• Don't let spies see you through your computer
• Old Church News from 1998
• World Orthodox Greeks give highest award to pro-abortion Governor Cuomo
• Flying over America 6 minutes
See the articles in these magazines:
The Harry Potter Phenomenon page 14
The “Uncertain Riches” of Fundamentalism page 2
In September 2012 I asked Archbishop Chrysostomos of Etna if the monastery still stands behind the Harry Potter books.
His answer: "... We do not "stand behind the Harry Potter books," which is an absurd statement, nor do we disavow what we consider intelligent commentary that may or may not suit your personal opinions, which, however much you may exalt them, are not the criteria of Christianity of Orthdooxy. ..."
What color will your potion be?
Add some powder and you shall see!
DREADFUL DEATH OF A SINNER
Every time praying for the alive and the dead I always specially remember two names that got written in my memorial book on July 20th, 1902: Andrew and his son, whose name God knows. And every time a terrible event of their death, which was an obvious proof of punishment from God, rises up in my memory. May the Lord God forgive them for their martyr death, by the prayers of the Church, and, who knows, maybe their horrible example will serve to salvation and repentance of some lost souls.
Lord forgive and save us all!
At the time when it happened I was still a quite wealthy farmer. And there was a worker amongst all that worked for me, who lived in a nearby village, his name was Andrew Marin. Sometimes, when he wanted, he could be the best worker ever, but when he did not, no matter what you do, he wouldn’t change. I had pity on that guy, he was still very young, maybe 25-28 y.o. and I always thought that he’d straighten up when he gets older, and I would work on him until I make him change. I was young myself and had a lot of hopes in myself too...
Andrew barely made it the first year; served his term and came to get hired for the second one and asking for a raise, but my foreman was telling me:
"Don’t hire him, master, he’s no good and won’t change. What good is a man who beats his own mother when drunk? She’s been complaining to all local authorities, but the times are now that a widow can’t find any help. Don’t hire Marin!"
But I did not listen to him and kept Marin for the second term, hoping deep inside that I would be able to change him.
But soon I realized that the foreman knew better than me. I had to fire Marin for something he’d done, and I had to do it in the midst of the season when every pair of hands was for the weight of gold to every farmer. I don’t remember now what exactly he had done, but I believe it wasn’t anything minor...
A year passed. I lost sight of Marin. He did not stay in his village. Once I asked the foreman: "What happened to Marin?"
"They say he went back to the mines," he replied.
Well, I thought, mining will kill the guy!..
Who ever lived with me around here, would know what a change in people’s souls those mines did. Iron mines, stone mines, absence of influence of family and Church, communication with all sorts of promiscuous crowd, – all that broke and damaged the souls to the point, that there was almost nothing of a human left in those still young men: as if a poisonous breath of the Hades itself touched the people’s souls, burning all good and truth, which they lived by for so many years, building the greatness and glory of our Homeland...
My soul that year suffered a great change as well. In sorrows and tribulations, by a great mercy of God, which came upon me as an angry and strong storm, I took off to pilgrimage to the holy places in search for help. And then, at that time, God allowed me for the first time to come to Sarov monastery, glorified by miracles and zeal of a great Elder Seraphim. That was in 1900, three years before glorification but even then live faith of people was searching for help from St. Seraphim and was receiving great and miraculous according to their faith. And I too, I received everything that my frightened and hurting soul was searching for from St. Seraphim then.
From this trip to Sarov I brought a memory of one good and God-pleasing custom of the peasants of that area, which touched me deeply: on every road crossings and village outskirts I saw miniature chapels, where behind the glass were icons of Christ, Mother of God and saints with a vigil lamp always lit up. They were of a very simple construction: a pole with a square box on top and a roof with tiny cupola, and icons on every side of the box behind glass, some did not even have a glass. But I was not looking for beauty, nor for elegancy; but admired the love and faith of those simple hearts that built those wretched looking but great in spirit shrines. That very custom I brought home with me and implemented immediately. S oon after that, far from village, two chapels with icons to all four sides of the God’s land and vigil lamps were created. What a beauty it was especially in warm summer nights!..
Local people loved them too.
"God grant you good health!" they used to say, "look what he’s done! The other day, I was riding from town , a little drunk, devil playing in my head, fussing backward and forwards with co-travelers and wife ... Look! Icons! And with vigil lamps! I stopped and crossed myself, prayed for your health and next thing, see, stopped fighting!"
Winter came. People were saying that my chapels did a lot of good to the orthodox people in dark autumn nights and during blind winter storms; some were even saying that those little houses of God saved someone from death: one got lost in a fearsome winter storm, came across one of the chapels and then could finally find his way home. Those stories were bringing a lot of joy to my heart... And people started bringing to the chapels their hard earned kopecks, that they worked with sweat and blood for. They’d come; put those coins on the ground and leave. Who came and who left the money – God only knows. My men would go and bring 7-8 kopeks every time, sometimes even more. What were we going to do with them? We used to buy candles for the local church and light them up for the health and salvation of the souls that God knows. This little but great in spirit deed of Christian love and faith was happening for about two years.
One day it was brought to my attention that someone started stealing those donations from one of the chapels.
That kind of news made me very sad. I was worried for that Christian soul, that fell so low, that it decided to do such a horrible thing.
"What people say," I asked, "who’s doing that?"
"The rumor says that this is the local herdsman and his little son," was the reply, "one noticed as if they both, or separately sometimes, run somewhere early in the morning in the direction of the chapel before the cattle is out."
"And who is the herdsman?"
"Oh, that is Andrew Marin, he used to live with us sometime ago."
"That can’t be!.. Is he back from mines?"
"He’s back. Came back with nothing and men hired him to guard cattle. Oh yeah, he will guard for them… to the point that they won’t like their own lives! He was a self-idol, and he remained a self-idol. What good can you expect from a man who does not care about his own mother? You did not believe me, but there won’t be any good out of this man!"...
That was a remark to my address that despite multiple warnings from my foreman I demanded to keep that “self-idol” employed. That was a very descriptive word – “self-idol”; and in the lips of my foreman it meant a person, who is ready for anything to fulfill his own desires, even for a crime: idol to himself, and brings whichever offerings (sacrifices) he wants for himself...
We tried to catch a thief on the spot – but in vain...
"You are watching him, and he’s watching you: how would you catch him, if “the dark one” helping him?" explained my foreman.
We gave up and left it up to God to solve.
And judgment came...
My dear reader, have you ever seen a herd of our poor village of mid-Russia? Tears, not a herd! Starved cows, one cow per one or two families, exhausted by winter hunger and poor sun-burned summer meadows, by dampness and coldness of winter buildings, by the poverty of their owners – by all the tribulations and sorrows of the modern neglected village. A dozen or two of pigs with piglets; hundred of two of sheep, a bull and a tiny calf – and that’s the whole herd… Barely there, barely moving, half asleep, half alive, very weak...
And this is a herd that Andrew Marin was a herdsmen of.
A beautiful, but very shallow river was floating through my home village. Shallow to the point that chickens could cross it at places. It was a little deeper at the bottom of the village and local kids used to spend a lot of time swimming and splashing in it in summer, but at the top of the village, where the local herd was placed, you could even see rocks on the bottom of the river. Only at one place, where the river was making a sharp turn, the current washed out a hole, about ten feet deep and no more than seven feet wide. That was the only deep place in the whole length of the river, but even a grown up could jump it over.
St. Elijah’s Day was approaching. The supply of kopecks to the chapel stopped completely. The thief was impertinently laughing and rudely talking back when someone would hint to him that he was up to something really bad and that he’d teach his son the same too.
"You are all liars," he’d say, "and it’s none of your business! That is not your money, and even if I’d take it I won’t answer to you what I did and where I went!..."
Before the Matins on St.Elijah’s Day one of Andrew’s neighbors saw the boy, secretly, run somewhere into the field in the direction of the chapel.
"Oh, Andrew, Andrew!" said the woman, "you won’t escape the punishment! You just think what a Day today! And you, on St.Elijah’s Day, are doing such things!"
Andrew cursed back at the woman and said:
"Go and tell on me! And I’ll come after you, and you’ll remember not only St.Elijah then, but all of the saints. I don’t care about your Elijah!"
I learned about all of this much later. A Russian does not like to tell on his brother, and on top of that is afraid of modern courts, especially now...
As usual, with a permission of our priest, I was standing in Altar during the Liturgy. The church was overfilled with people, hot from the July sun and flames of the candles that were sacrificed from the works and sweats of the Orthodox people to God and to the great Miracle Worker, the Prophet of God. The Great mystery of Eucharist had been performed; the priest was receiving the Holy Gifts at the Altar and our deacon was reading Thanksgiving prayers. People started already to go home after Liturgy. I was delayed in the Altar, waiting for the priest... Suddenly a boy ran into Altar, having forgotten the holiness of the place, he started yelling with a trembling voice:
"Father! Andrew and his son drowned!"
"Which Andrew? What are you talking about?"
"The herdsman Andrew! At our corner, by the hill!.. Both of them surely drowned! They tried to save them but couldn’t. One boy was there with them on the meadow and saw everything, saw how the bull threw them, and they drowned..."
"Which bull? Say it clearly!"
But we could not make any sense from an excited and scared boy. This is what we learned later:
Early in the morning, after Andrew’s son ran to the chapel, he brought the herd to the meadow, to the very place by the deepest place in the river. When the sun went up and it started to warm up, Andrew’s boy laid down for a nap on the river bank… Andrew was watching the herd by himself. Cows laid down too; only sheep and pigs were lazily moving around and a bull was walking among the resting herd. At that very moment the boy, who later became the only witness to the God’s punishment, came to that place. Suddenly, right before the boy’s eyes, the bull came up to the Andrew’s son, sniffed him and threw him off the bank with his horns! The next second Andrew’s son was screaming in the water. Andrew saw that and jumped into the water to save him, but none of them could swim and drowned in that hole like in a barrel with water...
This is how Andrew and his son died under a sharp sword of the righteous judgment of God…
There are a lot of sacrilegists in Holy Russia now-a-days: you only hear, that they burglarized a church here, they killed the church watchman there, or both; defiled a holy place not only with theft and murder, but also with and unbelievable Satanic blasphemy... Hair stands up on my head when I read or hear what those evil people, who lost the image of God in themselves, do!.. They say and write in newspapers that those people are impossible to find and there is no punishment to them: demons help those people to hide from the men’s judgment!..
Let it be. God sees everything. God is patient: let the villain come, steal and kill... But the longer God waits, the stronger He hits, the heavier is the punishment: up to seven generations suffer for this. And if it was possible to watch the lives of those rejected ones, who, seemingly, are left without punishment for their crime, we’d see that even in this life the punishing Hand of God has reached them. And only those who exceeded the measure of Satan in their deeds, who is awaiting the flame eternal, that one is left without visible punishment until the hour of death, until the Dread Judgment of God. Lord, have mercy!..
Two interesting articles on Roman Catholic websites
about the 2016 Presidential Election in USA
Although this is directed at Roman Catholics, I think it addresses a pretty fundamental issue which applies to all of us. It is also a nice departure from the current garbage coming with the electoral cycle from the candidates and their minions.
Yes, it is a pleasant departure from Mr. Voris' hopeful vision of Msr. Trump as a modern Constantine. I generally agree with his takes on the social, spiritual and ecclesiastical milieu. The choice that bothers is me is that we are faced between either yet more corruption, social manipulation and decline, or the grossly authoritarian, irrational voice of what has become the populist mob. It seems to me that the spirit of anti-christ (or perhaps Antichrist?) becomes greatly evident. They promise the world and deliver ...something else. To whom do we place our hope? The politicians? GOP held more than a decade of control of various branches of elected government and accomplished nothing. The Law Courts? They are, at heart, law courts. We have already seen the weird outcomes of what have come out of the SCOTUS with "conservative" justices crossing the aisle. Putting "the right guy" on the court guarantees little, in my opinion. We see the failures and continue to look to the same institutions over and over as "our saviours" –get the right guy in and everything will somehow everything will be better, whatever one defines as better. The classic Einsteinian formula for insanity: doing the same thing over and over and expecting different outcomes.
I agree fully with both Mr. Voris and Rod Dreher http://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher that America is in a steady cultural decline. I am inclined to agree with Mr Dreher that some degree of thoughtful and intentional disengagement (while continuing to evangelize) is inevitable, and perhaps a necessity. I fear it is later than any of us think.
GOC senior layman:A well stated position piece. It was once said that there is no salvation to be had, trusting in princes or the sons of men. That said, if I am relegated to an imperial choice, I would have to side with a Constantine rather than a Diocletian (or is that 'DioClinton'?).
Elections Have Consequences
Say it like it is — die in sin and go to Hell.
Shortly after Obama became president in January of 2009, he was sitting down with congressional Republican leadership "dialoguing," and he didn't like the sound of what they were proposing for various legislative initiatives. Suddenly Obama blurted out, "Excuse me, gentlemen, elections have consequences, and I won."
Pretty point-blank assessment there by the Child-Killer-in-Chief — point blank and correct. Every choice we make has consequences. But this is the exact point that Catholic leaders in the United States and the rest of the West seem to be completely unaware of. Choices have consequences, yet the bishops almost to a man never speak of the consequences of our sinful choices — not the full consequences, anyway.
This whole stupid-minded new evangelization effort focusing on people's emotions and feelings is completely idiotic. No one should become a Catholic so they can feel good and have an emotional overload and live on some kind of high for the rest of their lives. Heroin accomplishes the same thing.
Yet this is all the emphasis today. This is spiritual insanity and needs to be called out. A person becomes Catholic — or should become Catholic — because they recognize that outside of the Church there is no salvation. But of course this presupposes a person comprehends that, in juxtaposition to salvation, there is damnation — eternal damnation. That is the consequence of choosing poorly — not that you will feel sad, or not be as emotionally charged as you might be, or life might be more difficult.
Nope. The consequences of bad immoral sinful choices unrepented of is everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels. Why will the bishops not talk like this? Why do they discourage this sort of training in their seminaries? Why do they celebrate Bp. Robert Barron's ridiculous notion that we have a reasonable hope that all men are saved? Really? How incredibly, supremely stupid can you be to accept such intellectual trash?
Imagine — somewhere in the world right now are various people engaged in child kidnapping, pornographic movie-making with the these children and then the killing of these children so they will never be identified. These same people are tied into drug cartels, prostitution gangs and human trafficking circuits. And they kill each other in gangland shootouts and assassinations.
People die in the course of this "work." They are shot down in cold blood, engaged in the specific activity of moral decadence and depravity. Do Bp. Barron and his supporters really think these individuals die and go to Heaven? What about the men who buy these videos and keeps the industry flush with cash? Are we to just assume they got to Heaven?
Yet this is the primary preaching, the foundational principle of the entire Church of Nice, the theologically counterfeit Church which is supported by a huge portion of the episcopate. This is every bit as bad as the days of the Arian heresy; it's actually worse.
This is, in effect, a denial of Hell, and there is hardly a bishop anywhere in the United States or the West who isn't on board with this insanity. Every time we hear this continual claptrap about the New Evangelization, all we hear about is talking to people and telling them how much better they will feel if they come back to or into the Catholic Church.
Hey, leaders, get this through your heads: People love their sin. That's why they stay attached to it. No purveyor of child porn gives a hoot about hearing how much more satisfied he's going to feel waving his arms in the air at some laserbeam, rock band Mass. He already "feels" just fine, thank you very much, with his depraved nightly sojourns into internet sex and perversity. That's why he does that and doesn't come to your stupid, feel-good sessions — he already feels good.
The argument that you will feel better is completely unpersuasive to the man deep into sin. Clearly, the vast majority of Catholic youth, whom you have already had in front of you for years and whom you have continually run your mouths to about how good we all feel being Catholic, are completely unconvinced of your asinine arguments. They are choosing to walk away by the hundreds of thousands. And the completely idiotic response of Church leaders is to give them more of the same, double down on the emotions stupidity.
Bishops, catechists, religious ed directors and Catholic schools have not told the truth because they don't really believe it themselves: that embracing sin means embracing an eternity without God, in eternal torment. That's not Church Militant saying that; it's Church Militant repeating what the Son of God said over and over and over.
Choices have consequences. Even a man as evil as Obama understands that. Even a woman as wicked as Killary understands that. And the difference between these diabolical individuals and the bishops is that the political leaders understand the full picture, the complete consequences of choices. Too many Catholic leaders treat evil choices as having no eternal consequences.
Something is desperately, desperately wrong in the Church when evil politicians can comprehend a foundational philosophical principle and the bishops cannot.
Say it like it is — die in sin and go to Hell.
Why Traditional Christians Especially Roman Catholics should not vote for Hillary Clinton
Essay to Traditional Christians and Catholics on the Election
Wed, Oct 26, 2016
Paul “Mickey” Pohl is a lawyer at the Pittsburgh office of Jones Day, the world’s largest law firm. He served as head of the firm’s Pittsburgh office and recently won the St. Thomas More Society award for exemplary service by a Catholic lawyer. He and his firm represented Diocese of Pittsburgh Bishop David Zubik and Catholic Charities pro bono (for free) in the HHS Contraceptive Mandate case that went to the US Supreme Court earlier this year. In our nation’s highest court he (and I) witnessed firsthand how close our religious freedom rights are to extinction. Supreme Court Justices, of course, are appointed by the President of the United States. Please consider his essay below in casting your vote for President on Nov. 8.
* * *
On Tuesday, October 18, 2016 8:30 AM, Paul Pohl wrote:
I thought you would be interested in this essay I wrote last week. Best regards, Mickey
Many of you know that for more than 4 years, I have been one of the leaders of the team representing religious organizations, mostly Catholic (including Bishop David Zubik, Bishop of Pittsburgh’s Catholic Diocese) in his case which was consolidated in the U.S. Supreme Court with the case brought by The Little Sisters of the Poor and cases brought by others, against the government over Obamacare’s “contraception mandate.” A great number of religious groups of all denominations filed “friend of the Court” briefs supporting our position that while contraception is and could be available to all who choose to use it, government regulators should not force religious objectors (like The Little Sisters or Catholic Charities) to participate in the delivery of goods and services which offend their religious beliefs.
The work I have done in these cases , studying the guarantee of “free exercise of religion” in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act , has caused me to read and often to investigate what the Obama administration’s views are of traditional Christian religious beliefs, religion, and especially Catholicism. I have also tried to gather as much information as I can about what Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, their running mates and their respective parties think about religion, Catholicism and traditional Christian religions (which the media often mocks as Evangelicals, “Bible thumpers” or “the religious right”).
I am a Catholic. Many of my friends know that, like many Catholics who are the children or grandchildren of immigrants, I grew up in a heavily unionized factory town where almost every street corner had a Catholic church and school, a bar, an ethnic club and, very often, bowling alleys. Many of us had relatives that were policemen, firemen, coal miners and almost every family had someone who had served or was serving in the military. And, we immigrants and the grandchildren of immigrants were almost all Democrats. We cheered and cried when JFK was elected President. Many of you are now asking me who I am going to vote for. In this email, I am going to explain to you and present you with evidence to show why I have concluded that Hillary Clinton and today’s DemocraticParty is anti-Catholic, and no friends of traditional, observant Christians.
No one wants a theocracy. No one wants a single denomination imposing its views on government or Congress making any law respecting the establishment of religion as was often done in the 13 colonies. What we want is what the First Amendment guarantees: that all of us are allowed the free exercise of religion. The Democrats and Hillary Clinton, as the evidence detailed below shows, want to keep us from espousing our traditional beliefs because they think them harmful to their vision of what is good for the country. They have been very careful in trying to hide their views to hold the vote of traditional Christians. It is time to expose them.
Like so many others, I believe there is a God, an afterlife and that there are moral absolutes. Some things are wrong. God made rules and they come to us in the Old and New Testament and through our 2000 year old Christian traditions and beliefs. I believe God made men and women. I believe that there is such a thing as sin, and forgiveness. I think people should be married before they have children and parents are primarily responsible for raising their kids – not the government, as Hillary espouses in her book “It Takes a Village.” I think abortion is the taking of a human life. I happen to believe that marriage is a sacrament involving one man, one woman and God and that sex is not a sport or dating game. When sex is detached from the reproductive act and the intimacy of the marriage bond, it is not right.
I do not judge anyone. I just happen to have my own beliefs as a Christian, shared by millions of others for 2000 years. I know that there are doctrinal differences between denominations and I know that not everyone in our wonderful nation shares my beliefs. Many of my friends clearly do not. I respect and love atheists and my gay friends even though I may not agree with them on things that I believe are fundamental to my existence and, by the way, in my view, good for our society. Just because I may not approve of certain lifestyles, I am not homophobic and should not be ridiculed or called a “hater” because of my beliefs. I try to love and show compassion to all; I concede that I, like all humans, am a sinner.
What this essay is about, however, is that I should not have elected officials or those trying to get elected telling me that my sincerely held religious beliefs are not going to be respected , need to be changed by government and, even worse, that I and my children should not be able to espouse them in the public square. Please read on to see what is going on. I am not trying to jam my religious beliefs down on anyone much less the nation; I just want to be free to exercise them and talk about them. I respect those who may not share them.
Let me say at the outset that I am not getting paid to write this and, if you find my reasoning relevant or persuasive I urge you to circulate this to every traditional Christian and Catholic you know.
Let me also say at the outset that I have never met Donald Trump. I find much of his speech and action boorish and offensive -- but after a lot of fact checking and reflection – I am going to vote for him because he and his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, are more likely to respect the free exercise of religion set forth in the First Amendment to the Constitution and are going to give us much better judges than Hillary Clinton would appoint. You live with a bad president for four or 8 years, but a federal judge gets appointed for life. Obama has appointed very few observant Catholics or pro-life Christians to key positions and to judgeships. He can point to some who might say they were raised Catholic or at election time claim to be Catholic, but the reality is the only Christians and Catholics who can get appointed now are those that he considers acceptable to Planned Parenthood and his anti-religion friends. Hillary – as the evidence below shows – would be worse. Hillary has not released a list of names of judges she would consider putting on the Supreme Court. Trump’s list is excellent – people who respect the Constitution, interpret the law, and do not think they are supposed to make the laws.
Let’s start with where the Democratic Party is at this point in history. My concern about the Democratic Party began most conspicuously in July 1992. The late Pennsylvania Gov. Robert Casey, a pro-life advocate and a major player at the time in the Democratic Party, was slated to give a keynote address at the Democratic Convention at Madison Square Garden. The word got to Democratic Presidential nominee Bill Clinton and his group, who were then emerging as the new party leadership, that Casey was going to give a pro-life address. By that time, the new “progressive” Democrats led by Bill Clinton had decided to embrace Planned Parenthood and the pro-abortion feminists as a key voting bloc. They decided to keep Gov. Casey from speaking because of his pro-life views. He was bumped from the program and he was not allowed near a live microphone.
How do I know this? It is now widely reported. But more importantly, in February 1993 I attended a dinner in Philadelphia sponsored by the Catholic Campaign for America where Governor Casey was honored. I attended with Fr. Michael Scanlan, TOR, then President of Franciscan University of Steubenville, and spoke with Gov. Casey about the events at the convention. Notwithstanding subsequent efforts by the Democratic Party and their media friends to spin the story, I heard Gov. Casey and those around him verify the facts. When Gov. Casey’s son, U.S. Senator Bob Casey, used to call me to solicit contributions to his campaign, I told him that his father’s treatment by the party and its refusal to allow pro-life views to even be aired was why I switched my registration.
Very soon after hearing Gov. Casey talk about not being allowed to speak at Madison Square Garden, I changed my registration to Republican. The Democratic Party, the party my whole extended family had automatically belonged to and which cheered when John F. Kennedy was elected, had abandoned us and our beliefs – but continued to think that they could count on the Catholic vote. Catholics, it is time to look at the facts: this party does not only take us for granted, they are attacking us.
My concerns about what the power people in the Democratic Party really thought about religion were greatly heightened in April 2008 when then candidate Barack Obama made the following comments at a big dollar fundraiser in San Francisco:
“You go into these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them….” “And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion….”
When Obama said people cling to religion because jobs have left their area, it told me that he just did not understand what religion was; or at least the religion I and my Christian friends and relatives embrace. He just doesn’t get it. Or worse, he gets it but he deprecates it because he thinks he will get more votes by dissing believers than respecting the depth of their religious faith. And Obama’s lack of respect for traditional Christian beliefs, apparently shared now by the power people in the Democratic Party, became even more apparent in 2009.
As I described in detail in the Commencement Address I gave in May at Franciscan University, beginning in 2009 at The Cairo Conference, President Obama started to embrace a subtle but deceptively clever view of freedom of religion. He began to use the term “Freedom of worship” as if he were a champion of religion. But our Constitution gives us the “free exercise of religion,” which is vastly broader than mere freedom of worship. Many of the worst totalitarian governments in the world promise freedom of worship because that keeps religion confined within the walls of churches, temples, mosques, synagogues and houses. The very first freedom in our Constitution promises the free exercise of religion – your ability to practice your religion by having schools, hospitals, universities, and preaching your beliefs publicly. Obama and Hillary Clinton see that as getting in the way of things the “progressive” Democratic party want to regulate as part of their vision of an what an ideal society should look like.
Shortly after President Obama started to embrace the “freedom of worship” terminology, Hillary Clinton began using the same language, beginning as far as my research shows in a speech at Georgetown University and, with some exceptions, repeated and repeated since then.
Every American, of any faith, should begin to worry about a politician or a party that wants to shrink the first freedom in our Constitution from free exercise of religion to just freedom of worship.
So, am I just some paranoid lawyer over-analyzing words used in speeches?
Let’s look at the 2016 Democratic Party Platform, adopted July 21, 2016, with Hillary Clinton’s authorization. What does it say about religion and the free exercise of religion? Here is what it says:
“We support a progressive vision of religious freedom that respects pluralism and rejects the misuse of religion to discriminate.”
Let’s look at the 2016 Democratic Party Platform, adopted July 21, 2016, with Hillary Clinton’s authorization. What does it say about religion and the free exercise of religion? Here is what it says:
“We support a progressive vision of religious freedom that respects pluralism and rejects the misuse of religion to discriminate.”
Alarm bells should go off. For the first time in American history, a major party does not unequivocally endorse the free exercise of religion but supports only a “progressive view” of religion. This means that Hillary Clinton or someone in government is going to be deciding and telling you whether your view of religion, your beliefs and the beliefs of your faith are the correct ones: the “progressive” ones. If you think this is alarmist, look at what is going on at many colleges and universities – students are being told that if they express what they may believe as part of their sincerely held faith, especially as to LGBT issues -- they are engaging in hate speech.
So, the DemocraticParty has now redefined what its view of religious freedom should be – and that should scare traditional Christians and especially Catholics. Is there any other evidence that Hillary Clinton shares that radical recasting of freedom of religion? Again, let’s look at the evidence there.
At the Women’s World Summit in April 2015, Hillary Clinton said, “Laws have to be backed up with resources and political will. And deep-seated religious beliefs have to be changed.” Shouldn’t it be scaring us traditional Christians and Catholics when a major party candidate speaks of using laws to change deep-seated religious beliefs – and she is obviously speaking of changing the views of those of us whose religious views she disagrees with. When has a major candidate ever advocated an America where she or he is going to decide what religious views the rest of us or some of us may or may not hold? When did it become the job of the President to “change deep seated religious beliefs”?
It has, of course, been widely reported that Hillary Clinton’s senior thesis at Wellesley was an analysis of Saul Alinsky’s “Rules for Radicals.” This was an interesting choice for a college senior since Alinsky was a communist and his views and tactics would have been seen as aggressive even by the Bolsheviks in Russia in 1917. Published reports say that Hillary met with Alinsky, he found her charming and offered her a job, which she declined. In the introduction or dedication to his work, Alinsky praises Lucifer, the devil, as the first radical to come away with his own kingdom. You decide what you will about what this all tells us about Hillary Clinton.
In a September 23, 2016 Op-Ed piece in the Wall Street Journal, Kenneth L. Woodward, who had been the religion editor of Newsweek, wrote about Hillary Clinton’s views as a Methodist. He quotes Hillary’s youth minister who told Newsweek that “we Methodists know what’s good for you.” To be sure, that quote is not attributed to Hillary but it certainly seems apropos – since her own statements seem to reflect that she should be deciding what beliefs can and should be tolerated under the Democratic Party’s views of the “progressive” vision of religion that is going to be backed up by laws, regulations and political will. That has already started to happen. Just look at the government in Obamacare trying to muscle the Little Sisters of the Poor and Catholic Charities of Pittsburgh, by the threat of massive fines, into providing abortifacient and contraception insurance for their employees. Catholics, evangelicals and everyone who wants to be sure we continue to have the free exercise of religion should be concerned. Think about that when you decide who to vote for.
Many of my friends, relatives, neighbors, fellow parishioners – and especially women religious (who are usually the kindest best people in the world) will take issue with what I have written here. They find Trump outrageously offensive, as do I. They find the Democrats’ promises relating to education, health care and social services kind, and seductive. But it is fair to ask whether those kinds of programs have disserved the unfortunate, marginalized persons of our society who those programs were supposed to help by making them dependents of government rather than educated, free people with hopes and chances for a better future, not just a voting bloc that can be controlled by promises of free stuff. I truly worry about whether the government-subsidized breakdown of the traditional family and the narrowing of religious freedom as now espoused in the Democratic Party platform and by their candidate Hillary Clinton is the right course for Christians, Catholics, Hispanics, observant Jews or Muslims -- or for America. I have spent a lot of my professional career focusing on the free exercise of religion in one context or another. The Supreme Court Justices and other federal judges we will get from a Trump/Pence administration will be light years better than the ACLU types we will get from Hillary Clinton – and America will be living with the consequences for a long, long time.
The mainstream media, the Hollywood types and the debate moderators have completely ignored these issues about religion. On October 12, news reports of Clinton campaign emails released by Wikileaks showed Hillary Clinton’s staffer Jennifer Palmieri and others staffers bashing Catholics and their beliefs. They think they can just take the Catholic and Hispanic vote for granted because Joe Biden is Catholic or Tim Kaine purports to be a practicing Catholic. But I urge everyone who is Catholic, a traditional Christian, or who is worried about the erosion of religious freedom, to look at the facts.
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has issued a publication titled “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship.” The Catholic Church – which by the way is the largest provider of non-governmental social services in the history of the world – does not endorse or get into politics. That publication recommends that Catholics and all citizens vote their consciences after sincere reflection. But reflection means being informed. I hope you find my efforts here to inform you of the real facts helpful as you make your decision.
Three articles on Internet Sobor against the "jurisdictional ecumenism" espoused by the Kotlaroff schismatics. (Most recent article on top.)
...the Council of Bishops said that the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia does not believe that in our days the Local Russian Church apparently does not exist and is made up of fragments that do not have each other Eucharistic communion.
...one holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.
Church can not split, there can only be a falling away from her.
Statement by Council of Bishops
In connection with the approval of the group of supporters of the Archbishops Andronicus and Sophronia (calling itself "the Pre-Council Committee"), which they placed in the media: "In our time, that we believe the collegiate church has the form of fragmented" debris "that have no communication with each other "meaning that the Catholic Church, allegedly, did not seem to exist, and it is divided into fragments, the Council of Bishops said that the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia does not believe that in our days the Local Russian Church apparently does not exist and is made up of fragments that do not have each other Eucharistic communion. On the contrary, such a statement by us and the entire Orthodox Church condemned as heretical in anathema to ecumenism, "who attack the Church of Christ by teaching, for theirs is divided into branches, and approving, like a church apparently does not exist, but from the branches and splits (...) will be united into one body: Anathema ".
We believe that our Council of Bishops, chaired by the Metropolitan Cathedral Agafangel and subordinated diocese mission, monasteries and parishes have a visible and "an inseparable part of the Local Russian Orthodox Church, temporarily self-governing on conciliar principles".
We note that to date there is no objective physical obstacles to the canonical life of the Unified Russian Church (the presence of the front line, closed state borders, open persecution of the Orthodox Christians, etc.) and there is no "failure to establish relations with the bishops of neighboring dioceses" (Decree №362, p.4).
We also state that in our days, despite repeated appeals, the bishops and priests, formerly in the ROCA, now calling themselves "fragments", deliberately not fulfilled paragraph 2 of the Decree №362: "the diocesan bishop immediately enters into relations with bishops neighboring dioceses for the purpose of organizing a higher instance of ecclesiastical authority for several dioceses in similar conditions. "
The current situation is provided by paragraph 9 of the Decree №362:.. "In the case of extreme disorganization of ecclesiastical life, when certain persons and parishes cease to recognize the authority of the diocesan bishop, the latter being in the position indicated in paragraph 2 and paragraph 6, does not resign from their hierarchical powers, but of organizing parties, he remained faithful, parishes and from parishes - deanery and diocese, giving, where it is necessary to conduct services even in private homes and other devices to the premises and breaking ecclesial communion with the disobedient. "
Since the "ecclesiastical communion with the disobedient" (ie "shards"), no, we have, with regret, to state between us and the now existing "fragments", the state of schism. We, like the rest of the Church believe that the dissenters are not in the Church, and are fallen away part of it.
At the same time, our Council of Bishops has always called, and calls now, everyone who had been in the ROCOR, aside attempts to justify divisions, reaching, as we see, to the destructive false teachings heretical, and, trusting in God, to restore our common unity.
Yes Rebellion in unity in the making of Thine, O LORD, and serve you right! May it be so!
Chairman of the Council: Metropolitan Agafangel
Council members: Archbishop George (Secretary), Bishop Gregory (Vice Chairman), Athanasius, Nikon, Nicholas, Anastasius, Roman and Anthimus. Archbishop John and Bishop Cyril (participated in the work of the Council on Skype)
Members of the Supreme Church Council: John abbot (Schmelz) and Archpriest Leonid Plyats
A report of the Council of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad in 2016
"Of your own selves shall men who are speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them" (Acts 20.30).
The Church of Christ is one. This dogma, which we profess in the Creed: "I believe, in a single (...) Church." The fact that the Church is one Holy Scripture testifies. As in the Old Testament stories was the Temple, which is its singular witness of the unity of God and the New Testament Church, Temple just one. After the coming of Christ into the world, instead of just one church - one church - the Temple, the expanded geographically over the whole earth.
United Church has one head - Christ, is made up of the local Churches, which, in turn, are composed of dioceses, which include the individual parishes with parishioners. Together they make up one body of Christ, within which there is a single for all transforming and saving grace of the Holy Spirit.
Lord in the Garden of Gethsemane praying for the Church: "That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us" (John 17.21). Symptoms and conditions of the unity of the Church on earth is a common doctrine, liturgy and the sacraments (above all - the Sacrament of the Body of Christ in the Eucharist). Differing in doctrine or no communication in the liturgy and the sacraments can not be the one Body of Christ. Those who have faith differs from the Orthodox Church calls the heretics, and those who are not united with the Church common worship and the sacraments - splitters. This division may be an exception, when someone rejected his opinion, not a confession, the Orthodox Faith, not conviction, but by error or misunderstanding. Those that know the true faith and are aware of their error, easily returned to Orthodoxy. Also, those who by coincidence find themselves isolated and unable to participate in the liturgy and the sacraments, with other members of the Church (such as the Soviet Union), or by mistake, even living next to, but not knowing or nedoponimaya each other.
But quite another when someone consciously, staying in communication, this communication breaks not for good reasons (according to the teachings of the holy fathers valid reason can only be heresy). But here you can also see different reasons for this gap of communication in the liturgy and the sacraments. This can be, so to speak, the "human factor" that happened in the history of the Church - just a quarrel or dispute over property, or because of the location and position in the hierarchy, or something like that. Or, say, the rites and liturgical books translated as unfortunately happened in the history of the Russian Church. This division can be called even bewilderment caused by human weaknesses and to pray for his speedy heal. But still, in this case should be reasoning and determination on who is right and wrong to declare guilty of schism, and to recognize it and flock back to church. Split, unfortunately, often happens to human weakness and passions.
But this is not something that a conscious and well thought-out division, similar to what is happening now. Just in recent years, a new unorthodox doctrine, according to which split the act, in fact, there is no crime, and the church as much as necessary can be divided into isolated in prayer and the sacraments of the group, allegedly, while maintaining clean the main tenets of the Orthodox faith, and holding, so that the saving grace of the Holy Spirit. According to this new doctrine, in spite of the separation, the saving grace is preserved in all the divided groups of the former ROCOR. Some isolated groups of ( "fragments") that do not have a communication between the liturgy and the sacraments, are each individually small, supposedly canonical church, and together, they are all together, though, is a Local Russian Church. Thus, this new false teaching actually abolishes the concept of a split in the Church, and thus at odds with the teachings of the Holy Fathers.
Visible and effective anti-clerical manifestations of the new heresy: belittling the value of the patristic tradition, the canons of the Church rules, the humiliation of the individual pastors and hierarchs, the introduction into the Church of democracy instead of its hierarchical dispensation promotion between splitters intercommunion, the transition from one "jurisdiction" in the other, the formation of new " jurisdiction "and the like. General and most importantly, what is behind this false teaching - that it is not the gathering of the Church, and its ruin, crushed into many small groups and subsequent extinction. Personally, I have no doubt that this false doctrine is heresy against the Church, its unity. Heresy against the body of Christ.
Moreover, this heresy comes under part of the total anathema to ecumenism adopted Orthodox Church, "who attack the Church of Christ by teaching, for theirs is divided into branches (...): Anathema." Thus, the new heresy dissenters do not even need special anathemas and is not the new heresy, and a part of the ecumenical heresy, that is heresy, which confirmed the condemnation of the church and the reception is accepted by the whole Church.
The issue of this new heresy directly concerns us now because if someone who is close to us, professes such false teaching, then we can not say that such a man professes pure Orthodox faith, we must recognize that we have with him Faith is not the same.
* * *
Let us now look at the application of new dissenters. They write: "Split called a violation of unity with the catholic Church Those who call us schismatics, thus show that they consider that the Odessa Synod - a Russian national church, but this opinion is absurd.." From this phrase implies that they are not. find our Synod, and therefore everyone this Synod nourishes, "Collegiate Church", under which they are, if you follow them to the note, obviously, understands "the Russian Local Church." it is possible that they are under the Russian Local Church understands the Moscow Patriarchate, plus all "fragments" of the ROCA? But I do not think that they are the Moscow Patriarchate, by itself, is considered a "conciliar Church", otherwise it would just married that are dissenters. Thus, according to the schismatics: We ( "Odessa Synod") - not "catholic Church"; MP - obviously not too "catholic Church" According to them, it turns out, the current set of "fragments." - That's where the "cathedral Russian Church."
In fact, this division is not split with the local church, but simply with the Church. The question should not be placed on the division of a "cathedral of the local Russian Church", but simply - an apostasy from the Church.
Believers come to ruinous reasoning that the canons are outdated. Since the "Canons represent the Collegiate Church in the unity of the local Churches and the various fragmented groups of schismatics, apostates from the Church. In our time, on the contrary, what we believe catholic Church has the form of fragmented" debris "that have no communication with each other." This time the canons is not provided (ie, the holy fathers, according to the new dissenters allegedly not doglyadeli): "the existence of" fragments ", that is, the autonomous existence of microscopic ecclesiastical jurisdiction, is not provided in the canons" (in the canons are three form defection from the Church: parasinagoga, heresy and schism - the latter-day splitters consistently passed all these three stages). New heresiarchs teach that the Church in our time, supposedly, "has the form of shattered" fragments "that have no communication with each other" - and this, of course, despite the fact that they, according to their doctrine, if not in schism with respect to one other.
Today, the group, led by retired bishops Andronicus and Sophronius, unfortunately, crossed the brink of schism, solely based on this heresy skhizmoekumenizma.
If the unity of the Church, according to the Catechism of Metropolitan Filaret (259), "is expressed in apparently the same confession of faith and communion in prayer and the sacraments", accordingly, the split - it (at the same confession of faith), the lack of communication in prayer and the sacraments. If the "fragments" are not in liturgical communion and sacraments, then what to call their relationship to one another, if not the state of schism? Other definitions and understanding of the split but generally accepted by the Church, does not exist. The existing "fragments" exactly fall under this definition. To argue this is impossible, it is, by definition, the Apostle, "to go against the pricks" (Acts 9.5).
* * *
This is my summary report drawn up hastily, as the dissenters made his statement very recently, and there was a need to answer it. Though this heresy was announced earlier, but because it touches far removed from the ROCA group, I did not see the need to write about it. But now, when it was made of our Church, the issue has become a truly relevant. Therefore, I believe that the discussion of this new variety of the heresy of ecumenism should be continued because it is directly touched us and our flock.
Of course, I believed and continue to believe that the relationship with the dissenters should be the maximum economia, but we have no right to cross the line and teach what does not correspond to the teachings of the Holy Fathers. Perhaps I, at one time, some people confused the words of the proximity of all those who recently were together in the ROCOR, and some have interpreted these words in such a way that it is a complete unity. To this we must say that we must make sure, first of all, in itself, the fact that they themselves abide in the Church. We also believe that the dissenters go abroad Church. But what is actually happening around us - only God knows. Regarding the saving grace of the Holy. Spirit, we are confident that we have it. But we can not, we have no right to say that it is the others, because outside of the Church there is no internal saving grace of the Holy Spirit, we can not claim that it, this grace but we have no one else, and visible the boundaries of the Church is both invisible and its border. This question is answered ROCA fathers - we do not know. God knows.
+ Metropolitan Agafangel
Odessa, October 2016
From the correspondence with the dissenters.
Metropolitan Agafangel 10/14/2016
Behind this is a lack of faith in the dogma of the one holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. Church split can not, can only be a falling away from her. ROCA is strong precisely because the Church had no chips. But, now it no one pays attention, unfortunately.
October 12, 2016
Add questions and answers:
On the website of the Internet Council gives many quotations from St. Fathers condemning your split.
Every division in the Church is a tragedy, at whatever level it occurs. But not every division is split in the sense spoken of the canons and St. Fathers.
Those who are talking about the present division of the church, call it a split, consciously or unconsciously make substitution of notions. Split is called a violation of unity with the catholic Church. Those who call us schismatics and thus show that they consider that the Odessa Synod - a Russian national church. But this opinion is absurd. ROCA from its inception always confess itself only a part of the Russian Church. When ROCA merged with the Moscow Patriarchate in 2007, those who did not agree with this step, were divided into many church-administrative units, commonly referred to as "fragments". So Odessa synod - not the whole Russian Church, but only "fragment" of its parts.
Schism is terrible that it is falling away from the Cathedral Church. If separation from Odessa Synod - have a falling away from the cathedral of the Church, it follows that all those who do not have a dialogue with the Odessa Synod are outside the Church. However, he never Metropolitan Agafangel held such views. On the contrary, in their statements and actions he recognized the relative canonical other "fragments" (all available canonical "fragments", including Odessa Synod, can be challenged to a greater or lesser extent). For example, the Metropolitan Agafangel adopted in their existing orders, without cheirothesia bishops: Dionysius, Irenaeus, and Anastasia, ordained in the other "fragments".
Thus, the separation of the Synod of Metropolitan Agafangel is not a falling away from the Church, ie, split, and to make "terrible" Quotes from St. fathers to our situation, there are intentional or unintentional hoax.
How do you need to call these divisions within the "fragments"?
This question can not give a reasonable answer to the canonical, for the simple reason that the very existence of the "fragments", ie the autonomous existence of microscopic ecclesiastical jurisdiction, is not provided in the canons. It should not be forgotten by those who love bold talk about the canons and canons apply to our situation. Canons depict catholic church in unity of the local Churches and the various fragmented groups of schismatics, apostates from the Church. In our time, on the contrary, what we believe catholic Church has the form of fragmented "debris" that have no communication with each other. The division within the "fragments" can be called "church-administrative division."
We lose contact with the family of anti-ecumenical Church through the gap with the Odessa Synod?
This is a very sad fact. However, from here does not mean that we have because of this gap apostasy from the Church. To see this let us take, for example, the synod Archbishop. Tikhon (Pasechnik) that is not in communion with the Synod Callinicus. Let us ask ourselves the question: why? Is he less orthodox than Odessa Synod? - Not at all. This is explained by the circumstances of a church-political situation, about which there is no need to dwell on here. Those. the fact that it was a synod of Odessa, one of the all the other "fragments", is in communion with the Synod of Callinicus, - is nothing more than an accident of history, from which you can not do any canonical conclusions. One should not forget the fact that the Greek True Orthodox Church are also in such a "fragmentation" state. For example, it is unlikely the bishops of the Synod of Resistance agree that before their connection to the Synod of Callinicus, they were out of the church and the sacraments were invalid.
Metropolitan Agafangel: New Believers were heretics
December 13, 2016.
You can "congratulate" the new dissenters so that they, in addition to its split, fell in the heresy of ecumenism. More precisely, the original heretical confession of orthodoxy led them to split. In his "Questions and Answers" on October 12, 2016, their representatives on site "rocana", as in his mind and in accordance with his conscience write: "In our time is that we believe the collegiate church has the form of crushed "fragments", did not communicate with each other. "
This right is subject to the anathema, "who attack the Church of Christ by teaching, for theirs is divided into branches, and approving, like a church apparently does not exist, but from the branches and splits, heterodoxy and religions will be united into one body ...: Anathema!".
In support of their heresy, they even give an example: "Take, for example, the Synod Archbishop Tikhon (Pasechnik) that is not in communion with the Synod Callinicus Let us ask ourselves the question..? Why? Is it less orthodox than Odessa Synod - Not at all is explained. it is only the circumstances of the church-political situation, about which there is no need here to spread ie the fact that it was a synod of Odessa, one of the all the other "fragments", is in communion with the Synod of Callinicus, -. it is nothing more than an accident of history " .
At the time, I hesitate as inoffensive poimenovat those who separated from ROCA ahead of time, so that in the future they do not close the way for the reunification of his notes to find the word "debris". It seemed convenient and not offensive to others. But the split is a split. It can start even with a simple misunderstanding and quarrel or dispute, but then take root and turns into a schism, and then in heresy.
There may be individuals and groups who do not know about each other, or are offended at each other, or do not trust, or have distorted notions about each other, or something else of the kind, and the only reason, stay in the division. But when a misunderstanding and objective obstacles between them disappear, they are reunited and live in peace. It is always assumed ROCA when not insisted that she was the only Orthodox church in the world. But it is quite different when living together, suddenly separated for no apparent reason. There can not possibly be right both sides. In fact, we know without a cause nothing ever happens. So in this case it opened the real reason for this separation - hidden heresy of a certain group, the former before us.
The Church can accept incoming in her enclosure in various ways. The fact that we have adopted, "in the existing rank, without cheirothesia bishops: Dionysius, Irenaeus, and Anastasia, ordained in the other" fragments "," is a common practice of the Church. This does not mean recognition of the fact that the Church is the visible part. So, in the confession of faith, taken together ROCOR and CPI Greece and Romania in June 2014. "The True Orthodox Church in the face of the heresy of ecumenism", said:
"1. When making a repentant heretics and schismatics, Ecumenical and Local Councils of the Church, in addition to the principle of acrivia [austerity], at times used the so-called principle of economia [mercy], that is, canonical and pastoral practice, according to which the possibility of a temporary deviation from the letters of the sacred rules, without violation of their spirit. 2. at the same time, of course, economia never and in no way allows the justification of sin, or any kind of compromise with the "correct and saving confession of faith," as the oikonomia is aimed purely and solely to facilitate, in the spirit of humanity and mercy, salvation of souls for whom Christ died. 3. The use of economia in making heretics and schismatics in ecclesial communion does not mean that the Church recognizes the accuracy and validity of their sacraments, which were committed outside the boundaries of the canonical and charismatic. 4 . the Holy Orthodox Church never recognized the sacraments committed outside it at a distance from her, absolutely, nor by acrivia nor by economy, as make or receive these ordinances are in the depths of their heretical or schismatic communities. "
As heretics dissenters wrote: "The very existence of" fragments ", that is, the autonomous existence of microscopic ecclesiastical jurisdiction, is not provided in the canons." Indeed, there is provided, and can not be provided. For these groups, there are clear canonical definition: parasinagoga - dissenters - heretics.
It is possible that many of those who are now separated from the ROCA, are not aware of what is happening. Perhaps now they will think before you make a fateful step. That opened the heresy of separating from us - there is God's providence for those who follow the dissenters in the dark. Now the Lord opens the eyes of the blind.
+ Metropolitan Agafangel
September 30 / October 13, 2016.
St. Michael, Metropolitan of Kiev (992)
A schismatic Metropolitan Agafangel to the charge of heresy:
On the Internet website of the Cathedral placed your article "New dissenters were heretics" in which you accuse us of heresy "istinnopravoslavnogo ecumenism" (?!)
We leave on your conscience the name of our dissenters, but the accusation of heresy is so serious that we can not leave it unanswered.
You see heresy in the following statement, found you in one of the articles rocana website: "In our time that we consider the Collegiate Church, looks shattered" fragments "that have no communication with each other."
The existence of "fragments", ie not communicating with each other microscopically x ecclesiastical jurisdictions, - this is a well known fact. The question is how to interpret this fact in terms of communication. canons. In the majority of "fragments" cultivated the view that this is only a single "shard" belongs to the catholic church, and is ROCA and other "debris" - have fallen away from her dissenters. So it turns a strange picture: Each of the nearly two dozen "fragments" only considers himself a true and does not recognize the other.
The disadvantage of this approach is also that "fragments" continue to fragment, and each such crushing supporter of the theory-the only true "fragment" is faced with the need to decide which of the two newly-formed "fragments" is the true Church. But with the ongoing process of fragmentation can happen (this happened) that the person comes to the absurd conclusion that the Church had ceased to exist.
We believe such a view sad predrazsudkom originating, first, from the pride of the human (good to know yourself edinstvennoistinnym and look down on others), and secondly, because the canons interpreted too literally, and are used inappropriately.
Because of this prejudice (as well as the pride of the human, of course) can not budge association "fragments" of the process.
If we understand you correctly, this is the view of the "fragments" you set out in his article, recognizing your Odessa Synod only belonging to the cathedral of the Church, and your acceptance of Dionysius bishops Irinej and Anastasia in the existing rank, treating as joining of schismatic groups that are outside the Church.
But there is another view, which we adhere to. It consists in the fact that the partitions between "fragments" does not reach the sky. And from the fact that between the two jurisdictions no concelebration, it does not follow that they both can not belong to a single cathedral church because concelebration is only one of the visible manifestations of the spiritual unity of the Church, rather than this very unity. The Lord said of the Church that the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Church - is not such a fragile thing, that it can be so easy to destroy.
It would be strange to us, survivors of the shipwreck of the ROCOR is now blaming each other and disassembled: who jumped from the sinking ship earlier and some later. If the "fragments" adhere to the Orthodox faith and have the right of ordination hierarchy, then this could be the basis for the restoration of ecclesiastical communion between them, without going into trial historical circumstances.
We thought that before you do shared this point of view. In the summer of 2010 you organized a conference in Odessa "Path of Orthodox Church in the Modern World", which invited representatives of various "fragments". After the conference, you recorded your live journal: "That's our conference ended. For me personally, it became apparent unnatural s existence "section" of the ROCA. We shared not a creed or even "mentality", but some fatal misunderstanding. On the one hand - sad, but on the other - it is encouraging. "
Asked one of the visitors that you mean by a "misunderstanding", you answered: "The misunderstanding is that" fragments "of the ROCA shared exclusively ambitions of the leaders."
So, perhaps, we charge of heresy - it is also a misunderstanding.
Metropolitan Agafangel 10/21/2016
The dissenters themselves decided to prove that they are indeed heretics.
Read received today (Oct. 21) "The answer to the charge of heresy." That's really, really, the real heretics our new schismatics. It is one thing - the separation of the church by mistake or coincidence, and another - a conscious confession and attempt groundless justifications.
In different areas of the church dispensation, there are different approaches to the same subject - from church acrivia to ecclesiastical economy. In the matter of divisions in the ROCA - the same thing. I thought and still think that there should be a maximum economia to all "splinters" did not have time to run up so far as to collect them would be impossible. Therefore, the mutual relations should be guided by the principle of economia. Hence the underscore our recent union with the hope that it will be restored in the near future. But this feature has economia - this is exactly what crossed the new dissenters. This feature - a confession and acceptance of heretical confession apparently and effectively cuts off one or the other "splinter" of the ROCOR body.
Such heretical confession, as it turned out, and a group led by retired archbishops Andronicus and Sophronius. Confessing that the Church may be composed of independent, isolated from other parts. Confessing that the body can live as separate "pieces" - this is the real heresy and blasphemy bogomerzkih.
His "The answer to the charge of heresy" schismatics clearly and unequivocally demonstrated that they are indeed heretics. So our attitude towards this group should be appropriately adjusted.
+ Metropolitan Agafangel
http://internetsobor.org/rptsz/tserkovnye-novosti/rptsz/rptsz-nachalos-zasedanie-arkhierejskogo-sobora-2016-goda HUMAN ENGLISH
ROCA: Beginning of Meeting of the Council of Bishops in 2016
In Odessa, in the Archangel Michael diocesan building, began the meeting of the Bishops' Council of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia. The meeting was attended by the Chairman of the Council Metropolitan Agafangel, Archbishop George (Secretary), Bishop Gregory (Vice Chairman), Athanasius, Nikon, Nicholas, Roman and Anfim. Archbishop John and Bishop Cyril participated in the work of the Council via Skype. Also participating in the Council were members of the Supreme Church Council Abbot John (Smelic) and Archpriest Leonid Plyats.
Archbishops Andronik and Sofrony refused to come to the Council, despite invitations being sent to them.
The Bishops' Council granted the request of the Bishop of Vladivostok and the Far East Anastasy (Surzhikov), and decided to accept him and the Far Eastern Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia led by him. Bishop Anastasy also participated in the work of the Council of Bishops.
The Council of Bishops adopted the following agenda :
1. Report of the President.
2. On the joining of Bishop Anastasy and the Far East diocese to ROCOR
3. Report of bishops on the situation in the dioceses.
4. On the Ecclesiastical Court held.
5. On the new non-Orthodox teaching .
6. On the actions and statements of very reverend Archbishop Andronik and Archbishop Sofrony and their supporting clergy and laity, after the Ecclesiastical Court.
7. Conference of the territories of North and South America and Canada.
8. Diocesan boundaries
9. On the Synodal building.
10. Synodal representation in Odessa.
11. On the composition of the Synod of Bishops.
12. Supreme Church Council.
13. The convening of the 6th All- Diaspora Council.
14. Replenishment of the episcopate.
Council members sang the eternal memory of the deceased Archpriest Gregory Williams and discussed the current situation of our Mission in Haiti and the United States. Also on the first day of the Council , the participants discussed the situation in the Holy Land, South America and Australia. The Council noted the coming into force of the decision of the Ecclesiastical Court and the refusal to obey the order of the court by the Archbishops Andronik and Sophrony. The council listened to the memo by Metropolitan Agafangel, and discussed a number of other issues.