Voices from Russia

Monday, 17 July 2017

17 July 2017. The Famous Basso M O Reyzen Sings “Песня о Щорсе” (A Song About N A Shchors)



N A Shchors was one of the heroes of the Civil War… he drove the White Poles and their Galician Uniate nationalist lickspittles out of Kiev. He was a feldsher (medical assistant) in the tsarist army, but he took special courses and become a combat officer. He led Red partisans in successful resistance against the Polish and Galician Uniate occupiers of Little Russia until a rival shot him during a battle.

People’s Artist of the USSR M O Reyzen was one of the most famous Russian bassos of the 20th century. Mark Osipovich was from Gorlovka Raion, in what’s now the DNR. That is, he wasn’t “Ukrainian”, as the area wasn’t handed to the Ukrainian SSR until 1924. He served in the First World War in the infantry, was wounded twice, and earned two George Crosses. As a singer, he earned three Stalin Prizes of the First Degree. He was active on stage until 1985… when he was 90-years-old!

It looks like neither N A Shchors or M O Reyzen are high on the Galician Uniate nationalist “hit parade”… that’s why we should honour both of their memories and respect their legacies… they live on in the DNR and LNR.



Saturday, 15 July 2017

15 July 2017. V I Lenin on Socialism


Tuesday, 18 April 2017

18 April 2017. The Imperial Family… What They Were, What They Weren’t


The Imperial family aren’t “Martyrs” in the Church’s eyes… they didn’t suffer for the Faith. They’re “Passionbearers”… those who bore their suffering and deaths in a Christian manner. This isn’t a minor distinction. It means that the hoorah that you hear from certain ROCOR elements is pure BS. The Church doesn’t endorse monarchy… it never did… it doesn’t… it won’t. Individuals within the Church did… but that doesn’t mean that the Church “as Church” endorses and blesses monarchy. It’s just one of the many forms of human government out there. The Church DOES bless the Christian forbearance shown by the Romanov family. It says “amen” to that. However, that doesn’t mean that it approves of the system that they headed. If the Church called them “Royal Martyrs”, it’d give monarchy a boost, but the Church chose not to call them that. The ROCOR had to adjust its terminology at the Reconciliation… the Centre made it clear that “Royal Martyr” was unacceptable (it also made it clear that the ROCOR couldn’t canonise non-Orthodox just because the Reds killed them).

In this year of the centenary of the October Revolution, we’re going to hear much rubbish from the usual sources. I’d remind you that many of them had Nazi collaborators in their families… that doesn’t bother them. Puts a far different face on their rants, doesn’t it? Let’s honour the Romanov family’s faith and let’s fight the loudmouth anti-communists. After all, they gave succour and support to Hitler… what more need I say?


Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Patriarch St Tikhon on Vengeance


Today, many suffer resentment and frustration. They urge you to thirst for vengeance; they’d put a sword into your hands. Orthodox Rus would see carnage; people would see enemies everywhere. So far, what we’ve had is minor… a most serious test and agony lay ahead. However, never… never… deify or reach for the sword. Don’t do it. Don’t wish to wield it. Truly, in these current parlous days, to repay evil with good is a podvig* in Christ, a legacy and an exemplar for future generations, and an unsurpassed testament and blessing. You’ll build up the indestructible glory and greatness of our Holy Orthodox Church in the Russian Land and even her sworn enemies will call her Holy and laud the purity of the podvig of her ministers and believers. I wish mercy and peace on all those who can accept and follow this.

Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

Epistle of St Paul to the Galatians 6.18

St Tikhon Bellavin

Patriarch of Moscow and all the Russias


  • Podvig: Should NEVER be “Englished”… one of the most powerful words in the Russian language. There are literally no English equivalents strong enough. Podvig has overtones of “epic”, “heroic”, “bravery”, “self-sacrifice”, “victory”, “effort”, and “triumph”. It’s best to leave it as is, and admit that English lacks the necessary material to give meaning to this word.


To provide context, St Tikhon wrote this in 1919, at the height of the Civil War. I dedicate this translation to Vladimir Saemmler-Hindrichs, who passed yesterday as the result of a stroke. He was a man of good repute and character… although we often didn’t agree. I believe that he would’ve been as touched by this as I was…


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