.

.

After my death our beloved Church abroad will break three ways ... first the Greeks will leave us as they were never a part of us ... then those who live for this world and its glory will go to Moscow ... what will remain will be those souls faithful to Christ and His Church. ~St. Philaret of NY






from Fr. Elias

Bright Monday 2011
Dear Brothers and Sisters in the Risen Christ:

Christ is Risen!
Our voices join with the multitude of Orthodox Christians alive and those who have gone to their rest before us. We proclaim the end of death and the joy of life everlasting through our Lord God and Risen Saviour Jesus Christ!
For the last fourteen years on this day we have been blessed with being witness to the first streams of Holy Myrrh pour forth from the Holy Icon after lying dormant (completely dry) for the entire Holy Week. Our lives are normally filled with concern that our actions born from our weakness may cause this miraculous blessing to be withdrawn by our Lord and His Holy Saint Nicholas even more so at this time, yet to understand the depth of our Lord’s love for us is to believe without question that He would not abandon us.
He suffered humiliation, torture and crucifixion for our sake and we, in our weakness and lack of faith and repentance force more suffering upon Him which He in His infinite love repeatedly endures for our sakes.
Behold the words of St. Matthew, Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.” (Matt. 25:34-36)
May we be counted among the righteous, those on the right, by our actions and our love, in this most sinful time when the Holy Gospel is disappearing in the lives of His children world-wide. Let us not be a source of discomfort to Him that loves us and protects us, let us give thanks for the wondrous blessings that we are given each day and show our gratitude through repentance and faith.
May the words, Christ is Risen, resound in us every day as we seek to fulfill our love for Him!
+Fr. Elias and Family

Stickies


Pascha Bells in Jerusalem
And The Holy Fire, in The Church of The Holy Sepulcher
Somebody kindly tell me if this you tube is not 2011.  -jh

Please watch this little bit of Paschal joy from Ghana. Most have never heard the "Znammeny" setting quite like this!
We do not know what Orthodox jurisdiction this parish is in ... But anyway, they are expressing the Paschal joy, with all their hearts, in their culture. "Dance Now and Be Glad O Zion"

PASCHAL EPISTLE







PASCHAL EPISTLE
Of the Most Reverend AGAFANGEL
Metropolitan of New York and Eastern America
First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad
Right reverend bishops, honorable pastors,
pious monks and God-loving laypeople!
Dear brothers and sisters!
Christ is Risen!

Today we celebrate the victory of good over evil, truth over falsehood, godliness over wickedness, life over death! The Resurrection of Christ is a celebration given by the Savior Himself to his faithful disciples and followers, which lasts uninterrupted until the Final Judgment. No matter how much effort people spend to create their feast days, no matter how much fanfare is accorded them, they are only much ado about nothing and their impact is a pale comparison to the great celebration of the Christian faith.

In these days, the gates of Hades have arisen out of the depths of the earth.  The entire contemporary world is now like the gates of Hades, trying to capture the Church which confesses Christ. Hades surrounds us with the faithlessness and hopelessness of spiritual torments accompanied by malice and transgressions, like a new global flood, drowning the earth with its evil. Only small islands of faith remain, which are also overcome one after another with the waters of unbelief and indifference.

“I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.”  (Matthew 16:18)  These words of our Lord Jesus Christ have already been borne out for many centuries. They have been confirmed now as well, in our days. The determiners of destinies in this world desired to turn the page in the life of the Russian Church Abroad, but the Lord decreed differently and the Church has miraculously remained alive, just as Christ remained alive despite the Devil’s self-assured belief of his victory over Him!

We believe Christ and know that the Lord will not put our faith to shame.
Truth which is trampled underfoot on earth is triumphant in Heaven for all eternity.  It is glorified in the souls of those faithful to Christ and this glorification is visible especially now in the days of God’s union with mankind! Glory be to God, Who created us and gave us the Savior, who defeated death and granted eternal life to those who trust in Him!

Truly Christ is Risen!
+Metropolitan Agafangel
Odessa, Pascha 2011

Happy Names Day

Dear "Papa"
[Fr. Gregory Williams]

April 23

St. Gregory V
Patriarch of Constantinople 1821†

...Having performed the Divine Liturgy of the Resurrection in the early morning hours of Sunday, April 10, the patriarch broke his fast with a little broth in the presence of his bishops, and then withdrew to pray and rest...  About ten o'clock he was summoned to the Turkish Department of State...  they then offered him freedom if he would become a Moslem... while his successor was being enthroned in the Church, he was hanged before the central gate...     his incorrupt body was found a month later floating in the harbor despite the heavy rock that had been tied around his neck.


Tone 4

Thou wast both a sharer of the ways and a successor to the throne of the apostles, 
O divinely inspired one,
and thou didst find activity a ladder to the vision of God.  
Wherefore, thou didst rightly divide the word of truth 
and didst strive of the faith even to the shedding of thy blood. 
O Hieromartyr Gregory, 
intercede with Christ God that our souls be saved.

Letter of Support, Encouragement, and Correction

for 3 heroic protesting MP priests
from other clergy & laity in Russia

In English

Translation from Russian (done by Vladimir Djambov)
original Russian: http://orthodoxy-news.livejournal.com/


ADDRESS TO THE ALL-REVEREND FATHERS OF IZHEVSK AND UDMURTSK DIOCESES of ROC MP 
by clergy and laity of Barnaul and Altai, Novosibirsk and Berdsk dioceses 


Dear in Christ,  Reverend Fathers of Izhevsk and Udmurtsk Dioceses of ROC MP,

We, the clergy and laity of the Barnaul and Altai and of the Novosibirsk and Berdsk dioceses, express through our address spiritual joy vis-a-vis your letter to patriarch Kiril Gundyaev, as well as our support for you. Very important is the witness to truth among God’s people, and more important even is the priests’ confession of God's Truths. 

By definition we are a Catholic and Apostolic Church and therefore it is  quite natural  to support all you – faithful children of Christ and His Church. Moreover, your word is an expression of a feeling which has ripened amidst the faithful of a need for resolute actions against the domineering of heresies in ROC MP. But inasmuch as such actions, intentions and in general the very idea to resist  militant anti-Christianity are for many[something new, unfamiliar in practical terms, and quite often not fully comprehended, there comes a need to consider these issues from the stand-point of Church doctrines. 

We – the modern followers of Christ, despite the fact that from the Holy Fathers we have a description of similar situations and the ways out of them, nonetheless we still are – in practical terms – trailblazers. And as such we are typically characterized by inaccuracies and mistakes, which however do not change the essence of the overall picture and the interpretations of the situation. Also inherent is the “criticism” of you (in a positive  way) in our reasoning on this issue, aimed at detecting mistakes and inaccuracies to the benefit of those listening and desiring to follow your  good example, and also for the cause of  bringing all to the fullest compliance, with Orthodox doctrines and in their implementation. Therefore we – as ones following in your steps – gazing firmly at your resolution and being strengthened  by your example – we also see inaccuracies in your steps (please fraternally forgive our straightforwardness) and, in turn, humbly offer ourselves to the judgment of those following us. Forgive and bless us for our reasoning & our discussion with you. 

It seems necessary to identify two principles that find existence in both your presentation and in general in religious life. First: the absolute importance and primacy of cognition, preservation and confession of the truth – both personal and common – i.e.catholic/sobornost/collegiallity, and we all  residing in this TRUTH. This is the first greatest commandment of God: “And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.” [Lk. 10:27] This is an area of the mystic union of the soul with God, – this is what we owe to God. Second: we are obliged to the world – or rather, to those who are in the world. As a rule, this finds expression in the second commandment – similar to the first – “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” [Lk. 10:27] Naturally, there are many versions of applying these principles. 

As we have already mentioned - the essential meaning - the main idea of your letter, witnesses your zeal for implementing the First Commandment, which finds expression and is summarized by the resolution of your conscience not to desire to consider, as an apostate, your Great Lord and Father, (pat. Kyrill). This is  worthy of praises and imitation from the standpoint of Christ's faithful warriors. It is not in vain that through the Holy Spirit the Church approves such decisions in the text of your referrel to the  15th canon of the Second Council of Constantinople (later on the 15th canon), and in the text of the 3rd canon of the Third Universal Council it even commands to do likewise. 

And since the commandment on love for God – Truth is basic and paramount, then it is exactly that commandment that  dictates and determines the image of implementation of the consecutive commandment on love for  neighbors, and in a wider sense – the image of our inter relations with the outside world comprising of both men in unanimity with us in respect to God, and ones hostile. And not only that, but nowadays, when straightforwardness of confession has almost disappeared: "Yes – to be a, yes , no – to be a, no” – there is great diversity of options, opinions, measures, approaches, spiritual perversions - their number is  legion. 

So, having defined these two principles of faith – let us call – from the standpoint of the former, for a straightforward, honest, Russian – Orthodox assessment of Kiril Gundyaev – both as patriarch (?) and as a simple person. Those who are willing to argue – whether we have the right to judge and assess, let them keep silent until the end of this letter. And we shall proceed straight forward to not only our right – but also our obligation, as people of God - the carrier of Truth, which ultimately always determines the legitimacy and the presence of the Holy Spirit in the solutions. It is exactly the assessment by God’s People of the course of the church's ship steersmen, and – for example, the discord and protest – that is the major and main reason to revise what bishops and theologians have adopted,  if done in mistaken haste or major error. 

This principle, which the Lord set in the very creation  of the Holy Catholic Apostolic Church, is a dogma of faith that warrants that “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against her", [Math. 16:18] Therefore, both the ones placed by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself to protect the foundations of faith from both malicious and sly-flattering wolves in sheep's clothing – let us say together with the Holy Fathers and with the Fullness of the Church – the Militant and Triumphant one, that – Kiril Gundyaev, as a religious figure is a HERETIC by definition! It is you exactly who need no listing of certain canons and dogmas of the Church that he transgressed as early as before becoming a self-elected patriarch and asserted his apostasy by becoming exactly that, a self-elected 'patriarch'. 

The main verdict on these points basically goes like this: “let him be excommunicated”, “let him be deposed”, “anathema”. If the Spirit of God speaks through the mouth of the Church saying: “so be it”, and the Church faithful offspring, in contrast to obedient angels, (which as angels are always swift to obey God's commands), we  humans are slow to believe the Words of God, then here we have in the first place a ripening up of a weak standpoint of, those who are the faithless and the cowardly, whom God shall judge, and secondly , thus leaving ample space for the evil to toss out views and options justifying the ones who have slowed down  and turned the steering wheel of the church,  to their desired destination. “But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.” [Heb. 10:39]

Therefore the firmness of our ecclesiastical standpoint is based on the hardness of the Word of God. And woe to us if our court is not like the Dread Judgement Court of God. You see – the evil is not where there is condemnation, but where it is, in the stead of God's justification, and in no lesser degree, perhaps, evil is where our justification is, in the stead of God's condemnation. And this is clearly seen from the 15th canon – “... worthy of honor befitting Orthodox Christians, for they have condemned not bishops, but false bishops and false teachers...”. Condemnation of false bishops is an honor to the Orthodox – it is their spiritual health, an evidence/witness for themselves and for those inside the Church and for those outside her.  Because: “Who is like God!,"i.e. it is God we must fear and He we must please, not men! 

If, however, in regard to matters of religion, we apply the precepts of personal piety, then the very idea of condemning God’s enemies paralyzes us with fear. And it turns out so, that as  a man hopes through non-condemnation of others,  to save one’s soul, so that later, we would hope,  one would not perish together with the rest of the craven heretics of all past ages and in all of Church history,   in the general flow of apostasy. “For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it.” [Mark. 8:35]. For there is today a  wide circle, indeed, of those "Orthodox" by name, who are in no hurry to over-burden themselves with the knowledge of the canons and the dogmas of the church ,but rather instead, to always be, 'courteous and personally charming'. 

Wherefore they, by their doing acts of spiritual whoredom, which are widely presented by globalization and ecumenical processes, have brought upon themselves  a state of delusion (prelest) and eagerly believe this spiritual whoredom. Let us not be tempted by the sly charm of those wearing sheep’s clothing. And with an Orthodox understanding heart let us discern the wolf, having about him a semblance of Godliness, even if they dare to abolish and rewrite the canons. So that here still we have no angel from heaven, and even not a (real) patriarch, therefore – together with Apostle Paul and the Apostolic Church let us speak saying: Anathema! 

Further, if you agree with the above, then it is necessary to admit that the tone of presentation, here, is inappropriate and belated, although to us it is well-understood and explainable through the norms of human ethics and politness and fraternal love. But not in this case! For being non-firm here, is derived from inconsistency. How can it be! – that one may be considered as "His Holiness", at the start of your letter, and you beg him as to one power-wielding – that same one whom, at the end of your letter you would call a heretic. Of course, such a tone in today's (repressive) official church life has no alternative. But if we call for a change of the situation in the Church, then the image of that call has to come from clear and definite objectives – a Church in Orthodox witness, piety, rectitude of confession, and love of God, being jealous to do God's will, which naturally gives birth to, a total rejection and non-loving mind, for what the Evil One, and God's enemies are doing. 

Remember St. Nicolas, St. Joseph Volotsky, St. John Chrysostom, St. Theodore the Studite and the whole host of saints. Once (correctly) if.... heretics have never before been paid homage, then all the more so now, we have no right to do so, otherwise the next great master and  father would be antichrist – more evil than (Pat.) Kiril and more glamorous than him. Poor is that warrior, who has insufficient courage to pull the trigger in the face of the enemy. You are doing the will of God and God kisses your intentions and your first step. But if your second step will be more manly, then it will attract also more Grace in strengthening yourselves.  And the fuller our compliance with the Will of God, the greater will be the support from Him. An ultimate example to us is, martyrdom.  Nowhere is God as close to us, as when we are on our cross, in our agony. And the more terrible and impossible it is for us, the more natural it is for God to help us. 

The Church needs such steps right now exactly in order to silence those saying that the MP is not a church, and that it has no grace. Unfortunately, our hope – bp. Diomede – Lord, save him – misunderstood, he did not fully understand and thus he misrepresented the Cross and that we must suffer for the truth, and he did not arrive at the truth. If, however, there will be ones who would arrive at the truth, then everyone will see what the Triumph of Orthodoxy is. Christ gave us the image of His accession on the Cross and not an image of escaping from it. And if a heretic can be stopped by anything, then it is no less than by denouncing him according to the Truth, our resolvedness up to death to stand for the Orthodox Faith and the manly daring of the faithful of Christ, which would produce fear in the sons of darkness. And if it is more, then the sword of the Master shall ultimately stop them. 

They say Arch. Michael dared utter no railing accusation when disputing with the devil about the body of Moses. If the issue were sent to court, he would have said so. We now then have been sent to do the Work of God – to keep His Church from those encroaching on her: To Exhort, rebuke, condemn, expel, excommunicate. These are legitimate church tools. If a sick man in the hospital sees the medical tools and those mastering them skillfully, then one would be calm. If however the physician has no medications, no tools, and no skills to use them – then the patient is hopeless. How long can we keep on watching and allowing the handful of heretics to destroy our Church of Christ and our people?

The evaluation of the evil produced by Kiril Gundyaev is horrible. In the stead of the crumbling – after the apostasy – Byzantine Empire, there came Russia. Who will come to replace us, i.e.  Russia? The death of the Church is the death of Russia, and the death of Russia is the death of the world. We have a living memory – when a handful of revolutionaries were spared and 100 millions, plus one billion abortions were lost. Knowing better this position of ours than you and we do, he, (Kyrill) however, does not number himself amidst the ailing. But we see the greatest joy on his face as he welcomes these true butchers of Russia and of the Russian people, “Tell me who your friends are and I'll tell you who you are”. This is  the issue regarding him as a personality from the stand point of human conscience. Another small consolation, to us, is his seeming disapproval of UEC – the universal e-cards. This is but a spoon of honey, rather, in a barrel of tar, which he needs to use to weaken criticisms on the eve of holding the wolves’ Council. UEC presupposes the perdition of individuals, while the union (i.e. of the church with the state), and ecumenism –is  the death of the Church. Which is more important? 

You're talking about Kuraev, and rightly so, but to whom are you talking? The first great master of Kuraev, is Hilarion (Alferov) and other 'advanced/progressive'  'missionary' & ecumenist athiests who run Russia still. Likewise, what about his links with the KGB. So where has he come from? Those before him were at least residual patriots, but to him the Vatican is the Motherland. Just the same – nothing gives us grounds to hope that he can become a witness against the authorities in power. Not for this purpose he and those who are with him have made friends with the rich and the noble, for to denounce them, they themselves are afraid of being denounced, as people fear of being burned by fire. Their power, truly, stands not on the Truth of God but on lies and the golden calf. And their false "symphony" (of church and state) is a product of false belief and false love of neighbor. It is obvious to the naked eye who is ordering the music. Well, has there been at least one example in 20 years when the patriarch has not blessed and the president has not obeyed? Obviously things are the other way round – any decision of the authorities will find an explanation and approval with Kiril, the wagons of (protesting & appealing) letters from the people, are for him mosquitoes in the summer heat. 

The sin of sodomy he cannot possibly condemn because then he would not be promoting and building ecumenism. It would be amazing if he himself would prove,  that he is also not engaged in it. Spiritual fornication and perversions are manifested bodily. 

The issues of the [Roman- Catholic missionaries, theological intercourses, ecumenical actions, communion with the Vatican, WCC membership – all these are components of the faith of a man called the Patriarch of Moscow and of All Russia. He stated so 20 years ago in the eye of TV cameras, laying the foundations for his work on the road to the patriarchal rank. Over these 20 years he has given us not even a hint of repentance. And even if he were to repent, he could in principle become no Ermogen according to the canons. Do not fool yourselves nor the congregation – time is precious. The variant is hopelessness.. 

We have already made such a mistake with patr. Alexiy II. Then they spoke: let there be WCC, let there be a summit meeting, let there be  Notre’ Dam de Paris – would it not be worse if there was no Alexiy II? then there would be Kiril, and this – ecumenism, which is the final goal of those plans. Our troubles are the fruits of our previous elections and standpoints. You are now assured – from the fact how they treated you – that half measures do not lead to God-pleasing results. Were he (Kyrill) a good shepherd, he would need no persuasion. Our persuasions (in the best of our dreams), can only possibly, in reality, lead to our hoped for from him,   respectfullness and actions, on our concerns. But they would not bring to life in him a heart that would love us and Orthodoxy, and that is ready to sacrifice himself for the sake of truth. He has always sacrificed what the church has gathered – in one with Christ – for the benefit of his own self. May the Lord deliver us from his hypocritical corrections, let him better remain a visible  thief and a robber, then it would at least be clear how to treat him and what to do with him. He is the visible personification of apostasy. 

There is no apostasy – and there cannot be any apostasy – without the apostate clergy, among whom Kiril numbers first. Blessed Pelagia of Ryazan said that God would not forgive attempts to justify the Judea priests. They are the successors of the works of their unrepentant predecessors who betrayed the King-Father, (the Czar-Batyushka) and vacated the throne for the antichrist. And let us not delude ourselves that they would seem to honor the King. Christ, too, is venerated by half the world, but only a few are saved. 

 Understanding the situation, is the first and major step toward separation from the scornful, a step towards purification of the People of God (The "Laos"), from all that is loathsome before God. We know from experience how beneficial excommunication can be, for those whose thinking and believing is unorthodox. This is not the infamous, misunderstood "schism" –  which is indeed a horror story for the Orthodox. People pray out of the fear of falling into schism – and exactly through this {sometimes exaggerated fear}, they  hinder the salvific (necessary) separation of good from evil, which separation was brought by Christ on earth. The Lord separates in front of our eyes, the wheat from chaff. We are not to hinder Him, but to help Him. This was commanded by the Holy Fathers, beginning with King David. 

Let the heretics hear and know – the ecumenists, globalists, Papists and tsar-machists – we are not abandoning the truth but we stay, we remain and  stand in the truth, where we have been placed by Christ together with those who have survived and won, and we have always stood firmly and have won against the gates of hell – this time we are going to win together with God, because we are His Church. Leaving us, are those who cry most of all about "schism". Even today it is already difficult to see them, as  "Orthodox", and tomorrow they will form a legion of faithful satraps of antichrist. And were they even more in numbers (than the true faithful) – this does not mean that because of this fact – they are THE Church. Although they have worked hard to defame and distort the very doctrine of the Church. But let the one who reads understand what is written. 

They decided, without us, that the fullness of ecclesiastical authority, now is the council of archbishops, the  hierarchs alone! But God did not create such a church, and it is not the one that the gates of hell shall not prevail over. He created the Holy Catholic and Apostolic – The Church in which we believe and which we confess. This faith of ours rejoices with us and in us, for ever and ever. Theirs is a wicked faith – a road to hell. This is why we are not going to apologize to them and humiliate instead  Christian Virtue, but we are going to straightforwardly, openly and boldly speak the truth to one another, which is unbearable for the devil and his servants. If, however, somewhere we are overzealous because of the action  of the passions of human nature – then let the Merciful Lord forgive and cover for repentance, we  who confess His Name. Because it is worse, if we (as Jesus teaches in the Gospel), strain to swallow the tiny (gnat)/mosquito, but then swallow the huge camel instead, trying to be 'kind'...to please this world, i.e. if we easily accept pleasant/popular lies, but cannot seem to accept the truth, then we are going to perish in evil-belief. God forbid! 

Please excuse us, if our tone seems harsh and pray for us unto the Lord – that He would lead us to a perfect knowledge of His Truth and His Love. Our love, we send to you,  together with all His faithful. Amen! 

Letter to the Editor. ADDRESS TO THE ALL-REVEREND FATHERS OF IZHEVSK AND UDMURTSK DIOCESES of ROC MP by clergy and laity of Barnaul and Altai, Novosibirsk and Berdsk dioceses “Moscow – the Third Rome”

Vladimir Djambov, Eng
00359.885.455.189 - M/cell
00359.2.855.62.62 - H
En <> Bg translation, interpreting

From Vladyka Agafangel's blog

Agafa_angel’s post [much more than just informative]
Our future. Page 72.
"Just a few words To the Udmurt clergy and those who – whenever [this may be] – would wish to follow their example.

1. The most dangerous, as I see it, in this situation is to wait for a church revolution – hopes for support by a large number of church people. This can certainly not be. God grant two or three dozen of parishioners left – that is fully enough. On itself, this expectation stems from fearing to take up the Cross of Christ – this heavy burden, but one is not to look around in search of those who would run up to help him carry it. The Lord said, “Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him  deny himself, and... take up his cross, and follow me.” (Math 16:24). He did not say [so] in the plural: [You] Take up your cross. God grant that by there was at least one Simon of Cyrene, and not only sympathizers.
2. The most dangerous also is the temptation to base the new church governance – similarly to what Bishop Diomede has done. This is a mistake and cul-de-sac, out of which – practically, there is no exit.
3. The most dangerous, too, is an error in the choice of the path future [on]. It's like in the old children's tale, where the hero is invited – out of ten virgins – to find out his genuine bride. All too many now are the proposals from all sides, but those who make mistakes, now – as a rule – never come back from nothingness. Only one out of the ten teaches humility – all others stir up pride. The gate of the Kingdom of Heaven are closed to the proud.
4. Dangerous fallacy, too, is the temptation to improve the Moscow Patriarchate (or any other jurisdiction) from within. This is known to be impossible. One should not fight evil – from evil and injustice one should flee.

As a consolation I can say that those who opted for such a step – not for the sake of material wealth – would never regret this. Poverty and persecution together with Christ are infinitely sweeter to the human soul than wealth and honor with those engaging in lawlessness."

Vladimir Djambov, Eng
00359.885.455.189 - M/cell
00359.2.855.62.62 - H
En <> Bg translation, interpreting


Thank you, Vladimir, for this translation

original Russsian
http://agafa-angel.livejournal.com/36226.html

Google English: [to read comments]:
http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&ie=UTF8&prev=_t&sl=ru&tl=en&twu=1&u=http://agafa-angel.livejournal.com/36226.html

Stickies


√ The Lenten Prayer, sermon by Fr. Macarius
This is a "MUST READ"


√ Check this out.  Reader Daniel says it is surprisingly good.


Valaam Monastery-Beatitudes video

Vl. Andronik's Letter to Izhevsk Priests


Great Lent 2011
Fourth Week, St. Mary of Egypt
To the clergy of the Izhevsk and Udmurtia Dioceses:
Archpriest Sergey Kondakov
Archpriest Mikhail Karpeev
Fr. Aleksandr Maliy

Dear Fathers in the Lord!

With great spiritual exhilaration and gratitude to our Lord God, I read your open letter to Patriarch Kirill (Gundayev) of the ROC(MP).  The warranted distress over the Russian Orthodox Church (MP) expressed in your letter is similar to the spiritual anguish in the hearts of all members of the Russian Church in the Homeland and across the world.

Your letter caused a great uplifting of spirits and hope in the clergy and flock of the Russia Orthodox Church Abroad.

It caused a great uplifting of spirits because the appeals made in your letter to the Patriarch coincide in many ways with what Orthodox Russia has been expecting from the Moscow Patriarchate for decades.

It caused hope because one wants your letter not to be grounds for retaliatory measures by your church administration, but to be accepted as the distillation of all the desires of the clergy and flock of the ROC(MP) and to serve as a call to action to bring the Moscow Patriarchate within the confines stipulated by the Canons and Holy Fathers.

Your comments regarding the Russian Church Abroad were accurate, as they apply to the part of It that remained loyal on May 17, 2007, to the Status of the ROCA and resisted premature canonical unity with the MP. If the Moscow Patriarchate would only welcome the requests shared by both of us, then the long-awaited and genuine unity of the Russian Church based on Truth would be achieved.

Be strong and may the Lord protect you!

+Humble Servant Andronik
Archbishop of Syracuse and Nikolskiy
Archbishop of Ottawa and Canada
Vice-Chairman of the ROCA Synod of Bishops

Memory Eternal

Protopresbyter Valeriy Alekseyev -feast of the Annnciation

Protopresbyter Valeriy Alekseyev was born on February 16\March 1, 1937, in Odessa and was baptized in the church at the St. Dmitriy cemetery. His father, Boris Andreyevich Alekseyev, and mother, Vera Petrovna Alekseyeva-Grossul-Tolstaya, were both Orthodox.
Fr. Valeriy’s mother was persecuted for fifteen years as a member of the nobility and landed gentry. Fr. Valeriy’s father was a lieutenant in General Denikin’s army and earned the Order of St. George, Imperial Russia's highest military order. During World War II, he was a member of the Russian All-Military Union and Russian Corps in Serbia. He was repatriated later to the Soviet Union. He was trained as a medical doctor. He was sentenced to the prison camps for 15 years in 1950. He was rehabilitated posthumously in 1993. The family lived in a house in Odessa on the same street and near the house of the Aleksandrov family, who were parents of ROCA Bishop Daniel.
From the age of seven, Fr. Valeriy was an altar attendant in the Church of St. Mary Magdalene, Equal to the Apostles, which was known as the “church of the Russian officers.” Orphaned by the death of his mother, who died at an early age from tuberculosis, and his father’s imprisonment, he had a difficult childhood and equally difficult teenage years. The love of life in the church was felt from an early age and formed the basis for the rest of his life. He began reading on the kliros of the Holy Trinity Church in Odessa, and in the 1970’s, he entered the second class of the Leningrad Theological Seminary. He completed his studies at the Moscow Theological Seminary.  Fr. Valeriy was consecrated a reader, then later a subdeacon and ordained a deacon on October 27, 1994.  He was ordained a priest on November 4, 1994. He served in parishes of the Tulsk-Belevsk, Kirovogradsk, Nikolayevsk and Odessa dioceses of the MP. Fr. Valeriy was later named dean of the Izmailovsk district and taught comparative religion and sectology at the Odessa Theological Seminary.  He was also the secretary of the MP Odessa diocese administration.
Fr. Valeriy never supported “sergianist” church policies and fought for the truth at every assignment in the church. After long considerations of his life in the church, a pastor’s duty, responsibility before God and his personal salvation, and the grave violations of dogma by the MP episcopate, he decided to join the Russian True Orthodox Church, which was a jurisdiction of the ROCOR Synod of Bishops at that time (it was registered as a ROCA diocese in 2004). He joined as a priest on November 2, 1997, after completing the rite of penitence as instructed by the Holy Gospel, “And ye shall know the Truth, and the Truth shall set you free.”
Fr. Valeriy was the rector of the Church of Holy Martyr Tsarevich Aleksy since March 15, 1997. He also served as dean of the Odessa deanery since February 23, 2001, chairman of the Spiritual Court of the diocese since February 5, 2002, and dean of the Sts. Cyril and Methodius theological seminary since 1998.
In his years as a priest, Fr. Valeriy was awarded the right to wear a kamilavka, a epigonation
(nabedrennik), and a pectoral cross. He became an archpriest in 1986 and was later awarded a palitza, a jeweled cross and a mitre. Fr. Valeriy was elevated to the rank of protopresbyter in May, 2010.
On April 4, 2011, at 17:00 Fr. Valeriy suffered a brain hemorrhage and was taken to the hospital. He never regained consciousness.
Protopresbyter Valeriy died on April 7, 2011, at 1800 on the feast day of the Annunciation.
Eternal Memory!

Why We Stopped Commemorating the MP Patriarch

Fr. Sergei Kondakov is one of the three MP priests in Izhevsk who recently ceased commemorating Patr. Kyrill.  In his remarks below, Fr. Sergei quotes parts of Patr. Kyrill's statement at the Canberra Assembly of the WCC as being highly supportive of ecumenism. He also gives a lengthy quote of Canon 15 of the First and Second Council in support of his own action to cease commemorating Patr. Kyrill.

From his BLOG 4/4/11 
Protopriest Sergei Kondakova: 
Why we stopped commemorating the Patriarch? 

We often hear this argument: "But the Patriarch is open ever taught heresy, not distort the Creed."  However, these statements contradict the set of facts.  Is it not a distortion of the meaning of the Creed, said: "I believe in One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church, ROC participation in the so-called World Council of Churches, which is essentially the World Council of heresies and sects?  And Kirill is one of the most active leaders of the world ecumenism.  And as you now make viewing this video story, he is convinced that the noxious spirit of the WCC should move in the life of the church. 

Patriarch Cyril in this video claims that "the WCC is our common home."  A common house for the Orthodox is the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. Patriarch Cyril wants "to this house (WCC) was the cradle of a single church." And here it is appropriate to ask the question:  "And is this not the cradle of the religion of the Antichrist?" 

Patriarch Cyril says: "I am deeply convinced that what happens in the Assembly, the church should take or suffer to themselves, to convey to his people."  And the Orthodox are deeply convinced that what is happening in the Assembly, is the Bacchanalia, which we must protect ourselves from both geennskogo fire.  And though our time Kirill tries to avoid sharp ecumenical statements, but all his activities, he confirmed all his many statements in the spirit of ecumenism and the papacy, he made up his patriarchate.  The proof is the work of his protege, Met. Hilarion, the Department for External Church Relations, and many other neoobnovlentsev acting with his blessing and consistently destroy the sanctity and holiness of the Church. 

Violation of church canons leads hierarchs and clergy ecumenists and impropriety in the moral sense, thus creating psevdotserkovnoe thinking of double standards.  If we are children of the Orthodox Church, each one of us, from the Patriarch to the child should live according to church canons.  Because Orthodoxy is possible only when the retained ecclesiastical law bequeathed to us the apostles and holy fathers.  We do not advocate that we should be intolerant towards people of other faiths, because God created us free.  And we respect the people of other religious views, but at the same time remember that the Orthodox should live by the rules of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. 

We waited a long time from the patriarch Cyril real change in the direction of Holy Orthodoxy, but most of our conscience can not tolerate lawlessness, and we use the right afforded us by the Second Council Rule 15.  We give all of it, because our opponents like to cite as an example but only the first part:

 "What is defined on the presbyters and bishops and metropolitans, the one chiefly befits the patriarchs.  Therefore, if an elder or a bishop or metropolitan dares to deviate from communicating with his Patriarch and will not offer his name for a particular set and rank in the divine taynodeystvii, but before the announcement of the cathedral and a perfect conviction it maintains self-division, that of the holy Church has determined to be complete strangers to the priesthood, if only to be rebuked for this transgression.  However it is defined and approved of those who under the pretext of some charges back down from its primates and doing splits and dissolve the unity of the Church.  For separating from communion with the Primate, for the sake of some heresy condemned by holy Councils, or fathers, that is when he (primate) preaches heresy publicly, and teaches her openly in the Church; if any, and protect themselves from communion with the so-called Bishop before the conciliar consideration, not only are not subject to the put the rules of penance, but worthy of the honor that befits the Orthodox.  For they have not condemned the bishops, but false bishops and false teachers, and not split intercepted unity of the Church, but tried to safeguard the Church from schisms and divisions." 

That's why we decided not to call the Patriarch his great master and his father before his repentance.

http://portal-credo.ru/site/?act=monitor&id=16153

http://translate.google.com/translate?js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&sl=ru&tl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fportal-credo.ru%2Fsite%2F%3Fact%3Dmonitor%26id%3D16153

Barnaul Parish Captured

Through a Google translation we glean that the Church in Barnaul was captured by police Sunday 4/3/11 after liturgy.  There are 3 articles including a consoling letter from Vl. Agafangel and a "photo essay" which tells the story in pictures on the OrthodoxNews site


"Putin Corruption"

by Boris Nemtsov

Topic: Some real facts about real life in Putin's KGB ruled neo-soviet  Russian Federation:....and this is the 'now, new and  free Russia' that ROCOR/MP, and the Kremlin's KGB controled puppet espionage tool, 'church', the 'Moscow Patriarchy' trusts and supports and has  submitted itself to???

WAKE UP TO THE FACTS, all you who have bowed so foolishly to that 2007 'union' with the MP. FLEE IT!!!

It is NOT The Russian Orthodox Church, but a communist fraud front-organization formed by the God-hating communists after Holy Confessor  Patriarch Tikhon's passing, and officially established by Stalin in 1943, to use the deep religious sympathies of  common Russians, for their own secular/atheistic/immoral/worldly power purposes, i.e. to help the communist elites, to RETAIN their old soviet-days power....,   no matter how many, in pure ignorance, or by strong-armed coercion, accept it as genuine. The facts, prove otherwise.

And, may...someday...soon, Russia be truly free, and become a prosperous and happy great nation, not what the super corrupt and greedy KGB/FSB gangsters are doing to it & ruining it and the whole Russian people now.
GOD SAVE THE RUSSIAN PEOPLE!

See:
top posting: 4/3/11 'Putin Corruption', by Boris Nemtsov. The fifth installment of Nemtsov's 'White Paper' series on the many failures of the Putin regime.  
One can choose the Russian original text: or:
the English translation by Dave Essel 

Links to All 5 of Boris Nemtsov's White Papers

Boris Nemtsov, former Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, and his extremely informative 5 'White Paper' exposes about conditions in  Russia today.


Note: In these White Papers, one can read about the actual sad and deeply troubled and very very corrupt  condition of the neo-soviet hangover GANGSTER  KGB regime headed by V. Putin, controling/ruining the  Russian Federation, by someone who knows and documents of what he writes.

But, of course, these are lengthy texts, and are not quick to read or absorb.
Yet, these days, for us in the free-west, we especially need to know the truth about current Russia, and not accept fairy tales....from anyone.

Perhaps, if in 2006-2007, IF more in our ROCOR knew of even some of this foul corruption there (with which the Moscow Patriarchate is also fully co-corrupt in & guilty of), our then clercial leadership MAY not have signed that pathetic May,  2007 'Act' of union with the MP-? 
Work weekend
Dear friends,
for next weekend,
April 9/10,
there is a work weekend planned at Mountain View.
Please come all and help.
Тhank you.

Swift punishments against 3 MP clergy

who wrote that recent Open Letter to 'Pat'. Kyrill-Gundaev

...The MP response to this letter was swift.  MP Metropolitan Nikolai of
Izhevsk and Udmurtyia issued an ukaz April 1 forbidding these priests from
serving, and police came to change the locks at their churches to prevent
them from gaining access.

Advocates for union in what is now ROCOR-MP expressed the view that by
joining with the MP, they would hasten the day that the MP would renounce
ecumenism.  Is ROCOR-MP now willing to speak up in defense of these
priests who represent the principles that ROCOR has always held dear?
-from the Weekly email newsletter


"Skunk" And decree for three priests UDMURSKOY DIOCESE OF MP, refused to mention smoking GUNDYAEVA


Appeal to the Metropolitan Izhevsk and Udmurtia Nicholas about the split 

April 1, 2011 
His Eminence Nicholas, Metropolitan of Izhevsk and Udmurtia from the clergy and staff of St. Michael's Cathedral. 

Your Eminence, my dear Lord Nicholas! 
March 30 at St. Michael's Cathedral in Izhevsk held a general meeting of the clergy and staff of the cathedral. The reason for the meeting was the treatment of three priests in our diocese by the Patriarch Cyril. 
Clergy and members angrily denounced the act of data "clerics", describing them as brawlers and dissenters. At the meeting it was noted that refusing to commemorate the Patriarch, the priests put themselves outside the Church. 
We ask Your Eminence to give a canonical estimate of the treatment of priests who were the stumbling block to believers, because these actions are the discord and division within the church and gave rise to slander against the Patriarch, the clergy and the clergy of our Church. 

Clergy and members of the Parish of St. Michael's Cathedral 
Signatures of forty-five people 

Russian Orthodox Church 
Moscow Patriarchate 
Izhevsk and Udmurtia Diocese 
The parish of St. Michael's Cathedral in Izhevsk

Read More:

delete

Rocor has nothing to do with vagante synods or soviet fronts.  



Odessa, 9-10 November 2011
from Minutes of the recent synod Meeting:
6. They listened to the President on the issue of uniformity in liturgical practice.
Resolved: Consistently keep liturgical practice in the form in which we adopted her from our predecessors - the Founding Fathers and the hierarchs of the Russian Church Abroad.

http://sinod.ruschurchabroad.org/111110.htm

Book Review

The news of this book is now being distributed among us. -jh

A HISTORY OF THE FALL OF ROCOR,
2000-2007
Vladimir Moss
© 2011

Having just read this very long text, by the author, Vladimir Moss (who thinks he knows all, about all subjects!), through to it's bitter end, I have only a few over-view observations:

1) most likely, much of the events, personages, documents, etc, which Moss refers to or quotes here, are more or less true......* instructive to read, THOUGH we can't be certain of his 'facts', as he has proven himself to be very biased & opinionated & unfair, & sometimes even a LIAR, and ....unstable himself, an effete intellectual SNOB living in his ivory tower, as to his own...ever changing.... jurisdictional loyalty (he has been with a number of jurisdictions, leaving most of them, by condemning each one, as 'not Orthodox enough!"

2) however, ODDLY and illogically, he is very biased in favour of the RTOC Tikhon-Pasechnik's entity, referring to it (alone), as THE only canonical & valid continuation of the pre-union ROCOR, etc.   ...i.e. Moss here reveals himself as a very petty party-HACK propagandist for his (current) favorite Russian fragment jurisdiction, while defaming all others, especially that of ROCA Met. Agafangel's.

3) he continues his long term attack upon the SIR synod, (conveniently forgetting his own glorious Tikhon Pasechnik's failed attempt at joining RTOC to it,  but when he was rebuffed and the SIR instead recognized ROCA under Met. Agafangel, THEN Tikhon suddenly condemned the SIR as 'heretical'!!!) portraying it as heretical and unOrthodox & uncanonical ...and because ROCA and it are in fraternal communion, that the TAINT of their SIR 'heresy' has also infected and rendered ROCA as, ALSO ....automatically...100% ..heretical and uncanonical, etc.-  A radical and extremist position that MANY Orthodox do not hold to... indeed everything seems to be, automatic, to Mr. Moss, with no room in his highly regimented & limited brain, for any differences of opinion or expression, etc. ...anyone who doesn't think EXACTLY like Prof Moss, is...'in heresy'.

So, in conclusion, I have found this text both of some historical interest and some value (especially in his exposee of KGB and MP plots and conspiracies, etc.), but I just cannot trust his views en toto. He has too many axes to grind and too many pre-conceived yet unsubstantiated ....guesses, as to what has motivated various people, especially so, is he very unfairly biased and prejudiced against ROCA.

And too, Vladimir Moss has the mind-set of a perpetual sectarian schismatic, not someone on the Royal Path or in a balanced view of the Orthodox Faith. He is a sectarian, PERIOD!

My final question to Mr. V. Moss: IS THERE ANY Orthodox jurisdiction, other than your current favorite one, the RTOC, that you approve of, and which you will STAY in??? ...and how long before you anathematize RTOC?

4) Moss continues his long term super-legalistic, PERSONAL & selective interpretations of 'the canons,' using SOME of them, as his weapons against rival jurisdictions, as ROCA, whom he sees, as counterfeits to his precious & all-perfect Tikhon Pasechnik's RTOC.  In such activities, how is he any different than the KGB's MP?  They use the canons in exactly the same fashion, and to the same ends -i.e. to divide and destroy the faithful.

5) laughably, he seems to not see virtually ANYTHING deficient or KGB-related or suspicious about his RTOC or wonderful perfect Mr. Tikhon Pasechnik, a total product of soviet culture, even though, many others have found many suspicious connections between that man, and the KGB.

6) why doesn't Mr. Moss address the very serious objections to his Tikhon Pasechnik, of the two escaped RTOC bishops, Bps. Ireney and Dionesy, who fled RTOC and Tikhon, and have been received into ROCA (*from what I read, they have stated long lists of wrongs and unOrthodox behaviour in Mr. Tikhon Pasechnik.... none of which accusations Moss even seems to be aware of, or is he?...though they were all over the Russian internet, not that long ago).

7) If we could hear the FULL story of all this recent Russian church history, especially of ROCOR, history, ....such  as seen from Met. Agafangel's perspective, (& I have read some of his memories and views on all this), we would get a VERY different picture of many of these events and quotes, and one which shows, in our heroic Vl. Agafangel, a very Orthodox, a very honest, and a very long-suffering servant of Christ and of Orthodoxy.  And many around our Vladyka Agafangel can attest to this goodness and sincerity in him.

But, just my personal observations about V. Moss and this his latest offering...
He pretends to care only for 'the facts', but in reality, he is just another clever propagandist..
Rd. Daniel Everiss 

---∞ ∞ ∞---

For a stark contrast see Fr. Seraphim's book review of Eusebius' Church History where he says of Eusebius:  ...Here we have not the preposterous inventions and elaborate rationalist philosophy devised by sophisticated critics anxious to prove...