Why we do not speak of ‘British’ Orthodoxy, but of the Orthodoxy of the Isles

In contemporary England the word ‘British’ signifies the ‘Establishment’ as in ‘the BBC’, the propaganda-driven British Broadcasting Corporation. It thus refers to all the pitiful, imperial aspects of the history of this little country, whether in the period of the Romans, the Normans, the Georgians with their ‘Rule Britannia’ chant, or the Victorians who physically identified the figure of Queen Victoria with the mythical figure of Britannia and their cruel, worldwide empire.

Outside England, in particular in Scotland and even more in Ireland, the word ‘Britain’ means imperialist exploitation and the barbaric colonialism of the past. Thus, the Irish Embassy in London actively discourages the use of the term ‘The British Isles’ to refer to Ireland; for the Irish it is an insult. In the Orthodox context we note that the term ‘British Orthodoxy’ is used only by Establishment, ex-Anglican convert types among the tiny British Coptic group and a few others elsewhere.

Those elsewhere are usually under the once Anglican-dominated Patriarchate of Constantinople or else are connected with the former British Middle East and British-imposed freemasonry and new calendar. Often such people are connected with the Duke of Edinburgh, a Greek Orthodox freemason, and the current Prince of Wales, who appears to follow in his father’s footsteps; certainly he hates President Putin, absurdly identifying him with the Nazis.

The hatred of the Russian Church by the British Establishment became abundantly clear at the time of the extraordinarily biased British press coverage of the 2006 Sourozh schism, when former Anglican Establishment converts abandoned the Russian Church for Greek Orthodox freemasonry. What term then do we use to describe the Orthodoxy of those who live in England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales and their dependent islands and of the saints who dwelled in these islands?

Quite simply we use the term the Orthodoxy ‘of the Isles’ (of Britain and Ireland), and the Saints ‘of the Isles’ of Britain and Ireland. This term is not only inclusive of the whole archipelago of the British Isles and Ireland, but also avoids the sad connotations of the past, which saw scenes of the burning of British flags for arrogant, ‘British’ colonialist meddling. Ex-Anglican ‘British Orthodoxy’ is one thing, but Insular Orthodoxy, the Orthodoxy of the Isles, is quite another.