Today, on this the Sunday of Orthodoxy 2014, we pray to the saint of Little Russia who conquered the world, St John of Shanghai, Western Europe and San Francisco, for the Triumph of Orthodoxy.
The meeting of many, but not all, leaders of the Local Orthodox Churches in Istanbul, so inconveniently-timed in the first week of the Great Fast, has ended. The absence of all Orthodox leaders, notably of the Patriarch of Antioch and Metropolitan Rostislav of the Czech Lands and Slovakia, is much to be regretted. If the meeting heeds the words of the Russian Church, it will hopefully lead to a radical revision of the proposed, secularist agenda, which sounds like a provincial version of the now much discredited, fifty-year old Second Vatican Council.
As Patriarch Kyrill underlined, old-fashioned ecumenism is at an end – except perhaps in US-funded Constantinople, whose representatives are referred to as ‘our transatlantic colleagues’ by Russians, who see it as an American colony. The intervention of Patriarch Kyrill and others also explained to Constantinople that no decision can be rammed through by a small group of foreign-funded modernists; all decisions must be agreed on by consensus, by all bishops of every Local Church, and not just by a few of some Local Churches, if those decisions are to be ‘received’ by the Orthodox faithful.
Archbishop Chrysostom II of Cyprus, one of the smallest Orthodox Churches, rightly mentioned the problem of nationalism as the major problem of mononational Local Churches. For example, we only have to think of Mt Athos and the recent ‘shock’ meeting of a racist (‘phyletist’) Greek minister with a Chinese Orthodox monk on Athos, which led to the proposal by the Patriarchate of Constantinople to limit the number of Non-Greek monks there to 10%!
Another example of this is the Greek nationalist philosophy of Metr John Zizioulas, which was largely shaped by the disincarnate and intellectualist ideology of semi-Orthodox Paris Russian thinkers. Other examples are the ownership of the Russian church in Budapest, disputed by Constantinople despite Hungarian law, or the situation of the Local Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia, whose canonically-elected leader is not recognised by Constantinople.
The meeting in Istanbul came against the background of the recent Western-financed and orchestrated overthrow of the democratically-elected government in Kiev. This was supported by an estimated 3,000 to 5,500 Western mercenaries, mainly flown in and armed from the USA. The non-representative junta, come to power in an Orthodox country through violence and intimidation, has a President who is a Baptist pastor, a Prime Minister who is a scientologist and a homosexual Minister of Internal Affairs! The spontaneous reaction and decision by most of the inhabitants of the Ukraine, 83% of whom are Russian-speaking, to attach themselves to Russia, bringing about the possible break-up of the Ukraine in its present and temporary form, was inevitable.
The present anti-democratic Western aggression, led by President Obama and his ill-informed ideologue-advisors, is backfiring. Brought about by a deeply spiritually deficient West, the birthplace of the two most genocidal and atheist ideologies in history, Communism and Nazism, it is bringing Russian liberals, previously pro-Western, to revise their erroneous views and is encouraging oligarchs to return to Russia, repatriating their assets. They ask themselves: Whose side are we on? On the side of the bankrupt Galician junta and their regional language, representing scarcely 15% of the Ukraine, or of the real Little Russia and sorely persecuted Carpatho-Russia, whose leader has just been sentenced by the Neo-Nazis in Kiev to three years in prison against European law? In other words, on the side of the atheist West or the Christian East?
Today Orthodox Rus prays to the Tsar-Martyr Nicholas for the Triumph of Orthodoxy, both in Little Russia and Carpatho-Russia, as well as in Istanbul and in the rest of the weaker Orthodox world.