Voices from Russia

Friday, 17 June 2011

17 June 2011. Why Fathausen’s a Dead Duck… and Why the Centre Isn’t Backing Him to the Hilt

Filed under: Canada,Christmas,Metropolitan Jonas Paffhausen,Orthodox life,USA — 01varvara @ 00.00

“The whole thing about lemmings is just a myth. Religious cultists, on the other hand…” Here are the HOOMies, the konvertsy, and all the other supporters of JP’s lies and skullduggery. DON’T argue with autocephalist fanatics… they won’t change. Just make certain that YOU don’t follow them off the cliff.  


If you look at history, the coverup was always more damaging than whatever someone may have done.

Congressman Eliot Engel (D-NY)


The Internet era’s defining vice has been thrown into sharp relief. It isn’t lust, smut, or infidelity, though online life encourages all three. It’s a desperate, adolescent narcissism.




There are two things dogging Jonas Paffhausen:

  • An inability to be upfront about his past relationship with Gleb Podmoshensky (GP)
  • A general refusal to face reality

There’s more, of course, such as his refusal to be frank about his involvement over the years with the HOOMie cultists (both before and after their formal “reception” into Orthodoxy), his bringing over monastics without getting the proper releases beforehand, the foundation of a pseudo-diocese with only eight functional parishes, claiming non-existent support from the Centre for his harebrained schemes, and his blatant attempts to pack the Holy Synod by pushing his pals (and former BTU classmates) Eliel and Brum as episcopal candidates. Yet, these are the two main stumbling blocks as to why most grounded people don’t trust JP.

Everyone knows that GP’s deposition was public and messy, full of Sturm und Drang. Can you believe that the HOOMies are trying to shut up criticism of their idol JP by saying that JP wasn’t aware of what GP was and why the ROCOR Holy Synod deposed GP? That’s ridiculous… I remember the heated discussion on the East Coast surrounding l’Affaire Platina… it was full of sickening and frank detail, kids… no one was unaware of what was involved in it. Reflect on this… JP was closer to the situation than I was. JP was in California, and he had an intimate relationship with GP. He was aware of all the stories… he knew that all the brotherhood had left Platina in disgust, except for Eliel and Christiansen… he knew that the ROCOR Holy Synod deposed GP… and, yet, he went to Russia under GP’s auspices a few years later. This leaves JP with a series of questions to answer:

  • Did JP take any of the sacraments from GP at any time after GP’s suspension and deposition from the priesthood by the ROCOR Holy Synod?
  • Did JP give any money and/or gifts to GP after the latter’s deposition? Under what circumstances, and for what purpose?
  • How many times a year did JP go to Platina?
  • Did JP help to finance the Russki Palomnik boondoggle?

As the morals charges against GP were a matter of public record, JP has an obligation to explain why he stayed in prolonged contact with (and engaged in business in favour of) a deposed clergyman. The HOOMie “explanation” that JP wasn’t aware of what was involved is a mockery… if I had heard of it (and I DON’T claim to be the most-informed source, kids), it was clear that JP knew much more than I did, for the simple reason that he was closer to the situation geographically, and because he maintained a chummy relationship with GP, the principal figure involved in the affair.

In short, the former HOOMies still exhibit classical signs of cult behaviour; in this case, they lie when information surfaces that a cult leader is other than what he pretends to be. What should concern us is that we can see this tendency not only amongst HOOMies, but also amongst konvertsy in general. All one has to do is to see the posts of Dreher on ocatruth.org… don’t forget that Dreher stated publicly that he and Freddie M-G visited Platina, well after the deposition of GP. Podmoshensky is an equivocal figure, to be sure, but many of us don’t wish to admit how heavily this questionable figure contaminated many of the konvertsy. Part of it is our fault… we won’t condemn this charlatan… we fear that if we were to do such, it’d open up questions on other cases.

I say, let the truth be known… we have to admit that frauds such as Sam Greene, Laurence Mancuso, Panteleimon Metropoulos, Pierre l’Huillier, and Gleb Podmoshensky, amongst others, walked in our midst, and all too many of us turned a blind eye to it all until it became too gross to ignore. By the way, I’m no great fan of Seraphim Rose… his work at Platina fell into utter ruin after his death. GP ripped it all down in an astonishingly short time.

JP is covering up his past. He has a duty to “come clean” as he holds a high public office of trust in the Church… he’s not a rank-and-file priest; he’s not an ordinary layman. We can and should make generous allowances for ordinary folks and clerical footsloggers. Our hierarchs, on the other hand, are exemplars, and if a bishop refuses to tell the truth about their relationship with a deposed cleric, the only thing that the Holy Synod can do is to depose him with all dispatch and speed.

Look at the situation unfolding in DC… if a Russian bishop acted in contempt of the MP Holy Synod, let me assure you, the Archpastoral Council (or the Interconciliar Presence) would depose him without hesitation… do look at the case of Diomid Dzyuban. The OCA Holy Synod has a DUTY to remove Fathausen for disobedience. Shall they? I doubt it… the only one with any guts is Mel Pleska… and one man a Holy Synod doesn’t make (that’s why the Brum Doctrine is rank heresy). I fear that this cheesy play is going to grind its way to its end in fits and jerks… many will be hurt… many will have their faith tested (or lose it). If I wasn’t a believer, I’d walk away from it all.

Shall you swallow a kopeck’s worth?

Shall we?

Barbara-Marie Drezhlo

Friday 17 June 2011

Albany NY


17 June 2011. Good Sense From Russia… Are Schmemann’s Books Worthwhile Reading?

Filed under: Christian,Moscow Patriarchate,Orthodox faith,religious,Russian — 01varvara @ 00.00

Stop! DANGER AHEAD! If we take care of our bodies by not drinking or eating dangerous substances, we should care for our souls and minds by not reading dodgy and erroneous writings. Professor Osipov is one of the most brilliant Orthodox thinkers alive today… we should heed his warning… we should disregard such “interested parties” as Vanya Behr and Chad Hatfield… 


Aleksei Ilyich Osipov, an eminent Orthodox theologian, professor, and lecturer at the Moscow Theological Academy, offered us his opinion about the works of the well-known Renovationist thinker, Protopresbyter Alexander Schmemann. Answering the question of whether reading Schmemann’s books was worthwhile, he said, “It depends on what your desire is… What does it mean that something is worthwhile reading? Is it worthwhile walking down the street and looking around? Is it worthwhile visiting museums or libraries? What does it mean, worthwhile? What’s the criterion of something being worthwhile? If you’re concerned with the Christian point of view, then, ‘worthwhile’ is that which helps you to change your bad and sinful life. Therefore, you must ask yourself, ‘Do Schmemann’s books offer a path that help one to change one’s way of life?’ I’d say that Schmemann was a very intelligent person, a person with a very elevated intellect. True, his discourses, on the rational plane, are sometimes attractive. I’d say he had a good mind. Unfortunately, however, he was rather far from understanding the spiritual life. In his journals he puts it plainly, ‘I can’t understand all those Brianchaninovs, Theophane the Recluse. My soul isn’t touched by them; they don’t speak to me’”.

The most profound analysis of the books of Protopresbyter Alexander Schmemann was undertaken by the well-known Ukrainian writer Igor Druz. In his opinion, “Schmemann’s books are unintelligible and rather ambiguous; they’re incompatible with the spirit and letter of the Gospel and the patristic writings, where sin is always identified clearly and distinctly, where light and darkness, and sin and righteousness, are unquestionably set apart, where we read about hell and retribution. In [Schmemann’s] books, such notions are denied by being left out, and they’re totally forbidden for his followers, as well. … In fact, Fr Alexander tried to invalidate the very idea of truth by constantly uttering mutually exclusive illogical theses; he blasphemed fasting and prayer, saints, ascetics, and confessors of Christian faith. Besides, his every blasphemous pass against them was ‘sweetened’ with some sentimental verbose discourses about Christ and misunderstood ‘early Christianity’. … The danger of Schmemann’s books, especially his Journals, isn’t only that, in them, he openly slanders the Church and our Motherland, he also wants destructive reforms for the Church. As a general rule, he tried to do away with the very notion of truth by skillfully mixing truth and falsehood. With all his books he fought against solid criteria of good and evil. Let your word ‘yes’ be ‘yes’ and your ‘no’ be ‘no’; everything else is from the evil one (The Gospel according to St Matthew 5.37). All his anti-church statements hide behind the fig leaf of ‘probably’, ‘maybe’, ‘it is likely’, or ‘seems like’”, Druz remarked.

Aleksei Osipov

Professor Emeritus, Moscow Theological Academy

17 June 2011. If They’re Crook in One Thing…

Don’t forget… both JP and Potapov are rightwing nutters… remember how the Bushies wouldn’t tell us the truth about the Great Recession until it was on for a full year (couldn’t hurt Lil’ Mizz Sarah and McCain, after all)? JP (with Potapov’s and Lyonyo’s encouragement and aid) is doing the same thing… birds of a feather, ya know.


Today, I wrote on the defiance on JP and Victor Potapov to the teachings of His Holiness regarding peacemaking. Other things flow from this beyond JP’s and Potapov’s defiance of His Holiness’ specific teachings on social justice, peace, and economic equity. Don’t forget… Fathausen CHOSE to meet with the First Profit of the Mormons rather than meet with a visiting bishop of the persecuted UOC/MP (did he refuse to do so in order to please his Uniate pals? Perspirin’ minds wanna know!). Potapov CHOSE to aid Fathausen in his defiance of the OCA Holy Synod by helping JP find shelter for a group of nuns that JP illegally and uncanonically brought over form Greece.

Sources tell me that Potapov did so on the property of St John the Baptist parish in DC (near the Russian Embassy), then, when it got too heated for him there, in an unspecified Maryland location… Potapov lives in MD (which means that he has the local “connections” to be of “assistance”), I believe in Takoma Park or College Park, both of which, ironically, are Berkeley East, if you catch my drift. Delicious irony, no? An extremist rightwing neocon fanatic living in the midst of Obamatron Woodstock Redux… the Washington Times meets Mr Natural! This has relevance for us insofar as the nuns took shelter in MD. Remember, JP has NO DC connections (he’s not been there long enough, and he doesn’t have any street smarts and good sense, in any case)… he’s reliant upon his local contacts… ergo, a discussion of Potapov’s role in the situation isn’t only kosher, it’s mandatory!

It’s clear to all… these guys are rebels; they’re giving the “bird” to us. They’re REFUSING to resolve this as ordered by the OCA Holy Synod. To be blunt, the OCA Holy Synod should depose JP for his disobedience to their ukase… and the ROCOR Holy Synod should depose Potapov for abetting and aiding him. They should, but they won’t… things are going to get far dicier in the short term as a result. Trust me on this, they’re going to become very dark, indeed. Shall you take my hand? The road’s just gotten a great deal more bumpier and nastier…

Barbara-Marie Drezhlo

Friday 17 June 2011

Albany NY

Editor’s Caveat:

Here’s a warning to all First Family appartchiki: Hands off certain people (you know who I’m talking about)… you tried pressure once before, it was crude and amateurish in the extreme… in short, it was transparent. Don’t try to lean on others when it’s ME who’s doing the talking. I sign my name to my posts… I take responsibility for them, don’t even think of pressuring others for what I say.

By the way, none of you should put up with clerical bullying. If we were all to do so, it’d stop, and in short order, too. Priests aren’t special people… in Orthodoxy, married priests are no great shakes… the only time that one should “respect” them is when they’re vested and serving… otherwise they’re ordinary sorts on the same level as everyone else, they’ve no warrant to lord it over parishioners or browbeat them.


17 June 2011. His Holiness on Peace and a Multipolar World…

If not me and you… then, WHO? This has more resonance than just the peace movement… if we don’t act, if we sit supinely because cowardly priests counsel us “things have always been this way”, we DESERVE whatever we get. I know where I stand… what about you?


I’d like to applaud wholeheartedly the leadership and activists of the Russian Peace Foundation (RPF), and all those who take part in its good work, on the 50th anniversary of its foundation. I see quite a few people of my generation in the audience today, who remember well the circumstances that led to the foundation of this body. Do recall the difficult international situation of the late ‘50s and early ’60s, when there was no restriction upon nuclear weapons tests in the atmosphere, in outer space, or underwater. This terrible situation placed the world on the verge of irreversible environmental damage, and in general, as people said, it placed us on the brink of war. At that time, from all over the world, supporters of peaceful solutions to international problems arrived in Stockholm, where they adopted a proclamation calling for a ban on the use of atomic weapons. This document played an important role in maintaining peace, as it showed a broad-based determination to put a stop to the use of nuclear weapons. After that, as you know, a large-scale campaign to end the testing of atomic weapons started, which culminated in the signing of an agreement banning the testing of such weapons in the three areas I mentioned earlier. I’m talking about the anxious character of those days in order to emphasise the fact that the RPF didn’t come out of the blue; it voiced the aspirations of many people. Of course, then, in a highly-ideologised state, the RPF couldn’t avoid the influence of that ideology, and, because of the global scale of its operations, the Soviet authorities dictated that ideological approach. However, no matter what the perception of the RPF was at the time, its “output” (as an engineer would say) was a noteworthy indication of the fact that people didn’t want to live in an environment where, at any time, a war could break out, and where vast resources were consumed by the arms race.

Today, I think it’s important that we have organisations with a concern about global issues in our country. Over the last decade, the majority of our people directed most of their attention to internal problems, but international questions largely determine the overall context under which the entire human race and civilisation, including our country, acts. Joint efforts, including those emanating from NGOs, are important, for as Chancellor Gorchakov once wrote, “We must focus our forces; we must remain one of the poles of influence in a multipolar world”. Both politicians and economists favour multilateralism; for everyone understands that the creation of a unipolar world, one that has a single point of political and economic decision-making, is dangerous for the entire globe, for all countries. On the other hand, at least, most people understand that the unipolar world is like a man balancing on one leg; it’s an unstable system. Remember, one can only have balance in a secure system. Incidentally, it’s true not only in politics; it’s true in family life, too, for example. There’s no equilibrium between husband and wife unless there’s reciprocity. This concept is relevant to all spheres of human relations. A unipolar world based on the hegemony of one political centre isn’t viable. It seems to me, today, that Russia, along with a number of other states, in particular, those in the SCO, defends the idea of multipolarity, calling for the existence of a multiplicity of power centres in order to create a proper balance, to ensure the safety of our planet. Well, we all know the consequences of the hegemony of a single centre in the world. It’s sufficient to recall the tragic situation in Kosovo, in Yugoslavia, and in some other parts of the globe, which I’d prefer not to speak about now, because we’ve all heard of them, it’s been splashed all over the TV newscasts.

In my view, the most important role of organisations such as the RPF is to implement what one can call “people’s diplomacy”. It’s clear that society and NGOs should have a chance to voice their concerns, including those on international relations. It’s bad when the only voice heard comes from the government’s mouthpieces. The government has a programme; it has goals and objectives regarding international relations. However, it’s very important that people have the opportunity to express their understanding of events and, thereby, influence the international situation. I’m firmly convinced that Russian NGOs must carry out this task, they must take upon themselves the burden of doing so, and one of the first to do so was the RPF. As we saw in the video that we just watched, we can conclude that the RPF doesn’t only deal with international problems, although it seemed to me that in the video had a skewed focus, it spoke more about charity, rather than on the activity for which the RPF was created. Today, I think that we shouldn’t ignore its original mission. The RPF should manifest itself as a NGO that can express the opinion of a large part of the Russian public on current matters that concern the whole of mankind, as Mr Ban Ki-moon so rightly said in his message.

Of course, I give special thanks for great humanitarian work carried out by the RPF. Especially, I applaud their support for young talent, that’s especially important today, for it strengthens the ties between the generations. The disturbances of the ‘90s created many problems in generational relations. Since there was an ideological paradigm shift, that divided people, therefore, our contemporary challenge is to overcome this new division, to preserve the unity of our people… including the link between the generations. Furthermore, we can’t overstate the importance of what the RPF does… its events are remarkable affairs, involving youngsters and seniors, at all sorts of meetings, conferences, and much more besides. God willing, the RPF shall continue its activities in such a vigorous fashion. I’d also like to thank the RPF for its multifarious assistance to orphans, for its annual youth camp, and for its rallies at war memorials, involving both youth and veterans, bringing people together. This mutual cross-fertilisation between the generations, in my humble opinion, will be one of the more important factors in the general moral improvement of our society. Again, I’d like to applaud the RPF sincerely on its 50th “golden” anniversary, and I’d like to express the hope that, with God’s help, it’ll continue to carry out its charitable activities, as well as its tireless work for the sake of world peace and prosperity, both throughout the world and in our Motherland. Thank you, for your consideration.

16 June 2011


Official MP Website


Editor’s Note:

You have a stark choice as an Orthodox Christian… you can follow His Holiness, you can support his call for peace in a multipolar and multicultural (in the good sense) world, of a world with mutual respect and heartfelt cooperation. On the other hand, you can follow Fathausen (and his éminence grise Potapov), and support the rightwing neocon fantasies of the Teabaggers… a world of nasty repression by the Corporate class, a world where any deviation from Washington’s diktat results in bombing and occupation, a world where “might makes right” and where “money talks and bullshit walks”. You can have the Bottom Line or you can have Just Equity. You can have the world of the Holy Gospel or you have the world of Hobbe’s Leviathan and Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged (with an excursus into The Book of Mormon and Think and Grow Rich).

You can see that there’s more involved here than just adherence to Christian principles of Justice and Peacemaking. Those who disregard these things also disregard other basic Christian teachings… as the current imbroglio concerning JP, Potapov, the OCA Holy Synod, and the Greek nuns illustrates abundantly. There’s much more to this than just “peace”… if you find that someone defies His Holiness in one thing, you can count on them to be rebels to the bone. Don’t let shows of “conservatism” and smarmy pietism fool you… that’s irrelevant, in any case. Look at what His Holiness does and says (meeting with Fidel Castro and Gennady Andreyevich, calling for the end of the blockade against Cuba, and demanding government aid for families), then, look at what JP, Lyonyo, Potapov, Lebedeff, Bobby, and others do and say (belonging to the CFR, associating with the Moonie-run Washington Times, and speaking at Uniate conferences). One of these things is NOT like the other…


Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.