of Alexandria. Patriarch Moses.

The Patriarchate of Alexandria’s canonical territory remained All Africa. However, it began to be aided in its task of at last missionizing Africa by the other Patriarchates, especially the Patriarchate of Rus with its generous Imperial funds. From now on its Patriarchs became black Africans.

  1. The Patriarchate of Antioch. Patriarch John.

Centred in Russian-rebuilt Damascus after the Western war which had tried to destroy Syria through its puppets Saudi Arabia and Qatar (as they were then called), this Patriarchate was renewed. Its canonical territory was defined as the whole Arab world of the Middle East, outside Palestine (see below), together with Turkey.

  1. The Patriarchate of Jerusalem. Patriarch James.

This was now established again as the Patriarchate of the Holy Land and its canonical territory was defined as that of the lands of the Palestinians, Israel and the Jordan. Its old dispute with Antioch was overcome and its Patriarchs from now on were all to be Palestinians.

 

So it was after the great cleansing of the Church at the 2020 Great and Holy Council of Moscow (as it is now called) that the Church was reconfigured and the mission to the Non-Orthodox world began.

4 October 2045

Principles of the Coming Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Western Europe

Introduction

We first called for a Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Western Europe early on thirty years ago, in April 1988, against the background of the then dying Cold War. Far more importantly, 15 years later, in April 2003, after the Cold War, but before the reunion of the two parts of the Russian Church, Patriarch Alexis of Moscow did the same. 30 years on, there is still no Metropolia, but we feel that, despite all the frustration, impediments and delays, its time is at last coming. A Metropolia, and then Church, that is Orthodox, but also Local, is inevitable in Western Europe. What principles must this Metropolia adopt?

  1. Faithful to Orthodoxy, not Heterodoxy

First of all, we say ‘Away with nationalistic Finnish, French and American ideas of ‘localism’’ (Finland / Rue Daru / OCA), which ignore the integrity of the Orthodox Faith, putting the local flag before the Cross. Instead of ideas propagated in Paris and transferred to the USA, we choose a Metropolia that is both faithful and local. This cannot be based on anti-canonical compromises, on spiritual betrayal of the Faith, in the name of State-sponsored or of self-imposed cultural conformism. We must keep the Orthodox calendar and Church canons, ignoring old-fashioned modernism and ecumenism.

  1. An End to Old-Fashioned Ecumenism

It is this latter ecumenism that has especially delayed the formation of a Metropolia, the foundation of a new Local Church. There were those who said: ‘We must not offend the Catholics/Protestants. We must not give local titles to our bishops’. Such voices were those of traitors to Orthodoxy, those who saw us and see it as a mere piece of foreign exoticism, of folklore. No Metropolia could be born until those voices had fallen silent – and they were still very strong in 1988 and in 2003. It is time to move forward to the free and independent future, to the Autocephalous Church of Western Europe.

  1. Bilingual and Missionary

Unlike the old Russian immigrants (and those of other nationalities), who were intent negatively on preserving and pickling the past, even when nobody any longer knew what it meant, and so guaranteed that they would die out – the future Metropolia will have to be bilingual. Here too we put the Cross before the flag. Only in this way will we be able to pass on the spiritual heritage and values of Russian Orthodox Civilization in a missionary fashion to both the descendants of Russian immigrants and to native Western Europeans. Only in this way can a truly Orthodox and a truly Local Church be born.

  1. Pastoral, not Bureaucratic and Racist

One of the greatest problems in Church life at all times is the tendency to put administration above pastoral care, to put marble and gold above church buildings and, above all, human souls. (We can think of the Irish and Rome). There can be no more second-class (or third-class) citizens; non-Russians must be treated as Russians. The past, all too recent past, is a very dark area indeed in this respect. In such a Metropolia, the foundation of a true Local Church, there can be no racism. The old-fashioned attitudes and mistreatment of native Orthodox is not acceptable and must be severely sanctioned.

Conclusion

Fifty years ago, with the Russian Church paralysed, there was still a hope that Constantinople would abandon its Greek imperialism and take responsibility for the Diaspora. It utterly failed to do so. Indeed, the spiritual decomposition of the Constantinople with its new lurch into Eastern Papism, means that its serious clergy and people now want to join the Russian Church (although the long-term solution would be for the Church of Greece to take over the Greek Diaspora and make it Orthodox). The recent, long-awaited appointments of new bishops in Western Europe and those to come, carried out by both parts of the Russian Orthodox Church, are all steps towards the future Metropolia.

 

 

Another Step Towards a Russian Orthodox Metropolia of Western Europe

On Thursday 20 September, the six bishops of the ROCOR Synod meeting in London established the Diocese of Richmond and Western Europe. This combines the former Diocese of Richmond and Great Britain and Geneva and Western Europe. The ruling bishop is Bishop Irenei (Steenberg), former Professor of Theology at the University of Leeds and venerator of St Irenei of Lyon, whose name he bears.

Questions from Recent Correspondence (September 2018)

Church Matters

Q: Why does ROCOR still exist? Now that the Russian Orthodox Church is One, and Metr Nikodim Rotov, whom many considered to be a heretic and so to have compromised the Church inside Russia, dead for 40 years, why continue to have two parts?

A: The purpose of ROCOR as an administrative structure has always been purely temporary. Its spiritual purpose is to be St John the Baptist in the wilderness, heralding and preaching of the coming Tsar, for which the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 was only the prelude, and then to disappear, its purpose served. Clearly, ROCOR had this purpose during the period of atheist captivity. However, as long as sections of the State (especially education, health, the mainly Western-controlled media) and sections of the population in the Russian Lands are still under corrupting atheist/Soviet influence and therefore there is still no Christian Tsar and Christian Empire based in Russia (‘Rus’), ROCOR will still exist, in some form or other, to tell the Truth and to call to repentance.

Q: Is this September’s decision by the Patriarchate of Constantinople to let widowed priests remarry canonical? And what of their decision to discuss granting some Ukrainians autocephaly in October? Could this be the moment when the Russian Patriarch talks over and becomes the real ’Oecumenical’ Patriarch?

A: Of course, this permission is not canonical! It is pure renovationism. True, some bishops in all Local Churches (as well as among the old calendarists) have always allowed some priests to remarry in such circumstances, turning a blind eye to the canons. However, these have always been exceptional and very rare acts made by economy. What is new here is that Constantinople has decided to do this systematically. This means that in trying to act papally, it has once again canonically cut itself off from the other thirteen Local Churches.

As regards a Ukrainian autocephaly, that would also be an utterly uncanonical act, made under US financial pressure ($15 million has been mentioned as the bribe). So much so that the Constantinople clerical elite would thus fall altogether away from communion with the Church, something that it has been threatening to do since 1925, if not since the fifteenth century. Some would say, ‘Good riddance’, that this might clear the air at long last. But perhaps the situation is not as bad as some say. The Constantinople elite may stand like a lemming on the cliff, but it has not yet jumped. Therefore, we will not push it.

As for the Russian Church taking over as the first among equals in the Church, it would first have to prove itself worthy and competent to do this. This means that all the bishops, and not just some, would have to become real missionaries and pastors, unlike many in other Local Churches too. They would also have to stop behaving like feudal lords and treat priests properly, instead of expelling them from parishes where they are loved, and stop treating Non-Russian priests and people as second-class citizens, instead of persecuting them, learning how to apologize.

Russia

Q: In the light of revelations this month about the murderers of the Skripals, what would you reply to the accusers of the Russian secret services?

A: No-one murdered the Skripals, though someone did attempt to murder them. Clearly, the crime was carried out by people who wanted to incriminate Russia. After all, it occurred just before the Russian World Cup and Russian elections, in which the Western candidate, a CIA recruit with immense Western financial backing, got only 5% of the vote. Had Russians wanted to murder the Skripals, a professional hitman from London could have been hired for the right sum. Pictures of two men walking along a road in Salisbury – no-one knows who they were – MI5 agents? – prove nothing. And the rare poison allegedly used, not kept anywhere in Russia today and the product of a country that ceased to exist 27 years ago, is kept just 8 miles from Salisbury at Porton Down. This is one of the most dreadful chemical weapons producers in the world and why the UN has not shut it down long ago remains a mystery. Also professional assassins would not then have thrown away the bottle used for the poison into a litter bin in a park in Salisbury!

Clearly, the criminals wanted it to be found so as to incriminate someone else. In any case, why would Russia want to kill a retired British spy, who had already served a jail term in Russia and then been released, together with his daughter, who lived safely in Moscow? And both of them, recovered from their illness, whatever it was,  but now under State censorship D-notices, have since been kidnapped by MI5 and disappeared. Who knows what MI5 has done with them? I see no reason why we should believe anything issued by the British Establishment, which has a centuries-old history of systematic lying, perfidious cunning and bloody assassination from the Norman Conquest, when it began, to Cromwell, from Ireland to Iraq and the other 180 countries it has invaded for no reason other than lust for power and riches. That is why a very large number of British people do not believe a single word of the Establishment about the Skripal case.

Q: You seem to admire contemporary Russia, but why? It is so corrupt!

A: I would agree with you about contemporary Russia, but then I do not admire it, just as I do not admire the contemporary West, which is also so corrupt. I admire contemporary Orthodox Russia – about 5% of the whole, quite unlike the rest of contemporary Russia – hopefully the leaven to leaven the lump, but God knows.

Contemporary Non-Orthodox Russia is the hangover from the drunken depravity of the Soviet Union. Every bad thing about it, abortion, divorce, pollution, corruption, statues of and places named after murderous Soviet monsters, usually not even Russians, like Lenin and Stalin, and trained in Western Europe, is the direct result of the Soviet Union. As I have said so many times before, the restoration of Orthodox Russia has only just begun. There is far to go.

The West

Q: Why is it important to venerate the Western saints?

A: Artificially cutting itself off from Eurasia, the Western European tip of the Eurasian Continent and its overseas colonies in North America have produced all sorts of things, from Gothic architecture to siege technology, from scholastic philosophy to the modern novel, from the spinning jenny to the latest mobile phone, from heavy artillery to the cluster bomb. However, the West has never produced a faith. It has only ever adopted and twisted Asian faiths and spiritual philosophies, deforming them into artificial, State-run religions. Roman Catholicism and Anglicanism are classic examples of such manmade religions, with a man, pope or king, that is, humanism, at their centre. Let us recall that Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam and nationalist Judaism and Shintoism are all Asian. Even the other continents (the Americas, Africa and Oceania) produced at least animism and then adopted superior Asian faiths with fervour. But not the West.

In other words, Western Europe alone has produced no faith apart from materialist and humanist idolatry. Indeed, the West, living in its parallel universe to the rest of the world, has always destroyed faiths, conquering and erasing all religious civilizations by organized violence (crusades, colonialism, consumerist materialism), whether in the Americas, Oceania, China, India or Russia (in 1917) and Greece (imposing the Western, Non-Christian calendar and modernism after losing its protection in 1917). This organized violence, even though today it may be economic violence or mocking political correctness (censorship) and be called ‘sanctions’, is its only ideology. Our love of the Western saints is to challenge that ideology, to show that there was once a true West and it did have genuine faith – Orthodox Christianity.

Q: What are the consequences of the Protestant rejection of the Mother of God?

A: The Mother of God represents the Incarnation. Without her God could never have become man. Therefore, when Protestants refuse to venerate her and even blaspheme against her, they reject the consequences of the Incarnation. For most of them, Christianity is therefore just a God-slot hobby, something to do on Sunday morning and does not impinge on any way on the rest of life, on politics, economics etc, which are affairs of the pagan State, but is just a private matter.

Q: In your view, why were monarchies overthrown by revolutions?

A: All the destroyed monarchies, Charles I in England, Louis XVI in France and Nicholas II in the Empire, were overthrown by the rich (aristocrats/merchants or oligarchs/businessmen as we would say nowadays) who stole or seized power for themselves, wanting to get even richer and even more powerful. The new regimes, under the lying propaganda camouflage of ‘freedom and democracy’ which the naïve believed in, was and is based on lies and theft, that is, on ‘kleptocracy’, the rule of thieves. Democracy has always been a myth for the naive. This is why ‘democracy’ is inherently hypocritical and constantly produces corruption scandals, both financial and moral.

Orthodox Life

Q: There are those who say that we should not write anything new, only repeating what has been said before, in case we say something wrong. What do you think?

A: This is an extremist viewpoint of people who are negative and insecure ‘converts’, who have never moved on from that early state of mind. It is interesting that in Russia, for example, in the 1990s, beneath the wave of tens of millions of converts, they reprinted massively, but that since the Year 2000 approximately, they have moved on and have produced a huge amount of original and creative works, far greater than anything before.

Q: My Ukrainian wife says that playing cards are satanic. Is this really true? Where is the harm?

A: I think it depends on what you are doing with the cards. If you are playing for money or playing as an addiction, it is satanic. If, on the other hand, you are playing Snap with the children, that is a very different story. As so often, it is not what you do, but why you do it.

Q: Should we fly the Union Jack?

A: If at church, then there should be no flags of any sort. As for the Union Jack, originating in the 17th century, it is a symbol of exploitation and imperialism. It is as alien and contradictory as is the expression ‘British Orthodoxy’. Just like ‘Soviet Orthodoxy’, you cannot have something that cannot exist, something that is a contradiction in terms. Personally, like many others, when asked my nationality, I always reply ‘English’. By all means fly a flag at home, but the Cross of St George, which is also the Standard of Jerusalem, of the Resurrection of Christ.

 

 

 

 

 

Little Britain or Great England?

Brexit is supposed to take place next year, nearly three interminable years after the UK voted for it. This delay, and indeed Brexit will not even then take place in full, has given rise to various viewpoints: some still say that Brexit will be a disaster; some still say that Brexit will be wonderful; yet others say that it will never take happen at all, as the Prime Minister has never believed in it, she has cast out of her incompetent Cabinet most who firmly believed in it. In any case, the real men of power and finance, in Washington, London and Brussels, who stand behind all these party political puppets all over Western Europe, do not want it and will not allow it.

Whatever the case may be, the real question is not here. The real question is:

As Great Britain is no longer an option, will there one day be a Little Britain, a country of cynical post-modernists and amoral degenerates who do not believe in anything, a country of Third World infrastructure and narrow and conformist minds, serfs of secularism?

As Little England never was an option, will there one day be a Great England (and consequently a Great Ireland, a Great Scotland and a Great Wales), a generous-hearted country, (which is what true greatness is)? Will we repent and make up for the past, wrought by an alien British Establishment which trod underfoot the people of these islands for over 950 years, and then invaded almost every other country of consequence in the world, oppressing their peoples and stripping their natural resources?

Here is the real question.

Towards a Local Church of Western Europe

A Metropolia of Western Europe

It was in April 1988 that I first proposed in French a paper on a Metropolia of Western Europe, composed of six dioceses in six different linguistic and cultural areas (cross-border) which I called, Gallia, Germania, Iberia, Italia, Scandinavia and the Isles. (See, ‘A Vision for the Orthodox Churches of Western Europe’, published in Orthodox England, Vol 4, No 1, September 2001). My thought then was that this could become the foundation of a restored Local Church of Western Europe. This was a historic suggestion, as for well over 900 years this had ceased to exist.

Thirty Years Ago

The idea was dismissed in Paris, the historic centre of the Russian emigration in Western Europe, and the forward-looking project proved to be impossible then. There were only three groups who could realistically have contributed something towards it: the Rue Daru or Paris Exarchate group (RD); the Moscow Patriarchate Exarchate (MP) and the Church Outside Russia (ROCOR). Of these three, the old Rue Daru had tied itself up in modernist knots (nothing can be built on compromises) and in any case under US-run Constantinople it was not politically free to do anything of the sort.

As for the old MP, it was tiny because it was so distrusted by all. Run in fact by part of the Soviet Communist Party, it too was not politically free and moreover it had dangerously renovationist figures in it. As for the old ROCOR, it was small, disorganized, elderly and above all, inward-looking, as it still defined itself as being a group opposed to the atheist regime inside Russia, rather than as a key part of a future Local Church. It was living in reference to the past, not the future. The situation was to alter radically only after the year 2000, for those with the vision to see ahead.

Fifteen Years Ago

After the Moscow Council of August 2000, with a new archbishop after 1993, the Rue Daru group fell into conversations with the by then largely politically free MP, which was still very small in Western Europe. It was virtually agreed that RD would at last return to the jurisdiction of the MP and become an autonomous Metropolia within it, as a foundation for a future Local Church. However, Archbishop Serge (Konovalov) of the Rue Daru jurisdiction was to die tragically on 22 January 2003 and the next archbishop, Gabriel (De Vylder), was a furious Russophobe and strongly modernistic.

Indeed, since then, having missed the boat and set on a suicidal path, the Rue Daru group has largely fallen into irrelevance, its vital forces having quit it for one part or the other of the Russian Orthodox Church. Looking back, there was Providence here, since Archbishop Serge’s hopes would in any case have been dashed by the dominant wing of the Exarchate, represented by his successor. Today Rue Daru represents only 60 scattered parishes and communities, most of them very small. Most of its living parishes are in fact Moldovan and Romanian, with priests loaned by the MP.

The MP Needs a Partner

Why did the MP enter into such negotiations with Rue Daru? Simply because alone it could do nothing. Thus, even though the once few MP parishes of 30 years ago today number perhaps 250 in Western Europe with six bishops, dwarving the one-bishop Rue Daru group (ROCOR has about 100 parishes in Western Europe with three bishops), it is essentially an ethnic group. It is composed of recent immigrants, often  not understanding local languages and culture. The MP needs those who have this understanding. Let us compare as examples the MP and ROCOR dioceses in the Isles.

Although on paper the MP diocese here is much bigger, in reality most of its communities are tiny (less than ten!), often with only a few services a year, without property and without a regular priest. It is a paper empire, all its money expended on its ex-Anglican church in London. ROCOR probably actually has almost as many people, more property, is better established and tends to attract people who are better-established in these Isles. Often, those immigrants who have been here for more than ten years tend to drift across to ROCOR, their children more integrated into society.

Today

The old, inward-looking and too often politicized ROCOR, which largely died out in the 1980s and 1990s, could not have been a partner for the ultimate aim of building a new Local Church: however, the new ROCOR, born after the reconciliation with the MP in 2007, can be such a partner. The MP of the early 2000s, still with an old-fashioned, Sovietized cast of mind, could not see this and sought the wrong partner, one compromised in modernism. Today it needs a skeleton, a structure, solid Russian Orthodox people with local knowledge: it is only ROCOR that can provide this.

Twelve Parishes, a Monastery?, and Many Hopes ROCOR in Great Britain and Ireland: Better Times Ahead

After almost dying out by 2007, the Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (ROCOR) in Great Britain and Ireland has in the very recent past begun to be rebuilt. Now with twelve parishes (London, Colchester, Birkenhead, Norwich, Cardiff, Stradbally, Belfast, Mettingham, Cheltenham, Bury St Edmunds, Wisbech and Ashford), it has hopes of opening a monastery, new parishes in four more places in different parts of our four countries as well as many hopes beyond that. Moreover, it already possesses many premises of its own, including unique, purpose-built churches in the Russian Orthodox style and also the largest Russian Orthodox church in these islands, if not in Western Europe.

This September, the bishops of the Church Outside Russia will be meeting in Synod in London. This will be a historic meeting at which decisions may be made for the longer-term future. The saints of the Isles and of all Europe are calling us: The time for sleep is over, wake up!