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Re: Sergianism or Tikhonism?

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  • Fr. Alexander Lebedeff
    St. Patriarch Tikhon published Epistles are quite clear and speak for themselves. In his Appeal to the Archpastors, Pastors and the Flock of the Russian
    Message 1 of 9 , Jan 5, 2006
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      St. Patriarch Tikhon published Epistles are quite clear and speak for
      themselves.

      In his Appeal to the Archpastors, Pastors and the Flock of the
      Russian [Rossijskoj] Orthodox Church, dated July 1, 1923, he writes:

      "Having received the opportunity to renew my interrupted activity of
      service to the Holy Orthodox Church, and recognizing my guiltiness
      before the Soviet Power, which was expressed in several of our
      passive and active anti-Soviet activities, as was stated in the
      verdict of the Supreme Court, i.e. in resistance to the decree about
      the expropriation of church valuables to help the starving, the
      anathematization of the Soviet Power, the Appeal against the Brest
      Peace treaty, etc, we in accordance with the duty of a Christian and
      an archpastor -- repent of all of this and we are sorry for all of
      the victims which came about as a result of this anti-Soviet
      activity. In essence it is not we who are guilty of this, but also
      that society in we were raised, and those evil-minded people who
      pushed us to these actions from the very beginning of the existence
      of the Soviet Power. As enemies of it, they attempted to overthrow it
      through our Church, for which reason they tried to use me, as the
      head of it. Being powerless to overcome the Soviet Power openly and
      straightforwardly, they wished to achieve its destruction through
      round-about ways, utilizing the Church and its pastors.

      "Recognizing my guiltiness before the people and the Soviet Power, I
      would wish that others would do the same--others, who having
      forgotten their responsibility as pastors, have entered into joint
      actions with the enemies of the working people--with monarchists and
      White Guardists, and desiring to overthrow the Soviet Power, have not
      even shunned entering the ranks of the White Army. However difficult
      it is to admit participation in this crime, but we must say this
      honest, even if it be bitter, truth. We condemn now such actions and
      declare, that the Russian ["Rossijskaja"] Orthodox Church is
      apolitical and does not wish from now on to be "either the white, nor
      the red" Church, --it must be and will be the one, holy, catholic and
      apostolic Church, and any attempts, from whatever quarter they may
      arise, to cast the Church into the political fray must be rejected
      and condemned.

      "Based on these considerations, we in April of 1922 at a combined
      meeting of the Holy Synod and the Higher Eccesiastical Council,
      already condemned the Karlovtsy Diasporan Sobor for their attempt to
      restore monarchy in Russia from the dynasty of the Romanoffs. We
      could have limited ourselves to this condemnation of the bishops who
      were at this Sobor, headed by the Most Reverend Anthony, Metropolitan
      of Kiev, if they would have repented in their actions and would have
      ceased further activities in this direction, but we have been
      informed, that they not only have not ceased this, but all the more
      cast the Orthodox Church into the political fray, together with those
      evil-minded opponents of the Soviet Power, who are living in Russia
      and abroad, who have brought not a small amount of calamities to our
      native land. Let them now realize this, let them humble themselves
      and repent, otherwise it will become necessary to call these most
      reverend bishops to Moscow to give an answer before an ecclesiastical
      tribunal, and to petition the authorities for permission for them to come here,

      "May the Lord give wisdom to all of us to seek not our own, but the
      truth of God and the good of the Holy Church.

      "Humble TIKHON,
      Patriarch of Moscow and of all Russia ["Rossii"]

      =============================================

      In this Epistle, Patriarch Tikhon openly repents of his
      anathematization of the Soviet Power, and is clearly writing not from
      his own stance (which could be said about his Letter of Repentance to
      the Supreme Court, in which he petitioned to be released), but on
      behalf of the whole Church.

      In this Epistle he condemns all who fight against the Soviet Power,
      both in the homeland and abroad, all monarchists, "White Guardists"
      and those who fought in the White Army, and condemns Metropolitan
      Anthony and the Sobor of the Church Abroad, threatening them with an
      ecclesiastical trial for their anti-Soviet activities.

      In this he goes far beyond that which was expressed in the Epistle of
      Metropolitan Sergius, four years later.

      Undoubtedly, this Epistle of Patriarch Tikhon was issued under
      extreme pressure from the Soviet authorities.

      But so was the Epistle (Declaration) of Metropolitan Sergius.

      For some reason, people are willing to forgive St. Patriarch Tikhon
      for succumbing to this pressure, and officially proclaiming what the
      Soviets wanted him to write, while condemning Metropolitan Sergius
      for the very same thing.

      Why?

      With love in Christ,

      Prot. Alexander Lebedeff


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • gene703
      Dear Fr. Alexander, Are you personally willing to repent your passive and active anti-Soviet activities that you were involved in for most of your adult life
      Message 2 of 9 , Jan 5, 2006
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        Dear Fr. Alexander,

        Are you personally willing to repent your "passive and active anti-Soviet activities" that you were involved in for most of your adult life ?

        I have just looked the new site for your own eparhia http://www.wadiocese.com and what is the first thing I find under the document heading ?

        AN APPEAL Of the Pastoral Conference of the Clergy of the Western American Diocese 2001. (Regarding the state of the Church)

        below is just one quote from the appeal undoubtedly signed or maybe even written by you, would you please comment on it, thanks

        Gene T

        "Opponents to the latest Council of Bishops are trying to show that the "new course" of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia lies in the recognition of the Moscow Patriarchate as the "Mother Church". First, the expression "Mother-Church" is nowhere to be found in the conciliar resolutions and Epistles of the Council of 2000. Second, it is completely absurd for the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, founded in 1920 in accordance with Holy Patriarch Tikhon's Ukase, to consider the Moscow Patriarchate its Mother Church. The Moscow Patriarchate was unlawfully founded an entire seven years later in 1927 after the usurpation of the lawful Church Authority by Metropolitan Sergius, the Deputy to the Locum Tenens to the Patriarchal Throne. At that time he issued the infamous "Declaration" of the Church's complete loyalty to the godless Soviet State. The Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia has always refused to consider the new church structure created by Metropolitan
        Sergius to be lawful and canonical; it refuses this to this very day. How can our Church consider the hierarchal structure created by Metropolitan Sergius to be canonical, when a number of the Moscow Patriarchate's best church historians themselves refer to Metropolitan Sergius' authority as "non-canonical" (see the Acts of Holy Patriarch Tikhon published by the Saint Tikhon Theological Institute in Moscow)?

        For the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia the Mother Church always was and always will be the historical Local Russian Orthodox Church in Her fullness. The Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia has always considered itself to be merely the free part of the Russian Orthodox Church."
        http://www.wadiocese.com/eng/Document/2001pastoralconf.html

        here is the same thing in russian
        http://www.wadiocese.com/Document/0a.html




        "Fr. Alexander Lebedeff" <lebedeff@...> wrote:
        St. Patriarch Tikhon published Epistles are quite clear and speak for
        themselves.

        In his Appeal to the Archpastors, Pastors and the Flock of the
        Russian [Rossijskoj] Orthodox Church, dated July 1, 1923, he writes:

        "Having received the opportunity to renew my interrupted activity of
        service to the Holy Orthodox Church, and recognizing my guiltiness
        before the Soviet Power, which was expressed in several of our
        passive and active anti-Soviet activities, as was stated in the
        verdict of the Supreme Court, i.e. in resistance to the decree about
        the expropriation of church valuables to help the starving, the
        anathematization of the Soviet Power, the Appeal against the Brest
        Peace treaty, etc, we in accordance with the duty of a Christian and
        an archpastor -- repent of all of this and we are sorry for all of
        the victims which came about as a result of this anti-Soviet
        activity. In essence it is not we who are guilty of this, but also
        that society in we were raised, and those evil-minded people who
        pushed us to these actions from the very beginning of the existence
        of the Soviet Power. As enemies of it, they attempted to overthrow it
        through our Church, for which reason they tried to use me, as the
        head of it. Being powerless to overcome the Soviet Power openly and
        straightforwardly, they wished to achieve its destruction through
        round-about ways, utilizing the Church and its pastors.

        "Recognizing my guiltiness before the people and the Soviet Power, I
        would wish that others would do the same--others, who having
        forgotten their responsibility as pastors, have entered into joint
        actions with the enemies of the working people--with monarchists and
        White Guardists, and desiring to overthrow the Soviet Power, have not
        even shunned entering the ranks of the White Army. However difficult
        it is to admit participation in this crime, but we must say this
        honest, even if it be bitter, truth. We condemn now such actions and
        declare, that the Russian ["Rossijskaja"] Orthodox Church is
        apolitical and does not wish from now on to be "either the white, nor
        the red" Church, --it must be and will be the one, holy, catholic and
        apostolic Church, and any attempts, from whatever quarter they may
        arise, to cast the Church into the political fray must be rejected
        and condemned.

        "Based on these considerations, we in April of 1922 at a combined
        meeting of the Holy Synod and the Higher Eccesiastical Council,
        already condemned the Karlovtsy Diasporan Sobor for their attempt to
        restore monarchy in Russia from the dynasty of the Romanoffs. We
        could have limited ourselves to this condemnation of the bishops who
        were at this Sobor, headed by the Most Reverend Anthony, Metropolitan
        of Kiev, if they would have repented in their actions and would have
        ceased further activities in this direction, but we have been
        informed, that they not only have not ceased this, but all the more
        cast the Orthodox Church into the political fray, together with those
        evil-minded opponents of the Soviet Power, who are living in Russia
        and abroad, who have brought not a small amount of calamities to our
        native land. Let them now realize this, let them humble themselves
        and repent, otherwise it will become necessary to call these most
        reverend bishops to Moscow to give an answer before an ecclesiastical
        tribunal, and to petition the authorities for permission for them to come here,

        "May the Lord give wisdom to all of us to seek not our own, but the
        truth of God and the good of the Holy Church.

        "Humble TIKHON,
        Patriarch of Moscow and of all Russia ["Rossii"]

        =============================================

        In this Epistle, Patriarch Tikhon openly repents of his
        anathematization of the Soviet Power, and is clearly writing not from
        his own stance (which could be said about his Letter of Repentance to
        the Supreme Court, in which he petitioned to be released), but on
        behalf of the whole Church.

        In this Epistle he condemns all who fight against the Soviet Power,
        both in the homeland and abroad, all monarchists, "White Guardists"
        and those who fought in the White Army, and condemns Metropolitan
        Anthony and the Sobor of the Church Abroad, threatening them with an
        ecclesiastical trial for their anti-Soviet activities.

        In this he goes far beyond that which was expressed in the Epistle of
        Metropolitan Sergius, four years later.

        Undoubtedly, this Epistle of Patriarch Tikhon was issued under
        extreme pressure from the Soviet authorities.

        But so was the Epistle (Declaration) of Metropolitan Sergius.

        For some reason, people are willing to forgive St. Patriarch Tikhon
        for succumbing to this pressure, and officially proclaiming what the
        Soviets wanted him to write, while condemning Metropolitan Sergius
        for the very same thing.

        Why?

        With love in Christ,

        Prot. Alexander Lebedeff


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



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      • Michael Coleman
        Father bless! As a layman, it seems to me that Patr. St Tikhon may have been accorded a certain allowance in people s hearts because of his death, whereas
        Message 3 of 9 , Jan 5, 2006
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          Father bless!

          As a layman, it seems to me that Patr. St Tikhon may
          have been accorded a certain 'allowance' in people's
          hearts because of his death, whereas Metr. Sergius
          rather survived. The dead are always mourned, but the
          living ...

          This is just my relatively uninformed estimate. I am
          no fan of the pre-1991 MP, but it seems to me that
          there was moral weakness and strength on both sides of
          the issue back then, and even now. Ultimately, the
          issue appears to me to contain some gray ...

          Although I don't feel overly strongly about this, I
          feel that maybe our beloved ROCOR, so long a standard
          bearer for traditional Orthodoxy, can continue this
          role by 're-uniting' out of love for Church peace, for
          union and reconciliation for their own sakes as well
          as a normal love for one's people (for as St Innocent
          I believe once said that 'patriotism is a spiritual
          emotion').

          Are there pitfalls in this path? To be sure. Will we
          get a sign from the heavens that we are on the right
          path? Probably not. But our Lord often hides himself
          so that we can grow by making the right decisions that
          our consciences suggest.

          May the Lord guide our bishops to do the right thing
          in the right way for the right reasons. The Lord will
          judge in his timing what is the right path. As for
          me, this thing is too high for me.

          Just my 2 cents ...

          Michael Coleman
          California

          --- "Fr. Alexander Lebedeff" <lebedeff@...>
          wrote:

          > St. Patriarch Tikhon published Epistles are quite
          > clear and speak for
          > themselves.
          >
          > In his Appeal to the Archpastors, Pastors and the
          > Flock of the
          > Russian [Rossijskoj] Orthodox Church, dated July 1,
          > 1923, he writes:
          >
          > "Having received the opportunity to renew my
          > interrupted activity of
          > service to the Holy Orthodox Church, and recognizing
          > my guiltiness
          > before the Soviet Power, which was expressed in
          > several of our
          > passive and active anti-Soviet activities, as was
          > stated in the
          > verdict of the Supreme Court, i.e. in resistance to
          > the decree about
          > the expropriation of church valuables to help the
          > starving, the
          > anathematization of the Soviet Power, the Appeal
          > against the Brest
          > Peace treaty, etc, we in accordance with the duty of
          > a Christian and
          > an archpastor -- repent of all of this and we are
          > sorry for all of
          > the victims which came about as a result of this
          > anti-Soviet
          > activity. In essence it is not we who are guilty of
          > this, but also
          > that society in we were raised, and those
          > evil-minded people who
          > pushed us to these actions from the very beginning
          > of the existence
          > of the Soviet Power. As enemies of it, they
          > attempted to overthrow it
          > through our Church, for which reason they tried to
          > use me, as the
          > head of it. Being powerless to overcome the Soviet
          > Power openly and
          > straightforwardly, they wished to achieve its
          > destruction through
          > round-about ways, utilizing the Church and its
          > pastors.
          >
          > "Recognizing my guiltiness before the people and the
          > Soviet Power, I
          > would wish that others would do the same--others,
          > who having
          > forgotten their responsibility as pastors, have
          > entered into joint
          > actions with the enemies of the working people--with
          > monarchists and
          > White Guardists, and desiring to overthrow the
          > Soviet Power, have not
          > even shunned entering the ranks of the White Army.
          > However difficult
          > it is to admit participation in this crime, but we
          > must say this
          > honest, even if it be bitter, truth. We condemn now
          > such actions and
          > declare, that the Russian ["Rossijskaja"] Orthodox
          > Church is
          > apolitical and does not wish from now on to be
          > "either the white, nor
          > the red" Church, --it must be and will be the one,
          > holy, catholic and
          > apostolic Church, and any attempts, from whatever
          > quarter they may
          > arise, to cast the Church into the political fray
          > must be rejected
          > and condemned.
          >
          > "Based on these considerations, we in April of 1922
          > at a combined
          > meeting of the Holy Synod and the Higher
          > Eccesiastical Council,
          > already condemned the Karlovtsy Diasporan Sobor for
          > their attempt to
          > restore monarchy in Russia from the dynasty of the
          > Romanoffs. We
          > could have limited ourselves to this condemnation of
          > the bishops who
          > were at this Sobor, headed by the Most Reverend
          > Anthony, Metropolitan
          > of Kiev, if they would have repented in their
          > actions and would have
          > ceased further activities in this direction, but we
          > have been
          > informed, that they not only have not ceased this,
          > but all the more
          > cast the Orthodox Church into the political fray,
          > together with those
          > evil-minded opponents of the Soviet Power, who are
          > living in Russia
          > and abroad, who have brought not a small amount of
          > calamities to our
          > native land. Let them now realize this, let them
          > humble themselves
          > and repent, otherwise it will become necessary to
          > call these most
          > reverend bishops to Moscow to give an answer before
          > an ecclesiastical
          > tribunal, and to petition the authorities for
          > permission for them to come here,
          >
          > "May the Lord give wisdom to all of us to seek not
          > our own, but the
          > truth of God and the good of the Holy Church.
          >
          > "Humble TIKHON,
          > Patriarch of Moscow and of all Russia ["Rossii"]
          >
          > =============================================
          >
          > In this Epistle, Patriarch Tikhon openly repents of
          > his
          > anathematization of the Soviet Power, and is clearly
          > writing not from
          > his own stance (which could be said about his Letter
          > of Repentance to
          > the Supreme Court, in which he petitioned to be
          > released), but on
          > behalf of the whole Church.
          >
          > In this Epistle he condemns all who fight against
          > the Soviet Power,
          > both in the homeland and abroad, all monarchists,
          > "White Guardists"
          > and those who fought in the White Army, and condemns
          > Metropolitan
          > Anthony and the Sobor of the Church Abroad,
          > threatening them with an
          > ecclesiastical trial for their anti-Soviet
          > activities.
          >
          > In this he goes far beyond that which was expressed
          > in the Epistle of
          > Metropolitan Sergius, four years later.
          >
          > Undoubtedly, this Epistle of Patriarch Tikhon was
          > issued under
          > extreme pressure from the Soviet authorities.
          >
          > But so was the Epistle (Declaration) of Metropolitan
          > Sergius.
          >
          > For some reason, people are willing to forgive St.
          > Patriarch Tikhon
          > for succumbing to this pressure, and officially
          > proclaiming what the
          > Soviets wanted him to write, while condemning
          > Metropolitan Sergius
          > for the very same thing.
          >
          > Why?
          >
          > With love in Christ,
          >
          > Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
          >
          >
          > [Non-text portions of this message have been
          > removed]
          >
          >




          __________________________________________
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        • goossir
          Dear Father Alexander, So what! We never condemned Metr Serguei personally as we know perfectly well that what he has written was under pressure. We
          Message 4 of 9 , Jan 6, 2006
          • 0 Attachment
            Dear Father Alexander,

            So what! We never condemned Metr Serguei personally as we know
            perfectly well that what he has written was under pressure. We
            condemned the MP for saying that it was a "bold step" and that it was
            a way to "save" the Church.

            I did not know about this epistle of Patr. Tikhon. It is most
            unfortunate. Clearly he has written it under pressure as well. But
            I have read somewhere (I am not very good at finding the references)
            that at a certain time he has written that anything that will be
            written or said by him if he was imprisoned should not be taken into
            consideration. I hope someone more litterate on the list will
            confirm this.
            Did Patr Tikhon not die of a martyr's death? From what I was told he
            was killed finally because he did not want to put the Church under
            the Communist thumb. Even in this unfortunate epistle that you cite
            he says that:
            "that the Russian ["Rossijskaja"] Orthodox Church is apolitical and
            does not wish from now on to be "either the white, nor the red"
            Church, --it must be and will be the one, holy, catholic and
            apostolic Church, and any attempts, from whatever quarter they may
            arise, to cast the Church into the political fray must be rejected
            and condemned."

            And this Metr Serguei did: "cast the Church into the political fray".

            In Christ Truth,
            Irina Pahlen


            We always said that--- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, "Fr.
            Alexander Lebedeff" <lebedeff@w...> wrote:
            >
            > St. Patriarch Tikhon published Epistles are quite clear and speak
            for
            > themselves.
            >
            > In his Appeal to the Archpastors, Pastors and the Flock of the
            > Russian [Rossijskoj] Orthodox Church, dated July 1, 1923, he writes:
            >
            > "Having received the opportunity to renew my interrupted activity
            of
            > service to the Holy Orthodox Church, and recognizing my guiltiness
            > before the Soviet Power, which was expressed in several of our
            > passive and active anti-Soviet activities, as was stated in the
            > verdict of the Supreme Court, i.e. in resistance to the decree
            about
            > the expropriation of church valuables to help the starving, the
            > anathematization of the Soviet Power, the Appeal against the Brest
            > Peace treaty, etc, we in accordance with the duty of a Christian
            and
            > an archpastor -- repent of all of this and we are sorry for all of
            > the victims which came about as a result of this anti-Soviet
            > activity. In essence it is not we who are guilty of this, but also
            > that society in we were raised, and those evil-minded people who
            > pushed us to these actions from the very beginning of the existence
            > of the Soviet Power. As enemies of it, they attempted to overthrow
            it
            > through our Church, for which reason they tried to use me, as the
            > head of it. Being powerless to overcome the Soviet Power openly and
            > straightforwardly, they wished to achieve its destruction through
            > round-about ways, utilizing the Church and its pastors.
            >
            > "Recognizing my guiltiness before the people and the Soviet Power,
            I
            > would wish that others would do the same--others, who having
            > forgotten their responsibility as pastors, have entered into joint
            > actions with the enemies of the working people--with monarchists
            and
            > White Guardists, and desiring to overthrow the Soviet Power, have
            not
            > even shunned entering the ranks of the White Army. However
            difficult
            > it is to admit participation in this crime, but we must say this
            > honest, even if it be bitter, truth. We condemn now such actions
            and
            > declare, that the Russian ["Rossijskaja"] Orthodox Church is
            > apolitical and does not wish from now on to be "either the white,
            nor
            > the red" Church, --it must be and will be the one, holy, catholic
            and
            > apostolic Church, and any attempts, from whatever quarter they may
            > arise, to cast the Church into the political fray must be rejected
            > and condemned.
            >
            > "Based on these considerations, we in April of 1922 at a combined
            > meeting of the Holy Synod and the Higher Eccesiastical Council,
            > already condemned the Karlovtsy Diasporan Sobor for their attempt
            to
            > restore monarchy in Russia from the dynasty of the Romanoffs. We
            > could have limited ourselves to this condemnation of the bishops
            who
            > were at this Sobor, headed by the Most Reverend Anthony,
            Metropolitan
            > of Kiev, if they would have repented in their actions and would
            have
            > ceased further activities in this direction, but we have been
            > informed, that they not only have not ceased this, but all the more
            > cast the Orthodox Church into the political fray, together with
            those
            > evil-minded opponents of the Soviet Power, who are living in Russia
            > and abroad, who have brought not a small amount of calamities to
            our
            > native land. Let them now realize this, let them humble themselves
            > and repent, otherwise it will become necessary to call these most
            > reverend bishops to Moscow to give an answer before an
            ecclesiastical
            > tribunal, and to petition the authorities for permission for them
            to come here,
            >
            > "May the Lord give wisdom to all of us to seek not our own, but the
            > truth of God and the good of the Holy Church.
            >
            > "Humble TIKHON,
            > Patriarch of Moscow and of all Russia ["Rossii"]
            >
            > =============================================
            >
            > In this Epistle, Patriarch Tikhon openly repents of his
            > anathematization of the Soviet Power, and is clearly writing not
            from
            > his own stance (which could be said about his Letter of Repentance
            to
            > the Supreme Court, in which he petitioned to be released), but on
            > behalf of the whole Church.
            >
            > In this Epistle he condemns all who fight against the Soviet Power,
            > both in the homeland and abroad, all monarchists, "White Guardists"
            > and those who fought in the White Army, and condemns Metropolitan
            > Anthony and the Sobor of the Church Abroad, threatening them with
            an
            > ecclesiastical trial for their anti-Soviet activities.
            >
            > In this he goes far beyond that which was expressed in the Epistle
            of
            > Metropolitan Sergius, four years later.
            >
            > Undoubtedly, this Epistle of Patriarch Tikhon was issued under
            > extreme pressure from the Soviet authorities.
            >
            > But so was the Epistle (Declaration) of Metropolitan Sergius.
            >
            > For some reason, people are willing to forgive St. Patriarch Tikhon
            > for succumbing to this pressure, and officially proclaiming what
            the
            > Soviets wanted him to write, while condemning Metropolitan Sergius
            > for the very same thing.
            >
            > Why?
            >
            > With love in Christ,
            >
            > Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
            >
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
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