Voices from Russia

Sunday, 30 March 2008

CSTO to Hold a Meeting to Adopt a Resolution Condemning the UDI by Kosovo

Filed under: Kosovo,politics,Russian,Serbia — 01varvara @ 00.00


Boris Gryzlov

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) will hold a meeting in St Petersburg on 3 April to adopt a resolution condemning the UDI by Kosovo, Boris Gryzlov, the Speaker of the State Duma, told journalists in Moscow. The draft resolution highlights the fact that the unilateral separation of Kosovo from Serbia without the consent of the Serbian government created a dangerous precedent for other regions. The fact that some states recognise the independence of Kosovo means simply that they do not abide by international law. The SCTO comprises Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.

30 March 2008

Voice of Russia World Service


30 March 2008: A Thought from Fr Vsevolod


A bishop preached a sermon to seminarians and the girls from a diocesan college. The keynote theme of his address was our exposure to worldly vices. “What kind of society surrounds us? (The bishop held up his hands to heaven) On the right of us, are prostitutes! (His right hand pointed to the right, where the college girls were) On the left of us, are drug addicts! (He gestured towards the seminarians) Directly in front of us are racketeers and mafiosi!” (Both his hands reached forth to the clergy who stood before the pulpit listening attentively to every archpastoral word)

Fr Vsevolod Chaplin

Deputy Chairman (Zamglavy) of the Department of External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate



30 March 2008 Anecdotes

Filed under: humour/wry/"people are funny",Russian,Vsevolod Chaplin — 01varvara @ 00.00

Smile a while…

Story 1

An elderly friend told me a story. He was a member of the Communist Party City Committee. He was not an ordinary member, but a member of the presidium. Once, there was a meeting of the committed activists of the Party. Anti-religious propaganda was one of the items on the agenda. The head of the department spoke, and she told everyone how solemn it is in church services, this is how the priests can work with the masses informally. “Comrades! We need to talk to people from the heart, not just repeat things from the paper, and we need to talk to them directly and meaningfully. Then, we shall have a chance to stop the growth of the church”.

(Vigorous applause)

The Secretary for Ideology spoke after her, and he laid out his ideas on anti-church propaganda. He read it out from his notes flatly, stuttering badly. All of this was very upsetting. However, we had to keep up appearances and behave with decorum. The director of a plant, an honoured old worker, who was sitting nearby, twisted uneasily in his chair and finally lost his patience. He whispered to me, “He should be sent to the church to preach. Then, we will need no propaganda! He will scare away everyone from the church!”


Story 2

A Russian football (soccer) referee died. He went to the gates of paradise to meet St Peter before entering there.

“What did you do while you were alive?” St Peter asked.

“I was a football referee!” the referee replied.

“Well, I know the lads of your sort, you’re a rum lot!”

“No, I was honest! During the final match of the Russia-France series in Moscow, I ordered an eleven-metre penalty kick to the Russian goal when the score was 2:2 and there was only two minutes left before the end of the game”.

“Huh… that sounds fishy to me! When did that happen?”

“Five minutes ago!”


Story 3

An atheist was walking down a road along a precipice. Suddenly, the stones under his feet crumble away and he fell down over the cliff. A small tree growing on the rocks arrested his flight. Hanging onto it with one hand, he thought, “Well, I have nothing to lose if I pray”.

“Do you hear me, O Lord?” the atheist shouted out.

All of a sudden, a voice answered, “I DO”.

“Save me, O Lord, and I will believe in You”.

“No, I will not. You all say so when you are in trouble, then, you do not believe afterwards”.

“Please, very, very truly will I believe in You. I swear it. Now it’s done… I believe in You”.

“Very well, I will save you. Let the twig go”.

“Do you think I’m an idiot?”


Story 4

A woman went to a voodoo witch doctor.

“Help me to get my husband back! He’s left me with three kids and ran off with a young trollop”.

“Okay, let’s see what I can do for you”, the witch doctor said.

A week later, the woman came back and she was whiter than a sheet.

“Well, is your husband back?” the witch doctor asked.

“Yes, my husband is back, but, it’s my first husband… who died twenty years ago!”


Story 5

It was in Communist Russia on New Year’s Eve. The university students drank and celebrated. However, for the Orthodox it is the strictest week of the Nativity Fast and the feast day of St Boniface, the healer of drunkards…

One student, a future abbot, said his evening prayers and heard his mates knocking at the door. “‘C’mon buddy! Come with us!”

“Sorry guys, I can’t. I’m not alone”, he said meaningfully through the half-open door.

“Okay, we see. Sorry. Have a good time!” his mates replied leeringly, and left.

“Well, it was true that I wasn’t alone. God was with me”, the priest smiled, recalling the incident years later.




Fellow Muslims Slam Russian Mufti

Filed under: Inter-faith,Islam,religious,Russian — 01varvara @ 00.00


A mosque in Tartarstan at dusk

The Russian Central Muslim Spiritual Administration condemned a statement by Nafigullah Ashirov, co-chairman of the Russian Council of Muftis, that Zionism is similar to fascism, an assertion that caused a rift between the council and the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia (FEOR). “By his words, Mufti Ashirov endangered interreligious peace in the country”, Rastam Valeyev, the Muslim Spiritual Administration’s representative in Moscow, told Interfax-Religion.

“This is not the first time that the self-styled ‘Supreme Mufti of the Asian Part of Russia’ provoked a scandal and inflicted serious damage on interreligious dialogue”, Mr Valeyev said. Much has been said recently about anti-Semitic and anti-Orthodox statements by Mufti Ashirov, but “it is Muslim leaders who have been the targets of the sharpest and most insulting statements made by Mufti Ashirov”, he said. “Since 1992, Mufti Ashirov has constantly, and in the dirtiest way possible, insulted the chairman of the Central Muslim Spiritual Administration, Supreme Mufti Sheikh ul-Islam Talgat Tajuddin, his associates, and North Caucasus Muslim leaders”, Mr Valeyev said. Mufti Ashirov “has brought discord into Muslim communities stretching from Yekaterinburg to Sakhalin”, and the Administration is sorry it “believed in his seemingly sincere repentance of his criminal past”, Mr Valeyev said.

27 March 2008



Editor’s Note:

There one has it. Not all Muslims are fire-breathing fanatics. They are quite… NORMAL (GASP!). Get the smelling-salts, Herman… I think there are a few who fainted at that remark. Nevertheless, such is true. Russian Muslims have been patriotic and good citizens, and anyone who says otherwise is living in Cloud-Cuckoo Land. Of course, there are fanatics, but, unfortunately, we Orthodox have them as well! Oh, bother… I think I dropped a few more with that remark.


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