Voices from Russia

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

St Herman Monastery LIES and PUFFS UP Podmo’s Funeral

podmo funeral 02. 15.07.14

Podmo’s funeral at Holy Dormition parish in Santa Rosa CA… do note the lack of a proper iconostas

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A Cabinet member sent me this (hold on to your cookies… it’s off kilter and divorced from all reality)… no URL available, just copies of two e-mails:

E-mail One:

Fr Herman was buried in Sebastopol CA in the new Orthodox section of one of the cemeteries in the area. It was the decision of our Bishop Maxim to not allow his burial at the monastery. The below is a report sent out by one of the parishioners at the Holy Dormition Church. If you like, I’ll ask her permission to send you a link to the photos that were taken during the funeral and burial.

Yours in Christ,

The unworthy Hieromonk Paisius, secretary

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E-mail Two:

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As most of you know, Fr Herman reposed in the Lord on the morning of 30 June 2014 in Minneapolis MN. The funeral for Monk Herman Podmoshensky, the former Abbot of St Herman of Alaska Monastery, was served at Holy Dormition Orthodox Church in Santa Rosa CA (USA) on Thursday, 3 July 2014. His Grace Daniil, Vicar Bishop of the Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Diocese of the USA, Canada, and Australia of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church (Bulgarian Patriarchate), officiated. He was assisted by the clergy of Holy Dormition and Hieromonk Paisii of the St Herman of Alaska Monastery, and by nearly 20 priests, hieromonks, and other clergy of many canonical Orthodox jurisdictions, and by monastics and laypeople from all over America and from as far away as Mt Athos and Moscow.

The graveside burial service took place in the Orthodox section of the Pleasant Hills Memorial Park in Sebastopol CA. The address of this cemetery is 1700 Pleasant Hill Road, Sebastopol CA  95472; it’s only a 15-20 minute drive west of Santa Rosa CA, deep in the countryside. After the graveside service, those who didn’t have to leave immediately to the airport gathered under the redwoods next to the Holy Dormition Church for a memorial meal. Bishop Daniil, who became a monk in Bulgaria when converted as a young man by the writings of Fr Seraphim Rose, never met Fr Herman, so many of those present shared dozens of stories about their encounters with Fr Herman.

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An interlocutor commented on the situation:

It happened at the OCA (sic) church in Santa Rosa CA, a bit north of San Francisco. If that’s their iconostas, how strange! … Did they do his funeral in their church hall, not in their church proper, for some reason? This church in Santa Rosa belongs to the Bulgarians; it’s a bunch of HOOMies.

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Another Cabineteer opined on California Fats, and why he’d avoid going to his guru’s funeral:

He won’t go… that type forgets the past and expects us not to bring it up… he also doesn’t honour his friendships.

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Firstly, here are images of the church and of its parishioners:

00 Holy Dormition 'Orthodox' parish. Santa Rosa CA. 15.07.14

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00 Holy Dormition 'Orthodox' parish 02. Santa Rosa CA. 15.07.14

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A careful headcount gives fifty people (including clergy) in this “parish”. For his miniscule conventicle, there are THREE PRIESTS and TWO DEACONS. I shit you not (click here for the proof). There’s no real iconostas in this “church”… NONE. One can tell that the funeral was in the church proper by the presence of the bema. The “About” section of the website doesn’t give the foundation date for the parish (odd… that’s one of the most important titbits on a normal parish’s site), but it does refer to the patronal feastday in 2007, so, this odd lot is at least seven years old, if not older.

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Here’s an image of the “crowd” at the funeral and of the trapeza after the burial:

podmo funeral 03. 15.07.14

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podmo funeral 01. 15.07.14

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podmo funeral 04. 15.07.14

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There are ten seats at each table; it looks like there are six or nine tables in all, not counting the clergy table (do note the empty seats at the tables… there may be another row of three tables out of sight). That is, at most, there could be 60 or 90 people at the funeral (but there wasn’t… the empty seats are mute testimony to that)… this tiny conventicle couldn’t fit that many, to be frank. My guess is that about 40 to 60 people, all told, attended this affair. I only counted six clergy in the images, and the largest number of laypeople in any one image was 33. There wasn’t 20 clergy present… that figure is fiction at best, a self-serving lie at worst. In short, a small bunch of groupies gathered for Podmo’s funeral. The OCA, ROCOR, MP, GOAA, Serbian, or Antiochian bishops and clergy were no-shows. None of ‘em showed up. NONE. Fatso didn’t show up, even though Podmo was his guru for years (including after his 1988 deposition… James Paffhausen went to Russia under Podmo’s auspices in that Russky Palomnik boondoggle, remember?). Note well that the Serbian bishop refused to allow the burial of Podmo at Platina. That means that he doesn’t trust the Seraphim Rose groupies. Maxim refused to come to the funeral… yet, the Platina brotherhood (and the nuns nearby) came to the affair. This means that they’re unrepentant and haven’t truly turned away from Podmo’s oddbod teachings. Actions DO speak louder than words do. Never forget, we live in a crank world where first impressions can be misleading. Have a care… there be dragons…

BMD

Friday, 11 July 2014

11 July 2014. A Blast from the Past… Bishop Kip… One of the Finest Men to Wear the Crown…

00 bishop kiprian borisevich. 11.07.14

Bishop Kip with two generations of priests… Fr Dmitri Ressetar (left) and Fr Daniel Ressetar (right)… now, that’s old-school Orthodoxy

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I remember reading in the commboxes to Mark Stokoe’s blog some time back that some upstart konvert called Bishop Kiprian Borisevich a “cruel man”.  Nothing could be further from the truth. Everyone in NEPA respected and loved Bishop Kip. NO EXCEPTIONS… no way, no how. Bishop Kip knew how to “bish”, and no one, but no one, dared cross him after he’d decided something. That’s the way it’s ‘sposed to be, kids… bishops aren’t supposed to be convicted pervs (like Storheim)… bishops aren’t supposed to be driving under the influence (like Peterson)… bishops aren’t supposed to be siccing lawyers on the Synod (like Paffso). NO! Our bishops should follow Bishop Kip’s example… they should concentrate on being pastors who live with and for their flocks. Bishop Kip found himself in the interwar Polish state and served as a priest during the time of its persecution of Orthodox Christians. He fought the papists, along with his brother (Archbishop Varlaam Borisevich), who was also a priest. His brother was a Confessor of the Faith, imprisoned by the Polish papist authorities for defending the Church (do note well that the modernists and konvertsy don’t know this nor do they bother to find it out). All the oldtimers and everyone from the old families respects Bishop Kip’s memory (as well we should).

We’ve fallen… and we refuse to get up. We shouldn’t look for nostrums amongst the heterodox or amongst the Greeks… all that we have to do is to follow the good example set by our forebears. ‘Nuff said…

BMD

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Storheim Gets Eight Months in the Slam

01 Go to Jail

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A Winnipeg MN court sentenced a former OCA bishop convicted of molesting an altar boy to eight months in jail. Earlier this year, a Winnipeg court convicted Seraphim Storheim of sexually assaulting a boy who came to visit him in Winnipeg almost 30 years ago. Justice Christopher Mainella called Storheim’s actions deplorable and a gross breach of trust. The OCA placed the 68-year-old on leave after his arrest in 2010, and retired him following his conviction. The Crown asked for a 12-month jail sentence, arguing Storheim abused a position of trust, but his lawyer argued for a conditional sentence with no jail time. At the time of the offence, Storheim was a OCA priest, but later rose to archbishop… the church’s highest-ranking cleric in Canada.

9 July 2014

The Canadian Press

https://ca.news.yahoo.com/former-archbishop-convicted-molesting-alter-boy-almost-30-135631794.html

Editor:

Watch all the goodthinkers caterwaul over this. Let’s not be coy… Storheim’s the only one to go to the can… there were many other abusers… many other victims. I’ll be blunt… we still have a crank institutional culture in re clerical meatheads (whether sexual abusers, corrupt gelt-grabbers, power-hungry ecclesial pols, or nasty parish dictators). All too many people defend the worst priests… that’s superstitious and not Christian in the least. I have nothing but contempt for Jeff Gindin (Storheim’s mouthpiece)… his defence was that the victims were nuts. Thank God, the judge saw through that shit.

After he gets out of the slam, the Church should send Storheim away to a monastery, preferably in Athos or in Europe. Now, that would put a righteous finis to all this…

BMD

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

1 July 2014. Cabineteer Corrects Portal-Credo Piece on Podmo

01 woman on phone

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A Cabineteer sent me this on the Portal-Credo piece on Podmo:

Young didn’t claim he heard Rose curse Podmoshensky, he claims that **Podmoshensky** told him that Rose’s last words to him were, “I’m finished with you. Damn you!”

I simply gave you the Portal-Credo post as it stood. This shows their usual sloppiness and inattention to detail. Was this another “Svetlana Veiss” special or was a missive by Mark Stokoe? As for the “quote”, firstly, we have no other source but Podmo. No one else heard this, nor did Podmo tell WHEN Rose supposedly said it to him (a VERY important piece of intel). My earlier comment stands… it isn’t that I’m saying it’s untrue… I’m saying that it has no corroboration. Seraphim Rose is an equivocal figure… he did much good mixed in with some mischief and a bit of arrant foolishness (he was a UFO nutter and was a bit hagridden by the idea that demons are everywhere). He lacked a regular seminary formation (which Podmo did have)… plus he lacked a regular monastic formation prior to going off into the woods with Podmo (certainly, unwise at best). I won’t be coy… my Cabinet is split down the middle on Rose. Those who think him saintly excoriate me for not sharing their enthusiasm, those who find him questionable, excoriate me for not sharing their disgust. Well… I do fall in the middle on this one. He wasn’t a saint, but he wasn’t an unruly loose cannon like Podmo. I think that the final balance shows him more good than bad, and that his nutty preoccupations died with him (like his notion that UFOs are real and that they’re crewed by demons), so, they’re not that damning.

Seraphim Rose was no Serafim Sarovsky or Serafim Vyritsky. He was a competent translator of religious texts, a compelling speaker, and sincere ascetic (although one must be aware that asceticism isn’t always a sign of truth… Arius was a great ascetic, so was Avvakum Petrov, it’s why they were so persuasive). However, he’s NOT the spiritual giant that some konvertsy think that he is. He made some old chestnuts available in English… a laudable thing, indeed, but saintly? I think not. This will displease his fans and disciples. Yet that’s what he was… like all of us… a sinner groping along the way, who managed to help others as he helped himself. That’s no bad thing…

BMD

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