Voices from Russia

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Oh, I’m “One-Sided”…

The emperor’s new clothes… or, is it the metropolitan’s new vestments (from Moscow, no less)?


Editor’s Foreword:

I think that all accusations of “one-sidedness” have to be taken with a block of salt. After all, every one has a point they’re attempting to make, and I note that oca.org doesn’t offer anything other than the SVS/Syosset line. Does that make THEM “one-sided?” That’s something to ponder!

Oh… it’s not “OCA bashing” if one only states the facts. Your serve…



My comments, especially those that don’t make the cut are… amusing. Anglo-Saxon konvertsy whose only acquaintance with the Church is via their computers say the most INTERESTING things. They’re not very to the point nor are they objective, but, they do point up that people will believe the barmiest things. I am “one-sided”… hmm… I think that such a statement means, “I hate you for not bowing down in adoration before Jonas Paffhausen, but, I can’t say that, for they’ll take away my gold star for niceness and all the other well-balanced suburbanites will shun me”. Again, let’s look at objective reality. Let’s see where it takes us.

Since the beginning of this year, JP fired two salaried officials of the central administration of the OCA with no replacements (Tassos and Jarmus). That is to say, the Treasurer and Communications Director were given their walking papers for no stated reason. The slots were NOT refilled. Of course, there was a great commotion over the fact that the CFO of SVS would now also be the Treasurer of the OCA, but, she is being given more responsibility without a commensurate raise in pay. Do recall that she was put into the slot after a “nationwide search”. I don’t believe that anyone, save for deluded konvertsy, found that truthful.

The OCA is an institution, like all such bodies, it follows the laws of dynamics found in all bureaucratic organisations. That is, an office, once founded, shall perpetuate itself, even when it is no longer necessary or even when it is inimical to the body’s goals. Two paid slots have bit the dust. Finis. Dead. That’s all folks. Such things are usually the result of a well-thought-out reorganisation or they are acts of desperation. It’s more often the latter than the former (and I believe that is the case in the situation under review). Matthew Tate screamed about a 36G surplus… hmm… that was only after two positions with a total compensation of 268Gs hit the bricks. It also makes it easier to raid the till, for there is now only one watcher where there were two before. Does this mean that the OCA is going to confound the funds of SVS and the central administration? That’s something the konvertsy never bring up.

The publication of the OCA central organ in print format has been abandoned due to lack of funds (per Matushka Nina). The financial records of the Diocese of NY & NJ “simply don’t exist”, and we shouldn’t ask any more questions. The OCA still has not disbursed all of the 9/11 monies per a source in California (if it were disbursed, it would drop the “surplus” to 11Gs). The Honesdale loan is not yet repaid… gee… things don’t look so bright, do they? Add to that JP’s whopper about firing everyone save for a housecleaner and two secretaries as Lyonyo Kishkovsky looked wolfishly upon him, it’s certainly “one-sided”… yes, indeed! Everything points to the fact that the OCA is so strapped for cash that it is firing what few paid officials it has and that JP is an incompetent. He still has not explained his relationship with Gleb Podmoshensky, nor has he explained why he went to Russia under GP’s auspices (at a time when the ROCOR Holy Synod had publicly deposed GP). As one of my friends pointed up, I am clearly stating, “The emperor has no clothes”. Unlike in fairy tales, people don’t like being told that their idols have no substance. In fact, they react with anger and bile… “How dare you!”

Add something else to the above-mentioned facts. Holy Cross Monastery is still in the listing of OCA monasteries (as of 2000 Sunday 13 December), even though it has been in HOCNA for quite some time. It is sheer laziness and incompetence. Here’s a bunch that can’t keep their official website up to snuff and they’re asking you to trust them. If you do, you deserve everything that’s coming to you, for it’s a Ponzi scheme writ large. I would recommend that everyone look up the bio of Metropolitan Alexander Nemolovsky of the Metropolia. It’s very instructive for us today, for JP is trying the same tactics, insofar as church finances are concerned. To cut to the chase, St Platon’s Seminary in Tenafly NJ was lost because of stupid loans… sounds a bit too much like the Honesdale loan, doesn’t it?

Oh… I hear that ROWAN WILLIAMS is going to speak at SVS… on the Philokalia! That proves, even to the slow learners, that SVS has lost what little ties it had with grounded Orthodoxy. What does an Anglican know of the Philokalia? It’s like inviting a Uniate to SVS and having that Uniate insult the Holy Mountain and the SVS crowd chortled along with him. That speaks volumes, doesn’t it? Oh… I forgot! That makes me a “fearful Orthodox” who doesn’t know anything about my faith. This attempt on the part of SVS to inflate their stature is pathetic. ROWAN WILLIAMS… how could you? Chad Hatfield proves to the world that he is “a dog returning to his vomit” with this one. What more do people need?

Matushka Nina tells me that donations are WAY down. Combine that with the spiralling costs of defending Ray Velencia (the OCA defends him at all costs despite the known facts and spares no expense in that regard); the OCA is cruising for a repeat of the Nemolovsky fiasco.

Therefore, I’m “one-sided?” If the facts do lead in a particular direction, that’s where I’m going to go. What concord hath Christ with Belial? Indeed… what concord did JP have with Podmoshensky…? I wonder why he refuses to come clean on that. Think hard before accusing me of one-sidedness. Some of us remember what happened twenty years ago…

Barbara-Marie Drezhlo

Sunday 13 December 2009

Albany NY

Editor’s Postscript:
Inadvertently, I forgot to give you the URL for the Rowan Williams fiascoSad, ain’t it? Well… they ARE Anglicans in all but name only… perhaps, Rowan is coming to receive them into his communion. I never thought that I would live to see such an abomination. God DO help us.




Dmitri Khvorostovsky and Igor Krutoi Cool in Project “Déjà Vu”

Filed under: art music,cultural,music,opera,performing arts,pop,Russian — 01varvara @ 00.00

Dmitri Khvorostovsky (1962- ), People’s Artist of Russia, world-renowned operatic baritone (left) and Igor Krutoi (1954- ), People’s Artist of Russia, famous pop music composer (right)

Déjà Vu, the result of collaboration between world-renowned opera star Dmitri Khvorostovsky and pop music composer Igor Krutoi captivated listeners in Russia and Ukraine. Dmitri Khvorostovsky is a star of the world opera, an artist always distinguished by his nobility and aristocracy in appearance, demeanour, and in the sound of his voice… Most thought it unlikely that anyone could provide him a heroic programme for a show singing pop hits. Nevertheless, it happened… it was the curtain call of the year. Khvorostovsky and Krutoi performed their creative collaborative transmutation at many venues in Russia and Ukraine.

From Déjà Vu: Toi et Moi

However, did it really happen all of a sudden? Indeed, several years ago, Dmitri Khvorostovsky produced several programmes of the great songs of Russian pop music composers of the Second World War and the immediate post-war years, music from “the days of my parents’ youth”, as Dima himself put it. He also performed folk songs and Russian romances, a popular genre of urban music. Yet, this repertoire is not separated from the classics by a yawning abyss, for they have long since become classics of Russian musical culture. This is Khvorostovsky’s expected répertoire in his singing programmes in both Russia and abroad. This is a high bar to meet, and his new work in the field of contemporary pop music has become a groundbreaking triumph.

Pop music composer Igor Krutoi and poet Liliya Vinogradova are at the same level of Dima, equals of his status and talent. They created a programme for him entitled Déjà Vu, consisting of 24 songs in Italian, French, and Russian. On the stage, decorated as if it were a fantastic book of spells, the singer seemed to turn over the pages of life, contemplating the happiest and most difficult of moments…

From Déjà Vu: Muzyka

The creators of Déjà Vu required two years to work on the show before presenting the project in a concert performance. They recorded a double album and shot an impressive clip. However, the last point in the work is not yet complete, at least, in the opinion of Khvorostovsky, “The result was a kind of synthesis, because two totally opposite worlds came together in one person. It seems that I was able to grow creatively as this environment required me to learn a new role. I understand that everything’s still provisional; we’re only at the beginning of the road. It’s interesting to see how the show has transfigured me. Perhaps, I haven’t been as involved in this work, in all of its creative life… however, I haven’t approached anything with as much interest and enthusiasm for such a long time. This was my first try; I certainly would like to do something similar again, but, perhaps, something rather different from this project”.

From Déjà Vu: La Via

Well, there are bookings all over the world for the show Déjà Vu. It fully deserves such attention, and fundamentally, the inventiveness that it incarnates is understandable to any listener anywhere in the world. In the words of the poet Lilia Vinogradova, “What is so interesting in this project? Indeed, we blend quite a variety of colours, musical, literary, and historical with a range of philosophical meditations. All of this is eclectic in the best and broadest sense of the word”.

11 December 2009

Natalia Viktorova

Voice of Russia World Service


Churches in Perm Served Pannikhidas for Those Killed in the Lame Horse Nightclub Fire

Bishop Irinarkh Grezin of Perm and Solikamsk (1951- )

On the ninth day after the fire in the Хромая лошадь (Khromaya Loshchad: Lame Horse) nightclub, Bishop Irinarkh Grezin of Perm and Solikamsk blessed all parishes in the city of Perm to serve Pannikhidas for the repose of the souls of those who died in the tragedy. The bishop served a General Pannikhida for all the victims at Holy Trinity Cathedral. All the churches in the Diocese of Perm also served Memorial Liturgies. Priests preached their sermons only after the serving of the Pannikhida.

At the scene of the tragic fire, people laid flowers, lit candles, and placed pictures of their loved ones. Near the burnt-out shell of the club, mourners had laid veritable heaps of flowers, a myriad of red and white carnations, roses, and chrysanthemums. They lie on the stairs of the exit of the Park of the Ural Volunteers, and one sees them on the fence of the park. Governor Oleg Chirkunov of Perm Territory also laid flowers at the place of the tragedy and paid tribute to the victims at the memorial service at the Cathedral, ITAR-TASS reported on Sunday.

13 December 2009

Voice of Russia World Service


The Festival of Hanukkah Arrives for Jewish People

On Saturday evening, Jews around the world begin to celebrate one of the most joyous highlights on their festal calendar, the Feast of Hanukkah. As a reminder of the feast, most Jewish families set up a menorah, a special stand with eight or nine candles. On every day of Hanukkah, and the celebration lasts not one, but, eight days, observant Jews who follow the Torah will light a candle in memory of an event that occurred some two thousand years ago and was one of the key dates in the formation of the Jewish faith.

Traditionally, the celebration of Hanukkah begins on the 25th day of the Jewish month of Kislev, which, on the modern calendar, may fall during the period from late November to late December. The name of the Festival comes from the Hebrew expression “Hanukkat Ha Bait”, the Consecration of the Temple. Tradition associates the holiday with the Jewish revolt in 167 BC against the Syrian King Antiochus IV, who tried to ban Judaism, said Andrei Glotser, a representative of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia (FEOR). Mr Glotser noted, “After the expulsion of the invaders from Israel following the capture of Jerusalem, the soldiers of Judas the Hasmonean (nicknamed Maccabee) restored the desecrated and partially-destroyed temple. They had to light the main lamp of the Temple, the menorah, on the day of consecration. Moreover, the light had to continue to burn, but, there was only a tiny amount of oil for the lamp. When they lit the menorah with the oil that they had, the lamp miraculously burned without interruption for eight days until new oil was ready for the lamp. In memory of this miracle, Hanukkah is celebrated for eight days”.

Hanukkah, since ancient times, is a joyous celebration that symbioses the victory of the Jewish faith over the pagan cults. Hanukkah is like all traditional festive days, people dress in their best, guests drop in, everyone exchanges holiday greetings; in other words, there is much happiness. Housewives prepare special Hanukkah dishes such as potato pancakes and donuts fried in pure vegetable oil, which recalls the holiday legend.

On the first day of Chanukah, which, this year, falls on 13 December, in downtown Moscow, for the past several years, it has become an annual tradition to light a special holiday menorah in honour of the Festival of Hanukkah. Andrei Glotser told us that the lighting ceremony is traditionally attended by representatives of other faiths and city government officials, with whom the FEOR long enjoyed good relations. He said, “This dialogue is very productive and constructive. We see this confirmed by the fact that Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov lights the festive menorah in Manezh Square along with the Chief Rabbi of Russia. We see this confirmed by meetings between President Dmitri Medvedev with representatives of the Jewish community in Russia, and their discussions on the topics of religion and interfaith relations. I think that further interfaith dialogue and additional dialogue between the authorities and the Jewish community in Russia will be as a constructive and fruitful”.

The holiday celebrations shall culminate on 20 December. On that day, in the State Kremlin Palace, the FEOR shall hold their annual “Man of the Year” awards ceremony (this year is 5769 on the Jewish calendar).

12 December 2009

Milena Faustova

Voice of Russia World Service


Editor’s Note:

I’ve received an inordinate amount of shmutz for even acknowledging Hanukkah. I knew that there were Jew haters in our ranks, but, I was unaware as to their number. Now, I am not in doubt. There are enough of them to be a royal pain in the arse, but, they are nowhere near a majority of us. Of course, they are very loud, and they deploy the usual threats, “I’ll expose you. I’ll tell the truth about you. I’m going to spread the news about you all over the internet”.

Hmm… this is bringing out the “Bernard Manning” in my personality. Those of you, who don’t like rude language, please skip to the next paragraph. I’m gonna give these weasels both barrels. To all Jew haters, Muslim baiters, Amerikantsy konvertsy, “faggot bashers”, “canon (and Patristic and Scripture) quoters”, white supremacists, PC mavens, and all other such assorted filth: GET FUCKED!

Now, that we all feel better, let’s be blunt. Such folks tend to monopolise the discussion on all too many internet forums. It’s why many of us have abandoned them. These people distort Orthodoxy because of their manic need for security. They saw their faith or personal worlds collapse under the pressure of the modern secular world. Such is sad, but, Orthodoxy is NOT an anodyne for that. Orthodoxy is the freest of the Christian faiths… it is not bound by the Bibliolatry of the Proddies or the Homolatry of the Papists. Even the canons say, “Or as the bishop shall provide”, or words to that effect. That does not mean that we sanction the ordination of women, ecumania, denying Christ, or homosexual marriage. It does mean that our bishops have freedom of action within the stated bounds of the faith. If our bishops have such freedom, we have such freedom as well.

If you choose to hate Jews, hate Halloween, hate Santa Claus, and hate, hate, hate… there is nothing that I, of all people, can do, save to pray for you. I shall NOT argue with you or give you a forum. If you wish a forum, why, establish your own site, and start putting YOUR message out into the agora. I shall NOT put your message here.

Am I the only one to have noticed this, but, aren’t all of these loudmouths the most unproductive lot on the planet? If they put a tithe of the energy they put into trying to insert bile into other people’s websites into putting out their own sites… why, we’d all be much happier. They wouldn’t have to read things that disturb them and we wouldn’t be bothered with ignorant and sophomoric sociopaths. Nice thought… it shan’t happen. They’re much too bone-idle lazy… one can hope, no?


Next Page »

Blog at WordPress.com.