Voices from Russia

Thursday, 18 December 2014

A Colloquy on Scripture and the Church

00 Orthodox Bible image

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Editor:

My interlocutor is in plain type; I’m in italics and indented.

BMD

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Most likely, you use the Authorised Version. You’ll both find these sites to be amazingly helpful resources!

http://www.kjvtoday.com/

http://www.thekingsbible.com/

I’m trying to publicise these sites as much as possible. I can’t see how they’d find a “place” on your blog but perhaps you could send them around to Orthodox folks you know?

Of course… I use the KJV/AV in all my scripture quotes, as it’s the closest equivalent in English terms to the Russian of the Synodal Edition. I could post something… as part of one of my periodic “chats with readers”… I’m due for one…

It amazes me how many Christians hate the AV. Why? It goes like this:

Reformer:

Oh! I never use the KJV! I prefer modern translations. After all, they all say the same thing. There’s no place where the modern translations contradict any Christian dogma! (BTW: not true)

Traditionalist:

Oh! OK! Since there’s “no contradiction”, we’ll keep using the KJV.

Reformer: 

NOOOOOOOOOOO!

Yup. These sites expose the failings of the modern translations and support the AV’s validity. Did you know that St Kyrillos Lukaris, Patriarch of Constantinople, sent manuscripts to the AV translators? It has Orthodox roots! Kyrillos was Patriarch of Alexandria then. Alexandria glorified him as a saint in 2009 or thereabouts.

It’s the same argument used by those who want to drop Staroslav. I’d say that there’s less confusion than the intellectuals think. Firstly, the babas are NOT confused. Secondly, Staroslav is closer to modern Slavic languages than Old English is… for instance, some egghead idiots want to get rid of “zhivot”… well, the Modern Russian word for animal is “zhivotne” (“living thing”), so, I’d submit that the “confusion” is merely in the eyes of academic charlatans with a “reforming” itch… like the late Aleksandr Dmitryevich Schmemann!

Remember the “Reform” of Church Slavonic that everyone touted? You mentioned this on your blog. In time, the MP decided it was a waste of time. Obviously, some prissy “theological” types stirred a tempest in a teapot. Then, the Church looked to where the rubber met the road and dumped the whole idea. I’m sure that they’re writing tear-soaked epistles to Syosset…

I mean it…it’s time for Russian Orthodox people here in the diaspora to start seriously talking unity… it’s the only way that we’ll keep the feral in check. I’ll be blunt… I think that there’d be a “Rump OCA” after such a union… but the healthy parts would “come home”. It’s TIME… it’s time to overlook minor disagreements… we NEED to be together… that’s the lesson of the Ukrainian Civil War… the Ukies have unity, ergo their voice is heard. We’re shunted to the side… it’s our own fault!

However, you’re aware that Great Russian chauvinism is the curse of our unity? They disdain Rusins, Byelorussians, and Russophile Ukrainians and THAT has been the cause of our disunity. Don’t EVEN get the NEPA sorts started on THAT topic. “We’re ‘HIGH Russians’ and you people are ‘LOW Russians’. You’ll do as WE say”. UGH. Can you fight THAT?

Veliki Rus is the core of Holy Rus, but it isn’t the only part… Great Russia is the largest partner at table, but not the only one. God willing, “High Russians” like me can help move things right…

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I’m surprised that some elements in the Church use Evangelical distortions of Scripture. Such groups are only barely Christian (if they’re such at all)… not all those who say, “Lord, Lord”, will enter the Kingdom of Heaven… their ahistoricity and lack of a coherent liturgy, for me, put them outside of Christendom altogether. They’re pseudo-Christian sectarians, with no real and substantial ties to historical Christianity at all. Look at the Mormons, Pentecostalists, and megachurchers… to say the least, if we apply the standard of “lex orandi, lex credendi”, it’s clear that Evangelicals aren’t Christian at all. They have a bowdlerised distortion of the Holy Scriptures, no worship, no reverence, and no iconography… they’re closer to Muslims than they are to Christians (yet, look at how they HATE Muslims… when they’re closer to them than they are to REAL Christians). On top of that, they proselytise with vigour amongst our faithful… sane people don’t put an adder to their breasts!

We ordained far too many converts without insisting that they have sufficient time amongst us and without insisting that they pursue a FULL Orthodox clerical formation (that DOES take YEARS). Look at poseurs such as Josiah Trenham, and you can get a feel for what I’m saying. It’s coming home to haunt us. I fear that we’ll have a schism… either, we must recapture Orthodoxy in its fullness, or we’ll degenerate into “Evangelicals with a liturgical itch” (Fathausen was a sterling exemplar of such, with his signature on the Extreme Rightwing and Anti-Church “Manhattan Declaration”).

As always, the choice is yours…

BMD

Thursday, 11 December 2014

11 December 2014. Cabinet Reactions to Mollard’s Ad Limina… Sans Commentary

00 Tikhon Mollard and Ilarion Alfeyev. Moscow. 03.12.14

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I have it on very good authority that His Holiness the all-Russian patriarch laid down the Law on the OCA regarding Renovationism and lax morals (especially, the brewing homosexuality issue). His Beatitude agrees with HH… HH promised him every support. However, this means that they’re throwing down the gauntlet and it’s going to get ugly.

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I wonder why about this whole silly trip. Still can’t find anyone who has a clue. Was this a favour to Antioch so that their Patriarch wouldn’t have to receive Mollard in any official capacity?

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[Mollard] looks very angry… surely, the Patriarch isn’t on JP’s side! In other matters, just wait until the Arabs in the Antiochian Archdiocese start their backlash against the converts… Philip kept them in line with an iron fist…

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NO ONE KNOWS what went down in private. I’ll only say that I don’t know… but we’ll find out in due course, and it’ll be sooner, rather than later. Patience, kiddies… pass me the jug…

BMD

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Mollard Ends Trip to Russia… Oddest Ad Limina That I’ve Ever Seen

00 Metr TIkhon Mollard. Moscow. 10.12.14

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Read this. I’ve never seen such an odd ad limina visit. Whilst he was in Petersburg, Mollard did nothing major. On Monday, HH and Varsonofy blessed a reconstructed church at Tsarkoe Selo. VVP and Lavrov were there… Mollard and his delegation weren’t. HH handed out awards… Mollard and his delegation didn’t get any. Mollard had only one major event in eight days of his visit… the concelebration in Moscow. Otherwise, NOTHING of major import occurred… or, at least, nothing of major import surfaced in media reports. It seemed to underline the insignificance of the OCA… HH left Mollard in Moscow, and went off to Kaliningrad on pastoral business. They kept Mollard out of all major events, except for the singular instance of the Moscow Kremlin concelebration. I’ll bet that the Centre picked up the bill for this. The very lack of reportage suggests that both Yustinian the Poof and Paffhausen the Great were on the agenda. If I had to guess, that’s what I’d think. I’ve never seen the like before… and it may never happen again. Pass the jug… reporting on diaspora Orthodoxy is NEVER boring…

BMD

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Mollard Served Liturgy at OCA Podvorie… Went to Piter… To Leave the Rodina Tomorrow

00 Metr TIkhon Mollard. Moscow. 09.12.14

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Mollard took the train to Piter, Varsonofy Sudakov met him at the station… as did the American Consul (do you notice how Mollard always kisses ass with American officialdom? Now, that’s Sergianism!). Mollard visited the Aleksandr Nevsky Lavra, but there’s no other details available. This trip produced virtually NOTHING of a public nature. Mollard met with no government figure, let alone VVP or Medvedev. Literally, it’s been nothing but a tourist junket… externally. It did NOTHING to add lustre to Mollard’s stature… quite the opposite. Was that the point? God alone knows. Mollard served liturgy at the OCA podvorie in Moscow, but no local bishop concelebrated. The only local present of any note was Fr Nikolai Balashov, the effectual head of the MP Synodal Department for External Church Relations (OVTsS). That’s not the usual script for a visit of a First Hierarch of a Local Church. This is a signal to Bart… the status of the OCA is negotiable, but the MP will NOT kowtow to Bart publicly, nor will it give on the issue without Bart giving in on issues of Moscow’s concern (rolling up its opposition candy stores in the Baltics, stopping its interference in the Ukraine, and cutting off the Parisian Russians… interest in the last was shown by HH marking the 80th birthday of V N Tiesenhausen and giving him an award). Of course, the Centre doesn’t trust Bart… but it believes that it can do business with him, as the Centre does have the whip hand.

BMD

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