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Re: canonical obstacles

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  • vlutchenkov
    Christ is Risen, Mr. Nikitin starts his e-mail with a very strong statement, which he then attempts to support with his own opinions, while failing to provide
    Message 1 of 11 , May 1, 2006
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      Christ is Risen,

      Mr. Nikitin starts his e-mail with a very strong statement, which he
      then attempts to support with his own opinions, while failing to
      provide any reference or support in the linked document.

      Mr. Nikitin wrote: Joining a heretical institution and following it's
      rules is agreeing with it's heresy.

      He further makes a statement that in my opinion contradicts his own
      thesis.

      Mr. Nikitin wrote: All the bishops from MP or OCA who came to ROCOR
      had to repent.

      If all they had to do was repent to be accepted in to ROCOR, and they
      did not have to be re- baptized (or would that be baptized for the
      first time), they did not have to go to a ROCOR seminary or pass
      a "clergy entrance exam" to start or better yet continue there
      calling, then a logical conclusion would be that they did not come
      from a heretical sect.

      Mr.Nikitin please note that the same document you refer us to
      (written by wiser men then us is very specific in its conclusion. The
      last paragraph reads;

      "Taking into consideration all the above mentioned reasons, the
      Council of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia,
      as the representative of the free part of the Russian Church,
      determines: The election of Pimen (Izvekov) as Patriarch of Moscow
      and All Russia at the gathering calling itself an All-Russian Church
      Council in Moscow the 2nd of June of this year, on the authority of
      the 3rd Canon of the 7th Ecumenical Council and other reasons set
      forth in this decision, is to be regarded as unlawful and void, and
      all of his acts and directions as having no strength."

      This appears to be a statement about the freedom - or more the lack
      of freedom the church had (Vova's comment: and may still have) than
      about it not having grace. To me the statement is very specific as
      to Patriarch Pimen and all of his acts and directions. It also has
      an interesting statement, "calling itself an All-Russian Church
      Council in Moscow." Please lets remember that for 200 years before
      Patriarch Tikhon the Orthodox Church of Russia did not have a
      Patriarch. Mr. Nikitin is on a very slippery slope with his thesis.

      Having said that I wish to return to a point (question) that a number
      of folks have brought up or posed on this list and as of yet the
      clergy (who we look to for guidance) have not responded and yes in
      some cases have taken off on tangents. That is; How can we (ROCOR)
      consider the reconciliation process to be proper if we are now
      compromising our position about repentance now? Can one of the clergy
      please tell me if I am correct – Did the Patriarch of Bulgaria along
      with the entire Episcopate ask for forgiveness from the Bulgarian
      people for "working with the communist government?

      Inquiring minds want to know. It would be nice to hear from Fathers
      Alexander Lebedeff, John Shaw, and Stephan Pavlenko about acts of
      repentance or confession.

      Boba or Vova (Still not Vova H)
      --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, michael nikitin
      <nikitinmike@...> wrote:
      >
      > Joining a heretical institution and following it's rules is
      agreeing with it's heresy. It is a tacit denial of the unique truth
      of the Orthodox Church.
      > All who join the WCC sign it's heretical stipulations, therefore
      agreeing with them.
      >
      > All our previous hierarchs of ROCOR did not believe the MP to be
      the Historic Russian Church. When speaking of our Historic Russian
      Church under St.Tikhon they always called it our persecuted church.
      When the Moscow Patriarch was mentioned, it was always in a negative
      way and not the Historic Russian Church. B.Averky called the MP a
      harlot for praying with everyone. Our previous hierarch's would
      > never call their Mother Church, the historic Russian Church of
      St.Tikhon, a harlot.
      >
      > It is sufficient to say what our hierarchs believed is what our
      ROCOR believed. We can see this by the Synod's declaration of 1971
      which states the election of the Patriarch of MP is unlawful and
      void and his acts as being void. Therefore all ordinations from him
      are null and void. We see by this that the personal opinions of our
      > previouis hierarch's are the opnion of our Synod.
      >
      > All the bishops from MP or OCA who came to ROCOR had to repent.
      Fr.John is not being sincere.
      >
      > Please read the official proclamation of our Synod of 1971:
      >
      > http://www.stvladimirs.ca/library/concerning-patriarch-pimen.html
      > ...
      > 4. All of the elections of Patriarchs in Moscow, beginning in 1943,
      are
      > invalid on the basis of the 30th Canon of the Holy Apostles and the
      3rd
      > Canon of the 7th Ecumenical Council, according to which, "if any
      bishop,
      > having made use of secular rulers, should receive through them
      Episcopal
      > authority in the Church, let him be defrocked and excommunicated
      along with
      > all those in communion with him". The significance that the Fathers
      of the
      > 7th Council gave to such an offense is obvious from the very fact
      of a
      > double punishment for it, that is, not only deposition but
      excommunication
      > as well, something unusual for ecclesiastical law.
      > ...
      > Taking into consideration all the above mentioned reasons, the
      Council of
      > Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, as the
      > representative of the free part of the Russian Church,
      determines: The
      > election of Pimen (Izvekov) as Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia
      at the
      > gathering calling itself an All-Russian Church Council in Moscow
      the 2nd of
      > June of this year, on the authority of the 3rd Canon of the 7th
      Ecumenical
      > Council and other reasons set forth in this decision, is to be
      regarded as
      > unlawful and void, and all of his acts and directions as having no
      strength.
      >
      > Michael N
      >
      > "Fr. John R. Shaw" <vrevjrs@...> wrote:
      > XPICTOC BOCKPECE!
      >
      > Peter Bushunow wrote:
      >
      > > Father Alexander Lebedeff admitted very openly at our Diocesan
      meeting
      > > in Lakewood that the question of whether Patriarch Alexei and
      other
      > > Hierarchs of the MP are canonical bishops was never brought
      up. These
      > > issues were just not discussed, not resolved.
      >
      > JRS: But there never was any question about that for ROCOR. If
      there had been, it would have been an issue long ago. MP clergy were
      always received "in statu quo", and it could be shown who the
      bishops were that consecrated the Patriarch, and, if need be, who
      consecrated all the other MP bishops.
      >
      > I think the reason it was "never brought up", is that there was
      no doubt about their being canonical bishops.
      >
      > > One of the main heretical activities of the MP is their active
      > > participation in the WCC and other ecumenical organizations.
      You keep
      > > repeating that the MP is only an observer at the WCC.
      Patriarch Alexei
      > > has been, and continues to be an active participant (read his
      biography
      > > at http://mospat.ru/index.php?mid=99&lng=1 "Metropolitan Alexy
      took an
      > > active part in the work of international and national peace
      public
      > > organizations.") in fact, he is on the board of multiple
      organizations
      > > including the 'Rodina' (Motherland) Society,
      >
      > JRS: But none of that is what we mean by "the heresy of
      ecumenism".
      >
      > There is no "heresy" in going to meetings, taking an active part
      in international and national peace public organizations.
      >
      > The "heresy of ecumenism" lies in a denial of the unique truth of
      the Orthodox faith. That is what we call a heresy.
      >
      > > Father John, you and other current writers keep repeating that
      ROCOR
      > > hierarchs have never proclaimed that the MP is lacking Grace.
      On the
      > > contrary, there are numerous writings arguing exactly that
      point.
      >
      > JRS: But they are not proclamations by ROCOR: they are simply
      personal opinions.
      >
      > You might be surprised what you could find among the personal
      opinions of even the great Saints.
      >
      > > No, there is A LOT to talk about. Bringing these issues to
      the table,
      > > in the open, with emotional talk about the "podvig of
      reconciliation"
      > > will let us see ourselves and the ROCOR church more clearly,
      and, God
      > > willing, will bring those in Russia more closer to repentance.
      >
      > JRS: Why "emotional talk"? I would prefer to speak of "sincere
      talk". People can be quite irrational when they become emotional.
      Emotions do not solve anything.
      >
      > In Christ
      > Fr. John R. Shaw
      >
      > ---------------------------------
      > Get amazing travel prices for air and hotel in one click on Yahoo!
      FareChase
      >
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      >
    • michael nikitin
      So I wouldn t be understood, I am including a letter from our previous first hierarch, Holy Metr.Philaret, to make what some may not understand clearer. I also
      Message 2 of 11 , May 1, 2006
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        So I wouldn't be understood, I am including a letter from our previous first hierarch, Holy Metr.Philaret, to make what some may not understand clearer.

        I also stated joining ROCOR, who has stayed on the true path, not for ROCOR to join the uncanonical, schismatic creation of Stalin as the Western Dioscese called the MP.

        Hope the letter below helps:

        Michael N

        A LETTER FROM METROPOLITAN PHILARET (VOZNESENSKY) TO A PRIEST OF
        THE CHURCH ABROAD CONCERNING FATHER DIMITRY DUDKO AND THE
        MOSCOW PATRIARCHATE

        Exerpts from St.Metr.Philaret's letter:
        Now a few words on the tragedy of poor Father Dimitry Dudko.

        From the very beginning of his activities, when his name was being mentioned
        more and more often as a pillar of Orthodoxy, and moreover, the members of
        the Synod, the hierarchs, were joining
        their voices to this; I, however, the author of these lines, immediately
        kept out of it and forewarned my fellow hierarchs that a disaster might
        happen here. How so? Because in the USSR, according
        to the premise of Archimandrite Constantine, there is now a satan-ocracy.
        There rules he whom the Saviour called a liar and the father of lies. This
        lie reigns there. Therefore one cannot trust
        anything that occurs there. Any seemingly spiritually encouraging fact may
        turn out to be a falsification, a forgery, a deception, or a provocation...

        Why did this calamity befall Father Dimitry Dudko? Let's assume the best,
        not suspecting him of conscious collaboration with the KGB and betrayal of
        his convictions, but simply noting the sad
        fact that he did not endure, but was broken; he capitulated before the
        enemies of the Church. Why? It would seem that he did display courage and
        daring; and then suddenly, such an inglorious end. Why?! Because his
        activity took place outside of the true Church...

        What then is the Soviet church? Archimandrite Constantine has often and
        insistently stated that the most horrible thing that the God-hating regime
        has done in Russia is the creation of the Soviet
        Church, which the Bolsheviks presented to the people as the true Church,
        having driven the genuine Orthodox Church into the catacombs or into the
        concentration camps.

        This pseudo-church has been twice anathematized. His Holiness Patriarch
        Tikhon and the All-Russian Church Sobor anathematized the Communists and all
        their collaborators. This dread anathema has not been lifted till this day
        and remains in force, since it can be lifted only by a similar All-Russian
        Church Sobor, as the canonical supreme ecclesiastical authority. And a
        terrifying thing happened in 1927, when the head of the Church, Metropolitan
        Sergius, by his infamous and
        apostate Declaration, subjected the Russian Church to the Bolsheviks and
        proclaimed collaboration with them. And thus in a most exact sense was
        fulfilled the expression in the prayer at the beginning of Confession:
        having fallen under their own anathema! For in
        1918 the Church anathematized all the confederates of Communism, while in
        1927 she herself joined the camp of these collaborators and began to laud
        the red, God-having regime to laud the red beast spoken of
        in the Apocalypse.

        As if that is not enough. When Metropolitan Sergius promulgated his criminal
        Declaration, then the faithful children of the Church immediately separated
        themselves from the Soviet church, and thus
        the Catacomb Church was formed. And she, in her turn, has anathematized the
        official church for its betrayal of Christ.

        And it was within this very church of evil-doers that the activities of
        Father Dimitry Dudko occurred, who has frankly declared in the press that he
        is not going to break with the Soviet church but will remain in her. Has his
        spiritual eyes been open, and had he seen the true nature of the official
        church, he might have found within himself the courage to say: I have hated
        the congregation of evil-doers, and with the ungodly will I not sit I am
        breaking off with the company
        of the enemies of God, and I am withdrawing from the Soviet church. Why,
        then for us he would have become one of our own his courage would have
        destroyed the barrier which irrevocably stands between us by virtue of the
        fact that the Sobor adopted as its guiding principle the Testament of
        Metropolitan Anastasy. For in this Testament it is ordered that we must not
        have any communion whatsoever with the Soviets, not only no communion in
        prayer, but not even ordinary
        contact in daily life. But as long as Father Dimitry would have refused to
        remain in the Soviet pseudo-church, and would have withdrawn from membership
        in her the barrier would no longer
        have applied to him..........

        The hierarch Theophan the Recluse in his own day warned that a terrible time
        was approaching when people would behold before their eyes all the
        appearance of church grandeur solemn services, church order, and such while
        on the inside there would be total betrayal of the Spirit of
        Christ. Is this not what we see in the Soviet church? Patriarchs,
        Metropolitans, all the priestly and monastic orders and at the very same
        time, an alliance with the God-haters, that is, a manifest
        betrayal of Christ.

        To this company belongs also Father Dimitry Dudko. Of course, his sincere
        religious feelings compelled him to preach concerning God and not to condone
        many of the disgraceful happenings in the lives of Russian people. But for
        him, Pimen was, and likely still is,
        his spiritual head, the head of the Soviet hierarchy; while for us, it is
        not at all so. For our Sobor in 1971 passed a resolution:
        on the basis of such and such canons to consider the election of Pimen as
        unlawful and invalid, and to consider all his acts and decrees as having no
        force or significance.

        How difficult is Father Dimitry Dudko's position now! What is he to do?
        Continue his pastoral work? And what can he say to the faithful? Say the
        same thing that he said before his repentance? But then, he has already
        renounced this! Say the opposite? Why, they believed him before when he
        preached that which won for him the trust and respect of the faithful and
        now, how will he look them in the face? One girl correctly said that there
        is one way out for him: make a genuine repentance in atonement for the one
        he just now made. But in order to do
        that he must depart from the church of the evil-doers for the true Church,
        and there make his repentance. However, in return, the red church will
        undoubtedly deal with him with particular malice
        and cruelty. Of course, by crossing over to the true Church, he will pass
        over into the realm of Divine grace and strength, which can fortify him just
        as it fortified those catacomb nuns. God grant
        that he find the true and saving path.

        I should also like to note the following. The Catacomb Church in Russia
        relates to the Church Abroad with love and total confidence. However, one
        thing is incomprehensible to the Catacomb Christians: they can't understand
        why our Church, which realizes beyond a doubt that the Soviet hierarchy has
        betrayed Christ and is no longer a bearer of grace, nevertheless receives
        clergy of the Soviet church in their existing orders, not re-ordaining them,
        as ones already having grace. For the clergy and flock receive grace from
        the hierarchy, and if it [the hierarchy] has betrayed the Truth and deprived
        itself of grace, from where then does the clergy have grace? It is along
        these
        lines that the Catacomb Christians pose the question.

        The answer to this is simple. The Church has the authority in certain cases
        to employ the principle of economia condescension. The hierarch Saint Basil
        the Great said that, in order not to drive many away from the Church, it is
        necessary sometimes to permit condescension and not apply the church canons
        in all their severity. When our Church accepted Roman Catholic clergy in
        their orders, without ordaining them, she acted according to this principle.
        And Metropolitan Anthony
        [Khrapovitsky], elucidating this issue, pointed out that the outward form
        successive ordination from Apostolic times that the Roman Catholics do have;
        whereas the grace, which the Roman Catholic church has lost, is received by
        those uniting [themselves to the
        Church] from the plenitude of grace present in the Orthodox Church, at the
        very moment of their joining. The form is filled with content, said Vladyka
        Anthony.

        In precisely the same manner, in receiving the Soviet clergy, we apply the
        principle of economia. And we receive the clergymen from Moscow not as ones
        possessing grace, but as ones receiving it by the very act of union. But to
        recognize the church of the evil-doers as the bearer and
        repository of grace, that we cannot do, of course. For outside of Orthodoxy
        there is no grace; and the Soviet church has deprived itself of grace.

        In concluding my lengthy letter, I should like to point several things out
        to you, Father. The Bishops' Sobor resolved to be guided by and to fulfill
        the Testament of Metropolitan Anastasy, in which the late First Hierarch
        bade us not to have any communion with the Soviet church
        whatsoever, not only no prayerful communion, but not even ordinary contact.
        On what basis then have you and other clergymen had direct relations with
        Father Dudko? And have written him letters, etc.? No matter how sincere a
        man you may have considered him to be, nevertheless, can your private
        opinion annul a ruling adopted by the Church? Now, had Father Dudko said: I
        am breaking with the official church and leaving her then you could have
        entered into lively contact
        with him. But in the absence of that, your actions constitute a violation of
        ecclesiastical discipline. Dudko wrote to me personally, but I did not
        answer him although I could have said much. By the
        way, on what basis did you, even before this, take into your head to
        commemorate an archbishop of the Soviet church during the Great Entrance?
        Who gave you the right to do that, which hierarch
        who, how, where, when?.. Be more careful, my dear, zealous, but, ah, too
        impetuous fellow minister!



        vlutchenkov <vlutchenkov@

        If all they had to do was repent to be accepted in to ROCOR, and they
        did not have to be re- baptized (or would that be baptized for the
        first time), they did not have to go to a ROCOR seminary or pass
        a "clergy entrance exam" to start or better yet continue there
        calling, then a logical conclusion would be that they did not come
        from a heretical sect.
        ...


        ---------------------------------
        Love cheap thrills? Enjoy PC-to-Phone calls to 30+ countries for just 2¢/min with Yahoo! Messenger with Voice.

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Kenneth Doll
        How is this any different from the patriarchs of Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem who from 1453 onwards (at the very least, as several of
        Message 3 of 11 , May 1, 2006
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          How is this any different from the patriarchs of Constantinople,
          Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem who from 1453 onwards (at the very
          least, as several of these were under Muslim authority for a long time
          prior to this) almost always had to "make use of secular rulers" to
          acquire their episcopate?
          Kenneth

          --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, michael nikitin
          <nikitinmike@...> wrote:
          >
          > Please read the official proclamation of our Synod of 1971:
          >
          > http://www.stvladimirs.ca/library/concerning-patriarch-pimen.html
          > ...
          > 4. All of the elections of Patriarchs in Moscow, beginning in 1943,
          > are invalid on the basis of the 30th Canon of the Holy Apostles and
          > the 3rd Canon of the 7th Ecumenical Council, according to which,
          > "if any bishop, having made use of secular rulers, should receive
          > through them Episcopal authority in the Church, let him be
          > defrocked and excommunicated along with all those in communion with
          > him".
        • Fr. John R. Shaw
          XPICTOC BOCKPECE! ... JRS: And that is a key issue. ROCOR refused to submit to the authority of the Moscow Patriarchate, not because the latter was in
          Message 4 of 11 , May 1, 2006
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            XPICTOC BOCKPECE!

            Vova Lutchenkov wrote:

            > If all they [MP clergy who joined ROCOR] had to do was repent to be accepted..., then a logical conclusion would be that they did not come
            > from a heretical sect.

            JRS: And that is a key issue.

            ROCOR refused to submit to the authority of the Moscow Patriarchate, not because the latter was "in heresy", but because the Patriarch and the Holy Synod could not do what they thought was right: they were prisoners of one of the most tyrannical regimes in history.

            > It also has
            > an interesting statement, "calling itself an All-Russian Church
            > Council in Moscow." Please lets remember that for 200 years before
            > Patriarch Tikhon the Orthodox Church of Russia did not have a
            > Patriarch.

            JRS: And for the same period, there was also no Church Council [Sobor] in Russia.

            There used to be a special set of prayers for a Council of Bishops. It was removed from the official service books of the Russian Church, because of course Peter the Great and his successors did not want people even to have that reminder that there could be a "church council" in the Russian Empire.

            Those prayers were used, so far as I know, for the first time since Peter the Great, at the Sobor that elected Metropolitan Laurus as First Hierarch of the Church Abroad.

            On all previous occasions, they had been replaced by the "Moleben at the Beginning of Any Good Work".

            > Can one of the clergy
            > please tell me if I am correct – Did the Patriarch of Bulgaria along
            > with the entire Episcopate ask for forgiveness from the Bulgarian
            > people for "working with the communist government?
            >
            > Inquiring minds want to know. It would be nice to hear from Fathers
            > Alexander Lebedeff, John Shaw, and Stephan Pavlenko about acts of
            > repentance or confession.

            JRS: In 1991, Patriarch Alexy II did ask publicly for forgiveness, and said he took responsibility for all the wrong that was done in the name of the Church during the years of Soviet oppression.

            In fact, he did this twice in 1991. The specifics were posted [at least] twice on the Paradosis list, and for a while I kept it in my mailbox for possible re-posting. But I do not have time now to try and locate it again.

            I am not aware whether or not the Patriarch of Bulgaria, or any other Orthodox hierarch who had lived under communist rule, did anything of the kind.

            In Christ
            Fr. John R. Shaw
            --
            CoreComm Webmail.
            http://home.core.com

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • vlutchenkov
            Voistinu Voskrese!! Father Bless, New subject but the discussion continues. Father John: And that is a key issue. Vova: And I do not think we will get a
            Message 5 of 11 , May 1, 2006
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              Voistinu Voskrese!!

              Father Bless,

              New subject but the discussion continues.


              Father John: And that is a key issue.
              Vova: And I do not think we will get a response from Mr. Nikitin. He
              may have slipped on that slope.

              Father John:
              > Vova: It also has an interesting statement, "calling itself an All-
              Russian Church Council in Moscow." Please lets remember that for
              200 years before Patriarch Tikhon the Orthodox Church of Russia did
              not have a Patriarch.
              JRS: And for the same period, there was also no Church Council
              [Sobor] in Russia.

              Vova: Yes Father I agree. I think I wrote that portion rather
              poorly. What I was trying to say was that once again men wiser than
              us (or at least me) knew exactly what they were writing. I
              understood the comment "calling itself an All-Russian Church Council
              in Moscow" to be (dare I say) an accusation of the lack of freedom
              in the Soviet Union and that in fact it could not be "all-Russian"
              if the Diaspora was not part of it. Again the writers when they had
              the chance did not state that the Orthodox Church of Russia (or all
              the people that were partaking in its sacraments) lacked grace, they
              just question the patriarchal power of a man.

              Father John: In 1991, Patriarch Alexy II did ask publicly for
              forgiveness, and said he took responsibility for all the wrong that
              was done in the name of the Church during the years of Soviet
              oppression.
              Vova: Again Father thank you for a direct answer. But, as you are
              well aware, judging by your writing style, words are important. So,
              yes I have read Patriarch Alexy's statement a number of times and
              felt it a bit - well disingenuous. In Russian I would say it was a
              bit of some great kluchkotvorstvo (I like that concept/word in
              Russian than in English - though in English it is rarely and just
              does not sound as great.)

              I will now pose a question in simple layperson's words and
              thoughts. The question is hypothetical. If anyone reads more into
              it so be it, but the question and answer can stand on their own
              without commentary or as they say on TV programs "Any resemblance to
              person living or dead is purely a coincidence."

              So here is the question. If I came to you for confession and told
              you that I belonged to a group that was in the past responsible for
              and in some cases enjoyed torturing little rabbits.
              Can I go to communion?

              (More questions may follow.)


              In Christ,
              Boba

              --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, "Fr. John R. Shaw"
              <vrevjrs@...> wrote:
              >
              > XPICTOC BOCKPECE!
              >
              > Vova Lutchenkov wrote:
              >
              > > If all they [MP clergy who joined ROCOR] had to do was repent to
              be accepted..., then a logical conclusion would be that they did not
              come
              > > from a heretical sect.
              >
              > JRS: And that is a key issue.
              >
              > ROCOR refused to submit to the authority of the Moscow
              Patriarchate, not because the latter was "in heresy", but because
              the Patriarch and the Holy Synod could not do what they thought was
              right: they were prisoners of one of the most tyrannical regimes in
              history.
              >
              > > It also has
              > > an interesting statement, "calling itself an All-Russian Church
              > > Council in Moscow." Please lets remember that for 200 years
              before
              > > Patriarch Tikhon the Orthodox Church of Russia did not have a
              > > Patriarch.
              >
              > JRS: And for the same period, there was also no Church Council
              [Sobor] in Russia.
              >
              > There used to be a special set of prayers for a Council of
              Bishops. It was removed from the official service books of the
              Russian Church, because of course Peter the Great and his successors
              did not want people even to have that reminder that there could be
              a "church council" in the Russian Empire.
              >
              > Those prayers were used, so far as I know, for the first time
              since Peter the Great, at the Sobor that elected Metropolitan Laurus
              as First Hierarch of the Church Abroad.
              >
              > On all previous occasions, they had been replaced by the "Moleben
              at the Beginning of Any Good Work".
              >
              > > Can one of the clergy
              > > please tell me if I am correct – Did the Patriarch of Bulgaria
              along
              > > with the entire Episcopate ask for forgiveness from the
              Bulgarian
              > > people for "working with the communist government?
              > >
              > > Inquiring minds want to know. It would be nice to hear from
              Fathers
              > > Alexander Lebedeff, John Shaw, and Stephan Pavlenko about acts
              of
              > > repentance or confession.
              >
              > JRS: In 1991, Patriarch Alexy II did ask publicly for forgiveness,
              and said he took responsibility for all the wrong that was done in
              the name of the Church during the years of Soviet oppression.
              >
              > In fact, he did this twice in 1991. The specifics were posted [at
              least] twice on the Paradosis list, and for a while I kept it in my
              mailbox for possible re-posting. But I do not have time now to try
              and locate it again.
              >
              > I am not aware whether or not the Patriarch of Bulgaria, or any
              other Orthodox hierarch who had lived under communist rule, did
              anything of the kind.
              >
              > In Christ
              > Fr. John R. Shaw
              > --
              > CoreComm Webmail.
              > http://home.core.com
              >
              > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              >
            • Gilbert Gamboa
              vlutchenkov wrote: Voistinu Voskrese!! Father Bless, New subject but the discussion continues. Father John: And that is a key issue.
              Message 6 of 11 , May 2, 2006
              • 0 Attachment
                vlutchenkov <vlutchenkov@...> wrote: Voistinu Voskrese!!

                Father Bless,

                New subject but the discussion continues.


                Father John: And that is a key issue.
                Vova: And I do not think we will get a response from Mr. Nikitin. He
                may have slipped on that slope.

                Father John:
                > Vova: It also has an interesting statement, "calling itself an All-
                Russian Church Council in Moscow." Please lets remember that for
                200 years before Patriarch Tikhon the Orthodox Church of Russia did
                not have a Patriarch.
                JRS: And for the same period, there was also no Church Council
                [Sobor] in Russia.

                Vova: Yes Father I agree. I think I wrote that portion rather
                poorly. What I was trying to say was that once again men wiser than
                us (or at least me) knew exactly what they were writing. I
                understood the comment "calling itself an All-Russian Church Council
                in Moscow" to be (dare I say) an accusation of the lack of freedom
                in the Soviet Union and that in fact it could not be "all-Russian"
                if the Diaspora was not part of it. Again the writers when they had
                the chance did not state that the Orthodox Church of Russia (or all
                the people that were partaking in its sacraments) lacked grace, they
                just question the patriarchal power of a man.

                Father John: In 1991, Patriarch Alexy II did ask publicly for
                forgiveness, and said he took responsibility for all the wrong that
                was done in the name of the Church during the years of Soviet
                oppression.
                Vova: Again Father thank you for a direct answer. But, as you are
                well aware, judging by your writing style, words are important. So,
                yes I have read Patriarch Alexy's statement a number of times and
                felt it a bit - well disingenuous. In Russian I would say it was a
                bit of some great kluchkotvorstvo (I like that concept/word in
                Russian than in English - though in English it is rarely and just
                does not sound as great.)

                I will now pose a question in simple layperson's words and
                thoughts. The question is hypothetical. If anyone reads more into
                it so be it, but the question and answer can stand on their own
                without commentary or as they say on TV programs "Any resemblance to
                person living or dead is purely a coincidence."

                So here is the question. If I came to you for confession and told
                you that I belonged to a group that was in the past responsible for
                and in some cases enjoyed torturing little rabbits.
                Can I go to communion?

                (More questions may follow.)


                In Christ,
                Boba

                --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, "Fr. John R. Shaw"
                <vrevjrs@...> wrote:
                >
                > XPICTOC BOCKPECE!
                >
                > Vova Lutchenkov wrote:
                >
                > > If all they [MP clergy who joined ROCOR] had to do was repent to
                be accepted..., then a logical conclusion would be that they did not
                come
                > > from a heretical sect.
                >
                > JRS: And that is a key issue.
                >
                > ROCOR refused to submit to the authority of the Moscow
                Patriarchate, not because the latter was "in heresy", but because
                the Patriarch and the Holy Synod could not do what they thought was
                right: they were prisoners of one of the most tyrannical regimes in
                history.
                >
                > > It also has
                > > an interesting statement, "calling itself an All-Russian Church
                > > Council in Moscow." Please lets remember that for 200 years
                before
                > > Patriarch Tikhon the Orthodox Church of Russia did not have a
                > > Patriarch.
                >
                > JRS: And for the same period, there was also no Church Council
                [Sobor] in Russia.
                >
                > There used to be a special set of prayers for a Council of
                Bishops. It was removed from the official service books of the
                Russian Church, because of course Peter the Great and his successors
                did not want people even to have that reminder that there could be
                a "church council" in the Russian Empire.
                >
                > Those prayers were used, so far as I know, for the first time
                since Peter the Great, at the Sobor that elected Metropolitan Laurus
                as First Hierarch of the Church Abroad.
                >
                > On all previous occasions, they had been replaced by the "Moleben
                at the Beginning of Any Good Work".
                >
                > > Can one of the clergy
                > > please tell me if I am correct – Did the Patriarch of Bulgaria
                along
                > > with the entire Episcopate ask for forgiveness from the
                Bulgarian
                > > people for "working with the communist government?
                > >
                > > Inquiring minds want to know. It would be nice to hear from
                Fathers
                > > Alexander Lebedeff, John Shaw, and Stephan Pavlenko about acts
                of
                > > repentance or confession.
                >
                > JRS: In 1991, Patriarch Alexy II did ask publicly for forgiveness,
                and said he took responsibility for all the wrong that was done in
                the name of the Church during the years of Soviet oppression.
                >
                > In fact, he did this twice in 1991. The specifics were posted [at
                least] twice on the Paradosis list, and for a while I kept it in my
                mailbox for possible re-posting. But I do not have time now to try
                and locate it again.
                >
                > I am not aware whether or not the Patriarch of Bulgaria, or any
                other Orthodox hierarch who had lived under communist rule, did
                anything of the kind.
                >
                > In Christ
                > Fr. John R. Shaw
                > --
                > CoreComm Webmail.
                > http://home.core.com
                >
                > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                >









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              • vlutchenkov
                XPICTOC BOCKPECE!!!! Ahh Mr.Nikitin replied. (My apology for think he would not.) Mr. Nikitin: Hope the letter below helps: Vova: Yes it did. Especially
                Message 7 of 11 , May 2, 2006
                • 0 Attachment
                  XPICTOC BOCKPECE!!!!

                  Ahh Mr.Nikitin replied. (My apology for think he would not.)

                  Mr. Nikitin: "Hope the letter below helps:"
                  Vova: Yes it did. Especially the following portion of the letter.

                  "The answer to this is simple. The Church has the authority in
                  certain cases to employ the principle of economia condescension. The
                  hierarch Saint Basil the Great said that, in order not to drive many
                  away from the Church, it is necessary sometimes to permit
                  condescension and not apply the church canons in all their severity."

                  Vova: Mr. Nikitin, please remember that a Metropolitan is like the
                  Chairman of the Board. He is of course free to express and write his
                  opinions. However, when it comes time to vote he gets ONE vote.
                  Decisions of the Council of Bishops are voted on and majority rules.
                  In addition, if I am not mistaken the letter you offered
                  as "evidence" was written to a priest within the Diocese of the
                  writer. That is also important as far as the Church is structured.

                  In Christ,
                  Vova



                  --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, michael nikitin
                  <nikitinmike@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > So I wouldn't be understood, I am including a letter from our
                  previous first hierarch, Holy Metr.Philaret, to make what some may
                  not understand clearer.
                  >
                  > I also stated joining ROCOR, who has stayed on the true path, not
                  for ROCOR to join the uncanonical, schismatic creation of Stalin as
                  the Western Dioscese called the MP.
                  >
                  > Hope the letter below helps:
                  >
                  > Michael N
                  >
                  > A LETTER FROM METROPOLITAN PHILARET (VOZNESENSKY) TO A PRIEST OF
                  > THE CHURCH ABROAD CONCERNING FATHER DIMITRY DUDKO AND THE
                  > MOSCOW PATRIARCHATE
                  >
                  > Exerpts from St.Metr.Philaret's letter:
                  > Now a few words on the tragedy of poor Father Dimitry Dudko.
                  >
                  > From the very beginning of his activities, when his name was being
                  mentioned
                  > more and more often as a pillar of Orthodoxy, and moreover, the
                  members of
                  > the Synod, the hierarchs, were joining
                  > their voices to this; I, however, the author of these lines,
                  immediately
                  > kept out of it and forewarned my fellow hierarchs that a disaster
                  might
                  > happen here. How so? Because in the USSR, according
                  > to the premise of Archimandrite Constantine, there is now a satan-
                  ocracy.
                  > There rules he whom the Saviour called a liar and the father of
                  lies. This
                  > lie reigns there. Therefore one cannot trust
                  > anything that occurs there. Any seemingly spiritually encouraging
                  fact may
                  > turn out to be a falsification, a forgery, a deception, or a
                  provocation...
                  >
                  > Why did this calamity befall Father Dimitry Dudko? Let's assume the
                  best,
                  > not suspecting him of conscious collaboration with the KGB and
                  betrayal of
                  > his convictions, but simply noting the sad
                  > fact that he did not endure, but was broken; he capitulated before
                  the
                  > enemies of the Church. Why? It would seem that he did display
                  courage and
                  > daring; and then suddenly, such an inglorious end. Why?! Because
                  his
                  > activity took place outside of the true Church...
                  >
                  > What then is the Soviet church? Archimandrite Constantine has often
                  and
                  > insistently stated that the most horrible thing that the God-hating
                  regime
                  > has done in Russia is the creation of the Soviet
                  > Church, which the Bolsheviks presented to the people as the true
                  Church,
                  > having driven the genuine Orthodox Church into the catacombs or
                  into the
                  > concentration camps.
                  >
                  > This pseudo-church has been twice anathematized. His Holiness
                  Patriarch
                  > Tikhon and the All-Russian Church Sobor anathematized the
                  Communists and all
                  > their collaborators. This dread anathema has not been lifted till
                  this day
                  > and remains in force, since it can be lifted only by a similar All-
                  Russian
                  > Church Sobor, as the canonical supreme ecclesiastical authority.
                  And a
                  > terrifying thing happened in 1927, when the head of the Church,
                  Metropolitan
                  > Sergius, by his infamous and
                  > apostate Declaration, subjected the Russian Church to the
                  Bolsheviks and
                  > proclaimed collaboration with them. And thus in a most exact sense
                  was
                  > fulfilled the expression in the prayer at the beginning of
                  Confession:
                  > having fallen under their own anathema! For in
                  > 1918 the Church anathematized all the confederates of Communism,
                  while in
                  > 1927 she herself joined the camp of these collaborators and began
                  to laud
                  > the red, God-having regime to laud the red beast spoken of
                  > in the Apocalypse.
                  >
                  > As if that is not enough. When Metropolitan Sergius promulgated his
                  criminal
                  > Declaration, then the faithful children of the Church immediately
                  separated
                  > themselves from the Soviet church, and thus
                  > the Catacomb Church was formed. And she, in her turn, has
                  anathematized the
                  > official church for its betrayal of Christ.
                  >
                  > And it was within this very church of evil-doers that the
                  activities of
                  > Father Dimitry Dudko occurred, who has frankly declared in the
                  press that he
                  > is not going to break with the Soviet church but will remain in
                  her. Has his
                  > spiritual eyes been open, and had he seen the true nature of the
                  official
                  > church, he might have found within himself the courage to say: I
                  have hated
                  > the congregation of evil-doers, and with the ungodly will I not sit
                  I am
                  > breaking off with the company
                  > of the enemies of God, and I am withdrawing from the Soviet church.
                  Why,
                  > then for us he would have become one of our own his courage would
                  have
                  > destroyed the barrier which irrevocably stands between us by virtue
                  of the
                  > fact that the Sobor adopted as its guiding principle the Testament
                  of
                  > Metropolitan Anastasy. For in this Testament it is ordered that we
                  must not
                  > have any communion whatsoever with the Soviets, not only no
                  communion in
                  > prayer, but not even ordinary
                  > contact in daily life. But as long as Father Dimitry would have
                  refused to
                  > remain in the Soviet pseudo-church, and would have withdrawn from
                  membership
                  > in her the barrier would no longer
                  > have applied to him..........
                  >
                  > The hierarch Theophan the Recluse in his own day warned that a
                  terrible time
                  > was approaching when people would behold before their eyes all the
                  > appearance of church grandeur solemn services, church order, and
                  such while
                  > on the inside there would be total betrayal of the Spirit of
                  > Christ. Is this not what we see in the Soviet church? Patriarchs,
                  > Metropolitans, all the priestly and monastic orders and at the very
                  same
                  > time, an alliance with the God-haters, that is, a manifest
                  > betrayal of Christ.
                  >
                  > To this company belongs also Father Dimitry Dudko. Of course, his
                  sincere
                  > religious feelings compelled him to preach concerning God and not
                  to condone
                  > many of the disgraceful happenings in the lives of Russian people.
                  But for
                  > him, Pimen was, and likely still is,
                  > his spiritual head, the head of the Soviet hierarchy; while for us,
                  it is
                  > not at all so. For our Sobor in 1971 passed a resolution:
                  > on the basis of such and such canons to consider the election of
                  Pimen as
                  > unlawful and invalid, and to consider all his acts and decrees as
                  having no
                  > force or significance.
                  >
                  > How difficult is Father Dimitry Dudko's position now! What is he to
                  do?
                  > Continue his pastoral work? And what can he say to the faithful?
                  Say the
                  > same thing that he said before his repentance? But then, he has
                  already
                  > renounced this! Say the opposite? Why, they believed him before
                  when he
                  > preached that which won for him the trust and respect of the
                  faithful and
                  > now, how will he look them in the face? One girl correctly said
                  that there
                  > is one way out for him: make a genuine repentance in atonement for
                  the one
                  > he just now made. But in order to do
                  > that he must depart from the church of the evil-doers for the true
                  Church,
                  > and there make his repentance. However, in return, the red church
                  will
                  > undoubtedly deal with him with particular malice
                  > and cruelty. Of course, by crossing over to the true Church, he
                  will pass
                  > over into the realm of Divine grace and strength, which can fortify
                  him just
                  > as it fortified those catacomb nuns. God grant
                  > that he find the true and saving path.
                  >
                  > I should also like to note the following. The Catacomb Church in
                  Russia
                  > relates to the Church Abroad with love and total confidence.
                  However, one
                  > thing is incomprehensible to the Catacomb Christians: they can't
                  understand
                  > why our Church, which realizes beyond a doubt that the Soviet
                  hierarchy has
                  > betrayed Christ and is no longer a bearer of grace, nevertheless
                  receives
                  > clergy of the Soviet church in their existing orders, not re-
                  ordaining them,
                  > as ones already having grace. For the clergy and flock receive
                  grace from
                  > the hierarchy, and if it [the hierarchy] has betrayed the Truth and
                  deprived
                  > itself of grace, from where then does the clergy have grace? It is
                  along
                  > these
                  > lines that the Catacomb Christians pose the question.
                  >
                  > The answer to this is simple. The Church has the authority in
                  certain cases
                  > to employ the principle of economia condescension. The hierarch
                  Saint Basil
                  > the Great said that, in order not to drive many away from the
                  Church, it is
                  > necessary sometimes to permit condescension and not apply the
                  church canons
                  > in all their severity. When our Church accepted Roman Catholic
                  clergy in
                  > their orders, without ordaining them, she acted according to this
                  principle.
                  > And Metropolitan Anthony
                  > [Khrapovitsky], elucidating this issue, pointed out that the
                  outward form
                  > successive ordination from Apostolic times that the Roman Catholics
                  do have;
                  > whereas the grace, which the Roman Catholic church has lost, is
                  received by
                  > those uniting [themselves to the
                  > Church] from the plenitude of grace present in the Orthodox Church,
                  at the
                  > very moment of their joining. The form is filled with content, said
                  Vladyka
                  > Anthony.
                  >
                  > In precisely the same manner, in receiving the Soviet clergy, we
                  apply the
                  > principle of economia. And we receive the clergymen from Moscow not
                  as ones
                  > possessing grace, but as ones receiving it by the very act of
                  union. But to
                  > recognize the church of the evil-doers as the bearer and
                  > repository of grace, that we cannot do, of course. For outside of
                  Orthodoxy
                  > there is no grace; and the Soviet church has deprived itself of
                  grace.
                  >
                  > In concluding my lengthy letter, I should like to point several
                  things out
                  > to you, Father. The Bishops' Sobor resolved to be guided by and to
                  fulfill
                  > the Testament of Metropolitan Anastasy, in which the late First
                  Hierarch
                  > bade us not to have any communion with the Soviet church
                  > whatsoever, not only no prayerful communion, but not even ordinary
                  contact.
                  > On what basis then have you and other clergymen had direct
                  relations with
                  > Father Dudko? And have written him letters, etc.? No matter how
                  sincere a
                  > man you may have considered him to be, nevertheless, can your
                  private
                  > opinion annul a ruling adopted by the Church? Now, had Father Dudko
                  said: I
                  > am breaking with the official church and leaving her then you could
                  have
                  > entered into lively contact
                  > with him. But in the absence of that, your actions constitute a
                  violation of
                  > ecclesiastical discipline. Dudko wrote to me personally, but I did
                  not
                  > answer him although I could have said much. By the
                  > way, on what basis did you, even before this, take into your head to
                  > commemorate an archbishop of the Soviet church during the Great
                  Entrance?
                  > Who gave you the right to do that, which hierarch
                  > who, how, where, when?.. Be more careful, my dear, zealous, but,
                  ah, too
                  > impetuous fellow minister!
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > vlutchenkov <vlutchenkov@
                  >
                  > If all they had to do was repent to be accepted in to ROCOR, and
                  they
                  > did not have to be re- baptized (or would that be baptized for the
                  > first time), they did not have to go to a ROCOR seminary or pass
                  > a "clergy entrance exam" to start or better yet continue there
                  > calling, then a logical conclusion would be that they did not come
                  > from a heretical sect.
                  > ...
                  >
                  >
                  > ---------------------------------
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