- Dear List,
The document below is interesting to read and seems to indicate that
Vl Gabriel may indeed be described as relatively close in his
thinking to those who oppose the union with the MP before it
renounces sergianism and ecumenism.
As we do, he distinguishes between judging Met Sergius and judging
Here, no hint about that sergianism having its place in ROCOR so the
Church would not be only for the "pure", or about refusal of
sergianism amounting to some kind of donatism.
Vl Gabriel does not speak about the fear of being diluted, but about
the fear of losing independence.
The MP declaration about its renouncing sergianism, promised as
imminent by Father Alexander Lebedeff seems no to be ready as yet.
Last September, "Russian line" published an interview with the
secretary of the ROCOR Synod, Bishop of Manhattan Gabriel
(Chemodakov) ("We have been speaking different languages. The MP
cannot find any way to repudiate Met. Sergius's declaration"), and a
letter from this bishop to "Russian Line" following which "in the
present time, all of us should refrain from angry and irritable
In the text below, Preosvyashchenneyshiy Vl. Gabriel proposes his
vision of the course of the negotiations about the rapprochement
between the MP and ROCOR.
Today, as the process is experiencing a pause, we asked Vl. to
comment about the results of the first stage of negotiations. The
well-known orthodox writer and regular contributor of "Russian line"
Andrey Ryumin talks on behalf of the "Russian Line" editorial staff
with bishop Gabriel.
Bishop of Manhattan Gabriel (Chemodakov): "We fear to lose our
"...On the other hand, one is under the general impression that each
side is further insisting on its points, and that therefore, the
negotiations are stalled.
One may think that efforts aimed at issuing a common opinion on to
the 1927 declaration of Met. Sergius are still ongoing. Of course,
what is discussed is not the person of the metropolitan, but his
action, the 1927 "declaration".
In the open press, particularly in statements by Met Kyrill of
Smolensk, consideration of principles about the interrelations
between Church and State are everywhere, but the talks are in fact
precisely about the very "declaration".
One may assume, that a joint declaration will be published when it is
adopted by both sides...."