Voices from Russia

Sunday, 17 February 2019

17 February 2019. A Warning on “Enemies Within the Gates”

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The REAL Church doesn’t uphold the rich and the present order… I thought that you might like to know that

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I fear that the plug-uglies won’t go quietly into that dark night. Sadly, Bezos and Buffett will find defenders amongst ordinary sorts. A tip-off is whether someone is Evangelical or not. Interestingly, Mormons and JWs are Evangelicals socially, but not religiously. Evangelicals take Calvin to the extreme, teaching that God blesses the rich. To be fair, Jean Calvin himself would’ve rejected such an interpretation, but American Evangelicals do believe that. The richer you are, the more blessed by God you are. The historical ignorance of most Americans enables the spread of this lunacy. They simply don’t know that Evangelicalism is a relatively-recent heresy, being a product of the Second Great Awakening of the early 19th-century. Since its inception, Evangelicalism devolved into nothing more than a barely-religious apologia for American Exceptionalism, with no resemblance to any form of historical Christianity. The amorphous religious anarchy present amongst Evangelicals mirrors the social anarchy of laissez-faire Capitalism of the most feral sort.

If it came to it, Bezos and Buffett could call on White Evangelicals to uphold their buccaneer Crapitalism. It doesn’t matter that the order of society now regnant is repugnant to and counter to all tenets of historical Christianity. The White Evangelical is ignorant; furthermore, they revel in and relish their ignorance. That’s why Orthodox must be wary of all converts from this movement, as it isn’t Christian in any possible way. Indeed, a “whole new world” must arise in the mind of anyone who transits from Evangelicalism to any form of Christianity (let alone Orthodoxy). That’s why we shouldn’t ordain former Evangelicals as clergy. Experience taught us that they never give up their Evangelical heresy; they merely become Evangelicals with a liturgical itch… one need only look at Trenham and Damick to see the truth of this.

Yes, the White Evangelical would take up arms to defend the rich. In return, the rich would allow them to attain some of their goofier societal notions. That’s why the pro-life movement is evil to the core. It’s not so much about pro-life as it’s become an apologia for the most feral wing of the Republican Party. I fear that real Christians and other people of good will would have to take up arms to defeat this diabolical system and its deluded defenders. No, the neoliberal buccaneers won’t go quietly into that dark night (whether they call themselves “conservatives” or “liberals”, they’re all the same). Whether led by Trump or by Clinton, they’re the culmination of the evil that arose and mushroomed in the age of Reagan and Thatcher. Don’t be deluded. The White Evangelical will form ranks around the rich and their Upper Middle running dogs. Never mistake them for Christians.

Sadly, I’d remark that we must say that of virtually all converts from Evangelicalism to Orthodoxy. They drag Christ and His Church through the mud to defend the rich and the present neoliberal order. Yes, the rich do run things and democracy is deader than the dodo, as the last presidential election proved. Trump and Clinton are two sides of the same evil debased coin. Here’s the most curious part… the typical White Evangelical doesn’t share in the prosperity of the One Percent, but they defend the present order as God-given.

Have a care; we live in parlous times. Yet, there’s hope… the Oak of Mamre collapsed, but new shoots came forth and local Christians nurture and protect them. That’s a sign for us… the times will be difficult, our trial may be very harsh, but we’ll prevail, and life will blossom forth anew. However, in the near term, we must defend ourselves against “enemies within the gates”. Remember, “Not all that glitters is gold”. In like manner, not everything that claims to uphold life does so. Take my hand… the road ahead is very rocky, indeed…

BMD

Tuesday, 5 February 2019

Lavrov Slams New Ukrainian Church as “Travesty of History” Aimed at Dividing Both Nations

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On Tuesday, Minister of Foreign Affairs S V Lavrov said at the Russian-Tajik Slavonic University that the establishment of the so-called Orthodox Church of the Ukraine violated the precepts of state non-interference in ecclesiastical life as well as the canons of Orthodox Christianity:

The decision was totally illegitimate under all canons… both the canons of state non-interference in ecclesiastical life and the canons of Orthodox Christianity itself, because the 1686 decision on transferring that church under the Moscow Patriarchate’s auspices made in Constantinople is irrevocable. All you have to do is to read it. I believe that this travesty of history, which  pursues the objective of sowing discord between Russia and the Ukraine, in addition to preventing our peoples from being friendly, is essentially a crime [by the current Ukrainian régime] against their citizens.

Ecclesiastical standoff in the Ukraine

The current leadership in the Ukraine sought to create a local Orthodox church independent of the Moscow Patriarchate ever since it came to power after a violent coup in 2014. Last April, Ukrainian President P A Poroshenko sent a letter to Patriarch Bartholomew Achontonis of Constantinople requesting autocephaly for the Ukrainian church. The Poroshenko régime cobbled together a “unification council” held in Kiev on 15 December 2018, which announced the creation of a new church, the so-called Orthodox Church of the Ukraine. The EP handed over a Tomos of Autocephaly (a clerical decree on establishing an independent church) to its head, “Metropolitan” Epifany Dumenko, on 6 January 2019. Both the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church/MP and the central apparat of the Moscow Patriarchate consider the newly-established ecclesiastical institution schismatic. Other Local Churches either condemned Constantinople’s actions or chose ostentatious silence. None of them congratulated Epifany on receiving a Tomos of Autocephaly.

5 February 2019

TASS

http://tass.com/society/1043295

Putin sez that Russia Reserves the Right to Defend Religious Freedom in the Ukraine

Peace procession of the canonical UPTs/MP in 2016… it contains 85 percent of the Orthodox believers in the Ukraine

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President V V Putin noted that the struggle for power is a problem in church life in the Ukraine; it seems that a project based in speculation and politicking is taking place. He stated that Russia doesn’t wish to interfere in the situation, but it reserves the right to react to human rights abuses there. On Thursday, Putin spoke at a solemn ceremony noting the 10th anniversary of the MP’s Local Council:

Fraternal inter-church ties historically united and brought people together, serving to develop equitable relations between Russia and many foreign countries. However, unfortunately, we see other examples where speculation, politicking, and parasitism affecting questions of religious life led to disunity amongst the people, provoking anger, and fanning fanaticism. Such projects aren’t related to faith, but are obvious fakes, being entwined with the struggle for power taking place in the Ukraine. It’s regrettable that it involved the Patriarchate of Constantinople. In fact, this was blatant interference in church life. Its initiators looked as though they had learnt from the godless of the last century, who expelled believers from churches, and harassed and persecuted the clergy. The Russian authorities consider it unacceptable to interfere in church affairs. We respect and will respect the independence of church life, especially, in a neighbouring sovereign country. Nevertheless, we reserve the right to react and do everything to protect human rights, including freedom of religion.

31 January 2019

Interfax-Religion

http://interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=71945

Tuesday, 29 January 2019

Christmas: A Celebration of Light, Family, Peace, Love, and Joy

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To His Holiness Kirill

Patriarch of Moscow and all the Russias

Dear friends and comrades, my brothers and sisters!

From the Pacific Ocean to the icebound White Sea, our entire state is ready to celebrate Christmas… a beloved traditional holiday, the first in the new 2019. I’d like the feeling of joy, togetherness, and love to last for the whole coming year. Traditionally, we celebrate Christmas with the people most dear and close to us… our parents, children, grandchildren, workmates, friends, colleagues, and those with whom we share our joys and trials. However, according to ancient tradition, our thoughts turn these days to those treated badly by life, those who even on these joyful days are cold, hungry, uncomfortable, and anxious, and to those who vigilantly carry out their duty to protect the Motherland, to those who look after our health and safety. Mercy and gratitude figure largely in the Russian national character, in Russian people, in all those who live on our blessed land. Therefore, first of all, I want to give Christmas greetings to our servicemen, border guards, police, rescue workers, doctors, and volunteers, as well as to all those sick, weak, afflicted, orphaned, and homeless.

On this bright holiday, we look back as we gather around the festive table as if starting a new beginning in life. We evaluate our achievements; we blame ourselves for our errors, we make wishes, we give each other gifts, and we make plans for the coming year. On such days, we more than ever feel the unity of the past and the future. We can particularly clearly feel during the Christmas holidays the unity and interdependence of the world, of peoples, of countries, and of continents. Today, it’s more and more obvious that the formula of the “end of history” is fallen. The West actively imposed this on us immediately after the destruction of the USSR, when it seemed to many in the West that they defeated the ideals of social equality. Current events show that it isn’t so, history hasn’t reached a conclusion. The struggle for the interests of the working people, for justice, which is trampled upon by self-lovers, exploiters, and rapists, is only growing.  The confrontation between labour and capital, between rich and poor, is growing, becoming ever more acute and spilling over into open protests of the disadvantaged. We give them our sympathy and special support during these Christmas days.

Our great state is now a target for continuous attacks by its traditional opponents and detractors. A siege is coming for our country, when the base of the “approach” is almost along its entire perimeter… not only to intimidate us but also for possible aggression. The goal is to grasp the gigantic resources of Russia, to take our open spaces connecting East and West. They want to make our people forget their dignity and great history. We, as heirs of a mighty state and its glorious past, are particularly concerned about the process of alienation of the fraternal Ukraine from the Russian Federation, which they are trying to strike at the very heart, to knock out the canonical Orthodox Church, which is the support of the people. When the new government banned the activities of the Communist Party of the Ukraine in 2015, when they subjected its headquarters, newspapers, and offices to pogroms, when they defamed its leaders and activists, we warned that the process of destruction wouldn’t stop there. Indeed, such happened. In the Ukraine, not only do we see a revival of Nazi madness, but also a dangerous church schism, conceived far from the Dnieper and implemented with Byzantine cunning and American-English perfidy.

The schismatics don’t heed the words of the Fathers:

Making divisions in the Church is no less evil than to fall into heresy … even the blood of martyrdom doesn’t wash away the sin of schism.

St John Chrysostom Interpretation to Ephesians: 65, 11 

They don’t hear the witness of Orthodoxy:

The division of the churches is the work of the devil.

St Ioann Kronshtadtsky My Life in Christ Part II, 9

They don’t attend to the sayings of righteous elders:

Fear division and schism in the Church! Fear to fall away from the Mother Church, for only it alone holds back the lava of anti-Christian revelry in the world now! … Our task is to protect the Church from schism and heresies.

Archimandrite Ioann Krestyankin

In these hard times, we wish steadfastness for all Orthodox, not only those in the fraternal Ukraine. We all need to be firm and faithful. We hope that the cup of trials and torment would pass us by. We hope that the lava of bitterness won’t cover the Ukrainian land and that a hopeless “St Bartholomew’s Night” wouldn’t fall on it. We still believe that we can admonish the misguided, sober those intoxicated with anger, to reach out to our disoriented brethren, addressing them with the message of the poem Slavs by Fyodor Tyutchyov:

Hello, from us to all of you!

On the feast of peace and love …

Although hostile destiny

Separated us,

We’re still one people,

Sons of the same mother

Finally, we wish our beloved Russia to overcome inertia and embark on creative transformations in the interests of the majority, without imitating others, without the camouflage of showy festivities. It’s very important for us to return to the main achievements of the Soviet period… affordable education for all, truly free healthcare, and high-quality social security. The past year dealt a severe blow to whole generations of our citizens, who now have to work even longer, rolling up their sleeves in order to receive their expected and deserved reward from the state in the form of pensions. It’s become ever clearer to those able to see and hear that the course imposed on our country is a course going nowhere. As promised, we’ll continue to strive to achieve the creation of a socially responsible government focused on the national interests of the country, which would take care of the workers, overcome poverty and corruption, and wouldn’t serve the oligarchic clans who illegally appropriated gigantic resources for themselves. We can and should invest the national wealth in science, education, culture, and sports… in real modernisation, not its ostentatious imitation.

The quality of any policy is determined by the welfare and well-being of our people, by their life expectancy and education, and by its respect for our country and people. To realise our national interests, we need new objectives, another way of thinking, and a new socio-political culture. In this Christmas holiday season, the KPRF and other popular patriotic forces once again affirm that we’d actively struggle with all the situations facing our people, for the creation of social justice, to implant a creative and honest moral-political situation in the country and in the authorities. We must turn away from the course of destruction and return to the path of goodness and creativity. Otherwise, we’d spiral finally into the funnel of the crisis.

My dear compatriots, I greet all of you on the holiday, I hope that together we’d be able to prevent adversity and protect our fellow citizens, as we see in the All-Night Vigil:

Preserve us from hunger, destruction, fear, fire, sword, foreign invasion, internecine strife, and from all enemies, visible and invisible.

I believe that every malice and pride in everyday life, despondency, and negligence in our hearts will come to an end, and love, humanity and brotherly love would strengthen them.

С Праздником! С Рождеством Христовым!

To the feast! To the Nativity of Christ!

6 January 2019

G A Zyuganov

Head of the KPRF faction in the RF Gosduma

Chairman of the TsK KPRF

KPRF.ru

KPRF official website

https://kprf.ru/party-live/cknews/181627.html?fbclid=IwAR2o3HmR-bT1T649Q9O3tAmHFznylGgJTCKsvzMMlvi72ILvS3sdpB7YNK4

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