Voices from Russia

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Bulgaria Marks St Dimitar Day, “Beginning of Winter”

Great Martyr St Dmitri of Thessaloniki (St Dimitar)


The Bulgarian Orthodox Church marks St Dimitar Day, believed to herald the beginning of winter, on Friday 26 October. According to Christian legend, St Dimitar is the “master of frost and snow”, rides a red horse, and the year’s first snowflakes fall from his white beard. As a forerunner of winter, in popular belief, St Dimitar is associated with the netherworld… the world of the dead and of the forefathers. The so-called Dimitrovska Zadushnitsa (All Souls’ Day) is on the Saturday preceding St Dimitar Day.

The church holiday honours the Holy Martyr St Dimitar. Legend has it that he was born in the town of Thessaloniki. After the death of his father, he became a chief of the town, accepted the Christian religion, he started teaching the residents of Thessaloniki that they shouldn’t believe and pray to idols, but that they should embrace Jesus Christ instead. Emperor Maximian ordered Dimitar thrown into a dungeon. Even locked in prison, St Dimitar continued spreading his faith among the people; because of that, he was murdered, speared in the ribs. After some time, during the digging of a ditch, workmen discovered St Dimitar’s holy remains, which radiated healing fragrant “myrrh”.

In church hymnography, St Dimitar is glorified as a martyr, keeper of kings, a man who hated war and loved peace, and a haven for those seeking help. These last images of Saint Dimitar find their own place in our folk rituals. On St Dimitar Day, people with the names Dimitar, Dimitrina, Mitko, or Dimo traditionally host great parties, where, joined by their friends, they celebrate their Name Day.

26 October 2012


Sofia News Agency




Thursday, 11 August 2011

11 August 2011. We Don’t Know Whether Moriak’s a Bad Man… We DO Know that He’s a Weak One…

Patriarch Sergei Stragorodsky (1867-1944) of Moscow and all the Russias blessing members of the “Dmitri Donskoi” Tank Brigade during the VOV… he HAD to bend in order to save the Church (but he bent only so much as he had to)… he suffered imprisonment TWICE… Moriak’s a gutless coward who folded without any resistance… DO note that.


Moriak’s recent anti-Stokoe missive wasn’t about homosexuality or “respect” at all… not really. After all, the rolling fagorama in the upper reaches of the OCA has been going on since ADS’ accession to effectual power in 1965. In fact, one of my correspondents wrote me:

If the rumours are true, and Moriak still had the nerve to write that mess to Mark… well, nothing’s changed… same old hypocrisy… same old shit.

Feodosy Lazor’s homosexuality is well-known, indeed, it’s why the OCA removed him as First Hierarch (the rumour that he had AIDS was a result of the hushed-up truth that he was a faygeler)… he was supposedly in ill-health in 2002, but he’s still alive n’ kickin’ some nine years later! Herman Swaiko’s homosexuality’s a matter of open knowledge; he lives openly with his partner near the grounds of St Tikhon Monastery in South Canaan PA. Jonas Paffhausen served publicly with both of these men at the same time at the St Tikhon Memorial Day Pilgrimage in 2010. It was a SCANDAL to all the faithful… it UPSET most people who heard of it. It was a grave blow to the Church’s cred. Does Matthias Moriak take Fathausen to task publicly for this very public enabling of the homosexual agenda by a high churchman? NO! There’s utter silence… Matthias Moriak’s as mute as a fish… he says NOTHING about this or about any of the other questionable actions of the present and past OCA hierarchy.

If he attacks Mark for “disrespect”… well… the Church deserves it for its unconscionable actions. As for the promotion of homosexuality… look at the example I cited above. It’s far more glaring and egregious than anything that Mark or his correspondents have done. In short, Jonas Paffhausen has done more to advance the “homosexual agenda” in the Church through his actions than Mark ever did through what he or his correspondents wrote. Let’s get a grip and keep a proper perspective on things! I don’t bloody care what people SAY… time and again, that’s utter bullshit, and one must disregard it (often enough, good people have to say crook things to survive in crank times such as these are… any other attitude is outright Donatism). I care for what they DO… that’s God’s standard, too. He didn’t say, “Talk about others as you would be talked about”… He said, “DO unto others as you would be done by”.

Moriak fails the test utterly by this standard. All that he needed to do was to continue Vladyki Job’s oikonomia. There are a thousand and one ways to obfusticate an importunate superior. “You know, that’s a serious question, I’ll have to discuss that at my next annual Clergy Conference… certainly, I need more input on such an important and weighty topic”… then, when one’s superior presses again, “I really have to get the sense of what the laity feel on this… I’ll have to bring it up at the next annual Diocesan Convention”. Of course, when El Gordo came champing at the bit, again, Moriak would say, “We found that there were serious ramifications for the Church in this… we formed a clergy/laity committee that’ll give its report at the next Diocesan Convention… when’s that? Oh, next year… it’s an important issue; you can’t rush on such things, can you?”

In short, a clever and wily bishop would KNOW how to spin out the process so that it would take YEARS (trust me, I mean that literally, kids), resulting in either the importunate superior dying, or, the crisis/question would “die” a natural death without any action being taken to roil the waters unduly. That’s why one of my heroes in Church History is foxy Bishop Mensurius of Carthage… I’ll talk of him at length in a later post (he inspired the opposition of the Donatists)… he and the pagan magistrate were close bros and Bishop Mensurius knew how to twist the “letter of the law” during the Maximian persecution in such a way that he safeguarded the Church, protected his pal the magistrate, and kept the Imperial authorities satisfied… all at the same time! Moriak had an OBLIGATION to do likewise… he chose not to emulate Bishop Mensurius… yes, he chose his present path.

Indeed, circumstances can restrict one’s options (and can even make one unable to intervene positively), but one does have the obligation of taking the least injurious route. However, Moriak’s a gutless punk coward (there are rumours that Moriak has a “partner” himself… did Bobby use that to pressure him?)… but, then again, Fathausen ordained him, so, he’s El Gordo’s creature, which means that one would expect him to be JP’s toady and Step n’ Fetchit. Sergei Stragorodsky couldn’t do much in the face of the Early Soviet persecution of the Church, but he never “threw a pinch of incense on the altar”… he wasn’t a sacrificator, thurificator, or libelliticor (categories of lapsi… “one who sacrificed”, “one who threw incense”, or “one who attested, but didn’t”). At most, he was a traditor (one who handed over holy things) and acta facientor (one who made false statements to survive)… which were necessary, under the given circumstances… that’s why his hometown of Arzamas put up a statue in his honour. Moriak didn’t even do that… don’t forget that the Chekists imprisoned Sergei twice… he just didn’t roll over and “play dead”, as Moriak did.

Don’t fear evil men… there’s not as many of them as we think there are. Don’t fear corrupt men… they’re obvious to kids and fools… for instance, a Piggy Iggy or an Alexey Karlgut is an object of general scorn, not respect. Don’t fear apparatchiki… they’re rather clear, too… a Lyonyo or a Potapov fools no one. Don’t fear the professors… they’re just full o’ stuff n’ nonsense… no one pays attention to a Vanya Behr or a Paul Meyendorff. DO FEAR WEAK MEN. Most iniquity in the world enters because of weakness, not because of outright evil. “My hands were tied”… what arrant nonsense! Is that what they’re going to tell Almighty God on the Last Day? Are they going to tell Him (as they did in more than one secular court document), “We admit no guilt or wrongdoing” (with a pious look on their face, no less)? Don’t forget what Our Lord said, “Throw them into the outer darkness, where there’s wailing and gnashing of teeth”. That’s a meaty reflection, kids…

Barbara-Marie Drezhlo

Thursday 11 August 2011

Albany NY  

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