Voices from Russia

Friday, 9 December 2016

9 December 2016. A Point for Priests to Ponder from Bishop Panteleimon Shatov

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To teach people to love, they need an example. First of all, love is caring and being concerned about your spiritual children. Let them know that you’re always there for them… give them your phone number, let them know when you’re at the church building, let them know that you’re ready to talk to them. Without this, it’s impossible to teach them to love. If you’re going to love them and care for them, you must do this… for they won’t learn love if you don’t. … You can also involve the active laity… for example, teach them how to greet people on the Great Feasts, teach them how to talk to others about the church and about prayer, and have them publicise parish activities. It’s imperative that priests interact with unchurched people. Many such people have good hearts; they want to engage do good works… engage them in volunteer activities. For many people, volunteering can lead to becoming more churched.

Bishop Panteleimon Shatov of Orekhovo-Zuevo

Head, MP Synodal Department for Church Charity and Social Service (OTsBSS)


Bishop Panteleimon is the Mother Church’s “tsar” of social service and social justice. He’s a former parish priest (he’s a widower with grown children), so he knows from hard experience what works and what doesn’t “out there”. He’s one of my fave bishops… he’s always out there doing what he should; he’s always out there serving the people. If anyone “gives an example” and is an exemplar, he does and he is. People like Vladyki Panteleimon keep me in the Church after the latest antics of Farley, Whiteford, Trenham, et al. Bishop Panteleimon is the REAL Church… those named (and those like them) aren’t. Keep it focused and you’ll keep it together.


Sunday, 4 December 2016

4 December 2016. Our Church Is NOT “Conservative”

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Metropolitan Mark Golovkov mopping hospital floors as his “offering” to society… note well that rightwing loudmouths such as Paffhausen did NOT do likewise…


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HH showing where his political windsock points… he’s welcoming Comrade Tsipras… HH does NOT associate with rightwing “conservative” filth


Too many (lay and clergy) have sold out to Mammon (the Republican Party). The MP just issued a paper on neoliberalism (“conservatism” in the USA), globalism, and the “Free Market”… it condemned them as evil ideologies. Our clergy have to abjure all ties with anti-Christian political movements and with sects (such as Evangelicals)… otherwise, they’re the world’s men, not Christ’s men. Only then can they act as true leaders and healers (like His Holiness, who throws parties for the homeless on his birthday… or like Metropolitan Mark Golokov, who mops hospital floors as his contribution to society). There’s much more to it than just not endorsing this or that candidate. A priest has to uphold a righteous social order… which neoliberalism isn’t.

We have to disavow liars and perverters of Church doctrine such as Josiah Trenham. He teaches that artificial contraception is sinful. NO LOCAL CHURCH TEACHES THIS. NONE. ALL Local Churches teach that artificial contraception is licit via oikonomia, and is preferable to abortion. However, Mr Trenham not only holds to his rebellious stance, he uses “Ancient Faith Radio” to broadcast his filthy perversions to the believers. Note well that ALL of the “pro-life” poseurs in the USA support the death penalty. All recent papers on the subject from the Mother Church are unanimous… the death penalty is immoral and the state should use it only in the most pressing circumstances (unlike Texas, where godless “Evangelicals” rule). In history, Russia used the death penalty much less than Western Europe did… Tsar Aleksandr Aleksandrovich routinely commuted all death sentences to 12 years at hard labour, except for crimes against the state. Why did the early commies use it so much? Firstly, they were in a hard situation… the Whites proved just as trigger-happy. Secondly, they used a Western ideology, where the death penalty was more acceptable. The Church has always stood against the death penalty… the Westerns burned heretics at the stake… the ONLY time that happened amongst us was the case of Fr Avvakum Petrov, the Old Ritualist fanatic. In his situation, the local secular officials were copying what they saw in Western Europe… it wasn’t what the Church wanted (the Church wanted him sent to a monastery in Solovki).

Yet, does the existence of these Far Right nutters mean that we must leave the Church? As the late Archbishop Antony Bartoshevich said when a younger priest recounted the latest nuttery afoot in the Church, “Yes… what you say is true. However, where do we go, if not here?” I agree with Vladyki Antony… all the horror stories ARE true… but where does one go, if not here? Christ’s Church isn’t a child’s playground or fairy-tale. It’s for real… and real things aren’t consistent or rational at times. Don’t let the “conservative” loudmouths get you down. HH is on OUR side. Look at the humorous side of it all… Whiteford and Potapov have to commemorate Kirill the Red at every liturgy, and Dreher has to accept that the Church doesn’t bless his “conservative” bloviations and fantasies. As a friend at the MDA wrote me:

We have loud rightwingers, too. Ignore them… they’re marginal. The Church is what She was ever was… they’ll either grow up or leave us. Leave them be.

I think that great advice. I wish that I’d have thought of it… but I didn’t. Keep faith in Christ and His Church. The loudmouths will either reform or leave. I agree with my friend, “Leave them be”… by the way, don’t post links to their shit, for all that does is give the idiots “click bait”, and you’ll end up helping them (I kid you not). Let them rot in their self-centred perversion. It DOES take all kinds, but one doesn’t have to agree with them or tolerate them in the name of “Christianity”. Keep on keepin’ on and keep your eyes on the REAL prize.

The Church incarnates Christ… not Ayn Rand and Ronald Reagan… never forget that…


Saturday, 26 November 2016

Patriarch Kirill Will Consecrate Russian Spiritual and Cultural Centre in Paris



Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and All Russia Kirill will visit France and Switzerland on 3-7 December. On 4 December, the Patriarch will consecrate the Holy Trinity Cathedral in the Orthodox Spiritual and Cultural Centre in Paris, and on 7 December, he will serve at the 80th anniversary celebration of Resurrection parish in Zürich. The Russian Orthodox Spiritual and Cultural Centre in Paris opened on 19 October. It is on a 0.42 hectare (1.038 acre) site in the 7e Arrondisement of the French capital, and consists of four buildings… the Cultural Centre on Quai Branly, an educational complex on Rue Université, an administrative building on Rue Rapp, and the Holy Trinity Cathedral. Administratively, the Centre is part of the Embassy of Russia in France and has diplomatic immunity. The centre is in the same area as the Eiffel Tower, the Palais Bourbon, the Grand Palais, the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (MAMVP), the Musée du quai Branly, the Hôtel national des Invalides, Musée d’Orsay, the Musée Maillol, and the Musée Rodin. The closest RER d’Île-de-France stop is Pont d’Alma and the closest Métro de Paris stop is Alma-Marceau.

25 November 2016



A Plurality of Ukrainian Believers Belong to the UPTs/MP

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A poll conducted by Ukrainian Sociology Service found that 67 percent of Ukrainians call themselves believers. The largest group of believers (39.4 percent) belong to the UPTs/MP. The self-proclaimed (uncanonical) Kiev Patriarchate had 25.3 percent, the Ukrainian Greek Catholics had 21.3 percent, and the uncanonical Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church had 4.6 percent. In addition, the Ukraine has 1.9 percent Muslims, 1.3 percent Pentecostals, 1.2 percent Baptists, 0.6 percent Roman Catholics, and 0.2 percent Jews. Over the past 13 years, the number of religious believers in the Ukraine significantly increased (50 percent in 2003 to 67 percent in 2016).

23 November 2016



Both the Uniates and so-called “Kiev Patriarchate” showed gains against the UPTs/MP, but as virtually all of these “gains” came about as the result of armed seizures by nationalist thugs since the American-fomented coup in 2014, the above figures are notional, to say the least. That is, the bulk of believers are still faithful to the canonical UPTs/MP… the Uniates and uncanonical schismatics will have a major deflation after the fall of the present pro-American fascist junta. May that day come soon, to cut short the suffering of the ordinary people (note well that the suffering doesn’t move the “Ukrainian” diaspora, nor does it move their political sugar-daddies such as McCain, Bolton, and Clinton… evil, isn’t it?).


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