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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

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Father Seraphim Rose on the liberal clergy

Letters Platina does not want you to see.
I'm planning to ask Vyacheslav for the original English of this and other compilations on his website.  But this one I can't wait to post.  The machine English is not bad at all.  Going from English-to-Russian-to-English is usually pretty smooth.


Father Seraphim Rose on the liberal clergy
Father Seraphim of Platinum. About the liberal clergy - about Schmemann, Meyendorff, Shakhovsky, Florovsky and others. 
(From letters saved by Father Herman Platinsky.) 
Russian text, compilation of Vyacheslav Marchenko. 


The lives of the saints are what America desperately needs right now to give inspiration into true Orthodoxy for those who fade from the two-dimensional academic Orthodoxy of Schmemann and the new "autocephalic" absurdity. 
(From a letter to Father Photius on 16 / 29.03.70) 


The scandal has risen, because the Metropolia [Orthodox Church of America] does not want to canonize Father Herman!  I think it may very well be something like this.  From the history of the Spruce Island, we know that Father Herman treated those who treated him unworthily, and he was definitely on the side of Gerasim's father!  If (as it looks now) the leadership of the Metropolia intended to make canonization part of its political scam (because Meyendorff says that only the "local" Church can canonize the saints), Father Herman will do something and already do it. 

We especially pray earnestly for Alaska, and if it could be saved, then let Schmemann and Jacobos take for themselves both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts and the moon in addition! 
(From a letter to Father Nikita Palasis on March 19 / 04/04/70) 

[It is good to be reminded that the Metropolia (OCA) did not recognize St. Herman nor St. John Maximovitch, until they had rewritten their lives to delete any material that was evidence of their true opposition to MP or world-orthodoxy.]

I'm not Russian, I do not possess the psychology of a Russian person and I do not think that I look at things through rose-colored glasses.  Nevertheless, I do not think that it is possible, after all, to rise above the issue of "jurisdictions" - at least in the Russian Church.  We share your respect for Father George Florovsky as a learned theologian and interpreter of the Fathers, respect for him is widespread in the Synodal Church [ROCOR] - his books about the Fathers are basic textbooks.  Brother Gleb knows him and has received his blessing to go to study in Jordanville.  But there are also reasons for a less respectful attitude towards him, also prevalent in our Church, often among the same people who value his theological scholarship.  Orthodoxy, which is especially noticeable in such critical times as the whole of our century, is not just a doctrine for understanding, but the life concept by which one lives.  Father George, I think, has not succeeded in the life dimension of Orthodoxy in practice.  What is the result of his many years of appearance at the ecumenical meetings?  Of course, Orthodoxy has become better known, but not as the only Church of Christ, but rather as the "fourth major faith" that once insisted on the proclamation of "separate declarations" in order to pat down the nerves of Protestants, but now came to a single heretical view of the Church, which is interpreted by Protestants (Archbishop Jacobos, for example, clearly states: "The Church in all its sectarian forms is the Body of Christ!").  In the situation described by Vladyka Vitaly ("Orthodox Word", 1969, pp. 150-151), Father George himself pushes towards this heresy: not by saying something heretical himself, but by being subjected to pressure, which is always felt in ecumenical meetings, and says something that the Protestant majority will like and will be interpreted in the heretical sense.  At such meetings, Father George formally appears as Orthodox, but this is only a formal Orthodoxy, not a living Orthodoxy, not a practical one.  And today Orthodoxy is being destroyed from within by this lack of living Orthodoxy.  Orthodoxy can say only one thing to the ecumenical movement: here is the Truth, join Her; continue to "discuss" this Truth means not only weakening Orthodoxy, but destroying it.  Protestants were right when they said in ancient times: "If you have the Truth, then why should you participate in the ecumenical movement, which is the search for the Unknown Truth." 

The second aspect of Father Georgy's failure in "practical Orthodoxy" is the failure of attempts to stay and support the Russian Church Abroad.  Where the heresy of sectarianism interfered with the main idea of the Church Abroad - that all Russian hierarchs should unite, at least with their fellow-countrymen - foreign hierarchs, and also to the possible limit with the Catacomb Church in Russia and, when the Lord finally allows, with the visible Church in Russia too?  The Metropolia [OCA]  removed itself from the Church Abroad in its history books, but nevertheless, it was an organic part of the ROCOR, and the most objective view of the history of Russian Orthodoxy abroad can not but conclude that the Metropolia does not want to be in alliance with the Church Abroad and several times deliberately broke with it.  Read the case of Metropolitan Platon against the Bishop of Apollinaria in 1927, about Metropolitan Theophilus, who was betrayed to our Church, but had to leave it, about the infamous Cleveland Cathedral against Archbishop Vitaly; where the church truth and justice, where our confessors, who stand for unity and peace, are all, no doubt, in the Church Abroad! 

When Father Gregory talks about our alleged inclination to "root sectarianism," I can not take it lightly.  He is a man whose word should be taken seriously.  But how can he support such an extraordinary statement?  I suspect that he does not attach much importance to it, and the statement is more emotional than deliberate, as well as the recent paid advertisement of Archbishop John (Shakhovsky), who accuses the entire Church Abroad of being in a state of "intoxication, hatred and Pharisaic pride"!  It's not just unfair, it's slander!  Yes, we are a minority; Yes, the rest of the Orthodox Church is trying to cut us off and redoubles its efforts pushing for "autocephaly" to be signed; yes, we are consciously defending Orthodoxy, which today is being trampled upon by the Orthodox hierarchs themselves.  But how do we differ in this from the case of St. Athanasius, who found that all the churches in the city, except one, are in the hands of the Arians?  How are we different from St. Maximus the Confessor, who, when he was informed that the three patriarchs had entered into an alliance with monothelites, said: "Even if the whole world enters into an alliance with them, I will not enter!"?  (By the way, this statement was repeated in 1927 by Metropolitan Anthony (Khrapovitsky), speaking against Metropolitan Sergius).  How are we different from St. Mark of Ephesus, who did not succumb to the "Ecumenical Council" and all the hierarchs separately in the "root, sectarian, insane" faith that he alone was right?! 

Forgive me if I write too harshly, but I want you to clearly understand my point of view: The Church Abroad today is at the center of the struggle for Orthodox Truth and the foundations.  Of course, we have many shortcomings, of course, the general decline has also affected some of our members, but we are still fighting for the Truth, and, frankly speaking, there is not one sign that any of the "14 autocephalous Churches" or American jurisdictions does it.  If you are inspired by the last semi-conservative statements of Father Schmemann - well, I can only say that these statements are, apparently, a weak reaction to the impression that Metropolitan Filaret made on the conscience of the part of the Metropolia, but this will soon pass, and especially so if their autocephaly will be established.  The path of the "American Church" is clear - in accordance with the spirit of the times towards the union and "Protestantism with the Eastern rite." 

Each Orthodox Church has its shortcomings and weaknesses, and there are times when you can only suffer, silently suffering, some things that representatives of the Church do; but if this silence should continue even when violence against the conscience is committed and unprincipled "canonical" acts are committed that destroy the very integrity of the holy things, then how can one continue to be Orthodox at all? 
(From a letter to Father David Black on 23.03 / 5.04.70) 


What is heard about autocephaly?  Nothing comes to us except vague rumors.  Have you seen the attacks of Meyendorff on the ROCOR Synod in the last issue of his publication "Orthodox Church"?  This should be answered, at least, because of the three hierarchs on which the most slander is being committed.  Do you plan an answer?  If no one else does this, we will write him an open letter.  By the way, recently in "Orthodox Russia" (in the appendix for March) the full text of the super-political laudatory of the German army in 1941 by Shakhovsky was printed, and such a man dares to talk about "politics in the Church"?! 
(From a letter to Father Panteleimon and the monks on March 31 / April 13, 1970) 


How should we react when we read the attacks of Meyendorff's father?  Perhaps one can understand his superficial view of the history of the Church after 1917, when he quotes documents that confirm his position and ignore others (however, one of his documents is a forgery, it is universally acknowledged); a little puzzling that he can so easily reject the canonical nature of the Synod, not realizing that his remarks should have the same binding attitude to the Metropolia in 1920-26. and 1936-46 years.  (And he forgets to mention that no one recognized the Metropolia in 1926-36.); he sighs at the lack of "consistency" which he finds in the recent history of the Synod, for his own narrow understanding of "consistency" is trampled upon, based on the distortion of our position, and not the Synod; frankly, it is absolutely unfair that practically all the "facts" that he quotes are distorted, inaccurate or simply fictitious. 

But when he attacks the person, it is impossible to remain silent.  First, the argumentations are at the children's level - if we cooperate with the Communists, you also did it, and you are also fascists!  Even if this were true, it does not concern the principle under discussion; but this is in reality a slander based on half-truth and half-hints.  Metropolitan Anastassy never acknowledged any "blessings" on the "state police" of Hitler; in 1938 he really thanked the German government in a very worthy tone for the money given to one church, and for the law that legalizes our Church.  Later, when it became known how the Germans treated Jews, Russians, etc., Metropolitan Anastassy expressed himself so directly that his office was repeatedly subjected to rude searches by SS men.  Assuming that he was a pro-Nazi, as Father Meyendorff does, it is irresponsible (and inserting in the quote the words "the blessing of the state police" is dishonorable: he only cites his own imagination); saying that his attitude is equivalent to the active service of Metropolitan Nicodemus to communism, it means simply not to rely on facts and include the "defense mechanism" of the cheapest poshib.  "And all this when the Metropolitanate has really supported Hitler, Archbishop John (Shakhovskoy), who (leaving the Synod 10 years before ) in 1941, after Hitler captured Western Europe, when it was better than in 1938 to be aware of his actions in Germany, he published a stunning hymn to the Nazi army on the occasion of its invasion  into Russia: "The bloody operation of the overthrow of the Third International was entrusted to an expert, an experienced German physician ... This required the iron hand of the German army, professional military men, hardened in the most difficult battles ... This army, having passed with victories (over Western civilization !! !), through the whole of Europe, is strong now not only with the power of its weapons and principles, but also with subordination to the higher power, Providence ... Above all human, the sword of the Lord operates ... "(New Word, June 29, 1941. , Berlin.)  Our bishops, who were supposed to be involved in the "politics, "it was enough to refrain from such guerrilla attacks, even when it seemed that the Soviets could be defeated.  Nevertheless, Archbishop Shakhovskoy takes an honorable place in the preparations for autocephaly and constantly accuses the Synod of "politicalness" (indeed, his fiery speeches against the Synod in Cleveland contributed to the split in 1946), while our Metropolitan, a man of solid principles, is exposed slander!  Honestly, I would not have touched this feature of Archbishop Shakhovsky, but if Father Meyendorff is convinced that pronazism is a weighty argument against the hierarch and the Church, he should have known who better to criticize! 

The same is true of Metropolitan Philaret and Archbishop John (Maksimovich) in China: it is formally correct that for several days in 1945, after receiving false information that Metropolitan Anastassy had died, the Synod was dissolved, the church situation in Russia changed completely as a result of the war, and the Patriarch was elected legally, they did commemorate Patriarch Alexy, but when the connection with Metropolitan Anastassy soon reestablished and the truth became known, they both became such convinced opponents of Moscow, so at odds with Moscow that Moscow still today remembers Abp. Archbishop John as the head of the division in China (see., eg, "United Church").  And Metropolitan Filaret, because of his statements and sermons against the Soviets and the Patriarch, he was constantly exposed to the danger for his life.  It's difficult and quite tiring to tell you this in a letter, but I know that you will listen to the facts: Father Meyendorff has built a monstrous accusation from several misleading half-truths against our three leading hierarchs with the intention of discrediting our whole Church, and thousands of people will believe his words and will never know the facts.  If he prints our answer (in case no one else does this before us) it will not be for the sake of presenting the "other side", but simply to correct inaccuracies, falsehood and slander. 
(From a letter to Father David Black on 3/16/04/70) 


We would like to print your letter and in the same issue, include some of your statements about Archbishop John (Shakhovsky) and Father Schmemann.  We also hope to prepare an open letter to Father Meyendorff about his recent irresponsible statement against our Synod.  If those are their arguments against us, then they have no facts at all, and they act only on their emotions and exactly according to the plan by which Nicodemus [Rotov], who knows their psychology well, is waging his war against Orthodoxy! 
(From a letter to Father Seraphim Bobich 4 / 17.04.70) 


These three people are traitors to Orthodoxy of the same type (though more refined), like the patriarch Athenagoras and Archbishop Iakovos, and it's time to inform the Orthodox believers about it.  Archbishop John (Shakhovskoy) preached "poetic" Christianity, directed against monasticism and all strict Orthodoxy; Father Schmemann explicitly tried to convert Orthodoxy into Protestantism, and Father Meyendorff by his irresponsible and slanderous attacks on hierarchs and children of the Russian Church Abroad shows such a desire to follow in their footsteps that he forgets even ordinary honesty and decency.  These people are clearly leading the Metropolitanate [OCA] to "Protestantism with the Eastern rite," and now the hierarchs of the Metropolitanate have unanimously united with the enemies of the Church of Christ in order to achieve this goal faster - it's too late to do anything for the Metropolia, anyone who wants to stay in the Church of Christ must now, before they get caught in the trap, part with the Metropolis. 
(From a letter to Father Seraphim Bobich on April 19 / May 2, 1970) 


From the March-April "Orthodox Word" we begin a series of articles about the "renovated Orthodoxy" in which we hope to show some main currents and figures that are trying to lead Orthodoxy from a direct and narrow traditional path and turn it into something that is possible to call heresy, nevertheless and can no longer be considered Orthodoxy.  The first article, author of it - the leading Russian theologian, father Mikhail Pomazansky, exposes the Protestantism of the "Liturgical Theology" of Father A. Schmemann.  We ourselves later hope to write an article about the etheric "esoteric chiliasm" of Archbishop John (Shakhovsky).  We think, perhaps you could write an article for us on another topic - the theological-philosophical basis, the premise, the meaning, etc. actions and words of Athenagoras, Iacovos, etc.  This contains at least one explicit heresy, which Jacobos recently expressed with these words: "All Christian creeds constitute the Body of Christ," but it seems that there is involved much more.  Athenagoras, it turns out, is a chiliast speaking of the "Third era of the Holy Spirit," observing visions of the "common cup", etc.  In their "reformist" zeal, they seem to go so far as to reject all Orthodox and traditional, while bending at the same time before the cheapest kind of atheistic humanism.  (See the editorial of Father Patnakos's article in the last issues of the "Orthodox Observer" - he even says that we no longer need to pray for the air's sake, because now the people "control" the weather!),  Etc., etc. . 
(From a letter to Father Michael Azkoul on April 21 / May 4, 1970) 


The activity of the Synod is based on one thing: loyalty to Orthodoxy, first to its spirit, and then to all possible canons.

If they wish, the "leaders" of the world Orthodoxy can brand the Synodal Church (as Father Schmemann does) for "apocalyptic barrenness" - but the spiritual fruits that the Lord bestowed on the Church Abroad, recognized by many outside of our Church, seem to be strong evidence against such a superficial accusation. [spiritual fruits = saints]

The Synod almost alone leads today the struggle for Orthodoxy on the main fronts (against ecumenism-communism, Renovationism, etc.).  I would call the Synodal Church today the voice of the Orthodox conscience; no matter how much Father Schmemann expressed his displeasure with this and the lack of understanding of this fact.  However, Metropolitan Filaret in his "Sorrowful Epistle" appealed to the world-orthodox bishop [EP] with the request not to join the apostasy, but return to Orthodoxy.  The Synod did not "brand" Athenagoras and Iacosus, but simply warned Orthodox believers about their heresy and non-orthodoxy, and some of the Greeks obeyed the canons and recoiled from the heretic bishop [EP] before his conviction in order to free himself from his [EP] heresy.

Talk about "spirituality" brings us back to Father Florovsky and "Catarism."  When Father Florovsky refers to the "spirituality" of the Cathars, the Orthodox heads go around: what kind of spirituality can we speak of in relation to these fanatical and most anti-Christian sectarians?  Indeed, there is a Hindu "spirituality" - I know people who have become very close to it and have no doubt called it Satanic, and there is a special kind of "spirituality" inherent in frenzied sectarians of many species, but with Orthodoxy they have nothing in common, and any of them can be called a Christian only in a figurative sense.  While the spiritual fruits of our Orthodox pillars of the Church Abroad are undoubtedly Orthodox spiritual fruits, and they testify to a healthy Orthodox background and environment.  And, by the way, the Orthodox Church still considers Reverend Isaac the Syrian to be an Orthodox saint, whatever the Catholic scholars (and those Orthodox academics who are repeating everything behind them) would imagine. (I'm sure even Father Florovsky doubts this.)
(From a letter to Father David Black on April 23, 6/6/70) 


Now, when the Metropolitanate considers itself to be truly an Orthodox Church in America, the time to open fire on the whole front is to show what kind of "orthodoxy" it represents.  We have a wonderful article criticizing the "liturgical theology" of Father Schmemann, the author of her father Mikhail Pomazansky (now eighty years old, he lives in Jordanville) is probably the leading Russian theologian of our time.  Honestly, until recently, I more or less perceived Schmemann's father for his reputation as an "orthodox" scholar, partly worthy of criticism, but, perhaps, in the end, not so terrible.  But after this article, with liberal quotations from his book, he appears no more, no less than an outspoken Protestant.  We hope to have an article about Archbishop John (Shakhovskoy) soon.  If Schmemann's father is their "theologian," then he is their "confessor", and what perverse, full of self-deception and deceiving others "spirituality" he poses! 

We correspond with Father David Black, who is inherent in all the shortcomings of St. Vladimir Education and he, like flint, defends the Metropolia.  He recognizes the Metropolia's spiritual poverty and the spiritual wealth of the Synod (but his father Florovsky told him that we are like Cathars, who are also "spiritual" - God the merciful, the concept of "spirituality" is turned upside down!); he admits that the Soviet bishops may have compromised with their episcopate - but no cathedral blamed them, and some of the bishops of Peter I and Catherine were also bad!  He even prays that the bishops of the Metropolia "do not sell our Orthodoxy."  We spoke little with him, but he continues to write to us, so at least some grain in his soul is planted. 
(From a letter to Father Nikita Palasis on 04/26/9/05/70)


We, of course, would very much like to see your answer to Father Schmemann, the sooner, the better.  We might even have been able to put it instead of our already prepared article on Father Shmemann's "liturgical theology", which can be printed at any time, it is only in the amount.  We ourselves thought about writing something like the answer to this, as well as the attacks of Father Meyendorff in the "Orthodox Church," but there was no time and no conditions, and then the answers of Father George Grabbe came out.  Father Georgi's answers, as always, are weighed and sober, in fact addressed to Russians, people like the fathers of Schmemann and Meyendorff do not care at all, because they have long considered them apostates and simply do not listen to them anymore.  But for the English-speaking public, I think the approach should be more militant: for them these people are "authorities in theology", and it's time for us to prove that this is not so.  We just learned yesterday from Father Nikita that you wrote such an article, he plans to publish it together with the original of Schmemann's father to give a complete picture and avoid any charges of injustice. 

Father Meyendorff, of course, is known for addressing a very limited audience, who can not be trusted to distinguish between the "right" point of view (obviously, the party line) from all others.  We still hope to find time and write him an "Open Letter" on this topic, noting its significance for the new "American Orthodoxy." 
(From a letter to Father Michael Azkoul 10 / 23.05.70)


We heard that Father Michael [Azkoul] came to the Synod and wrote a response to Schmemann, who really deserves to be downgraded from his ridiculous pedestal.  In our new issue, we also issue a volley in this direction.  We are looking forward to the article of Father Michael. 
(From a letter to Father Panteleimon and to the monks on 10 / 23.05.70)


Father Michael Azkoul sent us a splendid answer to the attack of Father Schmemann against the Russian Church Abroad (his response to Metropolitan Philaret's "Sorrowful Epistle").  In their correspondence, Father Schmemann finally admitted that he simply does not have any facts about the Russian Church Abroad.  The manuscript was sent by Father Meyendorff to the "Orthodox Church" (Father Michael notes that Father Meyendorff is extremely sensitive to the Synod and simply can not judge him sensibly, while Father Schmemann is a little more reasonable, half of his own family in the Synod!), it is exclusively objective and fair, and it notes a fact that was not previously published - that the Moscow-Metropolitan negotiations were held in Geneva and New York under the auspices of the World Council of Churches in the presence of its representatives! 
(From a letter to Daniel Olson on 1 / 14.06.70)


Well, what to say: The Metropolitanate has completed its business, which so far only concerns its one, but, apparently, has a chance of a future alliance with all those who think that the "united Orthodox Church" is the answer to American Orthodoxy.  No, this is not the answer, this is the result of a very superficial attitude to this issue.  The answer is a return to true Orthodoxy, unfortunately, so emasculated in America in our century.  The course of the Metropolia, I think, is the watershed of Orthodoxy in the twentieth century - henceforth in America there will be two "Orthodoxy": the present (whose light, as no one doubts, has become our Synod) and the counterfeit, the product of the Protestant-academic Paris school, with practical indifference and worldly Protestantism of American life.  The evidence of the charge against the Metropolia lies not in its questionable behavior or even in its criminal negotiations with the Soviets, but in the fact that its leaders preach not Orthodoxy, but a cheap surrogate in its stead.  Yes, some priests are still trying to do something, but the future belongs not to them, but to the fathers of Schmemann and Meyendorff (they are not Orthodox), and the future generation is brought up on the blasphemous parody of Orthodoxy contained in official publications - from "Young Life" to "Care."  These people undoubtedly have good intentions, but they are terribly uneducated, and now they are trying to impose their absolute misunderstanding of Orthodoxy on the whole Church. 

The dispute is critical - Orthodoxy against non-Orthodox Christianity.  Speaking in secular language, all the advantages on the side of the Metropolia: the number, prestige, printed editions with large editions and with the editor, which, frankly speaking, is not distinguished by fairness or honesty.  But the rules, but the Truth is not on its side, and it can no longer be considered belonging to the Church.  The official representatives of the Metropolia either do not know the facts of church history in the last fifty years (Schmemann's father confessed to Father Michael Azkoul that he does not know the facts about the Synod!)  Or (on the other hand) they deliberately distort them.  The ship of the Metropolia as a Church was shipwrecked, from now it is still possible to save its individual representatives, but the judgment of the whole organization can only be conveyed to the free Russian Church of the future.  

The Synod's position on questions of truth and rules, what is and what is not Orthodoxy, will be described in detail in future publications.  Our "Orthodox Word" will soon print Father Michael Azkoul's excellent response to the attacks of Schmemann's father on the "Sorrowful Epistle"  (Father Meyendorff, presumably, shortened it) in the hope of correcting the distortions and mistakes of the theology of Father Schmemann.  Father Michael now moved to the Synod - not because he considers Metropolitan Philip a heretic, but because he did not break with Moscow on the question of joining the union with the Roman Catholics, he also joins Uniat, as Moscow has already done much more decisively.  "World Orthodoxy" did not listen to the requests of the Synod, and therefore those who wish to remain Orthodox have no choice but to leave "universal Orthodoxy."  In the fifteenth century, those who were not with St. Mark of Ephesus, were outside the Church, and today we are approaching the same situation. 

Alas, the modern basic church editions are shrouded in clouds of rhetorical and academic semi-truths. Today, the surrender of Orthodoxy does not take place in the form of signing a pseudo-union, but as a gradual series of acts of apostasy. Those who love the Truth must now get rid of this foggy and soul-destroying process. In the eyes of the Metropolitan Church is a miserable supplicant, timidly turning to the world and always ready to apologize for his deviations and adapt to the spirit of the times and the powerful of this world. This is not the Church of Christ! And so little we have left precious time to bring down the truth on an indifferent world! 
(From a letter to Father David Black on 8 / 21.06.70)


Have you yet begun to understand the enormous meaning of the most important part of your agreement with Moscow, its unwritten part?  Do not you yet see how your alleged "independence" so tightly binds you, that you should now start doing something that earlier you could not even imagine?  We whole-heartedly would like to be with you with one whole, at least with those of you who sincerely love the Church and most of all want to serve it, but we can be one with you only in Truth, and not in false friendliness.  And this uncompromising attitude will only cause some of you to be even more bitter than Father Meyendorff already expressed in his slanderous attacks, and people like Father Meyendorff will repeat all the details of Moscow's propaganda against us, not understanding that this is one of the the most important "conditions" of the agreement on autocephaly - in the destruction of the "Karlovackian schismatics".  [To this day in private the MP will still deridingly refer to ROCOR as the Karlovac Church.]

I remind you of another unwritten "condition" of this agreement, which you yourself use in your arguments for Moscow: "Every bishop, priest and layman of the Metropolia agrees to protect the Moscow Patriarchate not only as a persecuted organization that can not be judged by those living outside the USSR, The Church, which can still receive the grace of the Holy Spirit, but as a fully canonical, undoubtedly Orthodox Church, assigned to the leading role among the Orthodox Churches of the world. "  One can even paraphrase the 1927 Declaration: "Every blow directed against the Moscow Patriarchate is a blow against the Metropolia: they have a community of sorrows and joys." 

Have you not yet begun to understand the enormous spiritual dependence you have got?  Can not you see that the Metropolia can no longer objectively consider the church situation in the USSR?  What is no longer in the interest of the Metropolia to provide a complete picture of this situation?  That the Metropolia can not welcome the publication of statements of many hierarchs in 1927, unequivocally exposing the Declaration of Metropolitan Sergius and the Church organization created on its basis?  What will not be in the interests of the Metropolia if Boris Talantov is released from prison and allowed to continue writing about Sergianism as the root of all evil in the contemporary life of the Russian Church?  That the Metropolia openly sided with Sergianism and against the catacomb Church, whose existence she prefers no longer to hear?  Indeed, if it is possible to describe the present state of the Metropolia in one word, it will, of course, be the word "neo-Sergianism". 

Yes, our statements about the fathers of Schmemann and Meyendorff will be printed in the "Orthodox Word". The small deviations of yesterday already lead to great changes, which, we hope, will eventually be seen by some. 
(From a letter to Father David Black on June 29 / 12.07.70)


It's time to apply strictness in the selection of material that is suitable reading for the Orthodox.  Just do not allow the Orthodox reader to get from Schmemann's books, etc. great and small differences with Orthodoxy, which are now added to the whole new approach to Orthodoxy. 
(From a letter to Father Nikita Palasis on June 29 / 12.07.70)


I think that most Orthodox have a very vague idea of everything connected with the catacomb Church and, with God's help, we will try to correct this by means of a whole series of articles, since, basically, this topic is quite clear, and one can even call it "Sergianism against Orthodoxy."  The statements of non-Sergian hierarchs in 1927 were quite clear and could serve as a basis for further discussion of this issue.  An example of ignorance on this topic: Father John Meyendorff, in a recent article in the "Orthodox Church", trying to prove that the Metropolia was not really governed by the Synod in 1935-46, we note that, according to the 1935 agreement, both the Metropolia and the Synod revered primarily "Metropolitan Peter Krutitsky," that is, the leader of the opposition to Metropolitan Sergius, head of the catacomb Church!  The metropolia from top to bottom is simply completely unfamiliar with the facts and conditions of the situation with the Russian Church in the twentieth century.  The only change in the situation since 1935 is that we no longer know the name of the head of the catacomb Church and even whether she has a chapter at all, but the existence of the catacomb Church is certified in the Soviet sources themselves. 

The modern crisis of Orthodoxy is not at all superficial, but profound and dogmatic.  It is simply incredible how Constantinople comes to be (and Father Meyendorff in the June-July "Orthodox Church" completely identifies the Metropolis with Athenagoras and the company, arguing that those who are not its allies are "not allies of world Orthodoxy"), and only one question is not whether there is heresy here, but about how to begin to describe such a comprehensive apostasy.   Incidentally, Father Constantine Dombalis recently called for in the "Hellenic Chronicles" for the canonization of Athenagoras during his lifetime!  In the face of such Orthodox illiteracy, it is more likely to show affinity for the athenagorites that their teaching has at least something in common with Orthodoxy.  Such is our time that most Orthodox will have to explain why and why Athenagoras and Jacobos are not Orthodox. 

So the question is: how to clarify the situation?  The most obvious dogmatic material is a heresy concerning the essence of the Church - you can quote about it from Athenagoras and from Iacosus.  But this still does not say anything, because this heresy is the only random part of their teaching.  But what, then, are their real motives?  Trying to understand and criticize different teachings, I have always discovered that the most effective criticism happens when you first understand the main motivator of the thinker, and then you will strike at the very heart of the whole system, leave random heresies and mistakes for later. 

As for the destructive influence of Athenagoras and Iakos, it is, of course, precisely that they do not seem to have any system, no real ideological motivation whatsoever, they just pick up any changes in dogmas that coincide with their ambitions.  But I think we should take for an axiom that ideas are, in the end, primary, and even those who do not follow the ideas themselves, nevertheless, fall into the power (in this case) of someone else's ideas.  And, of course, the modern crisis of Greek Orthodoxy can not be explained by the ambitions of Jacob or the personal motives of someone else - they existed even in past times, but they were not the cause of the crisis in ideas, in theology that exists today. 

CHILIASM AND ANTICHRIST

And so it happened that when I read the article of Iakos in the July-August "Orthodox Observer" "The New Epoch?" the other day, I suddenly felt that I had penetrated into the "essence of Iakovism".  Indeed, is not chiliasm the main heresy?  What else, indeed, could justify such tremendous changes and monstrous distortions in Orthodoxy, except for the concept that we are entering a completely new era, for which the concepts of the past are no longer a revelation, and we need to be guided by the trends of the new time?  After all, Father Patrikasos in the previous issues of the "Orthodox Observer" defines Athenagoras not as a theologian, not as a traditionalist, but as a prophet, as one whose heresy can not be condemned, because he already lives in the "new time", ahead of his.  Athenagoras himself was quoted as speaking of the coming of the "Third Epoch of the Holy Spirit" - a purely chiliastic idea, for which, for the most part, N. Berdyaev fought, and in the past directly supported by Joachim of Floris, and indirectly by the Montanists.  The whole idea of the "new era", of course, completely permeates the last two centuries with its concern for "progress" is the key idea of the very concept of the revolution (from French to Bolshevik), the central idea of modern occultism (manifested in the contemporary conversations of wide sections of the public about the "Aquarian age" , an astrological post-Christian era) and, perhaps, due to its proliferation, mainly Freemasonry (in America, published a description of the Scottish ritual called "The New Century").  It is regrettable to note that all this philosophy is also represented on the American dollar bill with its Masonic heritage, with its "novus ordo seclorum" and its unfinished pyramid, on top of which it is necessary to put the thirteenth a rock!  In Christian terms, it is the philosophy of Antichrist, the one who will turn the world around and "change times and seasons."  Indeed, even the calendar is involved here, since the most serious revolutions, French and Bolshevik, introduce new calendars (they tried, failed, and were forced to settle for a compromise with the Gregorian calendar).  And the whole concept of ecumenism, of course, is permeated with this heresy and "re-establishing the Church". 

The last "thought" of Constantinople (if decently called so!) is full or direct identification of the Kingdom of God with the "new age" (the wolf lying next to the lamb), or by emphasizing an entirely new nature of time and/or Christianity, which makes the old Christian norms obsolete - new morality, a new religion, an early period of Christianity, a re-establishment of the Church, no need to continue to pray for the harvest, for the weather, because it is now controlled by a person, etc. 

How is it advantageous, moreover, for the chiliasm that we live (since 1917) in the "post-Konstantinov era", since at the beginning of that era, that is, the golden age of the Fathers, the heresy of chiliasm was crushed - in the West, I believe, the main thanks to Augustine, and in the East Origen (?) with their comments that a thousand years of the Apocalypse is not an earthly "millennium", but a life in church grace on earth.  And indeed, along with the revolutions that completed the Constantine era, we saw the reform of Christianity, which the Church as an instrument of God's grace for the eternal salvation of people substitutes for the "social gospel." In the article of Iacovus there is not a single word about salvation, but only concern for "peace." 

I said enough! 
(From a letter to Father Michael Azkoul on August 30 / 12.09.70)


Meanwhile, although Athenagoras did not recognize autocephaly, the Metropolia clings to him, and Father Meyendorff writes in the new issue of "Orthodox Church" that anyone who does not recognize Athenagoras as a true Orthodox patriarch simply "falls out of world Orthodoxy."  And this is at a time when Athenagoras gives out more and more wild statements (he fears that Moscow will prove more modernistic than him, and will thus become the leader of "world Orthodoxy"!); and the Greek archpriest in America (Father Dombalis) seriously calls in his lifetime for the canonization of Athenagoras !!! 
(From a letter to Daniel Olson on 4/17/09/70) [4/17Sept1970]


The Metropolia flees from Metropolitan Philaret directly into the embrace of Moscow, which is constantly competing with Constantinople in terms of who will make more statements and commit acts that are completely un-Orthodox, calculated for the public, and Father Meyendorff declares that all who are not allies of Athenagoras (I believe, do you understand that he is a heretic?) do not belong to the Orthodox Church. 
(From a letter to Father David Black on 30.10 / 12.11.70)


It's no secret that the bishops of the Metropolia eat meat (we used to know the cook at St Tikhon who cooked meat, to our surprise, for Shakhovsky) and that no one expects them to do it, and this really reveals their attitude towards feat and church tradition.  But, unfortunately, the mentality of the Metropolia is such that if they found that at least one of our monks is eating meat, this would cause the entire council of bishops to be convened, and we would be called "Pharisees" for not raising this issue . 
(From a letter to Father Nikita Palasis on 12 / 25.06.72)


It's not about Schmemann's "wrong views on this or that issue," but in his entire greenhouse approach to theology, which our simple Russian priests immediately catch with their true Orthodox flair, for which they do not need any theological degree at all; "Icon" Vasnetsov (how much we fought for him in the Russian Church because of him) - blasphemy against the saints; a mediocre article on holiness (clearly revealing the apologetic approach of Vladyka Vitaly) signed by someone who in the Church Abroad represents a public scandal, etc. etc. 
(From a letter to Father Nikita Palasis, Palm Sunday, 73) 


Do you see how far away you can go, doing generalizations about "Catholic influence" or "Latin enslavement"?  The very concept of "Latin enslavement" is played out by Schmemann and his company just to destroy the idea of continuity of the Orthodox tradition for many centuries.  Do not fall into this trap! 
(From a letter to Father Nikita Palasis on August 19 / September 1, 1977)


Father Sergius Schukin writes to us that in the decrees of the bishops he feels "the influence of Solzhenitsyn."  Yes, we also feel it, and I remember that you mentioned something like that when we were visited.  Solzhenitsyn is important as a moral force, boldly rising towards tyranny, prompting people to stop lying.  This is good, but very limited, and it is obvious that Solzhenitsyn himself does not have a deep ecclesiastical consciousness.  He is a sort of confessor, but not like the Monk Maximus the Confessor or St Mark of Ephesus.  He wants the Russians to unite, but perhaps he does not even understand that the Truth must precede the unification.  (And although he is against the "life in lies", he has not yet grasped the terrible lies of Schmemann and all this pseudo-Orthodoxy.)  Thus, Solzhenitsyn can now cause a huge scandal, and, indeed, he seems to have had a huge impact on our bishops.  How unpleasant it is to see that bishops try to keep up with the world, to keep pace with "fashion."  

I sum up: the bishops are very similar to the mundane "board of directors", which are administered in the Church according to their human understanding, and not according to the will of the Lord.  This means that we are in for trouble.  Just now, Bishop Anthony told us that Grabbe and Schmemann are "negotiating" - about what?  About that, to confess Truth?  Or about being pleasant in the eyes of the world and trying to be friends with everyone?  If the "negotiations" succeed, then we should accept all innovations and all the pseudo-orthodoxy of Schmemann and Co.?  This makes us feel insecure, the ground seems to go from under the feet. 
(From a letter to Father Valery Lukyanov on February 1, 1975)

[Wow can I relate to this!  This is just what happened/happens with the R-fragments!  Continually we enter into "negotiations" which are doomed before they start, and it makes us feel insecure to wonder if our synod understands that the negotiations are pre-doomed.


Chilism and the "new century" are connected with "superman", which, as I understand it, sincerely endorses Florensky: Soloviev was against Nietzsche, but is not his "God-manhood" more "theological" form of the same idea?  For example, when on page 25 of your MS are the words that a person ceases to be "just a person".  (Compare Dostoevsky, who correctly counterposed the Orthodox God-man to a new revolutionary man, hence the "Demons.")  Perhaps one could more emphasize the idea of how a man becomes a "god" in a new historical era in contrast to how in Orthodoxy he adores through grace . 

The tradition to which Kireyevsky joined continued until and after the revolution, that is, this traditional Orthodoxy, represented today by the Russian Church Abroad, which, with all its philosophy and theology, opposes the Gnostic tradition of Solovyov-Florensky-Bulgakov, etc.  This traditional Orthodoxy has not written scientific works - and because it does not fit in our time, and because its representatives almost all belong to the Church (with the exception of a few thinkers, for example, Konstantin Leontiev). 
(From a letter to Father Michael Azkoul on August 25 / September 7, 1975)


The fact that we refuse to participate in the campaign of mistrust of the people.  The Lavra or anyone else accused of "Western influence" (and those who use this accusation, obviously under the influence of Schmemann) does not mean that we absolutely agree with them on any issue.  For example, we think that the most weighted attitude towards the Old Calendarists lies somewhere between the positions of Vladyka Laurus and Dr. Kalomiros.  But we continue to maintain the best relations with both, because we understand that we are people, and we have no answers to everything. 
(From a letter to Nina Seko on 9 / 22.10.75)


© Copyright: Vyacheslav Marchenko , 2018 
Certificate of publication No. 218031401971

related post:
http://rocorrefugees.blogspot.com/2008/10/book-review-reveals-hidden-oca-history.html


Don't believe it when Platina tries to say that Fr. Seraphim became "soft" towards the end of his life and started moving towards world Orthodoxy.  Here is his last issue in 1982 –– he is just as "firm" and uncompromising of the Truth as he was in 1965.  The only "softening" he did was to grieve more in his heart for the poor people stuck in world-orthodoxy.
     Orthodox Word magazine issue #100 – 101 (double issue)

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