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Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: The Vanishing Russians Parts I-III: What Responsibility Has the MP Taken?

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  • George Edward Green III
    ... This reads like the major media apologetics for the Albanian Muslims in Kosovo. The genocide of Muslims in Kosovo and Serbia, etc were MADE UP. It s been
    Message 1 of 22 , Nov 2, 2006
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      On Nov 1, 2006, at 12:57 PM, Mike Woodson wrote:

      > Rather than engaging in false analogies with the Clinton
      > Administration's internationalist era, and absolutizing ALL Serbs as
      > angelic beings with no responsibility for what they've done in Europe
      > and the Balkans, and, sliming ALL Western journalists in general, why
      > don't we put the absolutizing of human behavior aside and turn off the
      > fog machine. Also, let's not engage in dueling hypocrisies of extreme
      > claims, either. To do my part, I'll keep citing hard data, since I'm
      > not a clairovoyant.

      This reads like the major media apologetics for the Albanian Muslims
      in Kosovo.

      The genocide of Muslims in Kosovo and Serbia, etc were MADE UP. It's
      been proven there was no genocide, plans for genocide, nor apparent
      interest in genocide.

      I do not see how any Orthodox Christian could come to the defense of
      invading Muslims who have killed Orthodox Christians and blown up
      churches at a consistent pace since this began.

      Serbs may not be angels but they were certainly trying to defend the
      historical religious center of their nation from an invasion by
      Muslim terrorists. Terrorists who've setup a heroin and human
      trafficking hub in Kosovo since.

      Me thinks you should check out:
      http://www.interfax-religion.com/kosovo/

      Also there is a book on the Orthodox Christian Heritage of Kosovo
      which you can purchase in the bookstore in Jordanville.

      George

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Fr. John R. Shaw
      ... JRS: 1) You are representing the current hierarchy of the Church of Russia as being somehow false bishops, mostly because they agreed to be bishops. Not
      Message 2 of 22 , Nov 2, 2006
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        --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Woodson" <singingmountains@...>
        wrote:

        > To the Russians: when are you going to throw these counterfeits off of
        > your backs and bring in the humble who have not sought the power seats
        > and therefore who can rightfully represent Christ's leadership in the
        > One Russian Church? Where are the men who don't allow themselves to be
        > called humble or thank God in public that *they* led the spiritual
        > renewal of Russia, thinking more of their legacy than the reality.

        JRS: 1) You are representing the current hierarchy of the Church of Russia as being
        somehow false bishops, mostly because they agreed to be bishops.

        Not only are the accusations you bring against them false and undeserved: the same
        supposed guilt of "having sought the power seats" could be applied to anyone else who
        was willing to become a bishop.

        2) Calling on "the Russians" to rise up and overthrow the Church hierarchy is completely
        contrary to Orthodox Christianity.

        It is the way of the Protestant reformation, and if followed, could lead to nothing good.

        3) However, the Moscow Patriarchate and its bishops and clergy are, if anything, much
        more popular today than the Russian clergy were before the revolution, when anticlerical
        attitudes were a well-known (and well-documented) problem.

        Ironically, the older Russian emigration sometimes preserved those anticlerical attitudes,
        whereas the new arrivals from Russia usually are respectful towards the clergy, and
        constantly seek their prayers and advice.

        4) The overwhelming majority of the Russian clergy, including the majority of the bishops,
        have been ordained since the fall of communism, mostly in the past few years.

        There are no canonical grounds for replacing them, few candidates with any training to
        could take their places, and in any case, the next generation of bishops, priests and
        deacons would still be "the successors" of those who went before them: thus they too
        would be attacked in the same way, by persons of your mindset.

        Consequently, what you are calling for is both unreasonable, and impossible to achieve.

        > The L.A. Times, however, put a reporter on the ground who made
        > contrary reports as to the exaggerations. ... I remember citing the
        > Times in some letters written to a national news outlet, ... and that was
        > the beginning of the wider media
        > exposure of the KLA as a drug-running organization in Europe with ties
        > to the Afghan Mujahadeen.

        JRS: Unfortunately, that "wider media exposure" has been anything but wide. I would
        recommend waiting until a few more people learn of it, before taking credit.

        > The central question in all of this seems to be: how do the people
        > deal with sin, fellow sinners and with overcoming passions? Is there a
        > spiritual light for them to follow in that land and in authority?

        JRS: The spiritual light for them, and for us, can only be in the Church.

        In Christ
        Fr. John R. Shaw
      • DDD
        On Thu, 2 Nov 2006 12:38:24 -0500, Melissa Bushunow wrote: Why has the Orthodox Church MP not taken this subject up?  Because it involves criticizing their
        Message 3 of 22 , Nov 2, 2006
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          On Thu, 2 Nov 2006 12:38:24 -0500, Melissa Bushunow wrote:

          Why has the Orthodox Church MP not taken this subject up?  Because it
          involves criticizing their past soviet masters, who are still their
          present day masters.  If the MP would truly throw off the soviet yoke
          by complete confession of its past and continuing complicity, then its
          penance could include fulfilling its scriptural obligations.  It would
          have the spiritual strength and legitimacy to criticize and help remedy
          the horrors and lawlessness occurring under Putin.
          __________________________________________________________

          Wow. By this logic, the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia "would
          have the spiritual strength and legitimacy to criticize and help remedy" Clinton's mass-murder and bombing of Orthodox Serbs and all the "horrors and lawlessness" that occurred under Clinton.

          --Dimitra Dwelley
        • Mike Woodson
          Dear Very Rev. Fr. John, See my responses below your comments. ... ... Fr. John, that s your take. I said throw these counterfeits off,
          Message 4 of 22 , Nov 3, 2006
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            Dear Very Rev. Fr. John,

            See my responses below your comments.


            --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, "Fr. John R. Shaw"
            <vrevjrs@...> wrote:
            > --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Woodson"
            <singingmountains@>
            > wrote:
            > To the Russians: when are you going to throw these counterfeits
            > off of your backs and bring in the humble who have not sought the
            > power seats and therefore who can rightfully represent Christ's
            > leadership in > the One Russian Church? Where are the men who don't
            > allow themselves to be called humble or thank God in public that
            > *they* led the spiritual renewal of Russia, thinking more of their
            > legacy than the reality.
            >
            > JRS: 1) You are representing the current hierarchy of the Church of
            > Russia as being somehow false bishops, mostly because they agreed to
            > be bishops.


            Fr. John, that's your take. I said "throw these counterfeits off,"
            which refers to the counterfeits among them. You generalized it to
            all, something I did not do. That was a mistake, or, yet another spin.

            Other items:


            Why haven't you responded about MP Bishop Clement's admission to the
            Episcopal Church in New York in 1998 that the Soviets had destroyed
            the Orthodox hospitals or commandeered them, and needed to be rebuilt?


            What are the names, locations and dates of Orthodox Christian
            hospitals rebuilt since 1992 when Bishop Clement said Perestroika had
            opened the door? Really, point them out. I can't find records.


            Why was Bishop Clement in New York thanking the Episcopalians
            (protestants) in the first place?


            By speaking ill of the protests of protestants, do you imply that the
            Roman Catholic Church was in their right not to be protested against?
            Just sit there and let them burn folks to death? Don't protest? Don't
            speak up?


            Today the equivalent would be: Don't preach against the neglect of the
            young, old and dying by the Putintocracy. Let their sacrifice be a
            gift to the Patriarchate's needs, right?


            Rather, you have singled out the elderly and their distrust of the
            clergy for special mention -- bad 'ole folks -- they ruin the
            sanitization of the Soviet legacy going on now, messing up the agenda.
            They're a problem because they remember the truth and don't sell it out.


            The USSR got so many people so sick with the pollution, neglect, and
            indifference to human life, that Putin knows it would be easier just
            to let entire generations die off than it would to take care of them.


            It's either that, or he was unaware while President of Russia for six
            (6) years that Russia was so sick before he announced spending. "As
            you do to the least of these, so you do unto me."

            > Not only are the accusations you bring against them false and
            > undeserved: the same supposed guilt of "having sought the power
            > seats" could be applied to anyone else who
            > was willing to become a bishop.

            Willing to become a Bishop is one thing. Accepting posts and seeking
            out higher posts by carrying out KGB/FSB orders to get there is
            another. From the 1950s to 1991 everyone acts like Drozdov (Alexei II)
            didn't exist. The highest posts are the men with tenure. They call the
            shots, and pick their picks.

            Which of those ordinations did not require the approval of the
            Patriarch Alexei II (Agent Drozdov)?

            Why haven't those MP Bishops been preaching against Vladimir Putin's
            conduct of a repressive government and neglect of the Russian people's
            colossal medical, agricultural and preventive health needs?

            If blood could be on their hands, shouldn't they step down? If the KGB
            /FSB elicited info from clergy (now the higher ups) about people in
            their communities, and they gave it up to protect their families,
            while that is understandable and forgiveable under the stress of the
            regime, just as Judas was forgivable had he repented, how do they know
            whether their information was used for killing human beings?

            > 2) Calling on "the Russians" to rise up and overthrow the Church
            > hierarchy is completely contrary to Orthodox Christianity.

            Only the "counterfeits," just as I said. The real hierarchy, the
            sincere, would not be overthrown. Overthrowing counterfeits means
            calling the pretenders to publicly resign. That requires an
            investigation to ferret out those who were active Soviet informants
            and agents. As I said, it would be easier if they would resign. If
            that doesn't happen, or an investigation is impossible because of
            destroyed records or lack of witnesses, it would be better to have
            patience until the dark cloud of their falsity has passed.

            Perhaps this is another reason for the neglect: so that all of the
            aging witnesses of the actions of KGB informants would die off. It is
            the ultimate sanitization of a record; killing the memory of the truth
            by hastening the death of those with the memory. But don't worry,
            there is a Higher governing Church Triumphant, and there are clouds of
            witnesses there.

            The investigation is not going to happen with Putin in power, so it
            will have to be a while. Another perestroika is needed to get the FSB
            and associated agencies to release all concealed KGB records.
            Independent and honest investigators loyal to the Russian laws of the
            Russian people, would also help. By now, I am concerned that the
            records are sanitized or destroyed.


            > It is the way of the Protestant reformation, and if followed, could
            > lead to nothing good.

            Yes, it would, and it wouldn't be a reformation, it would be a
            correction within the true Church, pruning the tree of that which the
            atheists grafted into the Patriarchate.

            > 3) However, the Moscow Patriarchate and its bishops and clergy are,
            if anything, much
            > more popular today than the Russian clergy were before the
            revolution, when anticlerical
            > attitudes were a well-known (and well-documented) problem.

            Popular in what way? Are pollsters calling the Russian households with
            polls to extrapolate approval ratings on the clergy in general? Since
            when were political perceptions of clergy measured by pollsters? Why
            would that be an emphasis or expenditure?

            It seems to me the Russian people have some reason for their
            anti-clerical attitudes, considering that there were clerics informing
            on their families, or participating with authorities in hunting down
            innocent people.


            > Ironically, the older Russian emigration sometimes preserved those
            > anticlerical attitudes,

            I wouldn't count distrust as anti-clerical. And their distrust comes
            from knowing how the regime worked. The younger generations don't take
            these things as seriously because they witnessed the USSR/Russia after
            opposition, dissidents and truthtellers had already been crushed. The
            elder emigres fully understood the single-minded focus of the
            Committee for State Security and its resolve to finish the job on the
            Church.

            I am really, really glad St. John wrote his concise history of the
            ROCOR. That has really helped us see the light about how dogged the
            pursuers of the flock have been, especially since the Russian
            government is reverting to Soviet practices again.


            > whereas the new arrivals from Russia usually are respectful towards
            the clergy, and
            > constantly seek their prayers and advice.

            You mean the people who left Russia to live here? They've come to the
            ROCOR. Doesn't that beg the question?

            >
            > 4) The overwhelming majority of the Russian clergy, including the
            > majority of the bishops,
            > have been ordained since the fall of communism, mostly in the past
            > few years.

            We're talking about Bishops here Fr. John. When were they ordained as
            priests, that's the question. Were they informants? That's what
            determines who they're loyal to, Christ or the worldly government?

            >
            > There are no canonical grounds for replacing them, few candidates
            with any training to
            > could take their places, and in any case, the next generation of
            bishops, priests and
            > deacons would still be "the successors" of those who went before
            them: thus they too
            > would be attacked in the same way, by persons of your mindset.

            There would be no canonicity to the placement of the counterfeits in
            the first place, would there? Formal removal would not seem necessary.
            It would be easier to tell who was who with a thorough investigation
            and release of all KGB records. If the KGB and USSR are history, then
            why are their records active secrets? Too embarrassing what could be
            in there about the leadership, I'll bet.

            > Consequently, what you are calling for is both unreasonable, and
            > impossible to achieve.

            How about a formal, careful, professional investigation to get to the
            truth?

            > > The L.A. Times, however, put a reporter on the ground who made
            > > contrary reports as to the exaggerations. ... I remember citing the
            > > Times in some letters written to a national news outlet, ... and
            that was
            > > the beginning of the wider media
            > > exposure of the KLA as a drug-running organization in Europe with ties
            > > to the Afghan Mujahadeen.
            >
            > JRS: Unfortunately, that "wider media exposure" has been anything
            but wide. I would
            > recommend waiting until a few more people learn of it, before taking
            credit.
            >

            At the time the Washington Times was the at the forefront of
            Washington newspapers keeping the Clinton Administration honest, and
            their KLA coverage spurred Washington Post and Wall Street Journal
            competition to widen that publicity. It's staff gets the credit for
            breaking the KLA connections stories I'm referring to. You can see
            them referenced online, or you can go to their archive. I saw
            irregularities at CNN, including one report in which Kosovar Albanians
            were sitting on a hillside laughing, and the camera turned on them and
            they began lamenting and crying for the camera. Too many things were
            irregular, much as is true for the Annexation of the ROCOR by the MP
            today.

            > > The central question in all of this seems to be: how do the people
            > > deal with sin, fellow sinners and with overcoming passions? Is there a
            > > spiritual light for them to follow in that land and in authority?
            >
            > JRS: The spiritual light for them, and for us, can only be in the
            > Church.

            Yes. And the boundaries of the Church God sets, not you or me. It
            seems to me the boundaries don't include false prophets and politicos
            installed by governments. Wouldn't you agree?

            >
            > In Christ
            > Fr. John R. Shaw
            >

            God help us.
            Michael
          • Mike Woodson
            Dear Dimitra, If that was the ROCOR s mission, yes. We are talking about the Church of Christ, living in faith. Yes. Michael ... would ... remedy Clinton s
            Message 5 of 22 , Nov 3, 2006
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              Dear Dimitra,

              If that was the ROCOR's mission, yes. We are talking about the Church
              of Christ, living in faith. Yes.

              Michael

              --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, DDD <dimitradd@...> wrote:
              >
              > Wow. By this logic, the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia
              "would
              > have the spiritual strength and legitimacy to criticize and help
              remedy" Clinton's mass-murder and bombing of Orthodox Serbs and all
              the "horrors and lawlessness" that occurred under Clinton.
              >
              > --Dimitra Dwelley
              >
            • DDD
              On Fri, 03 Nov 2006 13:11:38 -0000, Mike Woodson wrote: Dear Dimitra, If that was the ROCOR s mission, yes. We are talking about the Church of Christ, living
              Message 6 of 22 , Nov 4, 2006
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                On Fri, 03 Nov 2006 13:11:38 -0000, Mike Woodson wrote:
                Dear Dimitra,

                If that was the ROCOR's mission, yes. We are talking about the Church
                of Christ, living in faith. Yes.

                Michael

                --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, DDD <dimitradd@...> wrote:
                >
                > Wow. By this logic, the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia
                "would
                > have the spiritual strength and legitimacy to criticize and help
                remedy" Clinton's mass-murder and bombing of Orthodox Serbs and all
                the "horrors and lawlessness" that occurred under Clinton.
                >
                > --Dimitra Dwelley
                ________________________________________________________________

                Dear Michael,
                Criticizing the U.S. government was not at all ROCOR's mission. I'm sorry you don't see the absurdity of it. It is for men to come to the Church. The Church does not *force* repentance, nor does it start taking on governments. If you remember, in the Gospels, the Jews had your same point: they wanted the Saviour to do something about the un-Jewish Roman rule. He refused. He even condoned paying tribute to (pagan) Caesar, which pious Jews considered to be the same as apostasy, since Caesar set himself up as a Roman god. This passage is worth serious reflection.
                But the Church in Russia "took on" the government in a far different way: by its podvigi of existence under the cruel soviet regime, by prayer, by maintaining contact with God-bearing elders, by God's might working when we ourselves were powerless--and by martyrdom (yes, in the Moscow Patriarchate, which even the first Catacomb people were part of, since they recognized St. Peter of Krutista as patriarchal locum tenens.) By this means--spiritual means--the atheistic government in Russia was overcome and bloodlessly overthrown. This is a miracle for which we should all now be giving thanks to God!
                I am reading the life of St. Seraphim of Vyritsa, who was a wonderworking, clairvoyant starets born before the Revolution and who reposed in 1949. Many who were not believers would somehow end up visiting him in times of personal sorrow--someone would say to them, "There is an old man in Vyritsa who can help you." And these people would come away believers. *This* is how the Russian Church has conquered atheism.
                As for Putin, anything done by him as far as government goes is also done by our own government. That's why your accusation of the Orthodox Church is absurd--ah! the government has done something (you say) wrong, therefore the Church is not real. To go back to my comparison: that's like saying, "The Roman government was crucifying thousands of Jews; if Jesus were the Son of God He would come down from the Cross and overthrow the Roman government." But that's not what happened. He overthrew it in an entirely different way.
                Meanwhile, under Putin, thousands of churches are being rebuilt, going to church is legal and not only allowed, but thriving. For this we should be giving thanks. If you don't like something else he is doing, by all means move to Russia and get involved in politics and speak up. Or, you could simply pray that the pious and God-fearing Tsar prophesied by the Optina Elders, St. Theophan of Poltava, Starets Lavrentii of Chernigov and others will now appear.

                --Dimitra Dwelley
                PS: In writing, it is impossible to convey tone of voice. I do not mean this in any kind of hostile tone of voice, Michael.
              • Fr. John R. Shaw
                ... JRS: You seem fond of accusing us of spin and of misrepresentation of the facts, and of all manner of things you do yourself. If only some of the clergy
                Message 7 of 22 , Nov 4, 2006
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                  --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Woodson" <singingmountains@...>
                  wrote:

                  > Fr. John, that's your take. I said "throw these counterfeits off,"
                  > which refers to the counterfeits among them. You generalized it to
                  > all, something I did not do. That was a mistake, or, yet another spin.

                  JRS: You seem fond of accusing us of "spin" and of misrepresentation of the facts, and of
                  all manner of things you do yourself.

                  If only some of the clergy in Russia are "counterfeits", how do you claim to know which is
                  which, when you seem to gain all information from American newspapers?

                  And who is supposed to decide that in Russia?

                  In any case, revolutions and overthrowing of bishops and priests by the laity is not
                  accepted in the Orthodox Church.

                  If a cleric is guilty of some specific offense, he can be tried before an ecclesiastical court.

                  > Why haven't you responded about MP Bishop Clement's admission to the
                  > Episcopal Church in New York in 1998 that the Soviets had destroyed
                  > the Orthodox hospitals or commandeered them, and needed to be rebuilt?

                  JRS: I do not read everything you write. I believe in getting to the point, and keeping my
                  remarks as concise as I can.

                  In 1998, he was already Archbishop Clement.

                  As for his remark as quoted, obviously it's true: the Church's hospitals, that it had before
                  the revolution were all taken away from it, and today they are being gradually rebuilt.

                  > What are the names, locations and dates of Orthodox Christian
                  > hospitals rebuilt since 1992 when Bishop Clement said Perestroika had
                  > opened the door? Really, point them out. I can't find records.

                  JRS: Two suggestions:

                  1) Learn to read Russian, and

                  2) follow the daily accounts of these things at the several MP websites.

                  > Why was Bishop Clement in New York thanking the Episcopalians
                  > (protestants) in the first place?

                  JRS: Who knows? Who cares?

                  Our own bishops (among them, Patriarch St. Tikhon) did that often enough in times past.

                  > By speaking ill of the protests of protestants, do you imply that the
                  > Roman Catholic Church was in their right not to be protested against?
                  > Just sit there and let them burn folks to death? Don't protest? Don't
                  > speak up?

                  JRS: What has that got to do with the time of day?

                  > The USSR got so many people so sick with the pollution, neglect, and
                  > indifference to human life, that Putin knows it would be easier just
                  > to let entire generations die off than it would to take care of them.

                  JRS: There are some writers on the internet that make ME sick, you know...

                  In Christ
                  Fr. John R. Shaw
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