Voices from Russia

Thursday, 17 April 2014

17 April 2014. A Photo Essay: They’re Bakin’ Up Kulichi… Yum, Yum! Easter’s on its Way!

00 kulich 01. easter. 17.04.14

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00 kulich 02. easter. 17.04.14

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00 kulich 03. easter. 17.04.14

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00 kulich 04. easter. 17.04.14

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00 kulich 05. easter. 17.04.14

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00 kulich 06. easter. 17.04.14

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00 kulich 07. easter. 17.04.14

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00 kulich 08. easter. 17.04.14

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Christianity isn’t only theology and morals… it’s about celebration, joy, and humanity. Easter isn’t only the Resurrection of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ in the Flesh… yes, it IS that, but it’s more besides! It’s about Easter eggs, kulichi (them’s the thing-a-ma-bobs being baked and blessed above), your child’s smile, and a feast! It’s divine and human, sublime and earthy, utterly transcendent, yet closely intimate… all at once, all mixed up, and inextricable.

It’s almost here. If Christ be not risen from the dead, your faith is in vain… that’s the long and the short of it all. Keep it focused… it’s not much longer…

BMD

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17 April 2014. A Picture IS Worth a Thousand Words… Another Side of the Defence of Slavyansk

00 Slavyansk. 03. 17.04.14

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In the above image, we see local women at the barricades holding vigil. That’s the “other side of the story”. Some years back, President Putin said, “Russia has a double shield of defence. Its material shield is the RVSN (Strategic Rocket Forces)… its spiritual shield is the Orthodox faith”. Many Westerns don’t understand the depth of Orthodox commitment in most Russians… because we don’t act like Radical Proddies (however, most traditional Catholics are close to us in their patterns of practise), because we don’t wear our religion on our sleeves, and because most of us don’t go to church every week, they think us “irreligious”. That’s stupid. Take a look at the above picture. As a priest wrote me (about an image I posted of a priest blessing the Slavyansk fighters):

Thanks for showing the picture of the priest blessing those on the barricades. That’s where I’d be, and all true Orthodox would be there, too.

The strength of the fighters and the prayers of the people defend Slavyansk. That’s the way it’s was, that’s the way it is, and that’s the way it shall be in Russia.

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Wednesday, 16 April 2014

16 April 2014. Gleanings from My Mailbag

Mailbag

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Editor:

I’m in plain type; my interlocutors are in italics.

BMD

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What do you think of the resistance of heroic little Slavyansk? Sources tell me that real soldiers refused to move. The town’s name is proper, as one of the ways that you “read it” is “Hero Town”.

The Ukrainian patriots of Slavyansk will go down as heroes after this is all over and the dust settles. However, keep in mind that this isn’t an isolated incident. Patriots in Kramatorsk, Krasny Lyman, and Artomovsk pulled off similar actions. The Artomovsk patriots disarmed a junta military convoy without firing a shot on Saturday. Meanwhile, in Kharkov, Ukrainian patriots stormed the Gorsoviet building today and the police joined the anti-Maidan forces. If the putsch president Turchinov goes through with an attack on Monday morning, I don’t see how Russia can’t send in troops to protect the people, both Russian and Ukrainian, from these Nazis. Keep in mind, Turchinov would use “National Guard” troops, whose ranks are full of Western Ukrainian neo-Nazis. The regular army is utterly unreliable; it might even go over to the side of the patriots.

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You’d be surprised at how much of my material comes from my Cabinet. Some are people who can’t post publicly under their own names (this is true of some priests). I know that some use me as a conduit at times… but that’s OK. I pity the poor people of Little Russia… they’ve suffered enough, haven’t they?

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Judas! (In reference to Bartholomew Archontonis)

What else did you expect? He’s an American poodle… who wants to grab the Ukraine… and to join the papists (he did receive training in Rome, after all). It ain’t over yet.

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They’re misreading the whole Russian/Ukrainian situation due to ignorance of Russian history. Firstly, VVP did much to restore many “Soviet” aspects of society. Indeed, at the Victory Day parade, they introduce him as “Comrade Supreme Commander”, and the whole ritual has its later Soviet tinge. Secondly, haven’t they heard VVP say, “The Eurasian Economic Community shall bring back all the best features of the USSR?” In short, dogmatism blinds them. Putin’s rule is a new NEP, which anyone familiar with Russian history can tell. In fact, Putin all but admitted that the future belongs to communism. That’s what keeps me out of formal membership in any Marxist group… their refusal to truly embrace the dialectic (and reality), and their stubborn insistence on trying to fit reality to their theories. I think that their hearts are right… their dogmatism sucks. I don’t say this in anger.

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00 Crisis. 01 Odessa. We're not giraffe meat for the EU! .3

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When you posted that “We aren’t giraffe meat for the EU” sign in the protest picture it really warmed my heart. The senseless cruelty of those monsters in Denmark still bowls me over. Poor Marius! However, he did speak to the heartless EU from beyond his grave through that, no?

I feel so alone at times. I do. I think that the present crisis in the Ukraine is one of three great events that I’ve seen in my 60 years… first was Reagan’s election, which ushered in the present Dark Night… second was the August Events of ’91 that brought in the Second Time of Troubles… the third is the present situation, the world won’t be able to return to the status quo ante.

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IT seems that all the kerfuffle in Kiev has a good side… whispers tell me that certain people are asking Potapov… “Whom do you favour, VOA or the Church?” This mess is opening up eyes. People are seeing that Western “conservatives” aren’t our friends. The Eurasian Union is a creative synthesis of the good in Russia’s past… that is, Imperial Russia and Soviet Russia… not “either or”… it’s “both or nothing”. When HH, V V Putin, and G A Zyuganov all sing from the same score, you know that it’s on the up and square! To think that we have the meddling Amerikantsy to thank for it! The Nasty 90s brought the Church and Party together… the recent events of the past six years (after the August war) brought the post-’91 Russian élite in as well. Do you think that the Blunder will finally see the light? Despite all the gloom, there appears to more than a little hope. I think that we’ve turned a corner and won a respite…

I agree with you. People now see that they must choose. Whose side IS Hilarion Alfeyev on… the Vatican or us? I know what he’ll choose; maturity is dawning on this naïf at the age of 47! The same goes for the ROCOR, AND the OCA, AND Constantinople. We all have to lay our cards on the table, no longer hedging our bets. Who’s with us and who’s against us? Decision time is here.

I don’t have complete faith in all the OCA… sadly enough. However, I’m pulling “back” on some criticisms… I was harsh for a while for a reason… someone has to “bell the cat”. Once the cat is “belled”, you can scale back… but not before. My Cabinet keeps me informed, and that’s how I keep up or lessen the pressure. I believe that I play a role in the Church “discussion”… my role is to bring up things that many won’t (or can’t) look at. However, although I think that most of the OCA shall come ’round, I’m not overly sure of SVS. A friend at the Centre told me that Mollard was “the right man for the moment… he’ll do nothing, but that’s what we need”. I now realise what she meant… and I think that you do too!

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Rose impressed me once, too… we all were. He APPEARED so holy. Today, I’d say, “A long beard a monk does NOT make”. I think that you know what I mean…

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Note how they attack artificial birth control. In general, they abhor moderation of any sort. They’re fanatics… very much. They won’t listen to sensible people like HH, Charlie, or Vladimir Romanovich. What’ll they do when the Reds return and the Church and Reds embrace as one? That’s what VVP sees… that’s what HH sees… isn’t that how God works, after all? God doesn’t DESTROY his enemies in a Crusade; He loves them so much that they change of their own accord if their heart’s right. It puts the Nasty 90s in a new light, doesn’t it? Who woulda thunk it… the Reds repented and God blessed them… the Whites refused and died the death (I mean the White attitude, NOT White Russians or the White legacy)… God DOES work in mysterious ways, doesn’t He?

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Do you think that they’re abandoning unhealthy “generic” Orthodoxy for REAL Russian Orthodoxy? I’ve nothing against Greeks, Serbs, Romanians, et al (they ARE part of our Orthosphere, after all), but Russian Orthodoxy is a specific family… we must treat it as such.

They aren’t opposed to the real Russia that respects the Imperial legacy, triumphed under the USSR, and now is building a new state containing the best of both. They aren’t opposed, but they’re a bit slow to get it. This sodomic rape of the “real” all-Russian Ideal by their US Conservative “friends” was a revelation.

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The situation in the Ukraine is surreal… just when you think that it can’t get any odder… it does. On Fatso… the intel is all over the map, I’m discounting ALL of it until an official announcement comes out. We DO have the word on Soraich, but a friend of mine at the Centre a month ago told me it was a done deal. NO ONE at the Centre knows anything about Fats… NO ONE. What doesn’t help is that Fatso still schmoozes with neocons in full sight of the Russian Embassy! Crazy world… do pass the jug… it’s gonna get even crazier.

Same thing here, just no reliable news about Fatso… if all you have is Momomuckos and rumours, you don’t have anything.

I think that’s the Centre’s way of saying “NO”… after all, Soraich is no prize. How DO you “demote” a former First Hierarch (for that is what he was)?

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Editor:

That wraps up the latest sharable stuff… anything personal stays PRIVATE. Over seven years of posting, I’ve not betrayed anyone yet… and I don’t intend starting now!

BMD

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The Catering Staff of the RF Presidential Administration will Prepare 17,500 Kulichi and more than 5,000 Paskhas

00b Easter 2012. foods

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On Tuesday, Viktor Khrekov, a government spokesman, told Interfax-Religion that the catering staff of the RF Presidential Administration would prepare a range of foods for Easter in their own facilities. In particular, they plan to bake kulichi weighing from 500 grammes (1.1 pounds) to 1.3 kilos (2.9 pounds), make tvorog-based paskhas from 100 grammes (4.5 ounces) to 1 kilo (2.2 pounds), and dye chicken and quail eggs and apply Easter appliques to them. The plans call for them to produce and distribute about 17,500 kulichi, more than 5,000 paskhas, and 22,400 dyed eggs. According to size, kulichi will cost 35-600 Roubles (1.00-16.50 USD. 1.10-18.20 CAD. 1.07-17.75 AUD. 0.70-12 Euros. 0.60-9.90 UK Pounds) and paskhas will cost 55-560 Roubles (1.50-15.50 USD. 1.65-17 CAD. 1.60-16.50 AUD. 1.10-11.20 Euros. 0.90-9.25 UK Pounds). In addition, the catering staff is taking orders for kulichi; they’ve arranged a tradeshow of Easter products. Besides this, culinary experts offer advice on how to prepare kulichi, paskhas, and Easter eggs, and teach classes on how to set an “Easter table”. This affects all catering facilities in the Kremlin, the RF Government, the RF Gosduma, the Federation Council, and the Chamber of Accounts. Daily, these dining rooms feed about 15,000 people.

Editor:

A Christian society requires practical preparation as well as spiritual preparation. It ain’t easy getting all the details nailed down. The above indicates that there’s gonna be a whole lot of celebratin’ going on. We’re Christians… that’s what we do. Stand up and cheer! It’s the high point of the Christian Year!

BMD

15 April 2014

Interfax-Religion

http://interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=55022

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