Patriarch of Kirill Gundyaev (1946- ) of Moscow and all the Russias
Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias pointed up the importance of passing the memory of the Soviet people’s victory over fascism to the coming generation. “I become very emotional whenever I lay flowers at the eternal flame, as it’s a memorial to the defenders of our Motherland. Decades have passed, of course, and the families who lost loved ones have lost the sharp edge on their pain, but the diminution of our pain shouldn’t blunt our memory”, the patriarch said after laying flowers at the military memorial in Saransk, established in memory of the Mordovians who died in the Second Great Patriotic War. In his view, if future generations no longer remember those who gave their lives for their country, “those generations won’t find within themselves the strength to protect the Motherland. That’s why, today, it’s especially important to us to for you to remind us of your service, veterans. Through your lives, through your example, your words bring to life the events of so many decades ago; you bring it all to life for contemporary people, you embody the heroic feat (подвиг) of our people. You have faith in this, as you were part of these legendary military events”. To keep alive the memory of the Great Victory, even after the generation of veterans passes, “everybody needs to work hard, to educate our young people to love their Motherland, to give them a proper understanding of its history… not just to give them respect and admiration for the feat (подвигом) of their grandfathers and great-grandfathers”, His Holiness said. Then, the clergy, led by Patriarch Kirill, sang the Eternal Memory. At the end of the ceremony, His Holiness and Nikolai Merkushkin, the head of the Republic of Mordovia, greeted each of the veterans, shaking hands.
21 July 2011
Note that His Nibs used the word подвиг (podvig) twice… this is a VERY strong word in Russian, its overtones are impossible to render adequately in English. It’s “feat”, “wonder”, “miraculous”, and “heroic”, all at once, and all combined, one and inseparable. His Holiness was comparing the exploits of the soldiers of the VOV to the acts of the great ascetics of the Church… подвиг is the word that we use to describe their spiritual feats.
For Russian history fans, both Patriarch Nikon Minin and Archpriest Avvakum Petrov were ethnic Mordvins… was this one reason why their conflict was so bitter? After all, the ensuing Raskol persisted to the present… despite all the overblown affection of the konvertsy for the raskolniki, they’re still outside of the Church, they’re nothing but Proddies with an Orthodox liturgy (much like the konvertsy are themselves, nicht wahr?). I should mention that the enthusiasm of the knovertsy for the raskolniki is similar to their culpable indifferentism regarding Uniatism… they lecture us, telling us that Uniates are “brothers” with us in a notional “Eastern Church“. That’s damnably false (in the literal sense of the words), and it’s about time that we slapped down the ignorant and arrogant former Episkies saying that… they’re attempting to export their diabolical “Branch Theory” amongst us, but do remember that His Holiness condemned that Anglican heresy in no uncertain terms, when he was still a Metropolitan. If I’m to believe His Nibs, or, to believe JP, Hatfield, Dreher, Freddie M-G, et al, it’s NO contest! I somehow think that most of you reading this agree with me. You know what to do at the upcoming OCA Sobor…