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12052Re: Appeal of Bishop Agathangel of Odessa to the Synod of Bishops

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  • vkozyreff
    Aug 3, 2004
      Dear Father Alexander, bless.

      You write, in a way that perfectly corresponds to the present
      sorrowful reality:

      "This "Appeal" violates a decision made by the Synod of Bishops and
      by our First Hierarch that all working documents of the joint
      commissions of the Church Abroad and the Moscow Patriarchate would be
      strictly confidential".

      I think that this secretive approach is typically MP (Soviet) in
      style. From here, it is obvious who leads the exercise (Nye Russkim
      dukhom pakhnyet). We should not play by their rules, because these
      rules are not orthodox (they violate our sobornost') and because we
      cannot challenge them on that field.

      Please see Vl Agafangel comments:

      "And in this fundamental question we shouldn't - not having the right
      to - adopt the methods and the practice of the MP. But on the
      contrary, we should protest against such practice as far and with as
      much strength as possible. Because the question is about the
      preservation of one of the most important characteristics of the
      Orthodox Church - its sobornost".

      Let us not try to be smarter than the Evil one: if we accept his
      rules, we are lost. Vl Agafangel knows what he is talking about. The
      Russians in the emigration have always underestimated the wickedness
      of the Bolshevik, especially when they want to attract us in their
      nets by using our naïve love for Russia and orthodoxy.

      I will always remember how my father (we were in Africa in those
      days) tried to dissuade his friend, a Russian surgeon born in
      Finland, to return to Russia in the fifties. Stalin had promised
      pardon to all those who would return to serve the fatherland. My
      father did not succeed. Our friend left with his wife and his
      daughter. He was never seen again.

      The important is not to know whether they call themselves communist
      or not (they have many aliases). It takes more than what we have seen
      to eradicate that abject infection which changes your very nature,
      like a virus.

      Who they are, that is the question. They used to dwell in the
      comunist structures, but did it never occur to you that they are
      perfectly able to migrate into other structures that can fool many
      (all those who want to be fooled, in fact)? The clearest sign (you do
      not like signs) is that they never repented. What other evidence do
      you need? Are we so childish to believe that if we very, very hard
      wish that they convert, they did?

      "Atheistic Marxism-Communism, or Bolshevism, the struggle with which
      is the chief task of all national-minded Russian patriots, is just
      one of the offspring, one evil result of this "worldwide evil." To
      struggle only against it means just to cut off the branches without
      noticing the trunk and roots which gave birth to them and nourished

      Unfortunately, many of us see only these branches, paying no
      attention to the trunk and roots. Even more: this root source of
      the "worldwide evil" seems to some quite inoffensive, even favorably
      inclined toward us and our church, and many of us are ready to look
      to it for aid for, ourselves and for support in the struggle against

      (Vl Averky of Syracuse)

      In God,

      Vladimir Kozyreff

      --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, "Fr. Alexander Lebedeff"
      <lebedeff@w...> wrote:
      > Some have questioned why the "Appeal" of Bishop Agafangel has not
      > posted to the official website of the Church Abroad.
      > As the Senior Editor of the website of the Russian Orthodox Church
      > of Russia and as the Secretary of the Synodal Commission on
      > with the Moscow Patriarchate, I can answer the question directly.
      > 1) This letter is a letter from a Bishop of the Church Abroad
      directed to
      > his Synod and Sobor.
      > As such, it must be treated as a confidential communication among
      > of our Church--as are the deliberations of the Synod and Sobor.
      This should
      > be elementary. Our bishops **must** have the ability to express
      > opinions openly and freely, and their discussions and deliberations
      > also be protected from public dissemination. What **is**
      disseminated to
      > the public are the Resolutions that are passed--not the discussions
      or the
      > written or verbal opinions of the various bishops.
      > Bishops are free to express their opinions to the Synod or Sobor,
      or to
      > their fellow bishops, and do so. However, inter-episcopal
      > must be privileged. We have seen in the past how deliberate
      disclosure of
      > privileged communications between the First Hierarch and other
      bishops has
      > been exploited by enemies of our Church and has caused harm.
      > 2)
      > In his statement, Bishop Agafangel himself writes:
      > "I am writing this appeal out of concern that the documents
      submitted by
      > our commission for negotiations with the Moscow Patriarchate may,
      if made
      > public, lend themselves to more than one interpretation."
      > And, at the conclusion, he speaks of the necessity of avoiding "the
      > possibility of a range of interpretations of the documents
      submitted by our
      > committee for negotiations with the Moscow Patriarchate," and
      avoiding "the
      > possibly grievous consequences of such interpretations. . ."
      > So it is clear to anyone who understands the process of delicate
      > negotiations, that position papers, drafts, and other working
      > must be kept confidential. Again, this is so elementary that it is
      > difficult to understand why it has to be explained.
      > Notwithstanding his own words, Bishop Agafangel proceeds to quote
      > certain working documents of the Commission of the Church Abroad
      and to
      > make comments upon their content.
      > Should the Church Abroad, in the middle of delicate negotiations,
      be placed
      > in a position where it can be viewed as being unable to fulfill its
      > commitment, made at the highest level, to keep working documents of
      > Commission confidential?
      > I think not.
      > This was brought to the attention of Bishop Agafangel, and he
      > proceeded to remove his "Appeal" from his diocesan website, where
      it had
      > been originally posted.
      > Should our own clergy then proceed to disseminate this document, in
      > violation of the confidentiality of communications between bishops
      > their Synod, in violation of the commitment to keep working
      documents of
      > the Commission confidential, and after Bishop Agafangel himself
      removed the
      > document from his website?
      > I think not.
      > With love in Christ,
      > Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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