Voices from Russia

Monday, 25 April 2011

Easter Message of Gennady Zyuganov: With Faith in the Triumph of Justice, Truth, and Goodness!

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Dear brothers and sisters!

On this bright, chosen, and blessed day, when hope once again fills the hearts of all who believe in justice, truth, and goodness, I offer my earnest greetings to all my fellow compatriots, to all fraternal peoples, and to Russia’s like-minded neighbours, on the luminous holiday of Christ‘s Easter.

Our generation has witnessed how the world became as one thanks to scientific and technological discoveries and to relations between states. When any land and people undergo trials, the disturbance sets off a worldwide response. The responsive soul of our people knows that there’s no such thing as “someone else’s grief”, so, they always come to the aid of the suffering and downtrodden. The spirit of the present holiday leads all of us to believe that we can overcome all of the adversities that swamp today’s world.

I’m sure that we’ll overcome attempts to deprive the nation of a future through the destruction of the best traditions and the foundations of our classical schools. We’ll overcome the machinations of liberal {Gennady Andreyevich means “conservative” in US terms: editor} politicians in our country, who are agents of wickedness, malice, anger, envy, flattery, covetousness, slander and unrighteousness (see Romans 1.25,28-31). We’ll be forever grateful to the memory of our fathers and grandfathers, as our children will do likewise, we’ll not forget how they felled the evil of the “Brown Plague” {fascism: editor}, which brought ruthless terrorism to people throughout the world.

Bodily and spiritual health… healthcare and education… should be the top priorities of the state; we should see how the leadership attends to this, for this is the standard by which we can judge their spiritual wellbeing. Our children are our future… all of us should see to it that their childhood is happy, joyful, and without care, besides this, all of society should be pro-life, because there’s no greater sorrow than to see children who have no brothers and sisters. We believe that, like the Fire of Grace spreading throughout the globe, the ideals of goodness, justice, fraternity, and equality, which were set forth two millennia ago, will settle in people’s souls and lead them to light and joy. We have full faith that this will happen, we have hope for the revival of our people and our motherland, because love eternal and high ideals remain in the hearts of our compatriots. So be it!

Christ is Risen!

00 G A Zyuganov 2011Gennady Zyuganov

Chairman of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the RF

The Head of the Communist Party faction in the RF Gosduma 

23 April 2011

Official Website KPRF

http://kprf.ru/rus_soc/90854.html

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THIS is what the Republicans and teabaggers TRULY support… and Paffhausen, Potapov, Kishkovsky, Lebedeff, Whiteford, and all the HOOMies are in their amen corner, too… 

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Editor’s Note:

If you read this carefully, you’ll see why the Church and the Party have, for all intents and purposes, joined hands in a common cause. Make no mistake… Kirill Mikhailovich and Gennady Andreyevich share a common faith, a common social vision, and a common view of the future. The Church is Red… the Church is White… and both Red and White streams of thought condemn American Neoliberalism (“conservatism”). Ivan Ilyin was as dismissive of the money-grubbing basis of Corporatism as Vladimir Lenin was (if not more so, interestingly enough). Admiral Kolchak was no Scott Walker or John Boehner (let alone such gibbering monkeys as Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin)… he advocated land reform, the social market, and single-payer healthcare. Red and White must join forces to fight the Black horde of American Corporate Nihilism (“Greed is good”… “The race goes to the swiftest”).

Note well that Gennady Andreyevich is pro-life, in the best sense of the word. The US Republican Party isn’t pro-life… it’s anti-abortion, a beast of quite another colour. Randall Terry has NOTHING in common with His Holiness… Gennady Andreyevich is on the same wavelength. Anyone who wants to shred the social safety net to enrich the already sated oligarchs isn’t pro-life, and we should say so loudly and proudly.

Note who supports the real pro-life position… state support for families, single-payer healthcare, affordable housing for all, funding for schools (and the teachers who work in them)… and those who oppose it. Both the Communist Party and the REAL Church support this position… the US Republican Party and some jumped-up Orthodox clerics in the USA (JP, Potapov, Kishkovsky, Lebedeff, et al) oppose this programme. Look at who stands for the compassion of the Risen Christ; then, look, and see who stands for the demonic greed of the “Free Marketers”.

Easter is the Feast of Feasts… it’s the Triumph of Life over Death. If Christ rose from the dead, we can rise from the tomb of Corporatism and live. THAT’S the Christian view… it’s not “pie in the sky when you die”… it’s not Pat Robertson and Sarah Palin… it’s Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light (Gospel according to St Matthew 11.28-30).

You can have Christ as your Master or you’ll have Mammon as your Tyrant… we all know what Our Lord said of “two masters”… choose well… you can choose the Life-giving Cross of Christ the True God-Man or you’ll receive the Death-bringing Cross of the False God of the Dollar Sign… you can opt for the Cooperative Society of Belief and Decency or you’ll get the Atomised Individualism of Nihilism and Self-centred Consumption… whither thou goest?

BMD

 

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Tuesday, 13 April 2010

The Wound of Smolensk is still Fresh…

The hearse carrying the coffin with the remains of Maria Kaczyńska, the wife of Polish President Lech Kaczyński, in Warsaw on 13 April 2010. Both were killed in a plane crash near Smolensk in Russia on Saturday 10 April.

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Poland bid farewell to President Lech Kaczyński and his wife Maria Kaczyńska. Archpriest Konstantin Ostrovsky told our ANN correspondent how Orthodox Christians could pray for the repose of the Catholics amongst the victims of the plane crash near Smolensk. Fr Konstantin, who is the dean of the Krasnogorsk district of the Moscow diocese, told ANN that the desire to help our neighbour is quite natural for Orthodox believers, regardless of what religion his neighbour confesses. He said, “We can wish for the well-being of Catholics, for that matter, even of non-believers, including the dead. We may ask in our personal prayers for grace for the living, and indulgence and diminishment of suffering for the dead. This is a normal and natural thing. I know people who have Catholic relatives, and they pray for them”. However, Fr Konstantin went on to say we couldn’t submit the names of Catholics for commemoration either in the Liturgy or at a Pannikhida. The Orthodox Church is the Body of Christ; non-Orthodox are not a part of that. Therefore, we do not pray for them in the context of the Church. Nevertheless, according to Fr Konstantin, we can place candles in an Orthodox church in remembrance of reposed Catholics. He said, “Candles are a symbol of prayer, a manifestation of personal, rather than communal, prayer in the Church. We do not prohibit the placing of candles [for those outside the boundaries of the Church]. Sometimes, even Muslims come and light candles… we don’t forbid that”. Fr Konstantin said that when we pray for the repose of deceased Catholics, we should ask for the relief of their suffering. On the question of whether to ask for them the kingdom of heaven, he replied, “Should we boldly ask for that?” He went on to say believers could offer alms on behalf of deceased Catholics. Unfortunately, there is the view that churches can only take offerings given in behalf of deceased Orthodox, as some say that he Church must take money only from its own. On the contrary, Fr Konstantin said that believers could submit offerings to the Church given on behalf of deceased Catholics. He said the money brought on behalf of the deceased is the property of the man who gives them. However, this charity would benefit the deceased.

Polish President Lech Kaczyński was born in 1949. Along with his twin brother Jaroslaw, he entered politics. In his youth, they fought against communism and were part “Solidarity”. For this, Lech Kaczyński spent about a year in prison. When he was mayor of Warsaw, Lech Kaczyński banned several gay pride parades. On becoming the president of Poland in 2005, he stated that he would support Catholic values and fight for strong families. Until the election of President Kaczyński, abortions in Poland were very rare. However, when he introduced a bill to ban them outright, the Sejm did not accept this draft law. President Kaczyński spoke out against gay marriage and euthanasia. He compensated those sentenced by Stalin’s courts to terms in labour camps and, likewise, to those in “Solidarity” who suffered the same fate later. On 10 April 2010, President Kaczyński was on his way to Katyń, to honour the memory of repressed Polish officer POWs buried there. With him in the presidential plane were not only the highest Polish officials, but also descendants of some of the victims of the Katyń affair. In total, 96 people died in the plane crash near Smolensk.

Representatives of the Department for External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate visited the Embassy of Poland in Russia. Igumen Filipp Ryabykh, the deputy head of the DECR, and Fr Sergei Zvonarev, the acting Secretary of the DECR for Foreign Affairs, brought flowers, signed the condolences book, and personally expressed their condolences to the representatives of the Polish state, according to the website of the DECR. They gave the Ambassador of Poland to Russia, Jerzy Bahr, and Envoy Extraordinary Tomasz Turowski condolences on behalf of Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias and Metropolitan Hilarion Alfeyev of Volokolamsk, the head of the MP DECR. “We grieve with you, we pray for the victims. These days, many Orthodox believers bring flowers to the missions of the Republic of Poland; they light candles in churches and pray. I think that we shall learn a lesson through this tragedy only if we ensure that bad weather never mars the future relations between our peoples”, Fr Filipp said to Ambassador Bahr. He pointed up that on 7 April at Katyń “our peoples were united in an Easter prayer for the victims of repression, we rejoiced in common harmony, and, today, we are experiencing a common grief that transcends national borders”. In addition, Fr Filipp mentioned the joint effort of the MP and the Roman Catholic Church in Poland on a document of reconciliation between Russians, Ukrainians, Byelorussians, and Poles, which began several months ago.

The coffins containing the bodies of Polish President Lech Kaczyński and his wife Maria Kaczyńska lying in state at the Presidential Palace in Warsaw on 13 April 2010

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Fr Vsevolod Chaplin, the head of the MP Synodal Division for Church and Public Relations, remarked on the Christian values reflected in the life of the late Polish President Lech Kaczyński. “We had rather different assessments of history, but I would like to say that he was very faithful to Christian values. He created a new party, and it came to power precisely because he insisted on the observance of the eternal and unchanging moral values, in which European traditions are intimately associated with Christianity”, he said Tuesday on a radio broadcast of the Русская служба новостей (Russian News Service). Fr Vsevolod helped to organise a private visit by President Kaczyński to Katyń in 2007, and he said that the Polish president not only prayed at the place where the Soviets killed not only Polish officer POWs, but also many ordinary Soviet citizens, he also visited the Orthodox Cathedral of Smolensk, “where he prayed and he spoke with our priests. Truly, he was a man open to the Christian soul of the Russian people. For all the criticism he heaped on Russia, he did not, I think, like so many other Western politicians, equate ‘Russia’ and ‘disbelief’”, he said. He expressed the hope that Katyń will become a place of “shared memory of both the Polish and Russian peoples, and for all the peoples that were part of the USSR”. In addition, he hoped that it would become a place that “will warn us of the fact that the frenzy of militant atheism necessarily leads to human tragedy, and that we should not repeat it. That is why there are now Christian symbols at the Polish memorial, and, a few days ago, we laid the cornerstone for an Orthodox Church, a church that would not only be a place of prayer, it would also be a place of historical remembrance”.

To try to find a positive seed in the accident may seem weird and cynical… but soldiers do not just die… they die for the sake of something. Alas, if not for the death of Mr Kaczyński, Russians would have simply ignored the memorial events at Katyń because the prevailing attitude towards this subject is a tired and irritated, “Well, didn’t this all happen a long time ago, the graves are overgrown, all they ever do is to try to stab us…” This trip to Smolensk to go to that terrible forest, well, Russians thought it was nothing but a diplomatic nicety. It took a tragedy to shock us, what happened horrified us sufficiently that we took a fresh look at the nasty history of Russian-Polish relations in recent years. These seemed to be entirely composed of grievances based upon misunderstandings. It’s not even that it is impossible to feel the pain of others as your own. You can imagine someone else’s headache, since your own head sometimes hurts, too. However, where the Poles feel suffering, the Russians feel almost no pain, and they just cannot imagine why they feel this way. In 1940, the NKVD shot 20,000 Polish officer POWs… numerically, this is nothing compared to the millions of Soviet citizens who were tortured and ravaged through the actions of those same Chekists. It’s not many, even if you take into account the vast difference in the size of our populations.

Perhaps, apparently, this staggering number of victims led to apathy; otherwise, the pain would have overwhelmed us. For millions of contemporary Russians… well, their ancestors just died sometime in the past, didn’t they? It was just like an epidemic or a hurricane. This means that their deaths have no special meaning; there is no particular reason to grieve for them, to memorialise their suffering, to require the perpetrators to repent and recognise their responsibility, or to reach conclusions about ourselves based upon this experience. If we are to honour these millions of victims, we must spare nothing when we seek for the perpetrators [and what motivated them]. We must do this even if it results in an unpleasant dialogue [about us]. It is easier to forget, to slap a beautiful blind myth upon the past (thus spitting on the bones of our ancestors) and live on. Who was your greatgrandfather? Yes, God knows, he vanished somewhere. That’s what happened at that time. Who’s to blame? Nobody, really. Beria? Beria was nothing but a “talented servant”. Anyway, it was a wonderful romantic time back then.

Consequently, we wonder and don’t understand it when the people next door make a different choice… to remember. They honour them. They reach conclusions about the events and require the recognition of guilt, even after half a century, yes, even after 70 years. In this family and national remembrance, we see nothing but an impending “crash”. Instead, we cobble together a cheap and false consensus (соборность), and now we are ready to defend that selfsame Beria… because his hands are no longer around our necks. However, the Poles, in turn, cannot even imagine that we don’t care not only about their ancestors, but about our own as well… so, they suspect that every Russian secretly supports the return of imperial consciousness, and are convinced that we are nothing but imperialists. I’d love to believe that we could break this cycle of hatred, today, right now. We are now living as though there is clearly nothing to confess… but our conscience demands that we keep alive the memory and truth [of what happened]. We have not yet looked closely at our reflection in the mirror. We must bear in mind that the enormity at Katyń was not committed by monsters, but by ordinary human beings… just like us.

That means that we must change.

13 April 2010

ANN News

Interfax-Religion

Voice of Russia World Service

http://www.annews.ru/news/detail.php?ID=220975

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=35123

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=35133

http://rus.ruvr.ru/2010/04/13/6346475.html

Editor’s Note:

There is only one thing from the above that I would point up at present, please, read this:

We are now living as though there is clearly nothing to confess… but our conscience demands that we keep alive the memory and truth [of what happened]. We have not yet looked closely at our reflection in the mirror. We must bear in mind that the enormity at Katyń was not committed by monsters, but by ordinary human beings… just like us.

That means that we must change.

This means that the present attempt by the OCA leadership to bury the evildoing of the past is not only wicked… it keeps us shackled to a juvenile refusal to face ourselves. As Pogo said, “We have met the enemy, and he is us”. Either we face the evil of the past and punish those responsible or the OCA shall die… it is quite that simple. ‘Nuff said.

BMD

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Orthodox Film Festival in Kaluga Oblast

People’s Artist of Russia Aleksei Petrenko (1938- ), to be honoured at the “Meeting” Festival

In Obninsk, Kaluga oblast, the Fifth International Встреча (Vstrecha: Meeting) Sretenskii Orthodox Festival will run from 7 to 11 February, Nun Sofia Ishchenko, the president of the festival, told Interfax on Wednesday. She told us that nearly 300 films from 14 countries were submitted for this year’s festival, compared to last year, when the organising committee received about 200 films from 12 countries, 40 of which were eventually shown. This year, the competition has already selected 60 works in such categories as best fiction, documentary, television and animated film, and 20 paintings recommended for single-source display.

Женитьба (Marriage) (1977), a film starring People’s Artist of Russia Aleksei Petrenko (there are 9 parts accessible on Youtube)

In addition to film programme, there will be master classes, roundtables, photo exhibitions and art exhibitions, and concerts of songs written by Orthodox composers. There will be an event in memory of Vasili Shukshin, with People’s Artist of Russia Lidiya Fedoseyeva in attendance, planned and created by People’s Artist of Russia Aleksei Petrenko. After the closing ceremony of the festival, the participants, according to tradition, shall visit the Optina Pustyn Monastery, where a thanksgiving molieben will be served and they will have an opportunity to meet with the members of the monastic brotherhood.

27 January 2010

Interfax-Religion

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=33933

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Ded Moroz will Light the Kremlin Christmas Tree

Poster for New Year‘s festivities in Moscow

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On New Year’s Eve, the all-Russian Ded Moroz will arrive in Moscow to greet the kids in the capital and to light the Kremlin Christmas tree. To meet the Fairytale Wizard, several thousand children will gather on Manezh Square, the Moscow City Administration reported. “Moscow will not leave its dear guests empty-handed, a play, The Student Wizard, will be presented on Manezh Square for the young Muscovites waiting for Dede Moroz. Sources in the mayor’s office told us “the show will begin at 14.00 MSK”. The stars of the presentation will be young wizards who, together with Dede’s assistants, will sing holiday songs, read poetry, dance, and do tricks. During the presentation, a large video monitor shall show a documentary chronicling the New Year’s celebrations 65 years ago in 1945, the year that Russia won the Second Great Patriotic War.

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Of course, on a day when the forces of good arrive, fabulous villains such as huge bugs, deadly germs, and Intrigue also come in an attempt to vex them. These evil forces will try to set up enmity between the young wizards and Ded Moroz, to disrupt the New Year’s celebrations. Furthermore, at the dramatic climax, they will almost succeed, but, just in time, Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov and Governor Vyacheslav Pozgalyov of Vologda oblast will come to assist the children to help the forces of good to expel the minions of evil from the capital. “After the total defeat of the dark forces, Ded Moroz will arrive along with Snegurochka in Manezh Square. They, along with the children, will say the magic words and the Christmas tree will light up”, the city spokesman added. After the tree-lighting ceremony, Dede will go to his Moscow residence in Kuzminki Park. From 27 December, he will receive visitors here and participate in pre-New year performances, according to a report by ITAR-TASS.

26 December 2009

Voice of Russia World Service

http://rus.ruvr.ru/2009/12/26/3276359.html

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