Voices from Russia

Monday, 23 June 2008

Archbishop Ioanafan says that the Enemies of the Unity of Russia and the Ukraine shall be crushed just as Team Russia smashed Holland in their Football Match

CD cover of The Liturgy of Peace composed by Archbishop Ionafan. When such a peaceful man is aroused, watch out!

One of the hierarchs of the canonical Ukrainian Autonomous Orthodox Church (MP) who arrived in Moscow to take part in the MP Archpastoral Council called those who wish to destroy the unity of Russia and the Ukraine “spiritual invalids”. “Today, some attempt to pervert and denigrate the true meaning of the Baptism of Russia in the waters of Kiev. In fact, it was not only the baptism of the people of Kiev and the surrounding towns; it was the Baptism of all Russia”, said Archbishop Ionafan of Tulchinsk and Bratislavsky in addressing the participants in the Rus Pevchaya (Russia Sings) music festival. He noted that many attempts to destroy the unity of these two fraternal Slavic peoples are launched today. “However, nothing shall come of the actions of these spiritual invalids, because the Lord granted to us, to Russians, Ukrainians, and Byelorussians, our triune Holy Russia as a means of our unity, and we must zealously guard this union”, Vladyki Ionafan stated. He is certain that “just as Team Russia smashed the Dutchmen [in their match], so, we shall also crush the enemies of the unity of our peoples”. Some of the ensembles singing at the Rus Pevchaya festival performed sacred music composed by Archbishop Ionafan.

23 June 2008



here is a cut from the CD pictured above… good stuff

Editor’s Note:

This is unusually harsh language for Archbishop Ionafan Yeletskykh, who is well-known as a composer and patron of the arts. His anger is due to the provocations offered by Orange fanatics, “Orthodox” schismatics, and Uniate proselytism. The Ukrainian people are rising to the defence of the faith just as they did in the 17th century. I pray that a similarly-successful outcome awaits the canonical Orthodox faithful today as it occurred for their forefathers. There is hope for the Church of Christ when men such as Vladyki Ionafan stand up and are counted.



The MP calls for the Establishment of an Official Corps of Chaplains in the Army and Opposes the Conscription of Clergy for Armed Service

“Unofficial” chaplains in a Russian forces unit. The MP wishes to formalise this arrangement.

The MP called for the establishment of an official corps of chaplains in the Russian forces and spoke against the cancellation of draft deferments for clergymen. “If we were to remove clergy from the deferred list, if all of our young priests were sent to do army service, of course, this shall not solve any of the problems that we have in the forces”, said Archbishop Feofan of Stavropol and Vladikavkaz at a press conference in Moscow on Moscow. “If this were to happen, the Church would suffer, for we have many young priests”, he added.

In Vladyki Feofan’s opinion, we should rephrase the question. If clergy are required to serve in the army, they should serve by bearing the Word of God to the troops as unit chaplains, “for they have accumulated spiritual experience”. In particular, in his view, this shall help to solve the problem of the dedovshchyna (literally, “rule of the grandfathers, the harassment of younger recruits by their seniors: editor’s note). Archbishop Feofan noted that in the Northern Caucasus, which is under his spiritual care, there are many units of the forces. “I see that there is a crying need for priests to serve with the forces, for our soldiers long to hear a word of comfort and wisdom before heading into harm’s way”, he said. Vladyki Feofan said that the topic of the establishment of an official corps of chaplains in the forces shall be on the agenda of the Archpastoral Council, which is in session from 24 to 29 June in Moscow.

23 June 2008



The ROCOR proposes that some Orthodox feastdays should become State Holidays

Archbishop Mark Arndt of Berlin and all Germany (1946- ) (ROCOR)

The ROCOR believes that some of the Orthodox feastdays must become days-off in Russia. “On some of the Orthodox feastdays such as the day after Easter and the day after Trinity, our children should not be in class. We can get our children excused in foreign countries, therefore, I think, we should urge [Russian society] to do likewise”, said Archbishop Mark of Berlin and Germany of the ROCOR at a press conference Monday in Moscow. In answering a question about whether the ROCOR was celebrating the 1,020th anniversary of the Baptism of Russia, Vladyki Mark noted that it is not usual in the West to note non-traditional anniversaries. “It is a good thing that Russia is celebrating this anniversary. It is correct and necessary, because for many decades the Church was forbidden to observe its feastdays, and they were not counted as state holidays”, he said.

Speaking about the forthcoming Archpastoral Council, Archbishop Mark stated, first of all, it is necessary to strengthen the unity between the church in the motherland and the church abroad, which was achieved on 17 May 2007 by the signing of the Act of Canonical Communion in Moscow. “The consolidation of [this union] shall not occur at the stroke of a pen, it shall require long and patient labour. We hope that our participation in the upcoming Council shall contribute to the strengthening of our unity”, he said. Vladyki Mark added that “one of the lacunae in the interaction between the MP and the ROCOR appears to be an insufficient amount of contact between the parishes and clergy of the now-united church”.

23 June 2008



The Russian Exarchate in Western Europe (EP) calls all who accused it of Russophobia Slanderers

St Aleksandr Nevsky Russian Orthodox Cathedral in Paris. As this church and the one in Nice were built from imperial funds, they are rightfully the property of the RF. The EP jurisdiction is a squatter in legal terms.

The Russian Exarchate in Western Europe (EP) accused those of its parishioners who accused it of Russophobic tendencies of intentional slander. “In keeping with our consistent general policy, the Exarchate Council declares its unwillingness to enter into any discussion with slanderers, whoever they may be, and it sharply condemns this deceitful and low campaign, which has the goal of destabilising not only the parish in Nice, but, the Exarchate as a whole”, said a statement of the Council, posted on the official website of the Exarchate.

In the spring, a parishioner of St Nicholas Cathedral in Nice, Lydia Plas, the former secretary of the church council of the Russian Orthodox Association of the City (ACOR), wrote an article in the Parisian newspaper Russkaya Mysl (Russian Thought) that stated that Archpriest Johannes Heidt, the rector of the cathedral, and other of his clergy express frankly Russophobic viewpoints, they intend to “obliterate Russian traditions and eradicate them”. As a result, in parish life, “anything that is Russian is blocked and restricted”. Soon after the publication of the article, the primate of the Exarchate, Archbishop Gabriel of Comana, banned Mme Plas from Holy Communion for an indefinite period.

In turn, the Exarchate Council at a session on 17 June advanced the opinion that the “deliberately false fabrications” delineated in Mme Plas’ article and some other articles written in support of her by some other parishioners “are part of the dispute surrounding the lawsuit in Nice concerning the real and legal owner of the cathedral, to which the Russian Federation has made a claim. Such claims are unworthy, they are humiliating, and we find them unacceptable. We cannot allow such a scandalous slander in our church life, and we protest the way in which it was made public”, the statement of the council noted. It also expressed sympathy and support to Fr Johannes Heidt, the rector of the St Nicholas Cathedral, “in his difficult and important work in normalising the life of the parish, in its spiritual and pastoral care, and in its organisation and management”.

23 June 2008



Editor’s Note:

It appears to me that Gabriel and his gang are losing the lawsuit. The church, after all, was built using Russian government funds prior to World War I, and it is only logical that the property should revert to the Russian Federation, the legal successor to the imperial state. The Paris Jurisdiction is even more frail than the OCA (yes, Virginia, such is possible), it has declined from over 100 parishes to less than 80, mainly by parishes returning to the Mother Church of the MP (one such parish was the one at Clamart, which successfully resisted the attempts of the young Alexander Schmemann to introduce Renovationism there in the late 40s).

This body is important for it is the group that introduced, via Schmemann and his cronies, Modernism to the OCA. Is it any surprise that both bodies are sinking into the abyss?

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