Voices from Russia

Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Ukrainian MP Archbishop Demands the Withdrawal from Sale of Playing Cards with the Picture of Grand Princess St Olga


The Baptism of Grand Princess Olga (Part One of the Triptych “Holy Rus“)

Sergei Kirillov

1993

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On Wednesday, the official MP website reported that Archbishop Pavel Vyshgorodsky of the canonical UOC/MP, the Deputy Superior of the Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra, protested the sale of playing cards with the image of Grand Princess St Olga. “As a Christian, as a bishop, and as a member of the clergy, I don’t countenance blasphemy of sacred things, whether such mockery is open or implied. I’m against the circulation of these playing cards with the image of Grand Princess St Olga categorically. These cards must be withdrawn from sale immediately”, Vladyki Pavel stated. “We’ll use all means available to us; we’ll go to the secular courts if necessary, because holy things were, indeed, profaned. First of all, please, I ask all of all of you to be sober and not be led astray by your anger, because, if you do so, you’ll have to answer for it, if not now, then, on the Last Day”, he noted. Vladyki Pavel urged “everyone to vote in favour of truth”, and he emphasised the point that “this mockery shouldn’t stand in our country, with its ancient heritage of Christianity and its strong Orthodox traditions”.

30 January 2008

Interfax-Religion

www.interfax.ru

Army Unit Composed Entirely of Orthodox Conscripts Activated in Vladimir Oblast

A Russian soldier venerating the relics of Grand Prince St Aleksandr Nevsky

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A military unit composed entirely of Orthodox believers was activated in Vladimir Oblast. “I received my call to the colours whilst I was at the Optina Pustyn, I arrived here without knowing where to find it on the map. My spiritual father said that service to the motherland is compulsory for all Orthodox Christians”, stated Junior Sergeant Denis Fedorov in an interview on the TV show Vremya (Time) on Pervy Kanal (First Channel). Colonel Andrei Lopatin, the commander of the unit, testified, “There’s no harassment in my unit, I don’t allow it. I find that believers make better soldiers than unbelievers”. A working monastery dedicated to St Zosima is part of the unit’s permanent base. The soldiers attend services regularly and they sing in the choir, which is led by Honoured Artist of Russia Leonid Pavlov. Mr Pavlov comes to the base every Saturday to hold rehearsals for the singers.

30 January 2008

Interfax-Religion

www.interfax.ru

Editor’s Note:

I’d like to add two things. Firstly, this is a creative approach to deal with the problem of dedovshchyna (literally, “rule of the grandfathers”). This is the pernicious practise of older conscripts bullying and humiliating their younger mates. If this works, it’ll, no doubt, be extended further in the army. Secondly, it’s a clever way of getting around the present lack of chaplains in the Russian forces. True, now, priests serve many units in the regions in which they are based. Unfortunately, such clergy also have parochial duties to attend to as well. In this case, the monks have the obedience of attending to the spiritual needs of the troops exclusively. Think of it… a unit of Orthodox warriors ready to defend Faith and Motherland. Isn’t that INSPIRING? One can follow the Optina fathers (who honoured sacrificial military duty) or one can follow the delusions of the “Orthodox Peace Fellowship” (who advocate shirking and draft dodging). I know where I stand… what about you?

BMD

President Ramzan Kadyrov of Chechnya Supported the Teaching of Religion in State Schools

President Ramzan Kadyrov (1976- ) of Chechnya

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President Ramzan Kadyrov of Chechnya supported the teaching of religion as an established part of the curriculum of the state schools. “I support this proposal, for spiritual and moral training must be taught in our schools”, he said in a radio interview on Ekho Moskvy. Kadyrov mentioned that he advocates the teaching of the principles of Islam in the Chechen state schools. “If our young people were taught what Wahhabis truly are, we’d have no conflict, and no new Basayevs and Khattabs would appear”, he said. Kadyrov believed that terrorists in Chechnya “used Wahhabi ideology to further their interests”. He thought that the religious education of the younger generation shouldn’t only be in the hands of the parents, “for in all other subjects, this isn’t the case”. Kadyrov deplored some current trends amongst youth, saying, “What are some young people doing now? They go about undressed, this leads to lewd behaviour and other evil things”. President Kadyrov thinks that the study of religious principles in school helps to foster in students a proper love of the motherland and a due respect for their elders.

30 January 2008

Interfax-Religion

www.interfax.ru

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