3 April 2013
3 April 2013
On Thursday, the press service of the Diocese of Yekaterinburg and Verkhoturye announced that events celebrating the 400th anniversary of the Romanov Dynasty began in the Urals city of Yekaterinburg, where the Ural Soviet executed the last Russian tsar and his family in 1917. The Romanovs came to power when the Zemsky Sobor elected 16-year-old Mikhail Fyodorovich Romanov as tsar in February 1613. His reign marked the end of the Smuta. Celebrations in Yekaterinburg began with a liturgy and the opening of an outdoor exhibition dedicated to the Romanov Dynasty. The exhibition centres on the last tsar, Nikolai Aleksandrovich, and his family, executed by the Bolsheviks in the cellar of the Ipatiev House in Yekaterinburg on 17 July 1918. The Church canonised the family in 2000.
21 February 2013
Вечная памятъ… what more need be said?
This week’s events have quite clearly pigeon-holed Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and his policies. In fact, the EP Holy Synod refused to intercede for the persecuted Archimandrite Ephrem. True, the Synod expressed regret about Fr Ephrem’s imprisonment, but they refused to ask the Greek authorities to release him, saying they didn’t have the authority to interfere in the activities of the secular authorities, they didn’t have full information on the affair, and weren’t familiar with the court documents. Thus, Patriarch Bartholomew not only repudiated ancient church property rights (in fact, that’s what the dispute centres around), but he also refused to aid his brother in distress.
Apparently, we do indeed live in the last days. If the early Christians did everything that they could to ransom their brethren, to aid them when they were imprisoned, and the bishops did all that they could in the times of persecution to relieve the suffering of Christians caused by the Roman judicial authorities, now, Patriarch Bartholomew, like the well-known figure in the Gospels, washes his hands. Moreover, he castigates the MP, saying that Athos is solely his concern, and that the MP has no warrant to interfere into the affairs of his canonical territory. Let me ask you, did the Patriarch of Constantinople imprison Archimandrite Ephrem? Or, are Church courts investigating his affairs? Since when was the court system of the Hellenic Republic canonically responsible to Patriarch Bartholomew? What about the ancient right of intercession, which goes back to the times of the Muscovite Tsars and Patriarchs, and then passed to the Russian Tsars and the Holy Governing Synod (who intervened for the persecuted Greeks before the Turkish authorities), so why is there talk of interference on the canonical territory of the EP? Such an attitude leaves no doubt to the supposition that the affair surrounding Fr Ephrem’s not only anti-Russian in character (properly speaking, the real estate questions are an excuse not a reason), but that the Patriarch of Constantinople takes a public hand in this dirty game.
This week, Patriarch Bartholomew made yet another objectively anti-Russian step. He met with representatives of the schismatic “Abkhazian Church” and held talks with them about the future of the Abkhaz diocese. He clearly hinted that the EP was ready to take jurisdiction over the rebel Abkhaz diocese, and thus challenged not only the MP, but also the Georgian Patriarchate, who holds legitimate jurisdiction in Abkhazia (although due to political circumstances, he’s incapable of exercising his jurisdiction). The MP displayed canonical scruples and did not send any representatives to Abkhazia, especially not bishops. If, indeed, Abkhazia comes under the omofor of the EP, it’ll be an open canonical robbery. Such a policy is quite typical of the EP, as one sees in its canonical interference in Estonia, its rather dubious manoeuvring vis-à-vis the Ukraine, and its unwillingness to recognise the presence of the MP in Western Europe and other lands. All this looks rather petty and short-sighted at a time when Orthodoxy needs to marshal its forces to oppose globalisation, to fight the de-Christianisation of the world. It looks as thought the EP’s provoking a schism in the Orthodox world. Prospects for a so-called Great all-Orthodox Council in this regard are becoming increasingly dimmer.
12 January 2012
Русская народная линия (Russian People’s Line)
The most glaring insult of this situation is that Igumen Ephrem sits in a cell whilst his political counterparts sit free, sipping piña coladas, chasing scantily-clad bimbos, catching every venereal disease known to man. Its “illegal” to “persecute” the pols… the statute of limitations has expired (conveniently) for them… how dare you even suggest such a thing (they DO sound like the OCA/ROCOR First Families, don’t they?). That is, it’s EVIL to impute wrongdoing to the pols, yet, they throw a monk and well-known elder in the slam. He’s not convicted, mind you; he might “commit other offences”. There’s something deeply and obviously WRONG in that. They’re smokin’ some potent wacky weed out there, and I want my share of it!
The Americans leaned on their puppet Bart… and Bart did their bidding, even though it hurt him immensely. Firstly, Bart’s going to get no aid from anyone to reopen Halki. You see, if Bart interferes on the canonical territory of the MP (in Estonia) and Georgia (in Abkhazia), that means that no one’s immune from interference from Langley through its EP proxy. Bart chose to piss on the Mountain and on the Russians… for what? Money from the Americans and the Vatican? Actually, if Bart turned down the Americans, they’d turn off their money spigot, and that would crimp Bart’s style immensely. He’d not go under completely, but he’d suffer a catastrophic drop in funds, which he’d try to recoup from his Greek-American sugar-daddies, in the midst of a full-blown recession. GOOD LUCK…
Indeed, this runs counter to all of the EP’s true interests. However, it shows how deeply the Phanar’s in Langley’s pocket. The chain is VERY short and they’re not averse to pulling it tighter… in public, no less. To be frank, such a dénouement had to happen sooner or later. Look at the bright side of it all… Bart’s revealed for the American lickspittle that he is. Even the Blunder can’t defend him publicly.
As of 12 January 2012, there’s not a peep on either oca.org or the ROCOR official website in support of His Holiness’ principled stand on the Igumen Ephrem affair. They can post about a yolka… but not about an unjustly imprisoned holy elder (it tells you volumes about John Behr, Andrei Psaryov, Alexander Webster, and Vassa Larina, doesn’t it?). Let’s see… the OCA’s “autocephaly” came from the Centre and the ROCOR is an integral part of the Centre… ergo, both bodies had an obligation to have echoed His Holiness’ stance. Note well that they didn’t… and I believe it’s due to such extremist rightwingers as Potapov and Paffhausen. After all, they hang out with Mormons and Moonies… and like DOES call unto to like.
You can’t do much… but you can notice who’s naughty and who’s nice. Don’t send money to the plug uglies… it’s the only thing that they understand. Pass the jug… it’s a goofball world, and it hasn’t gotten any more straight in the last 24…