Voices from Russia

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Believers Outraged at the Excommunication of the Head of the Ukrainian Union of Orthodox Brotherhoods by the UOC/MP

I wonder why Stokoe made such a fuss of this news… it wasn’t particularly earth-shattering… it’s a bishop giving the boot to someone who irritated him… it happens all the time.


The Russian Union of Orthodox Brotherhoods (RSPB) called on Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias to intervene into the situation surrounding Valentin Lukiyanik, the head of the Ukrainian Union of Orthodox Brotherhoods (SPBU). In late June, the Holy Synod of the UOC/MP excommunicated him. In an open letter to the patriarch, members of the RSPB protested this decision, the Ukrainian edition of the newspaper Kommersant wrote on Tuesday. The UOC/MP Holy Synod described Lukiyanik’s activities as “anti-church and destructive, they sowed disquiet in church and community life, they were clearly boorish, an affront to sanctity, and a disturbance of public order”. The RSPB wrote, “It seems unfair to remove this man from communion with the Church; for two decades, he’s been at the epicentre of many struggles for Church unity, he’s repeatedly been physically assaulted by his opponents”. In response to this letter, Archpriest Vladimir Vigilyansky, the head of the patriarchal press service,  said, “The patriarch, of course, considers all requests that come to him, so, its much too soon to give a reaction to this yet. Most likely, before he responds to this publicly, he’ll consult with the MP DECR, so that they can recommend to him a course of action”. Turning to the DECR, Archpriest Igor Yakimchuk, the head of the MP DECR Secretariat for Inter-Orthodox Relations, said, “Such cases aren’t quickly resolved. We’ll have to look into the situation”. Archpriest Georgi Kovalenko, the press secretary to Metropolitan Vladimir Sabodan of Kiev and all the Ukraine, noted, “We excommunicated Lukiyanik for political activities that he carried out under the cover of Orthodoxy. It’s not a surprise that he’s criticising the Church hierarchy instead of repenting”.

5 July 2011



Editor’s Note:

Mark Stokoe made a huge point of posting an item on this situation on his website. Well… he didn’t follow it up. Does that surprise you? He NEVER does! In short, this was a highly controversial and political decision. Let me give you an American analogy. Victor Potapov, Jonas Paffhausen, Lyonyo Kishkovsky, Patrick Reardon, John Whiteford, Anthony Nelson, Terrence Mattingly, Rod Dreher, and Freddie M-G (indeed, most of the konvertsy ignoramuses fall into this category) all attempt to ally the Church with extremist rightwing political elements in the USA (especially, the so-called Tea Party, with its call to radically slash the social safety net, at a time of great economic need, no less). These extremists hold political views in contradiction to the Church’s stated position on social justice as enunciated by His Holiness Patriarch Kirill Gundayev; His Holiness has made the Church’s TRUE position clear in many public statements. They REFUSE to follow the Church… instead, they follow the extremist wing of the US Republican Party. Then, they try to insinuate that such extremist rot is in line with the teachings of the Church. A bishop should order Whiteford to remove the links to Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin that he has on his website. The first is an amoral four-time married pill-popper… the second is a Sectarian nutter who worships Jayzuss, not the Lord Christ (she also refused to serve out her term as Governor of the State of Alaska). That’s the sort of monkeyshines that Lukiyanik was up to.

As for this situation, none of the loudmouth konvertsy “experts” (nor did Mr Stokoe) caught the obvious reality behind this action. Trust me… the canons are only a fig leaf. This happened because Vladimir Markiyanovich said, “Make it so”. His aides all replied, “Yes, sir; yes, sir; three bags bloody full”. By the way… KMG owes his election to the funny white hat to the backroom manoeuvring and political skills of Vladimir Markiyanovich. VMS was also the smoky-room genius at the Sobor that elected Aleksei Rediger… everyone was expecting Philaret Denisenko (the locum tenens then) to get the cowl, but he lost out to Aleksei. That is, Sabodan was the kingmaker at the last two Local Councils. In any case, this Lukiyanik isn’t a major political figure with an independent and substantial power base… that is, he’s not a guy that’s always in the news or can make the news. Obviously, he pissed off Sabodan, and that’s that. KMG is going to go through the motions, but do watch for KMG to uphold the UOC/MP action. Oh… one last thing… Vladimir Markiyanovich is the last survivor of Nikodim Rotov’s troika in the MP hierarchy. Aleksei Rediger and Philaret Denisenko were the other two; Rediger was the late Patriarch, and Denisenko’s gone off into the outer darkness of heresy and schism. Neither Stokoe nor the konvertsy “experts” in his comboxes gave you this important detail… I did. That’s why you come here…



Medvedev Aide Visited Orthodox Cathedral in Tokyo and Talked with Metropolitan Daniel Nushiro

On Monday, Sergei Naryshkin, the Head of the Presidential Administration, visited the Orthodox Cathedral of Resurrection (in popular usage,) in Tokyo. During a conversation with Metropolitan Daniel Nushiro of Tokyo and All Japan, he thanked the bishop for the opportunity to visit this historic church. “I’ve long wanted to do this, and I’m glad that I finally did it on the [150th] anniversary of the arrival of St Nicholas of Japan”, Naryshkin said. He’s in Japan as the head of the organising committee of the Festival of Russian Culture, which recently opened. In turn, Metropolitan Daniel thanked Naryshkin for the assistance Russia rendered to the victims of the recent tsunami and earthquake. “We were overjoyed at the support that we received from the MP; they sent us such a large donation”, he said. The “Nikorai-do”, “the House of Nikolai” in Japanese, is the common name for the Resurrection Cathedral in Tokyo, in honour of the founder of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission in Japan, St Nikolai Kasatkin, whom the Holy Governing Synod sent to “the Land of the Rising Sun” in 1861. Vladyki St Nikolai translated the Scripture and religious books into Japanese, and built Holy Resurrection Cathedral. In 1970, the MP glorified Bishop Nikolai Kasatkin as one of the saints. That same year, the MP granted the Japanese Autonomous Orthodox Church internal autonomy {as a constituent part of the MP… it had been part of the American Metropolia: editor}.

4 July 2011



Editor’s Note:

When RF officials travel abroad, they meet with clerics and laity of the Russian Orthodox dioceses in the country they visit. I’m told that Greek, Serbian, Romanian, et al officials do likewise with their compatriot dioceses in the diaspora. American officials do NOT meet with Orthodox clerics abroad as a matter of course, as Orthodoxy is an insignificant minor religion in the USA, less than 0.3 percent of the population of the USA’s Orthodox (that is, “Chalcedonian Orthodox” in communion with one another)… that’s MINOR… and that’s that.

Don’t be fooled by the loudness of the konvertsy… they’re a relatively small bunch, maybe only 10,000 individuals at the most. They have a strident internet presence… that’s all. It’s like the Blunder… he’s got resonance amongst the konvertsy because he has an internet footprint, despite the fact that he’s the most hated major cleric in Russia and that KMG clipped his wings by taking away two-thirds of the old DECR (and not making him a ruling bishop, as Rotov, Denisenko, and Gundyaev were whilst heading the DECR).

Thought that you might be interested…


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