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Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: He Who Restraineth

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  • Fr. Alexander Lebedeff
    Reader John should be commended for his wonderful presentation of the meaning of the last Emperor of Russia, St. Nicholas ast He who retaineth. However, the
    Message 1 of 27 , Jul 14, 2002
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      Reader John should be commended for his wonderful presentation of the
      meaning of the last Emperor of Russia, St. Nicholas ast "He who retaineth."

      However, the conclusions he reaches are totally fallacious.

      He writes:


      > > That the pseudo church, the MP, questions whether or not this man,
      > > one of the greatest saints of all time, is indeed a passion bearer,
      > > is a testimony to their spiritual bankruptcy.

      First of all, the Moscow Patriarchate did glorify St. Nicholas as a
      Passion-Bearer, so John's premise is false--if they glorified him as among
      the Saints, how can they question his glorification?

      Secondly, never has the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, in any
      official pronouncement, called the MP a "pseudo church," or one that is
      devoid of grace.

      Quite the contrary. In its official Epistle of 1933, specifically dedicated
      to express with outmost clarity the view of the Church Abroad to the
      actions of Metropolitan Sergius, six years after his "Declaration," the
      Moscow Patriarchate is **never** called a false Church--and Metropolitan
      Sergius is explicitly called "the de facto Head of the Russian Church," and
      is praised for his attempts to give the Church legal status under the
      Communist regime.

      Patriarch Alexei I is called by Metropolitan Anastassy "the Head of the
      Russian Church," and the "Navigator of the Russian Church" in the Conciliar
      Epistles of the Church Abroad in 1946 and 1948.

      >Archbishop Vitaly (Maximenko), writing in 1953 (when the situation of the
      >Moscow Patriarchate was very clear to all):
      >
      >"First of all, with our former steadfastness we confess our unity with the
      >Mother Church of Russia, now enslaved; our faithfulness to Her historical
      >thousand-year path, and we send to Her our cordial prayerful wishes that
      >She may be freed quickly from the domination of the God-fighters. Without
      >any compromise, we condemn the collaboration of Her current leaders in the
      >USSR with the atheistic communist authorities. But in a like manner, we
      >also condemn all self-created autonomies, separatism, divisions, and
      >independent-mindedness. The essence of our Church is not in divisiveness
      >and seeking power, but in keeping Divine truth in Unity." ("Motifs of My
      >Life," p. 71).
      >
      >[Actually, in this book, "Motifs of My Life," published in Jordanville,
      >Archbishop Vitaly (who was a confessor, himself) uses the term "Mother
      >Church" dozens of times to refer to the Church in Russia. Yes, enslaved,
      >yes, downtrodden--but still the Mother Church.

      Here is what St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco wrote:


      "Does the Russian Church inside Russia need, would she benefit from, the
      annihilation of the Church Outside of Russia and her annexation to the
      Patriarchate? The Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia is not
      spiritually separated from her suffering Mother. She offers up prayers for
      her, preserves her spiritual and material wealth, and in due time she will
      unite with her, when the reasons for their disunity shall have vanished.
      And there is no doubt that within Russia also many hierarchs, clergy, and
      laymen are with us and would themselves be happy to act as we do if they
      were able."




      >And, a little more clarity on the opinion of Metropolitan Anthony on
      >Metropolitan Sergius (in personal letters, written after the "Declaration"):
      >
      >"Metropolitan Sergius has scandalized humself: in church the people yelled
      >at him: "Traitor, Judas!" and chased him out, tearing off his
      >vestments--Evlogy has stopped commemorating him and doesn't know whom he
      >can stick to now. Nevertheless, I feel sorry for Metropolitan Sergius: he
      >has no willpower, but his mind is clear and his heart is good." (Letters
      >of Metropolitan Anthony, p. 221).
      >
      >"I feel sorry for poor Most Reverend Metropolitan Sergius, who was reviled
      >and whistled at in a Moscow church--that is, in the temple; he is, of
      >course, not as he was characterized by the revilers, although the last
      >three years he has acted unwisely--he outsmarted himself." (Ibid.)


      Let us look at the book, entitled "Motives of My Life," by Archbishop
      Vitaly (Maximenko), published at Jordanville in 1955.

      Now, no one could possibly claim that Archbishop Vitaly, the Missionary of
      Pochaev and the Carpathian Moutains, Confessor for the Faith (he was
      sentenced to death and was minutes away from execution in 1918), and the
      man chosen by Metropolitan Anthony to be consecrated bishop (in 1934) and
      sent to North America to heal the rift among the various jurisdictions in
      America, was "outside of the mainstream" of the Russian Orthodox Church
      Outside of Russia. He was and is greatly revered as the "Avva," and was
      instrumental in making the Jordanville Monastery and Seminary what they are
      today.

      The book contains an "imprimatur," on the back of the title page: "Printing
      permitted. Spiritual Censor Archpriest Michael Pomazansky."

      The book was published at the Monastery in its Second, Revised Edition (the
      one I have before me) in 1955, when the Monastery was under the Rectorship
      of Archbishop Averky.

      I can assure you that both Archbishop Averky and Fr. Michael Pomazansky
      were serious and meticulous scholars and theologians, who took their
      responsibilities extremely seriously, and carefully read everything
      submitted to them to be reviewed before printing.

      There can be no doubt that if there were anything contrary to the positions
      of the ROCOR in this book, it would not have slipped past this review, or
      the review of Metropolitan Anastassy, or any of the other senior bishops of
      the Church Abroad--much less to have made it to a Second, Augmented Edition.

      And what do we read in this book, (which was required reading in Seminary,
      at least when I was there--in the 60's)?

      Archbishop Vitaly repeatedly and consistently referring to the Moscow
      Patriarchate as the "Mother Church."

      Page 25:

      "We are found within the bosom of the local (pomestnoj) Russian Oerthodox
      Church and do not have the right to abandon the Mother Church during Her
      serious illness. However, we cannot listen to Her current leaders."

      In Russian (for any who may think I am adulterating the text in translation):

      "My nakhodimsia v lone pomestnoj Russkoj Pravoslavnoj Tserkvi i ne imeem
      prava ostavit' Mater'-Tserkov' v tiazhkoj jeja bolezni. No i poslushat'
      nyneshnikh Jeja vozglavitelej ne mozhem."

      There can be no doubt that the pronoun "Her" "Jeja" in the second sentence,
      refers to the term "Mother Church" in the first sentence. Also, it is clear
      that Archbishop Vitaly was not speaking of the Catacomb Church, as he is
      criticizing the "leaders"--he was clearly speaking of the Moscow Patriarchate.

      Page 35:

      "1. All of us are children of the Russian Orthodox Church, and to separate
      from Her, especially in these difficult for Her days, we have no right. . .

      2. To our great sorrow, our native ("rodnaya") Russian ("Rossijskaia")
      Orthodox Church is not subjugated by the Godless Communist autority, and
      the current leaders of this Church (Patriarch Alexei) serve that authority
      not out of fear, but out of conscience, as they themselves boast before the
      whole world..

      3. However, some parts of the Church, among them the American part, have
      remained outside the borders of the USSR and in freedom. Before us now
      stand three choices--three paths, upon which we can go forward:

      a) either voluntarily submit to the subjugated leaders of the Church in the
      USSR (i.e. the Patriarchate), and through that work ourselves for the
      Godless Communists; b) or, taking advantage of the current helplessness of
      the Mother-Church, to separate ourselves from Her and on our own organize
      our "autocephaly," . . . c) or, remaining free and temporarily not uniting,
      strictly keep the true faith and work toward the liberation of the Mother
      Church and the restoration to Her Her legal rights."


      Again, here it is clear that Archbishop Vitaly is speaking of the Moscow
      Patriarchate as the "Mother Church" -- our "native" Church, that is now
      "helpless, subjugated, ill."

      And these phrases "subjugated Russian Mother Church" (p. 36, p. 39)
      "suffering Mother Church" (p. 39) "helpless Mother Church" (p. 39)
      "Mother-Church under the yoke" (p. 43), appear again and again, always in a
      context that makes it clear that he is speaking of the Moscow Patriarchate,
      not the Catacomb Church, because he speaks of its "current leaders" who
      have submitted themselves to the Godless authorities.

      Here is another quote from Archbishop Vitaly (p. 44):

      "For many years we carefully studied and now clearly see the situation of
      our Mother-Russian Orthodox Church. For this reason we will not be dazzled
      by any lures, by any contemporary apparitions, by any new ecclesiastical paths.

      "God has allowed our Russian Church to suffer a grave test, as did the
      righteous Job in the past: It is under the *bitter* [emphasis by Arch.
      Vit.] yoke of Godless Communism, and Her official leaders have become not
      just the captives, but the ardent servants of the Godless authority."

      Archbishop Vitaly continues (p. 45):

      "With the situation of our Russian Church being what it is, *here is the
      challenge and responsibility given to us by God's Providence:

      "Not to tear ourselves away from the fundamental massif, body, root of
      the Mother Church: in the depths of this massif, currently only pressed
      down by the great weight of bolshevism, are preserved even now the
      spiritual treasures of Her thousand-year struggle ("podvig").

      "But we should not recognize Her official leaders, who have become the
      obedient tools of the Godless authority."

      In another article, Archbishop Vitaly says:

      "1. First of all we must with our previous steadfastness confess our
      unity with the Mother Russian Church, now subjugated,--our faithfulness to
      Her thousand-year historical path, and we send Her our heartfelt prayerful
      wishes to be quickly free of God-fighting involuntary servitude. Without
      compromise we condemn the cooperation of Her current leaders in the USSR
      with the Godless Communist authority."

      (Similarly on p. 74.)

      In all of these passages, one sees the same theme: Archbishop Vitaly
      consistently calls the Moscow Patriarchate our "Mother Church"--(or simply
      "the Russian Orthodox Church") while at the same time deploring the
      compromises of its leadership.

      The most significant essay in this, Archbishop Vitaly's collection of
      essays, is titled "Our Responsibility [Debt] before the Mother-Russian Church."

      The entire article expresses the same theme--we are one with our
      Mother-Church in Russia, but cannot be subject to its leadership as long as
      they are in subjugation to the Godless authorities.

      Here is a quote (p. 77):

      "We wish to point out our direct responsibility [debt], our great
      responsibility [debt] before the Mother-Russian Church and we will speak of
      this with all our love and devotion to Her, with deep reverence before the
      podvig of Patriarch Sergius, ("s glubokim prekloneniem pred podvigom
      Patriarkha Sergiia"), but with full obedience also to the Truth of Christ
      and the Church, deeply believing, that 'the Truth is great and can do all.'"

      and another, (p. 80)

      "Let us strive then, American Rus', that our Mother-Russian Orthodox
      Church in Russia would receive the same freedom and rights as we have here
      in America."

      And, regarding the future of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of
      Russia, Archbishop Vitaly wrote (p. 49): "The Hierarchical Sobor [of the
      ROCOR] . . .as a temporary organization, existing until its reunification
      with the Russian Ecclesiastical authority. . ."

      The above material should be adequate to 1) diffuse any false statements
      about whether our senior hierarchs ever called the Moscow Patriarchate "the
      Mother Church" and 2) to show that, in a series of essays spanning 20
      years--essays the defined the position of the Church Abroad--Archbishop
      Vitaly *never once* called the Moscow Patriarchate a "Graceless" or
      "Heretical" organization, but always referred to the body of it (its
      faithful) with great compassion and love, while uncompromisingly being
      critical of its leadership.

      So, if Archbishop Vitaly was not writing what was officially the policy
      of the Church Abroad, he would have been censured by the Metropolitan
      Anastassy and the Sobor of Bishops of the ROCOR (as was Archbishop Afanassy
      when he published his book 'Belarus'), and Archbishop Averky and Father
      Michael Pomazansky would never have permitted the publication of the book,
      much less letting it go to a second edition.

      Either you must consider them all incompetent fools (which they
      emphatically were not)--or the positions of Archbishop Vitaly were within
      the mainstream of ROCOR thought.


      I would like to conclude with one more quotation from the "old thinking"
      of the ROCOR, this time from its highest authority at the time,
      Metropolitan Anastassy-- from his sermon on the Sunday of All Saints of
      Russia, given in 1960, and reprinted in Pravoslavnaia Rus' in its May 15/28
      Issue for 1999:

      "God has truly not allowed that ancient Holy Russia, filled with such
      great piety, would be destroyed as a sacrifice to the deceiver, Satan. God
      has preserved for all of us a remnant of that which is saved. These are the
      people who are faithful to the commandments of their Church, and to the
      teaching of the Gospel, -- these people now either are hiding in the
      so-called Catacomb Church, where the hand of the Bolsheviks cannot reach,
      or they departed from persecution into the diaspora, reminding us of the
      apocalyptic woman, who once fled from the beast into the desert.

      "And it is alive in these people, in these sons, true sons, of
      Russia--Holy Russia is alive even to this day! But it has not died there,
      either, in our Russia itself, however it may be defiled by sins,
      transgressions, crimes and ugly blasphemies. It lives on also in the hearts
      of those Russian people who have remained faithful to Orthodoxy, who openly
      confess it, attending with zeal those Churches which have been still
      preserved in all of Russia."

      Pray tell -- whom was Metropolitan Anastassy speaking about in the last
      sentence? t couldn't be those who were in the Catacomb Church--he talked
      about that category and the people in the diaspora in the previous
      paragraph. Clearly, he could only be talking about those attending the
      churches of the Moscow Patriarchate--for those were the only churches that
      were still open in 1960.

      Note that Metropolitan Anastassy did *not* state that the faithful in
      Russian should not attend the few remaining open churches of the Moscow
      Patriarchate because it was graceless and uncanonical, although he could
      have. Instead, he praised the faithful who attended them for their zeal and
      stated that Holy Russia lives on in their hearts.

      These quotations should be enough to show the "thinking" of our major
      Church leaders in the past.



      John wrote


      >After all, their
      > > hierarchs are only legitimate if Stalin is legitimate. Met. Sergius
      > > and all the MP Patriarchs received their apostolic succession from
      > > Lenin and Stalin. Why would they say anything else?
      > >

      This is patently ridiculous. Metropolitan Sergius (and Patriarch Alexei I)
      received his apostolic succession from the hierarchs of the historical
      Church of Russia--they were both consecrated before the Revolution. All of
      the other bishops of the MP have valid apostolic succession from bishops
      consecrated before the Revolution, or by Patriarch Tikhon.



      > > Each of the thousands of Orthodox churches in Russia has been
      > > desecrated. Yes, some have been rebuilt. With blood money from
      > > murder, drug trafficing and smuggling.

      More nonsense--thousands of churches in Russia have been rebuilt and
      restored solely from donations from pious worshippers--who throw their last
      rubles into collection bins for the restoration of the Churches.
      Undoubtedly, there are some churches which have been given illegally
      obtained funds--but that happens over here, as well.



      >The churches have no doubt
      > > been reconsecrated by KGB agents wearing a saccos, mitre, panagia
      >and
      > > great omophorion.


      The vast majority of bishops of the MP have been consecrated after the fall
      of Communism and the disappearance of the KGB. Are you stating that every
      one of them is a secret KGB agent?

      The First Hierarchs of the Church Abroad and the Conciliar Epistles of the
      Church Abroad throughout the decades spoke about the fact that there were
      many bishops and priests in the persecuted Church in Soviet Russia, who,
      despite the persecution, maintained their faith and struggled to do God's
      work as best they could. Do you now doubt this?


      >But are these men dressed as bishops Orthodox?

      They have valid Apostolic Succession from pre-revolutionary bishops--their
      confession of faith, given at their consecration, is identical, without one
      iota of change, to the confession of faith made by per-revolutionary
      bishops of the Church of Russia--of course they are Orthodox!!



      > >
      > > This is the impact of the murder and sacrifice of St Nicholas, The
      > > One Who Restraineth. Instead of great spiritual power throughout
      > > Russia, there is despair. There are churches that have been
      > > restored; some are beautiful no doubt, but their priests
      >commemorate
      > > the spiritual descendents of the murderers of St. Nicholas.


      Obviously, John is ignorant of the fact that Patriarch Alexei II
      specifically repented in the name of all of the Russian Orthodox people for
      the crime of regicide, in which he stated that all bear a personal
      responsibility. He also took upon himself full responsibility and repented
      for all actions of himself, and his predecessors in the compromises they
      made with the Soviet atheistic government.

      Surely you will not take the anti-Christian position that repentance is
      impossible for bishops or clergy of the Moscow Patriachate?

      Our Lord, Who accepted the repentance of Peter for having denied Him
      thrice, and Who accepted the repentance of Paul for persecuting Christians,
      surely can accept the repentance of bishops of the Moscow Patriarchate.





      With love in Christ,

      Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
    • Evelyn Hunter
      Good Morning John, May I use your post in one of our parish newsletters? I would like something to include in a write-up I want to do about Tsar Nicholas.
      Message 2 of 27 , Jul 14, 2002
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        Good Morning John,

        May I use your post in one of our parish newsletters? I would like
        something to include in a write-up I want to do about Tsar Nicholas. Our
        circulation is very small, but, I know some people (especially non-Russians)
        would like a better grasp on this!

        May I?

        In Christ,
        Evgenia


        > -----Original Message-----
        > From: Jean-Claude Williams [mailto:cwilliams@...]
        > Sent: Saturday, July 13, 2002 5:18 AM
        > To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] He Who Restraineth
        >
        >
        > Amen.
        > ----- Original Message -----
        > From: rdrjohn2000
        > To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
        > Sent: Saturday, July 13, 2002 1:47 AM
        > Subject: [orthodox-synod] He Who Restraineth
        >
        >
        > Very few people realize the impact on Orthodoxy of the
        > murder of the last Orthodox Emperor. Here is a way to visualize the
        > impact. Think of the largest country in the world. Moving from West
        > to East you leave St. Petersburg with its many churches, go to Moscow
        > with its hundreds of churhes, cross the Urals, go thousands of
        > miles across the vast steppes, through Siberia, Yakutsk to Kamchatka
        > to the Pacific Ocean (and into Alaska for Orthodoxy had spread
        > there). From Arkangelsk and Murmansk in the far North and all of its
        > latitudes, South to Odessa on the Black Sea thence East past the
        > Caspian Sea, past the Turkik regions, past the Aral sea, past Lake
        > Baikhail to Vladivostok. Where ever there were people and villages
        > there existed an Orthodox church. Thousands and thousands of them.
        > Each of these churches had a consecrated altar with relics of the
        > saints. In each Church there was a priest, some not educated, but
        > all the more pious, who gave the holy mysteries to all who asked.
        > Each parish priest instructed his flock and gave sermons about
        > Christian living from the amvon. The totality of this my friends is
        > purity. Great purity and strength beyond what we can comprehend
        > today. And this strength is so vast; millions of believers and great
        > spiritual power. In this pious Orthodox land there existed hundreds
        > of monasteries. In this nation all the Orthodox Christians who
        > attended church prayed for the salvation of the world and for all
        > other Orthodox Christians.
        >
        > This great Emperor and his father not only attended to the spiritual
        > needs of Russia; they were the defenders of Orthodoxy throughout the
        > world. They protected Holy Mt. Athos and built St. Pantelaimon's
        > Monastery,the Prophet Elias skete, and other monasteries. The Tsar
        > protected Orthodox Christians in Eastern Europe by gently (and not so
        > gently sometimes) reminding the heterodox that they will not allow
        > Orthodox lands to be swallowed up by the corrupt Hapsburg Empire and
        > other Western powers. They kept the militant and secular Turks of the
        > Ottoman empire in check by letting it be clear that Holy Russia
        > viewed the saving of Constantinople as a fundamental element of
        > Russian foreign policy.
        >
        > They built Orthodox churches, monasteries and convents in the Holy
        > Land and were the ONLY world power to defend Orthodoxy in Palastine.
        >
        > They built Orthodox churches here in America and defended the faith
        > even as far from Moscow as New York, throughout all of Pennsylvania
        > to Clevland and into Detroit. This was all before the Russian
        > revolution.
        >
        > Now give this Christian emperor a faith so strong that he will look
        > Satan and death in the face and not shirk or cower. That he will not
        > bow down to Satan and make his pact with him, but would accept the
        > pain and torture of a martyr's crown; not only for himself but for
        > his family whom he loved and cherished. This was a Tsar who had all
        > the riches in the world, who could have had all the Things of This
        > World if only he had made his pact with the evil one. Yet he, St.
        > Nicholas, was strong in his faith and the love of his country and the
        > Holy Orthodox Faith. He gently accepted this great passion for
        > himself and his family.
        >
        > St. Nicholas died for his people; for their sins and for the faith.
        > That the pseudo church, the MP, questions whether or not this man,
        > one of the greatest saints of all time, is indeed a passion bearer,
        > is a testimony to their spiritual bankruptcy. After all, their
        > hierarchs are only legitimate if Stalin is legitimate. Met. Sergius
        > and all the MP Patriarchs received their apostolic succession from
        > Lenin and Stalin. Why would they say anything else?
        >
        > Each of the thousands of Orthodox churches in Russia has been
        > desecrated. Yes, some have been rebuilt. With blood money from
        > murder, drug trafficing and smuggling. The churches have no doubt
        > been reconsecrated by KGB agents wearing a saccos, mitre, panagia and
        > great omophorion. But are these men dressed as bishops Orthodox?
        >
        > This is the impact of the murder and sacrifice of St Nicholas, The
        > One Who Restraineth. Instead of great spiritual power throughout
        > Russia, there is despair. There are churches that have been
        > restored; some are beautiful no doubt, but their priests commemorate
        > the spiritual descendents of the murderers of St. Nicholas.
        >
        > Mt. Athos has no earthly protector. There is spiritual chaos now on
        > the Holy Mountain because the Orthodox champion no longer exists.
        >
        > The Holy Land has no Orthodox defender. The Orthodox holy sites are
        > swallowed up by evil people.
        >
        > Orthodoxy in America is like unto the Tower of Babel with more
        > jurisdictions than the Protestants.
        >
        > The One Who Restraineth is no more my friends. He suffered his
        > earthly passion and now wears a martyr's crown in heaven. And that
        > is why each one of us must fight the good fight, even unto
        > the end, because there no one else today who restraineth Satan.
        >
        > Brothers and sisters in Christ, Let each one of us recommit ourselves
        > to this spiritual fight for today there is no one who will fight for
        > us.
        >
        > Holy Father, St. Nicholas, pray unto God for Us!
        >
        > In Christ,
        >
        > Rdr John
        >
        >
        >
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      • Fr. George Primak
        Dear Fr. Alexander, I am wondering why are you trying so eagerly to convince us that the MP is a true Russian Orthodox Church? You know perfectly well that the
        Message 3 of 27 , Jul 14, 2002
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          Dear Fr. Alexander,
          I am wondering why are you trying so eagerly to convince us that the MP is a
          true Russian Orthodox Church? You know perfectly well that the recognition
          of the Holy Zar Nikolas and His family as martirs was done only by people's
          pressure. If there was not such pressure they wouldn't do it. Maybe I am an
          old fashined but I still stick to the Apostolic and Ecumenical Council's
          rules which fill me witl a lot of doubts with regards to your arguments in
          favour of MP.
          With love in Christ,
          Fr. George
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "Fr. Alexander Lebedeff" <lebedeff@...>
          To: <orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Sunday, July 14, 2002 8:38 AM
          Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: He Who Restraineth


          > Reader John should be commended for his wonderful presentation of the
          > meaning of the last Emperor of Russia, St. Nicholas ast "He who
          retaineth."
          >
          > However, the conclusions he reaches are totally fallacious.
          >
          > He writes:
          >
          >
          > > > That the pseudo church, the MP, questions whether or not this man,
          > > > one of the greatest saints of all time, is indeed a passion bearer,
          > > > is a testimony to their spiritual bankruptcy.
          >
          > First of all, the Moscow Patriarchate did glorify St. Nicholas as a
          > Passion-Bearer, so John's premise is false--if they glorified him as among
          > the Saints, how can they question his glorification?
          >
          > Secondly, never has the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, in any
          > official pronouncement, called the MP a "pseudo church," or one that is
          > devoid of grace.
          >
          > Quite the contrary. In its official Epistle of 1933, specifically
          dedicated
          > to express with outmost clarity the view of the Church Abroad to the
          > actions of Metropolitan Sergius, six years after his "Declaration," the
          > Moscow Patriarchate is **never** called a false Church--and Metropolitan
          > Sergius is explicitly called "the de facto Head of the Russian Church,"
          and
          > is praised for his attempts to give the Church legal status under the
          > Communist regime.
          >
          > Patriarch Alexei I is called by Metropolitan Anastassy "the Head of the
          > Russian Church," and the "Navigator of the Russian Church" in the
          Conciliar
          > Epistles of the Church Abroad in 1946 and 1948.
          >
          > >Archbishop Vitaly (Maximenko), writing in 1953 (when the situation of the
          > >Moscow Patriarchate was very clear to all):
          > >
          > >"First of all, with our former steadfastness we confess our unity with
          the
          > >Mother Church of Russia, now enslaved; our faithfulness to Her historical
          > >thousand-year path, and we send to Her our cordial prayerful wishes that
          > >She may be freed quickly from the domination of the God-fighters. Without
          > >any compromise, we condemn the collaboration of Her current leaders in
          the
          > >USSR with the atheistic communist authorities. But in a like manner, we
          > >also condemn all self-created autonomies, separatism, divisions, and
          > >independent-mindedness. The essence of our Church is not in divisiveness
          > >and seeking power, but in keeping Divine truth in Unity." ("Motifs of My
          > >Life," p. 71).
          > >
          > >[Actually, in this book, "Motifs of My Life," published in Jordanville,
          > >Archbishop Vitaly (who was a confessor, himself) uses the term "Mother
          > >Church" dozens of times to refer to the Church in Russia. Yes, enslaved,
          > >yes, downtrodden--but still the Mother Church.
          >
          > Here is what St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco wrote:
          >
          >
          > "Does the Russian Church inside Russia need, would she benefit from, the
          > annihilation of the Church Outside of Russia and her annexation to the
          > Patriarchate? The Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia is not
          > spiritually separated from her suffering Mother. She offers up prayers for
          > her, preserves her spiritual and material wealth, and in due time she will
          > unite with her, when the reasons for their disunity shall have vanished.
          > And there is no doubt that within Russia also many hierarchs, clergy, and
          > laymen are with us and would themselves be happy to act as we do if they
          > were able."
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > >And, a little more clarity on the opinion of Metropolitan Anthony on
          > >Metropolitan Sergius (in personal letters, written after the
          "Declaration"):
          > >
          > >"Metropolitan Sergius has scandalized humself: in church the people
          yelled
          > >at him: "Traitor, Judas!" and chased him out, tearing off his
          > >vestments--Evlogy has stopped commemorating him and doesn't know whom he
          > >can stick to now. Nevertheless, I feel sorry for Metropolitan Sergius: he
          > >has no willpower, but his mind is clear and his heart is good." (Letters
          > >of Metropolitan Anthony, p. 221).
          > >
          > >"I feel sorry for poor Most Reverend Metropolitan Sergius, who was
          reviled
          > >and whistled at in a Moscow church--that is, in the temple; he is, of
          > >course, not as he was characterized by the revilers, although the last
          > >three years he has acted unwisely--he outsmarted himself." (Ibid.)
          >
          >
          > Let us look at the book, entitled "Motives of My Life," by Archbishop
          > Vitaly (Maximenko), published at Jordanville in 1955.
          >
          > Now, no one could possibly claim that Archbishop Vitaly, the Missionary of
          > Pochaev and the Carpathian Moutains, Confessor for the Faith (he was
          > sentenced to death and was minutes away from execution in 1918), and the
          > man chosen by Metropolitan Anthony to be consecrated bishop (in 1934) and
          > sent to North America to heal the rift among the various jurisdictions in
          > America, was "outside of the mainstream" of the Russian Orthodox Church
          > Outside of Russia. He was and is greatly revered as the "Avva," and was
          > instrumental in making the Jordanville Monastery and Seminary what they
          are
          > today.
          >
          > The book contains an "imprimatur," on the back of the title page:
          "Printing
          > permitted. Spiritual Censor Archpriest Michael Pomazansky."
          >
          > The book was published at the Monastery in its Second, Revised Edition
          (the
          > one I have before me) in 1955, when the Monastery was under the Rectorship
          > of Archbishop Averky.
          >
          > I can assure you that both Archbishop Averky and Fr. Michael Pomazansky
          > were serious and meticulous scholars and theologians, who took their
          > responsibilities extremely seriously, and carefully read everything
          > submitted to them to be reviewed before printing.
          >
          > There can be no doubt that if there were anything contrary to the
          positions
          > of the ROCOR in this book, it would not have slipped past this review, or
          > the review of Metropolitan Anastassy, or any of the other senior bishops
          of
          > the Church Abroad--much less to have made it to a Second, Augmented
          Edition.
          >
          > And what do we read in this book, (which was required reading in Seminary,
          > at least when I was there--in the 60's)?
          >
          > Archbishop Vitaly repeatedly and consistently referring to the Moscow
          > Patriarchate as the "Mother Church."
          >
          > Page 25:
          >
          > "We are found within the bosom of the local (pomestnoj) Russian Oerthodox
          > Church and do not have the right to abandon the Mother Church during Her
          > serious illness. However, we cannot listen to Her current leaders."
          >
          > In Russian (for any who may think I am adulterating the text in
          translation):
          >
          > "My nakhodimsia v lone pomestnoj Russkoj Pravoslavnoj Tserkvi i ne imeem
          > prava ostavit' Mater'-Tserkov' v tiazhkoj jeja bolezni. No i poslushat'
          > nyneshnikh Jeja vozglavitelej ne mozhem."
          >
          > There can be no doubt that the pronoun "Her" "Jeja" in the second
          sentence,
          > refers to the term "Mother Church" in the first sentence. Also, it is
          clear
          > that Archbishop Vitaly was not speaking of the Catacomb Church, as he is
          > criticizing the "leaders"--he was clearly speaking of the Moscow
          Patriarchate.
          >
          > Page 35:
          >
          > "1. All of us are children of the Russian Orthodox Church, and to separate
          > from Her, especially in these difficult for Her days, we have no right. .
          .
          >
          > 2. To our great sorrow, our native ("rodnaya") Russian ("Rossijskaia")
          > Orthodox Church is not subjugated by the Godless Communist autority, and
          > the current leaders of this Church (Patriarch Alexei) serve that authority
          > not out of fear, but out of conscience, as they themselves boast before
          the
          > whole world..
          >
          > 3. However, some parts of the Church, among them the American part, have
          > remained outside the borders of the USSR and in freedom. Before us now
          > stand three choices--three paths, upon which we can go forward:
          >
          > a) either voluntarily submit to the subjugated leaders of the Church in
          the
          > USSR (i.e. the Patriarchate), and through that work ourselves for the
          > Godless Communists; b) or, taking advantage of the current helplessness of
          > the Mother-Church, to separate ourselves from Her and on our own organize
          > our "autocephaly," . . . c) or, remaining free and temporarily not
          uniting,
          > strictly keep the true faith and work toward the liberation of the Mother
          > Church and the restoration to Her Her legal rights."
          >
          >
          > Again, here it is clear that Archbishop Vitaly is speaking of the Moscow
          > Patriarchate as the "Mother Church" -- our "native" Church, that is now
          > "helpless, subjugated, ill."
          >
          > And these phrases "subjugated Russian Mother Church" (p. 36, p. 39)
          > "suffering Mother Church" (p. 39) "helpless Mother Church" (p. 39)
          > "Mother-Church under the yoke" (p. 43), appear again and again, always in
          a
          > context that makes it clear that he is speaking of the Moscow
          Patriarchate,
          > not the Catacomb Church, because he speaks of its "current leaders" who
          > have submitted themselves to the Godless authorities.
          >
          > Here is another quote from Archbishop Vitaly (p. 44):
          >
          > "For many years we carefully studied and now clearly see the situation
          of
          > our Mother-Russian Orthodox Church. For this reason we will not be dazzled
          > by any lures, by any contemporary apparitions, by any new ecclesiastical
          paths.
          >
          > "God has allowed our Russian Church to suffer a grave test, as did the
          > righteous Job in the past: It is under the *bitter* [emphasis by Arch.
          > Vit.] yoke of Godless Communism, and Her official leaders have become not
          > just the captives, but the ardent servants of the Godless authority."
          >
          > Archbishop Vitaly continues (p. 45):
          >
          > "With the situation of our Russian Church being what it is, *here is the
          > challenge and responsibility given to us by God's Providence:
          >
          > "Not to tear ourselves away from the fundamental massif, body, root of
          > the Mother Church: in the depths of this massif, currently only pressed
          > down by the great weight of bolshevism, are preserved even now the
          > spiritual treasures of Her thousand-year struggle ("podvig").
          >
          > "But we should not recognize Her official leaders, who have become the
          > obedient tools of the Godless authority."
          >
          > In another article, Archbishop Vitaly says:
          >
          > "1. First of all we must with our previous steadfastness confess our
          > unity with the Mother Russian Church, now subjugated,--our faithfulness to
          > Her thousand-year historical path, and we send Her our heartfelt prayerful
          > wishes to be quickly free of God-fighting involuntary servitude. Without
          > compromise we condemn the cooperation of Her current leaders in the USSR
          > with the Godless Communist authority."
          >
          > (Similarly on p. 74.)
          >
          > In all of these passages, one sees the same theme: Archbishop Vitaly
          > consistently calls the Moscow Patriarchate our "Mother Church"--(or simply
          > "the Russian Orthodox Church") while at the same time deploring the
          > compromises of its leadership.
          >
          > The most significant essay in this, Archbishop Vitaly's collection of
          > essays, is titled "Our Responsibility [Debt] before the Mother-Russian
          Church."
          >
          > The entire article expresses the same theme--we are one with our
          > Mother-Church in Russia, but cannot be subject to its leadership as long
          as
          > they are in subjugation to the Godless authorities.
          >
          > Here is a quote (p. 77):
          >
          > "We wish to point out our direct responsibility [debt], our great
          > responsibility [debt] before the Mother-Russian Church and we will speak
          of
          > this with all our love and devotion to Her, with deep reverence before
          the
          > podvig of Patriarch Sergius, ("s glubokim prekloneniem pred podvigom
          > Patriarkha Sergiia"), but with full obedience also to the Truth of Christ
          > and the Church, deeply believing, that 'the Truth is great and can do
          all.'"
          >
          > and another, (p. 80)
          >
          > "Let us strive then, American Rus', that our Mother-Russian Orthodox
          > Church in Russia would receive the same freedom and rights as we have here
          > in America."
          >
          > And, regarding the future of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of
          > Russia, Archbishop Vitaly wrote (p. 49): "The Hierarchical Sobor [of the
          > ROCOR] . . .as a temporary organization, existing until its reunification
          > with the Russian Ecclesiastical authority. . ."
          >
          > The above material should be adequate to 1) diffuse any false statements
          > about whether our senior hierarchs ever called the Moscow Patriarchate
          "the
          > Mother Church" and 2) to show that, in a series of essays spanning 20
          > years--essays the defined the position of the Church Abroad--Archbishop
          > Vitaly *never once* called the Moscow Patriarchate a "Graceless" or
          > "Heretical" organization, but always referred to the body of it (its
          > faithful) with great compassion and love, while uncompromisingly being
          > critical of its leadership.
          >
          > So, if Archbishop Vitaly was not writing what was officially the policy
          > of the Church Abroad, he would have been censured by the Metropolitan
          > Anastassy and the Sobor of Bishops of the ROCOR (as was Archbishop
          Afanassy
          > when he published his book 'Belarus'), and Archbishop Averky and Father
          > Michael Pomazansky would never have permitted the publication of the book,
          > much less letting it go to a second edition.
          >
          > Either you must consider them all incompetent fools (which they
          > emphatically were not)--or the positions of Archbishop Vitaly were within
          > the mainstream of ROCOR thought.
          >
          >
          > I would like to conclude with one more quotation from the "old thinking"
          > of the ROCOR, this time from its highest authority at the time,
          > Metropolitan Anastassy-- from his sermon on the Sunday of All Saints of
          > Russia, given in 1960, and reprinted in Pravoslavnaia Rus' in its May
          15/28
          > Issue for 1999:
          >
          > "God has truly not allowed that ancient Holy Russia, filled with such
          > great piety, would be destroyed as a sacrifice to the deceiver, Satan. God
          > has preserved for all of us a remnant of that which is saved. These are
          the
          > people who are faithful to the commandments of their Church, and to the
          > teaching of the Gospel, -- these people now either are hiding in the
          > so-called Catacomb Church, where the hand of the Bolsheviks cannot reach,
          > or they departed from persecution into the diaspora, reminding us of the
          > apocalyptic woman, who once fled from the beast into the desert.
          >
          > "And it is alive in these people, in these sons, true sons, of
          > Russia--Holy Russia is alive even to this day! But it has not died there,
          > either, in our Russia itself, however it may be defiled by sins,
          > transgressions, crimes and ugly blasphemies. It lives on also in the
          hearts
          > of those Russian people who have remained faithful to Orthodoxy, who
          openly
          > confess it, attending with zeal those Churches which have been still
          > preserved in all of Russia."
          >
          > Pray tell -- whom was Metropolitan Anastassy speaking about in the last
          > sentence? t couldn't be those who were in the Catacomb Church--he talked
          > about that category and the people in the diaspora in the previous
          > paragraph. Clearly, he could only be talking about those attending the
          > churches of the Moscow Patriarchate--for those were the only churches that
          > were still open in 1960.
          >
          > Note that Metropolitan Anastassy did *not* state that the faithful in
          > Russian should not attend the few remaining open churches of the Moscow
          > Patriarchate because it was graceless and uncanonical, although he could
          > have. Instead, he praised the faithful who attended them for their zeal
          and
          > stated that Holy Russia lives on in their hearts.
          >
          > These quotations should be enough to show the "thinking" of our major
          > Church leaders in the past.
          >
          >
          >
          > John wrote
          >
          >
          > >After all, their
          > > > hierarchs are only legitimate if Stalin is legitimate. Met. Sergius
          > > > and all the MP Patriarchs received their apostolic succession from
          > > > Lenin and Stalin. Why would they say anything else?
          > > >
          >
          > This is patently ridiculous. Metropolitan Sergius (and Patriarch Alexei I)
          > received his apostolic succession from the hierarchs of the historical
          > Church of Russia--they were both consecrated before the Revolution. All of
          > the other bishops of the MP have valid apostolic succession from bishops
          > consecrated before the Revolution, or by Patriarch Tikhon.
          >
          >
          >
          > > > Each of the thousands of Orthodox churches in Russia has been
          > > > desecrated. Yes, some have been rebuilt. With blood money from
          > > > murder, drug trafficing and smuggling.
          >
          > More nonsense--thousands of churches in Russia have been rebuilt and
          > restored solely from donations from pious worshippers--who throw their
          last
          > rubles into collection bins for the restoration of the Churches.
          > Undoubtedly, there are some churches which have been given illegally
          > obtained funds--but that happens over here, as well.
          >
          >
          >
          > >The churches have no doubt
          > > > been reconsecrated by KGB agents wearing a saccos, mitre, panagia
          > >and
          > > > great omophorion.
          >
          >
          > The vast majority of bishops of the MP have been consecrated after the
          fall
          > of Communism and the disappearance of the KGB. Are you stating that every
          > one of them is a secret KGB agent?
          >
          > The First Hierarchs of the Church Abroad and the Conciliar Epistles of the
          > Church Abroad throughout the decades spoke about the fact that there were
          > many bishops and priests in the persecuted Church in Soviet Russia, who,
          > despite the persecution, maintained their faith and struggled to do God's
          > work as best they could. Do you now doubt this?
          >
          >
          > >But are these men dressed as bishops Orthodox?
          >
          > They have valid Apostolic Succession from pre-revolutionary bishops--their
          > confession of faith, given at their consecration, is identical, without
          one
          > iota of change, to the confession of faith made by per-revolutionary
          > bishops of the Church of Russia--of course they are Orthodox!!
          >
          >
          >
          > > >
          > > > This is the impact of the murder and sacrifice of St Nicholas, The
          > > > One Who Restraineth. Instead of great spiritual power throughout
          > > > Russia, there is despair. There are churches that have been
          > > > restored; some are beautiful no doubt, but their priests
          > >commemorate
          > > > the spiritual descendents of the murderers of St. Nicholas.
          >
          >
          > Obviously, John is ignorant of the fact that Patriarch Alexei II
          > specifically repented in the name of all of the Russian Orthodox people
          for
          > the crime of regicide, in which he stated that all bear a personal
          > responsibility. He also took upon himself full responsibility and repented
          > for all actions of himself, and his predecessors in the compromises they
          > made with the Soviet atheistic government.
          >
          > Surely you will not take the anti-Christian position that repentance is
          > impossible for bishops or clergy of the Moscow Patriachate?
          >
          > Our Lord, Who accepted the repentance of Peter for having denied Him
          > thrice, and Who accepted the repentance of Paul for persecuting
          Christians,
          > surely can accept the repentance of bishops of the Moscow Patriarchate.
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > With love in Christ,
          >
          > Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
          >
          >
          >
          > Archives located at http://www.egroups.com/group/orthodox-synod
          >
          >
          >
          > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
          >
          >
          >
          >
        • P. Joshua Hatala
          I was also wondering if I might be able to use portions of what you ve written for my webpage... Thanks, P. Joshua
          Message 4 of 27 , Jul 14, 2002
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            I was also wondering if I might be able to use
            portions of what you've written for my webpage...
            Thanks,
            P. Joshua



            __________________________________________________
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          • rdrjohn2000
            Dear Evgenia, I am honored with your request. Of course you may use the essay. However, I am going to post a more polished version in time for the vigil for
            Message 5 of 27 , Jul 14, 2002
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              Dear Evgenia,

              I am honored with your request. Of course you may use the essay.
              However, I am going to post a more polished version in time for the
              vigil for the Royal Martyrs (I'll post it sometime Tuesday).

              In Christ,

              Rdr JOhn
              --- In orthodox-synod@y..., "Evelyn Hunter" <boots@a...> wrote:
              > Good Morning John,
              >
              > May I use your post in one of our parish newsletters? I would like
              > something to include in a write-up I want to do about Tsar
              Nicholas. Our
              > circulation is very small, but, I know some people (especially non-
              Russians)
              > would like a better grasp on this!
              >
              > May I?
              >
              > In Christ,
              > Evgenia
              >
              >
              > > -----Original Message-----
              > > From: Jean-Claude Williams [mailto:cwilliams@i...]
              > > Sent: Saturday, July 13, 2002 5:18 AM
              > > To: orthodox-synod@y...
              > > Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] He Who Restraineth
              > >
              > >
              > > Amen.
              > > ----- Original Message -----
              > > From: rdrjohn2000
              > > To: orthodox-synod@y...
              > > Sent: Saturday, July 13, 2002 1:47 AM
              > > Subject: [orthodox-synod] He Who Restraineth
              > >
              > >
              > > Very few people realize the impact on Orthodoxy of the
              > > murder of the last Orthodox Emperor. Here is a way to visualize
              the
              > > impact. Think of the largest country in the world. Moving from
              West
              > > to East you leave St. Petersburg with its many churches, go to
              Moscow
              > > with its hundreds of churhes, cross the Urals, go thousands of
              > > miles across the vast steppes, through Siberia, Yakutsk to
              Kamchatka
              > > to the Pacific Ocean (and into Alaska for Orthodoxy had spread
              > > there). From Arkangelsk and Murmansk in the far North and all
              of its
              > > latitudes, South to Odessa on the Black Sea thence East past the
              > > Caspian Sea, past the Turkik regions, past the Aral sea, past
              Lake
              > > Baikhail to Vladivostok. Where ever there were people and
              villages
              > > there existed an Orthodox church. Thousands and thousands of
              them.
              > > Each of these churches had a consecrated altar with relics of
              the
              > > saints. In each Church there was a priest, some not educated,
              but
              > > all the more pious, who gave the holy mysteries to all who
              asked.
              > > Each parish priest instructed his flock and gave sermons about
              > > Christian living from the amvon. The totality of this my
              friends is
              > > purity. Great purity and strength beyond what we can comprehend
              > > today. And this strength is so vast; millions of believers and
              great
              > > spiritual power. In this pious Orthodox land there existed
              hundreds
              > > of monasteries. In this nation all the Orthodox Christians who
              > > attended church prayed for the salvation of the world and for
              all
              > > other Orthodox Christians.
              > >
              > > This great Emperor and his father not only attended to the
              spiritual
              > > needs of Russia; they were the defenders of Orthodoxy
              throughout the
              > > world. They protected Holy Mt. Athos and built St. Pantelaimon's
              > > Monastery,the Prophet Elias skete, and other monasteries. The
              Tsar
              > > protected Orthodox Christians in Eastern Europe by gently (and
              not so
              > > gently sometimes) reminding the heterodox that they will not
              allow
              > > Orthodox lands to be swallowed up by the corrupt Hapsburg
              Empire and
              > > other Western powers. They kept the militant and secular Turks
              of the
              > > Ottoman empire in check by letting it be clear that Holy Russia
              > > viewed the saving of Constantinople as a fundamental element of
              > > Russian foreign policy.
              > >
              > > They built Orthodox churches, monasteries and convents in the
              Holy
              > > Land and were the ONLY world power to defend Orthodoxy in
              Palastine.
              > >
              > > They built Orthodox churches here in America and defended the
              faith
              > > even as far from Moscow as New York, throughout all of
              Pennsylvania
              > > to Clevland and into Detroit. This was all before the Russian
              > > revolution.
              > >
              > > Now give this Christian emperor a faith so strong that he will
              look
              > > Satan and death in the face and not shirk or cower. That he
              will not
              > > bow down to Satan and make his pact with him, but would accept
              the
              > > pain and torture of a martyr's crown; not only for himself but
              for
              > > his family whom he loved and cherished. This was a Tsar who had
              all
              > > the riches in the world, who could have had all the Things of
              This
              > > World if only he had made his pact with the evil one. Yet he,
              St.
              > > Nicholas, was strong in his faith and the love of his country
              and the
              > > Holy Orthodox Faith. He gently accepted this great passion for
              > > himself and his family.
              > >
              > > St. Nicholas died for his people; for their sins and for the
              faith.
              > > That the pseudo church, the MP, questions whether or not this
              man,
              > > one of the greatest saints of all time, is indeed a passion
              bearer,
              > > is a testimony to their spiritual bankruptcy. After all, their
              > > hierarchs are only legitimate if Stalin is legitimate. Met.
              Sergius
              > > and all the MP Patriarchs received their apostolic succession
              from
              > > Lenin and Stalin. Why would they say anything else?
              > >
              > > Each of the thousands of Orthodox churches in Russia has been
              > > desecrated. Yes, some have been rebuilt. With blood money from
              > > murder, drug trafficing and smuggling. The churches have no
              doubt
              > > been reconsecrated by KGB agents wearing a saccos, mitre,
              panagia and
              > > great omophorion. But are these men dressed as bishops Orthodox?
              > >
              > > This is the impact of the murder and sacrifice of St Nicholas,
              The
              > > One Who Restraineth. Instead of great spiritual power throughout
              > > Russia, there is despair. There are churches that have been
              > > restored; some are beautiful no doubt, but their priests
              commemorate
              > > the spiritual descendents of the murderers of St. Nicholas.
              > >
              > > Mt. Athos has no earthly protector. There is spiritual chaos
              now on
              > > the Holy Mountain because the Orthodox champion no longer
              exists.
              > >
              > > The Holy Land has no Orthodox defender. The Orthodox holy
              sites are
              > > swallowed up by evil people.
              > >
              > > Orthodoxy in America is like unto the Tower of Babel with more
              > > jurisdictions than the Protestants.
              > >
              > > The One Who Restraineth is no more my friends. He suffered his
              > > earthly passion and now wears a martyr's crown in heaven. And
              that
              > > is why each one of us must fight the good fight, even unto
              > > the end, because there no one else today who restraineth Satan.
              > >
              > > Brothers and sisters in Christ, Let each one of us recommit
              ourselves
              > > to this spiritual fight for today there is no one who will
              fight for
              > > us.
              > >
              > > Holy Father, St. Nicholas, pray unto God for Us!
              > >
              > > In Christ,
              > >
              > > Rdr John
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > Yahoo! Groups Sponsor
              > > ADVERTISEMENT
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > Archives located at http://www.egroups.com/group/orthodox-synod
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of
              Service.
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > Archives located at http://www.egroups.com/group/orthodox-synod
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
              http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
              > >
              > >
              > >
            • Joseph Digrande
              There is another point to Father Alexander s post: All of the quotes he used from the ROCOR bishops (if ture) could be just a huge mistake like the mistake of
              Message 6 of 27 , Jul 14, 2002
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                There is another point to Father Alexander's post:
                All of the quotes he used from the ROCOR bishops (if
                ture) could be just a huge mistake like the mistake of
                recognizing the sacraments and clergy of someone like
                Meletius in the 20's or Bartholemew now. In effect for
                the ROCOR that Father Alexander portrays- being a
                Mason like Meletius is of no importance with regard to
                the question of grace and so Alexi being in the KGB is
                of no great importance either.
                Another point he omits: the Catacomb Church as of 1933
                was in open theological warfare with the MP- some of
                their major hierarchs said they had no grace(St.
                Joseph of Petrograd)and forbid them from entering
                their Churches. They compared them to the
                Renovationists of which many were former members. So
                any ROCOR statements by any hierarchs (saints or not-
                after all Blessed Augustine is a saint to and he made
                big mistakes) in 1933 or after that contradicts the
                catacomb Churches ruling is devoid of power. After all
                this is a group of exiled bishops. Lets not make too
                much of them- they O.K.ed New Calendar parishes in
                ROCOR despite 11 separate anathemas by the Ecumenical
                Church. So their absolute authority in the 20th
                century is something to take with a grain of salt.
                Alexi has blood on his hands- repentance verbally is
                only the first step- being busted to a simple monk
                like St. Tikhon did to Sergius of sorry memory is the
                next step- a step that will not be taken.
                Also Sergius in 27 was devoid of the grace to even
                serve. St. Tikhon declared that in public when he
                repented of being a Renovationist. He disobeyed him
                and continued to serve. Anything that ROCOR hierarchs
                said in the intevening years justifiying Sergius and
                his ilk is just plain wrong/ not foolish/ just wrong


                joseph digrande
                --- "Fr. George Primak" <primaks@...> wrote:
                > Dear Fr. Alexander,
                > I am wondering why are you trying so eagerly to
                > convince us that the MP is a
                > true Russian Orthodox Church? You know perfectly
                > well that the recognition
                > of the Holy Zar Nikolas and His family as martirs
                > was done only by people's
                > pressure. If there was not such pressure they
                > wouldn't do it. Maybe I am an
                > old fashined but I still stick to the Apostolic and
                > Ecumenical Council's
                > rules which fill me witl a lot of doubts with
                > regards to your arguments in
                > favour of MP.
                > With love in Christ,
                > Fr. George
                > ----- Original Message -----
                > From: "Fr. Alexander Lebedeff"
                > <lebedeff@...>
                > To: <orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com>
                > Sent: Sunday, July 14, 2002 8:38 AM
                > Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: He Who Restraineth
                >
                >
                > > Reader John should be commended for his wonderful
                > presentation of the
                > > meaning of the last Emperor of Russia, St.
                > Nicholas ast "He who
                > retaineth."
                > >
                > > However, the conclusions he reaches are totally
                > fallacious.
                > >
                > > He writes:
                > >
                > >
                > > > > That the pseudo church, the MP, questions
                > whether or not this man,
                > > > > one of the greatest saints of all time, is
                > indeed a passion bearer,
                > > > > is a testimony to their spiritual bankruptcy.
                > >
                > > First of all, the Moscow Patriarchate did glorify
                > St. Nicholas as a
                > > Passion-Bearer, so John's premise is false--if
                > they glorified him as among
                > > the Saints, how can they question his
                > glorification?
                > >
                > > Secondly, never has the Russian Orthodox Church
                > Outside of Russia, in any
                > > official pronouncement, called the MP a "pseudo
                > church," or one that is
                > > devoid of grace.
                > >
                > > Quite the contrary. In its official Epistle of
                > 1933, specifically
                > dedicated
                > > to express with outmost clarity the view of the
                > Church Abroad to the
                > > actions of Metropolitan Sergius, six years after
                > his "Declaration," the
                > > Moscow Patriarchate is **never** called a false
                > Church--and Metropolitan
                > > Sergius is explicitly called "the de facto Head of
                > the Russian Church,"
                > and
                > > is praised for his attempts to give the Church
                > legal status under the
                > > Communist regime.
                > >
                > > Patriarch Alexei I is called by Metropolitan
                > Anastassy "the Head of the
                > > Russian Church," and the "Navigator of the Russian
                > Church" in the
                > Conciliar
                > > Epistles of the Church Abroad in 1946 and 1948.
                > >
                > > >Archbishop Vitaly (Maximenko), writing in 1953
                > (when the situation of the
                > > >Moscow Patriarchate was very clear to all):
                > > >
                > > >"First of all, with our former steadfastness we
                > confess our unity with
                > the
                > > >Mother Church of Russia, now enslaved; our
                > faithfulness to Her historical
                > > >thousand-year path, and we send to Her our
                > cordial prayerful wishes that
                > > >She may be freed quickly from the domination of
                > the God-fighters. Without
                > > >any compromise, we condemn the collaboration of
                > Her current leaders in
                > the
                > > >USSR with the atheistic communist authorities.
                > But in a like manner, we
                > > >also condemn all self-created autonomies,
                > separatism, divisions, and
                > > >independent-mindedness. The essence of our Church
                > is not in divisiveness
                > > >and seeking power, but in keeping Divine truth in
                > Unity." ("Motifs of My
                > > >Life," p. 71).
                > > >
                > > >[Actually, in this book, "Motifs of My Life,"
                > published in Jordanville,
                > > >Archbishop Vitaly (who was a confessor, himself)
                > uses the term "Mother
                > > >Church" dozens of times to refer to the Church in
                > Russia. Yes, enslaved,
                > > >yes, downtrodden--but still the Mother Church.
                > >
                > > Here is what St. John of Shanghai and San
                > Francisco wrote:
                > >
                > >
                > > "Does the Russian Church inside Russia need, would
                > she benefit from, the
                > > annihilation of the Church Outside of Russia and
                > her annexation to the
                > > Patriarchate? The Russian Orthodox Church Outside
                > of Russia is not
                > > spiritually separated from her suffering Mother.
                > She offers up prayers for
                > > her, preserves her spiritual and material wealth,
                > and in due time she will
                > > unite with her, when the reasons for their
                > disunity shall have vanished.
                > > And there is no doubt that within Russia also many
                > hierarchs, clergy, and
                > > laymen are with us and would themselves be happy
                > to act as we do if they
                > > were able."
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > > >And, a little more clarity on the opinion of
                > Metropolitan Anthony on
                > > >Metropolitan Sergius (in personal letters,
                > written after the
                > "Declaration"):
                > > >
                > > >"Metropolitan Sergius has scandalized humself: in
                > church the people
                > yelled
                > > >at him: "Traitor, Judas!" and chased him out,
                > tearing off his
                > > >vestments--Evlogy has stopped commemorating him
                > and doesn't know whom he
                > > >can stick to now. Nevertheless, I feel sorry for
                > Metropolitan Sergius: he
                > > >has no willpower, but his mind is clear and his
                > heart is good." (Letters
                > > >of Metropolitan Anthony, p. 221).
                > > >
                > > >"I feel sorry for poor Most Reverend Metropolitan
                > Sergius, who was
                > reviled
                > > >and whistled at in a Moscow church--that is, in
                > the temple; he is, of
                > > >course, not as he was characterized by the
                > revilers, although the last
                > > >three years he has acted unwisely--he outsmarted
                > himself." (Ibid.)
                > >
                > >
                > > Let us look at the book, entitled "Motives of My
                > Life," by Archbishop
                > > Vitaly (Maximenko), published at Jordanville in
                > 1955.
                > >
                > > Now, no one could possibly claim that Archbishop
                > Vitaly, the Missionary of
                > > Pochaev and the Carpathian Moutains, Confessor for
                > the Faith (he was
                > > sentenced to death and was minutes away from
                > execution in 1918), and the
                > > man chosen by Metropolitan Anthony to be
                > consecrated bishop (in 1934) and
                > > sent to North America to heal the rift among the
                > various jurisdictions in
                > > America, was "outside of the mainstream" of the
                > Russian Orthodox Church
                > > Outside of Russia. He was and is greatly revered
                > as the "Avva," and was
                > > instrumental in making the Jordanville Monastery
                > and Seminary what they
                > are
                > > today.
                > >
                > > The book contains an "imprimatur," on the back of
                > the title page:
                > "Printing
                > > permitted. Spiritual Censor Archpriest Michael
                > Pomazansky."
                > >
                > > The book was published at the Monastery in its
                > Second, Revised Edition
                > (the
                > > one I have before me) in 1955, when the Monastery
                > was
                === message truncated ===


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              • VJB
                Correct me if I am wrong. I was under impression that Sergius repented of Renovationism and submitted his staff to Patriarch Tikhon and the Patriarch
                Message 7 of 27 , Jul 15, 2002
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                  Correct me if I am wrong. I was under impression that Sergius repented of Renovationism and submitted his staff to Patriarch Tikhon and the Patriarch personally returned him the staff acknowledging his episcopacy. Let's be accurate.

                  v
                  St. Tikhon declared that in public when he
                  repented of being a Renovationist. He disobeyed him
                  and continued to serve. Anything that ROCOR hierarchs
                  said in the intevening years justifiying Sergius and
                  his ilk is just plain wrong/ not foolish/ just wrong


                  joseph digrande



                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Fr. Alexander Lebedeff
                  ... They are all documented as to source--anyone can easily verify these quotes. ... The ROCOR absolutely considered Meletios (Metaxakis) to have grace, which
                  Message 8 of 27 , Jul 15, 2002
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                    Joseph Digrande wrote:

                    >There is another point to Father Alexander's post:
                    >All of the quotes he used from the ROCOR bishops (if
                    >ture)

                    They are all documented as to source--anyone can easily verify these quotes.



                    >could be just a huge mistake like the mistake of
                    >recognizing the sacraments and clergy of someone like
                    >Meletius in the 20's or Bartholemew now. In effect for
                    >the ROCOR that Father Alexander portrays- being a
                    >Mason like Meletius is of no importance with regard to
                    >the question of grace and so Alexi being in the KGB is
                    >of no great importance either.

                    The ROCOR absolutely considered Meletios (Metaxakis) to have grace, which
                    is confirmed by the fact that Archbishop Anastassy (later Metropolitan),
                    who was living in Constantinople from 1920-1924, commemorated Patriarch
                    Meletios during his entire tenure there.

                    Also, the Church Abroad sent two official representatives--Archbishop
                    Anastassy and Archbishop Alexander to the "Pan-Orthodox Congress" called by
                    Meletios in Constantinople in 1924--the one at which the calendar reform
                    was proposed, among other significant reforms. The representatives of the
                    Church Abroad participated as representatives of the entire Church of
                    Russia at that Congress, since the Church in Russia was not free.



                    >Another point he omits: the Catacomb Church as of 1933
                    >was in open theological warfare with the MP- some of
                    >their major hierarchs said they had no grace(St.
                    >Joseph of Petrograd)and forbid them from entering
                    >their Churches. They compared them to the
                    >Renovationists of which many were former members. So
                    >any ROCOR statements by any hierarchs (saints or not-
                    >after all Blessed Augustine is a saint to and he made
                    >big mistakes) in 1933 or after that contradicts the
                    >catacomb Churches ruling is devoid of power. After all
                    >this is a group of exiled bishops.


                    This makes no sense. First of all, there was **no** entity called "The
                    Catacomb Church"--there were only individual bishops, clergy, and faithful
                    who protested the Declaration of Metr. Sergius and broke communion with
                    him. There were dozens, if not hundreds of groups of catacombniks--most of
                    which had no knowledge of each other or communion with each other, and some
                    had very dubious validity of orders. So--no one was authorized to speak for
                    all of the catacombniks--and they had widely varying views on the presence
                    of grace in Metropolitan Sergius' ecclesiastical organization.

                    The Church Abroad, on the other hand, was the sole free part of the Russian
                    Church--they only part able to speak freely to the world about the
                    persecution of the Church in Soviet Russia.


                    >Lets not make too
                    >much of them- they O.K.ed New Calendar parishes in
                    >ROCOR despite 11 separate anathemas by the Ecumenical
                    >Church. So their absolute authority in the 20th
                    >century is something to take with a grain of salt.

                    The Church Abroad concelebrated with New Calendarists and those Old
                    Calendarists who concelebrated with New Calendarists throughout the entire
                    time of the existense of the New Calendar and up to this day.

                    Metropolitan Anthony (Khrapovitsky) went himself to Bucharest to take part
                    in the enthronization of the New Calendar Patriarch Myron of Romania and
                    celebrated with New Calendarists all the way to the end of his life, as did
                    Metropolitan Anastassy.

                    New Calendarist Metropolitan Anthony (Bashir) of the Antiochian Archdiocese
                    here was consecrated jointly by ROCOR Bishop Vitaly (Maximenko) and New
                    Calendar Bishop Athenagoras (later Patriarch) of the Greek Archdiocese.

                    In 1961, the ROCOR published an Encyclical in which it explicitly stated
                    that New Calendarists had grace.

                    And, for those in the HOCNA who might be interested--the ROCOR had New
                    Calendar parishes and concelebrated openly with New Calendarists at the
                    time that Fr. Panteleimon and his followers joined the ROCOR and throughout
                    the entire time that they were in ROCOR.



                    >Alexi has blood on his hands- repentance verbally is
                    >only the first step- being busted to a simple monk
                    >like St. Tikhon did to Sergius of sorry memory is the
                    >next step- a step that will not be taken.


                    This is again simply historically inaccurate. In fact, exactly the opposite
                    took place.

                    When Patriarch Tikhon was released from imprisonment (after being required
                    to express his support of the New Calendar as a condition of his release),
                    many former Renovationist bishops repented, including Metropolitan Sergius,
                    and asked to be received back.

                    A special order of penitential reception was developed.

                    The repenting bishop would, while wearing just the simple undercassock
                    (podriasnik) be led into the Church just before Divine Liturgy, where
                    Patriarch Tikhon and any other concelebrating bishops and clergy were
                    already vested and waiting on the ambo.

                    The repenting bishop would, in front of the Patriarch, the clergy, and all
                    of the people, would make three full prostration, asking forgiveness of the
                    Patriarch, the clergy, and the people.

                    After this, the Patriarch would himself lead the repenting bishop into the
                    altar, where the repenting bishop would vest in full episcopal vestments
                    and would concelebrate with the Patriarch at the Divine Liturgy.

                    This is exactly what happened with Metropolitan Sergius--after which the
                    Patriarch assigned him as Ruling Bishop of Nizhny-Novgorod--an important see.

                    Metropolitan Sergius was never deposed, defrocked, or retirned to the
                    status of a simple monk. He was, instead, a Ruling Bishop under Patriarch
                    Tikhon until the latter's repose, and then he was appointed as the third
                    successor Deputy Locum Tenens by Metropolitan Peter, who himself had been
                    appointed the third successor Locum Tenens of the Patriarchal Throne by
                    Patriarch Tikhon.


                    >Also Sergius in 27 was devoid of the grace to even
                    >serve. St. Tikhon declared that in public when he
                    >repented of being a Renovationist. He disobeyed him
                    >and continued to serve. Anything that ROCOR hierarchs
                    >said in the intevening years justifiying Sergius and
                    >his ilk is just plain wrong/ not foolish/ just wrong
                    >

                    Absolutely incorrect. See above.

                    Metropolitan Sergius, after his repentance, was a Ruling Bishop in good
                    standing under Patriarch Tikhon, and noone doubted the legitimacy of his
                    succession as Deputy Locum Tenens of the Patriarchal Throne.




                    With love in Christ,

                    Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
                  • Rd. Constantine Wright
                    ... But the rejection of the false council of Florence was also accomplished in many places by people s pressure. Metropolitan Isidore, on behalf of the
                    Message 9 of 27 , Jul 15, 2002
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                      "Fr. George Primak" <primaks@...> wrote:

                      > true Russian Orthodox Church? You know perfectly well
                      > that the recognition
                      > of the Holy Zar Nikolas and His family as martirs was
                      > done only by people's
                      > pressure. If there was not such pressure they wouldn't
                      > do it. Maybe I am an

                      But the rejection of the false council of Florence was also
                      accomplished in many places by people's pressure.
                      Metropolitan Isidore, on behalf of the Russian Church,
                      signed on to Florence and acknowledged it... but that
                      didn't make the Russian Church of the time graceless and
                      irredeemably fallen.

                      In Christ,
                      Rd. Constantine

                      =====
                      +----------------------------------------------------------+-------+
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                      |PO Box 1457, Felton CA 95018 Patriarchate of Jerusalem| IC|XC |
                      |----------------------------------------------------------| ----- |
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                    • jsbaglien
                      ... Father, I was not aware of this statement - can you provide more information on the occasion of these remarks, and if possible, a translation of the text?
                      Message 10 of 27 , Jul 15, 2002
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                        --- In orthodox-synod@y..., "Fr. Alexander Lebedeff" <lebedeff@w...>
                        wrote:

                        > (Patriarch Alexei II) also took upon himself full responsibility
                        > and repented for all actions of himself, and his predecessors in
                        > the compromises they made with the Soviet atheistic government.

                        Father, I was not aware of this statement - can you provide more
                        information on the occasion of these remarks, and if possible, a
                        translation of the text?

                        James Baglien
                        Corvallis, OR
                      • Fr. Alexander Lebedeff
                        ... Sure, James. Here are some quotes from an interview of the head of the MP, Alexis II, given to Izvestia No 137, June 10, 1991, entitled Patriarch Alexis
                        Message 11 of 27 , Jul 15, 2002
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                          Regarding:



                          >Father, I was not aware of this statement - can you provide more
                          >information on the occasion of these remarks, and if possible, a
                          >translation of the text?
                          >
                          >James Baglien
                          >Corvallis, OR

                          Sure, James.

                          Here are some quotes from an interview of the head of the MP, Alexis II,
                          given to "Izvestia" No 137, June 10, 1991, entitled "Patriarch Alexis II:
                          -- I Take upon Myself Responsibility for All that Happened":

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


                          Pat A.: "Being a person of the Church, I must take on myself responsibility
                          for all that occurred in the life of my Church: not only for the good, but
                          also for the difficult, the sorrowful, the erroneous."

                          Regarding the 1927 Declaration of Metropolitan Sergius:

                          Pat. A.: "Today we can say that falsehood is interspersed in his
                          Declaration, which stated as its goal 'placing the Church into proper
                          relations with the Soviet government.' But these relations--and in the
                          Declaration they are clearly defined as the submission of the Church to the
                          interests of governmental politics--are exactly those which are incorrect
                          from the point of view of the Church."

                          And, regarding the statements and activities of the Moscow Patriarchate
                          during the time of the oppression of the Church:

                          Pat. A.: "Of people, then, to whom these compromises, silence, forced
                          passivity or expressions of loyalty that were permitted by the Church
                          leadership in those days, have caused pain -- of these people, not only
                          before God, but also before them, I ask forgiveness, understanding, and
                          prayers."




                          With love in Christ,

                          Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
                        • Fr. John R. Shaw
                          ... A vivid enough proof of this is the fact that Panteleimon was received into ROCOR *by canonical transfer* from the Ecumennical Patriarchate. In Christ Fr.
                          Message 12 of 27 , Jul 16, 2002
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                            On Mon, 15 Jul 2002, Fr. Alexander Lebedeff wrote:

                            > And, for those in the HOCNA who might be interested--the ROCOR had New
                            > Calendar parishes and concelebrated openly with New Calendarists at the
                            > time that Fr. Panteleimon and his followers joined the ROCOR and throughout
                            > the entire time that they were in ROCOR.
                            >
                            A vivid enough proof of this is the fact that Panteleimon was
                            received into ROCOR *by canonical transfer* from the Ecumennical
                            Patriarchate.

                            In Christ
                            Fr. John R. Shaw
                          • Hristofor
                            I first would like to thank Fr Alexander for his concise and clear postings, which are done for the enlightenment of all, without any emotion or passion,
                            Message 13 of 27 , Jul 17, 2002
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                              I first would like to thank Fr Alexander for his concise and clear
                              postings, which are done for the enlightenment of all, without any emotion
                              or passion, despite numerous provocations to the contrary.

                              A general observation may be made that many believers, whether converts or
                              "cradle Orthodox" (myself included) know very little about the Church (the
                              group of unschooled unfortunately includes some of the clergy; most of the
                              schism ringleaders have never studied at Seminary). Especially little seems
                              to be known about the canons and how the Church hierarchy functions. Often
                              writings or statements of deceased hierarchs are taken out of context to
                              support one point of view, completing ignoring other writings (which might
                              very well indict those who are trying to "save" Orthodoxy). With the advent
                              of the Internet, as we well know from secular life, anyone can post just
                              about anything and it is taken as Gospel Truth, just because it appeared
                              on the Net'. I am glad that a respected clergyman such as Fr Alexander (and
                              others) participate and correct these mistakes, which may of course be
                              simply errors and not purposely posted as "disinformation."

                              I am also amazed to see what may be called a spirit of sectism (dukh
                              sektantsva) creeping into certain postings. It seems that many whom we
                              thought were with us yesterday have somehow been infected by this virus and
                              are no longer with us.

                              My main comment is taking issue with 2 statements posted by Joseph.

                              >There is another point to Father Alexander's post:
                              >All of the quotes he used from the ROCOR bishops (if
                              >ture) could be just a huge mistake like the mistake of
                              >recognizing the sacraments and clergy of someone like
                              >Meletius in the 20's or Bartholemew now.

                              I don't think that it is appropriate to cast doubt in people's minds about
                              the legitimacy of Fr A's postings by saying "All of the quotes ... (if
                              true)". Instead, be thankful to him for replying so quickly with so many
                              citations that we all can benefit from. Do you honestly believe that he sat
                              and down and composed a bunch of phony citations and quotes? And what
                              exactly is meant by "could be just a huge mistake"? The quotes were made by
                              many respected hierarchs through the life of the ROCA. Yes, individuals may
                              have made mistakes; clergymen are not without sin. However, I believe that
                              when the bishops sit down and call upon the Holy Spirit to guide them in
                              their decision making, most times in front of the Miraculous Kursk ikon,
                              that they are truly seeking to make the best decisions and are not
                              purposely attempting to lead people astray, don't you? If you do not
                              believe this and if you believe that everything over the past 80 years was
                              just a huge mistake, what on earth are you doing in the ROCA, if you are
                              indeed a member? I am afraid that you know not what you write; this seems
                              to me a very serious accusation.

                              >So
                              >any ROCOR statements by any hierarchs (saints or not-
                              >after all Blessed Augustine is a saint to and he made
                              >big mistakes) in 1933 or after that contradicts the
                              >catacomb Churches ruling is devoid of power. After all
                              >this is a group of exiled bishops. Lets not make too
                              >much of them- they O.K.ed New Calendar parishes in
                              >ROCOR despite 11 separate anathemas by the Ecumenical
                              >Church. So their absolute authority in the 20th
                              >century is something to take with a grain of salt.

                              Really? Odd, how this "group of exiled bishops" provided at least 2 saints
                              (to our knowledge) to the choir of saints. Odd, how this "big mistake"
                              Church has been blessed with the Kursk Icon, the renewed icon of the Mother
                              of God "Joy of All Who Sorrow", the Iverskaya Icon, the St Nicholas Icon,
                              to name just a few blessings. Odd, how these exiles were always looked up
                              to through the Iron Curtain. Odd, how a monk at St Sergius Lavra asked me
                              to send a message to "Religous Books for Russia" to stop sending books by
                              Frs Meyendorf and Schmeman and to instead send books by Vl Averky and Fr M
                              Pomazansky to the then USSR. Odd, how modern saints from other Orthodox
                              jurisdictions (such as St Justin Popovic and St Nikolaj Velimirovic to name
                              a few) had great respect for the ROCA. (Oh sorry, since they come from the
                              Serbian Church, you may take their opinions with a grain of salt as well.)
                              Could you clarify--with citations--what you mean by "despite 11 separate
                              anathemas by the Ecumenical Church." It is my recollection that the
                              Ecumenical Patriarchate changed the calendar. How could they then go and
                              issue 11 anathemas against something they had done? The monasteries of Mt
                              Athos are under the omophor of the EP. Although they are Old Calendar, they
                              still commemorate the EP. Are they also not Orthodox?

                              >Alexi has blood on his hands- repentance verbally is
                              >only the first step- being busted to a simple monk
                              >like St. Tikhon did to Sergius of sorry memory is the
                              >next step- a step that will not be taken.

                              Don't think it is appropriate language to say that Patriarch Alexei should
                              "be busted". Despite your opinion, he still is a cergyman and deserves to
                              be treated with respect.

                              Sincerely,

                              Hristofor

                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            • Joseph Digrande
                              Acccording to the eyewitness of the ceremony, Arch. Pitirim, Sergius entered the Church 3 times on his knees begging for forgiveness. All three times the crowd
                              Message 14 of 27 , Jul 17, 2002
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                                Acccording to the eyewitness of the ceremony, Arch.
                                Pitirim, Sergius entered the Church 3 times on his
                                knees begging for forgiveness. All three times the
                                crowd in the Church begged Pat. Tikhon to :"Holy
                                Vladyko, do not believe him>"
                                On the third time Pat. Tikhon said,
                                "The former Met. Sergius as having fallen away into
                                the anti=God heresy of living-Church renovationism,
                                and as having drawn many Orthodox priests, monks and
                                laity into destruction, is to remain for the rest of
                                his life weeping for what he has done and from now on
                                cannot touch church serving, but will remain in the
                                rank of a simple monk."
                                And he instructed him to remain in a certain monastery
                                without departing from it, in complete obedience to
                                the father abbot. And before Christ and His Angels and
                                the Holy Church the former Met. Sergius gave a
                                promises to fulfull everything he had promised
                                exactly. But alas, he immediately deceived the
                                Patriarch, broke his promise to him, boldly trampled
                                on the canons of the Catholic and Apostolic Church. He
                                deceived everyone he could deceive, he declared that
                                he had received complete forgiveness from "His
                                Holiness" and began to serve. IN view fo the canons of
                                the Holy Apostles, Holy Councils and Holy Fathers,
                                after this he is not only considered banned but also
                                completely deposed, even excommunicated...
                                And this deception was successful for in those days
                                that were so difficult for the Church, the voice of
                                His Holiness the Pat could scarcely be heard beyond
                                the Donskoy Monastery where he lived in
                                imprisonment,,,"
                                Joseph digrande
                                --- VJB <venceslav@...> wrote:
                                > Correct me if I am wrong. I was under impression
                                > that Sergius repented of Renovationism and submitted
                                > his staff to Patriarch Tikhon and the Patriarch
                                > personally returned him the staff acknowledging his
                                > episcopacy. Let's be accurate.
                                >
                                > v
                                > St. Tikhon declared that in public when he
                                > repented of being a Renovationist. He disobeyed
                                > him
                                > and continued to serve. Anything that ROCOR
                                > hierarchs
                                > said in the intevening years justifiying Sergius
                                > and
                                > his ilk is just plain wrong/ not foolish/ just
                                > wrong
                                >
                                >
                                > joseph digrande
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > [Non-text portions of this message have been
                                > removed]
                                >
                                >
                                >


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                              • VJB
                                Is that why Patriarch appointed him to the Diocese of Nizhniy Novgorod? v ... From: Joseph Digrande To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com Sent: Wednesday, July
                                Message 15 of 27 , Jul 18, 2002
                                • 0 Attachment
                                  Is that why Patriarch appointed him to the Diocese of Nizhniy Novgorod?

                                  v
                                  ----- Original Message -----
                                  From: Joseph Digrande
                                  To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
                                  Sent: Wednesday, July 17, 2002 8:59 PM
                                  Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: He Who Restraineth


                                  Acccording to the eyewitness of the ceremony, Arch.
                                  Pitirim, Sergius entered the Church 3 times on his
                                  knees begging for forgiveness. All three times the
                                  crowd in the Church begged Pat. Tikhon to :"Holy
                                  Vladyko, do not believe him>"
                                  On the third time Pat. Tikhon said,
                                  "The former Met. Sergius as having fallen away into
                                  the anti=God heresy of living-Church renovationism,
                                  and as having drawn many Orthodox priests, monks and
                                  laity into destruction, is to remain for the rest of
                                  his life weeping for what he has done and from now on
                                  cannot touch church serving, but will remain in the
                                  rank of a simple monk."
                                  And he instructed him to remain in a certain monastery
                                  without departing from it, in complete obedience to
                                  the father abbot. And before Christ and His Angels and
                                  the Holy Church the former Met. Sergius gave a
                                  promises to fulfull everything he had promised
                                  exactly. But alas, he immediately deceived the
                                  Patriarch, broke his promise to him, boldly trampled
                                  on the canons of the Catholic and Apostolic Church. He
                                  deceived everyone he could deceive, he declared that
                                  he had received complete forgiveness from "His
                                  Holiness" and began to serve. IN view fo the canons of
                                  the Holy Apostles, Holy Councils and Holy Fathers,
                                  after this he is not only considered banned but also
                                  completely deposed, even excommunicated...
                                  And this deception was successful for in those days
                                  that were so difficult for the Church, the voice of
                                  His Holiness the Pat could scarcely be heard beyond
                                  the Donskoy Monastery where he lived in
                                  imprisonment,,,"
                                  Joseph digrande
                                  --- VJB <venceslav@...> wrote:
                                  > Correct me if I am wrong. I was under impression
                                  > that Sergius repented of Renovationism and submitted
                                  > his staff to Patriarch Tikhon and the Patriarch
                                  > personally returned him the staff acknowledging his
                                  > episcopacy. Let's be accurate.
                                  >
                                  > v
                                  > St. Tikhon declared that in public when he
                                  > repented of being a Renovationist. He disobeyed
                                  > him
                                  > and continued to serve. Anything that ROCOR
                                  > hierarchs
                                  > said in the intevening years justifiying Sergius
                                  > and
                                  > his ilk is just plain wrong/ not foolish/ just
                                  > wrong
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > joseph digrande
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > [Non-text portions of this message have been
                                  > removed]
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >


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                                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                • Joseph Digrande
                                  Good question/I will have to dig a little to find the exact date he became the vicar at Nizhniy Novgorod and how he became one. Also what evidence that the
                                  Message 16 of 27 , Jul 18, 2002
                                  • 0 Attachment
                                    Good question/I will have to dig a little to find the
                                    exact date he became the vicar at Nizhniy Novgorod and
                                    how he became one. Also what evidence that the
                                    Communists wer involved in his placement there. The
                                    Patriarch was pretty much a prisoner of the Donskoy
                                    Monastery at that time. I will get back to you with
                                    what I can find/ joseph digrande
                                    --- VJB <venceslav@...> wrote:
                                    > Is that why Patriarch appointed him to the Diocese
                                    > of Nizhniy Novgorod?
                                    >
                                    > v
                                    > ----- Original Message -----
                                    > From: Joseph Digrande
                                    > To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
                                    > Sent: Wednesday, July 17, 2002 8:59 PM
                                    > Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: He Who
                                    > Restraineth
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > Acccording to the eyewitness of the ceremony,
                                    > Arch.
                                    > Pitirim, Sergius entered the Church 3 times on his
                                    > knees begging for forgiveness. All three times the
                                    > crowd in the Church begged Pat. Tikhon to :"Holy
                                    > Vladyko, do not believe him>"
                                    > On the third time Pat. Tikhon said,
                                    > "The former Met. Sergius as having fallen away
                                    > into
                                    > the anti=God heresy of living-Church
                                    > renovationism,
                                    > and as having drawn many Orthodox priests, monks
                                    > and
                                    > laity into destruction, is to remain for the rest
                                    > of
                                    > his life weeping for what he has done and from now
                                    > on
                                    > cannot touch church serving, but will remain in
                                    > the
                                    > rank of a simple monk."
                                    > And he instructed him to remain in a certain
                                    > monastery
                                    > without departing from it, in complete obedience
                                    > to
                                    > the father abbot. And before Christ and His Angels
                                    > and
                                    > the Holy Church the former Met. Sergius gave a
                                    > promises to fulfull everything he had promised
                                    > exactly. But alas, he immediately deceived the
                                    > Patriarch, broke his promise to him, boldly
                                    > trampled
                                    > on the canons of the Catholic and Apostolic
                                    > Church. He
                                    > deceived everyone he could deceive, he declared
                                    > that
                                    > he had received complete forgiveness from "His
                                    > Holiness" and began to serve. IN view fo the
                                    > canons of
                                    > the Holy Apostles, Holy Councils and Holy Fathers,
                                    > after this he is not only considered banned but
                                    > also
                                    > completely deposed, even excommunicated...
                                    > And this deception was successful for in those
                                    > days
                                    > that were so difficult for the Church, the voice
                                    > of
                                    > His Holiness the Pat could scarcely be heard
                                    > beyond
                                    > the Donskoy Monastery where he lived in
                                    > imprisonment,,,"
                                    > Joseph digrande
                                    > --- VJB <venceslav@...> wrote:
                                    > > Correct me if I am wrong. I was under impression
                                    > > that Sergius repented of Renovationism and
                                    > submitted
                                    > > his staff to Patriarch Tikhon and the Patriarch
                                    > > personally returned him the staff acknowledging
                                    > his
                                    > > episcopacy. Let's be accurate.
                                    > >
                                    > > v
                                    > > St. Tikhon declared that in public when he
                                    > > repented of being a Renovationist. He
                                    > disobeyed
                                    > > him
                                    > > and continued to serve. Anything that ROCOR
                                    > > hierarchs
                                    > > said in the intevening years justifiying
                                    > Sergius
                                    > > and
                                    > > his ilk is just plain wrong/ not foolish/ just
                                    > > wrong
                                    > >
                                    > >
                                    > > joseph digrande
                                    > >
                                    > >
                                    > >
                                    > > [Non-text portions of this message have been
                                    > > removed]
                                    > >
                                    > >
                                    > >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > __________________________________________________
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                                  • Fr. Alexander Lebedeff
                                    ... This is a complete fabrication and absolutely does not correspond to the truth. It is a fable--a myth concocted by some fanatical anti-Sergianist. There
                                    Message 17 of 27 , Jul 19, 2002
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      Joseph Digrande wrote:

                                      >Acccording to the eyewitness of the ceremony, Arch.
                                      >Pitirim, Sergius entered the Church 3 times on his
                                      >knees begging for forgiveness. All three times the
                                      >crowd in the Church begged Pat. Tikhon to :"Holy
                                      >Vladyko, do not believe him>"
                                      >On the third time Pat. Tikhon said,
                                      >"The former Met. Sergius as having fallen away into
                                      >the anti=God heresy of living-Church renovationism,
                                      >and as having drawn many Orthodox priests, monks and
                                      >laity into destruction, is to remain for the rest of
                                      >his life weeping for what he has done and from now on
                                      >cannot touch church serving, but will remain in the
                                      >rank of a simple monk."
                                      >And he instructed him to remain in a certain monastery
                                      >without departing from it, in complete obedience to
                                      >the father abbot. And before Christ and His Angels and
                                      >the Holy Church the former Met. Sergius gave a
                                      >promises to fulfull everything he had promised
                                      >exactly. But alas, he immediately deceived the
                                      >Patriarch, broke his promise to him, boldly trampled
                                      >on the canons of the Catholic and Apostolic Church. He
                                      >deceived everyone he could deceive, he declared that
                                      >he had received complete forgiveness from "His
                                      >Holiness" and began to serve. IN view fo the canons of
                                      >the Holy Apostles, Holy Councils and Holy Fathers,
                                      >after this he is not only considered banned but also
                                      >completely deposed, even excommunicated...
                                      >And this deception was successful for in those days
                                      >that were so difficult for the Church, the voice of
                                      >His Holiness the Pat could scarcely be heard beyond
                                      >the Donskoy Monastery where he lived in
                                      >imprisonment,,,"

                                      This is a complete fabrication and absolutely does not correspond to the
                                      truth. It is a fable--a myth concocted by some fanatical anti-Sergianist.
                                      There were plenty of eyewitnesses to the formal repentance of Metropolitan
                                      Sergius and the full and accurate description was published many times,
                                      including in early ROCOR sources, such as Gleb Rahr's "Subjugated Church."

                                      And what is clear is that Patriarch Tikhon accepted Metr. Sergius's
                                      repentance and personally assisted in vesting him in full vestments of a
                                      Metropolitan and immediately concelebrated Divine Liturgy with him.

                                      There are obvious errors in the narrative presented by Joseph--such as "he
                                      entered the Church 3 times on his knees begging forgiveness" when the
                                      actual procedure of repentance was that the penitent would, inside the
                                      Church, make three full prostrations, asking forgiveness of the Patriarch,
                                      the clergy, and the faithful.

                                      The most telling error is that it states that Patriarch Tikhon, at that
                                      time, "lived in imprisonment," when it is known that Patriarch Tikhon was
                                      released from imprisonment in July of 1923 (he had been arrested in May of
                                      1922). After his release in July of 1923 and up to his repose in April,
                                      1924 patriarch Tikhon was not restricted in his ecclesiastical activity--he
                                      traveled freely aroung Moscow, serving at the various Churches and was
                                      extremely active in sermons, letters, appeals, etc., so that it is
                                      ridiculous to state that "his voice could scarcely be heard."

                                      Joseph later posted regarding Metropolitan Sergius appointment:

                                      >Good question/I will have to dig a little to find the
                                      >exact date he became the vicar at Nizhniy Novgorod and
                                      >how he became one. Also what evidence that the
                                      >Communists wer involved in his placement there. The
                                      >Patriarch was pretty much a prisoner of the Donskoy
                                      >Monastery at that time. I will get back to you with
                                      >what I can find/ joseph digrande

                                      First of all, Metr. Sergius was not appointed "vicar" at Nizny Novgorod.
                                      That was not a vicariate, but a major Metropolitan See, where he was
                                      appointed Ruling Bishop.

                                      Historical evidence is plentiful on this issue.

                                      Metr. Sergius was in the Renovationist schism from the middle of 1922 to
                                      the beginning of 1924.

                                      Immediately after his repentance, Metr. Sergius was appointed by Patriarch
                                      Tikhon to the see of Nizhny Novgorod (the exact date was March 18/31, 1924).

                                      Less than two months later, on May 8/21, 1924, Patriarch Tikhon and his
                                      Patriarchal Synod issued a Decree about the reorganization of the Higher
                                      Church Administration and the appointment of the members of the Holy Synod
                                      and of the Higher Church Council.

                                      Reading from the actual Ukaze:

                                      "Appointed as permanent members of the Holy Synod under the chairmanship of
                                      Patriarch Tikhon are:

                                      Metr. Sergius of Nizhny-Novgorod
                                      Metr. Kyrill of Kazan
                                      Metr. Tikhon of the Urals
                                      Metr. Seraphim of Tver'
                                      Metr. Peter of Krutitsk" . . .

                                      . . .and 6 more Archbishops (including Archbishop Joseph of Rostov (later
                                      Metropolitan of Petrograd) and one other Bishop.

                                      So it is perfectly clear that not only was Metr. Sergius **not** removed
                                      from serving and reduced to the status of a simple monk, as the fabrication
                                      depicts, but actually he was given a criitically important see and
                                      appointed the **ranking member** of the Holy Synod by Patriarch Tikhon.




                                      With love in Christ,

                                      Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
                                    • VJB
                                      He was appointed to replace Archbishop Evdokim (Isiderskiy), a renovationist. v ... From: Joseph Digrande To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com Sent: Thursday,
                                      Message 18 of 27 , Jul 19, 2002
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        He was appointed to replace Archbishop Evdokim (Isiderskiy), a renovationist.

                                        v
                                        ----- Original Message -----
                                        From: Joseph Digrande
                                        To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
                                        Sent: Thursday, July 18, 2002 8:41 PM
                                        Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: He Who Restraineth


                                        Good question/I will have to dig a little to find the
                                        exact date he became the vicar at Nizhniy Novgorod and
                                        how he became one. Also what evidence that the
                                        Communists wer involved in his placement there. The
                                        Patriarch was pretty much a prisoner of the Donskoy
                                        Monastery at that time. I will get back to you with
                                        what I can find/ joseph digrande
                                        --- VJB <venceslav@...> wrote:
                                        > Is that why Patriarch appointed him to the Diocese
                                        > of Nizhniy Novgorod?
                                        >
                                        > v
                                        > ----- Original Message -----
                                        > From: Joseph Digrande
                                        > To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
                                        > Sent: Wednesday, July 17, 2002 8:59 PM
                                        > Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: He Who
                                        > Restraineth
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Acccording to the eyewitness of the ceremony,
                                        > Arch.
                                        > Pitirim, Sergius entered the Church 3 times on his
                                        > knees begging for forgiveness. All three times the
                                        > crowd in the Church begged Pat. Tikhon to :"Holy
                                        > Vladyko, do not believe him>"
                                        > On the third time Pat. Tikhon said,
                                        > "The former Met. Sergius as having fallen away
                                        > into
                                        > the anti=God heresy of living-Church
                                        > renovationism,
                                        > and as having drawn many Orthodox priests, monks
                                        > and
                                        > laity into destruction, is to remain for the rest
                                        > of
                                        > his life weeping for what he has done and from now
                                        > on
                                        > cannot touch church serving, but will remain in
                                        > the
                                        > rank of a simple monk."
                                        > And he instructed him to remain in a certain
                                        > monastery
                                        > without departing from it, in complete obedience
                                        > to
                                        > the father abbot. And before Christ and His Angels
                                        > and
                                        > the Holy Church the former Met. Sergius gave a
                                        > promises to fulfull everything he had promised
                                        > exactly. But alas, he immediately deceived the
                                        > Patriarch, broke his promise to him, boldly
                                        > trampled
                                        > on the canons of the Catholic and Apostolic
                                        > Church. He
                                        > deceived everyone he could deceive, he declared
                                        > that
                                        > he had received complete forgiveness from "His
                                        > Holiness" and began to serve. IN view fo the
                                        > canons of
                                        > the Holy Apostles, Holy Councils and Holy Fathers,
                                        > after this he is not only considered banned but
                                        > also
                                        > completely deposed, even excommunicated...
                                        > And this deception was successful for in those
                                        > days
                                        > that were so difficult for the Church, the voice
                                        > of
                                        > His Holiness the Pat could scarcely be heard
                                        > beyond
                                        > the Donskoy Monastery where he lived in
                                        > imprisonment,,,"
                                        > Joseph digrande
                                        > --- VJB <venceslav@...> wrote:
                                        > > Correct me if I am wrong. I was under impression
                                        > > that Sergius repented of Renovationism and
                                        > submitted
                                        > > his staff to Patriarch Tikhon and the Patriarch
                                        > > personally returned him the staff acknowledging
                                        > his
                                        > > episcopacy. Let's be accurate.
                                        > >
                                        > > v
                                        > > St. Tikhon declared that in public when he
                                        > > repented of being a Renovationist. He
                                        > disobeyed
                                        > > him
                                        > > and continued to serve. Anything that ROCOR
                                        > > hierarchs
                                        > > said in the intevening years justifiying
                                        > Sergius
                                        > > and
                                        > > his ilk is just plain wrong/ not foolish/ just
                                        > > wrong
                                        > >
                                        > >
                                        > > joseph digrande
                                        > >
                                        > >
                                        > >
                                        > > [Non-text portions of this message have been
                                        > > removed]
                                        > >
                                        > >
                                        > >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > __________________________________________________
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                                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                      • joeswaydyn2000
                                        Until Joseph D made this statement I have never seen an argument that Sergius was only a simple monk. Even the Synod of Bishops in the 1920 s communicated
                                        Message 19 of 27 , Jul 19, 2002
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          Until Joseph D made this statement I have never seen an argument that
                                          Sergius was only a simple monk. Even the Synod of Bishops in the
                                          1920's communicated with Sergius, who declined to answer questions
                                          about the diaspora because he was unaware of what was going on. That
                                          the Patriarch was a prisoner in the Monastery there is no doubt. But
                                          it would strike me as odd that something of this magnitude is not
                                          even documented in more than one source; all my sources on the
                                          history of the ROCA indicate that Sergius was considered a Bishop
                                          until 1927, when after ten months of imprisonment and torture, he
                                          capitulated to the Communists.- JS

                                          --- In orthodox-synod@y..., Joseph Digrande <paisiosj@y...> wrote:
                                          > Good question/I will have to dig a little to find the
                                          > exact date he became the vicar at Nizhniy Novgorod and
                                          > how he became one. Also what evidence that the
                                          > Communists wer involved in his placement there. The
                                          > Patriarch was pretty much a prisoner of the Donskoy
                                          > Monastery at that time. I will get back to you with
                                          > what I can find/ joseph digrande
                                          > --- VJB <venceslav@s...> wrote:
                                          > > Is that why Patriarch appointed him to the Diocese
                                          > > of Nizhniy Novgorod?
                                          > >
                                          > > v
                                          > > ----- Original Message -----
                                          > > From: Joseph Digrande
                                          > > To: orthodox-synod@y...
                                          > > Sent: Wednesday, July 17, 2002 8:59 PM
                                          > > Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: He Who
                                          > > Restraineth
                                          > >
                                          > >
                                          > > Acccording to the eyewitness of the ceremony,
                                          > > Arch.
                                          > > Pitirim, Sergius entered the Church 3 times on his
                                          > > knees begging for forgiveness. All three times the
                                          > > crowd in the Church begged Pat. Tikhon to :"Holy
                                          > > Vladyko, do not believe him>"
                                          > > On the third time Pat. Tikhon said,
                                          > > "The former Met. Sergius as having fallen away
                                          > > into
                                          > > the anti=God heresy of living-Church
                                          > > renovationism,
                                          > > and as having drawn many Orthodox priests, monks
                                          > > and
                                          > > laity into destruction, is to remain for the rest
                                          > > of
                                          > > his life weeping for what he has done and from now
                                          > > on
                                          > > cannot touch church serving, but will remain in
                                          > > the
                                          > > rank of a simple monk."
                                          > > And he instructed him to remain in a certain
                                          > > monastery
                                          > > without departing from it, in complete obedience
                                          > > to
                                          > > the father abbot. And before Christ and His Angels
                                          > > and
                                          > > the Holy Church the former Met. Sergius gave a
                                          > > promises to fulfull everything he had promised
                                          > > exactly. But alas, he immediately deceived the
                                          > > Patriarch, broke his promise to him, boldly
                                          > > trampled
                                          > > on the canons of the Catholic and Apostolic
                                          > > Church. He
                                          > > deceived everyone he could deceive, he declared
                                          > > that
                                          > > he had received complete forgiveness from "His
                                          > > Holiness" and began to serve. IN view fo the
                                          > > canons of
                                          > > the Holy Apostles, Holy Councils and Holy Fathers,
                                          > > after this he is not only considered banned but
                                          > > also
                                          > > completely deposed, even excommunicated...
                                          > > And this deception was successful for in those
                                          > > days
                                          > > that were so difficult for the Church, the voice
                                          > > of
                                          > > His Holiness the Pat could scarcely be heard
                                          > > beyond
                                          > > the Donskoy Monastery where he lived in
                                          > > imprisonment,,,"
                                          > > Joseph digrande
                                          > > --- VJB <venceslav@s...> wrote:
                                          > > > Correct me if I am wrong. I was under impression
                                          > > > that Sergius repented of Renovationism and
                                          > > submitted
                                          > > > his staff to Patriarch Tikhon and the Patriarch
                                          > > > personally returned him the staff acknowledging
                                          > > his
                                          > > > episcopacy. Let's be accurate.
                                          > > >
                                          > > > v
                                          > > > St. Tikhon declared that in public when he
                                          > > > repented of being a Renovationist. He
                                          > > disobeyed
                                          > > > him
                                          > > > and continued to serve. Anything that ROCOR
                                          > > > hierarchs
                                          > > > said in the intevening years justifiying
                                          > > Sergius
                                          > > > and
                                          > > > his ilk is just plain wrong/ not foolish/ just
                                          > > > wrong
                                          > > >
                                          > > >
                                          > > > joseph digrande
                                          > > >
                                          > > >
                                          > > >
                                          > > > [Non-text portions of this message have been
                                          > > > removed]
                                          > > >
                                          > > >
                                          > > >
                                          > >
                                          > >
                                          > > __________________________________________________
                                          > > Do You Yahoo!?
                                          > > Yahoo! Autos - Get free new car price quotes
                                          > > http://autos.yahoo.com
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                                          > > ADVERTISEMENT
                                          > >
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                                          > > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo!
                                          > > Terms of Service.
                                          > >
                                          > >
                                          > >
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                                          >
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                                        • frmarkg
                                          Date: Thu, 18 Jul 2002 12:28:04 EDT Sender: Orthodox Christianity From: Mr. Vincent Niemann
                                          Message 20 of 27 , Jul 19, 2002
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                                            Date: Thu, 18 Jul 2002 12:28:04 EDT
                                            Sender: Orthodox Christianity <orthodox@...>
                                            From: "Mr. Vincent Niemann" <GreekOrthodoxTV@...>
                                            Subject: New Rules For This List.

                                            One day an acquaintance met the great philosopher Socrates and
                                            said, "Do you know what I just heard about your friend?"

                                            "Hold on a minute," Socrates replied. "Before telling me anything
                                            I'd like you to pass a little test. It's called the Triple Filter
                                            Test."

                                            "Triple filter?"

                                            "That's right," Socrates continued. "Before you talk to me about
                                            my friend it might be a good idea to take a moment and filter what
                                            you're going to say.

                                            That's why I call it the triple filter test. The first filter
                                            is Truth. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about
                                            to tell me is true?"

                                            "No," the man said, "actually I just heard about it and..."

                                            "All right," said Socrates. "So you don't really know if it's
                                            true or not. Now let's try the second filter, the filter of
                                            goodness. Is what you are about to tell me about my friend
                                            something good?"

                                            "No, on the contrary..."

                                            "So," Socrates continued, "you want to tell me something bad
                                            about him, but you're not certain it's true. You may still pass
                                            the test though, because there's one filter left: the filter of
                                            usefulness. Is what you want to tell me about my friend going to
                                            be useful to me?"

                                            "No, not really."

                                            "Well," concluded Socrates, "if what you want to tell me is
                                            neither true nor good nor even useful, why tell it to me at
                                            all?"
                                          • Fr. Alexander Lebedeff
                                            ... This is not fully historically accurate. First of all, the surname of the renovationist bishop Evdokim was **Meshcherskiy**, not Isiderskiy. Secondly,
                                            Message 21 of 27 , Jul 19, 2002
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                                              VJB wrote:

                                              >He [Metropolitan Sergius] was appointed to replace Archbishop Evdokim
                                              >(Isiderskiy), a renovationist.
                                              >


                                              This is not fully historically accurate.

                                              First of all, the surname of the renovationist bishop Evdokim was
                                              **Meshcherskiy**, not "Isiderskiy."

                                              Secondly, Evdokim (Meshcherskiy) was the Orthodox Ruling Bishop of Nizhny
                                              Novgorod from 1918 to June 3/16, 1922. From June 3/16, 1922 to October
                                              20/November 2, 1922 he was the Renovationist Bishop of Nizhny Novgorod.
                                              From October 20/November 2, 1922 to March 31/April 13, 1923--he was the
                                              Renovationist Bishop of Odessa. From March 31/April 13, 1924 to September,
                                              1924, he was the Renovationist Bishop of Kirov.

                                              The Orthodox (Non-Renovationist) See of Nizhny Novgorod was vacant from
                                              June 3/16, 1922 to March 18/31, 1924, when Metr. Sergius (Stragorodsky) was
                                              appointed by Patriarch Tikhon.




                                              With love in Christ,

                                              Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
                                            • goossir
                                              Dear Father Alexander, Bless! About Alexis II s repentence: 10 years later in november 2001, his comments on ROCOR Bishops Council response to MP s fraternal
                                              Message 22 of 27 , Jul 23, 2002
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                                                Dear Father Alexander, Bless!

                                                About Alexis II's repentence: 10 years later in november 2001, his
                                                comments on ROCOR Bishops' Council response to MP's fraternal letter:
                                                in http://www.ripnet.org/besieged/rparocora.htm, :

                                                "--About the accusations against us of so-called sergianism I want to
                                                say that it was necessary to live here in the motherland in order to
                                                understand that this is an artificial accusation and artificial
                                                pretext that they are trying to exaggerate so as simply to prevent
                                                reunification. In the main it deals with the letter by Metropolitan
                                                Sergius in 1927, the so-called Declaration of Metropolitan Sergius.
                                                By this letter he wanted to show the authorities, who, I remind you,
                                                had imprisoned and shot clergy and believers, that the church was not
                                                a counterrevolutionary organization. Thus the letter said: "we want
                                                to be Orthodox and we want to realize the Soviet Union as our
                                                motherland, whose joys are our joys and whose sorrows are our
                                                sorrows." Most often it is these words that evoke the far-fetched
                                                criticism: "What kind of joys can be in common with an atheist
                                                state?" But the letter is not talking about an atheist state; it is
                                                talking about the motherland, although in 1927 this concept was
                                                almost forgotten.

                                                This was a clever step by which Metropolitan Sergius tried to save
                                                the church and clergy. In declaring that the members of the church
                                                want to see themselves as a part of the motherland and want to share
                                                her joys and sorrows, he tried to show to those who were persecuting
                                                the church and who were destroying it that we, the children of the
                                                church, want to be loyal citizens so that the affiliation of people
                                                with the church would not place them outside the law. So this is a
                                                far-fetched accusation."

                                                SO-CALLED SERGIANISM! Alexis II finds it clever the step taken by
                                                Met Sergius (a pact with satan to save to church) - no regrets!

                                                If his repentence came after the above declaration, then I could
                                                understand but it is exactly the reverse and, to top it all in
                                                reacting to our Synod.
                                                This cynicism only shows that he thinks we are idiots.

                                                Please forgive me for what could seem as a cutting tone. There is
                                                another interview published at the beginning of this year, that I
                                                will post the momment I can put my hand on it, where Pat Alexis II
                                                justifies sergianism in even better words.

                                                May I ask a question - why are you so kind, understanding and
                                                compassionate with the MP, while, at the same time, full of anger
                                                against your own brothers who questionned some of our bishops about
                                                their sincerity in keeping the true path of our Church?

                                                Yours in Christ,

                                                Irina Pahlen


                                                --- In orthodox-synod@y..., "Fr. Alexander Lebedeff" <lebedeff@w...>
                                                wrote:
                                                > Regarding:
                                                >
                                                >
                                                >
                                                > >Father, I was not aware of this statement - can you provide more
                                                > >information on the occasion of these remarks, and if possible, a
                                                > >translation of the text?
                                                > >
                                                > >James Baglien
                                                > >Corvallis, OR
                                                >
                                                > Sure, James.
                                                >
                                                > Here are some quotes from an interview of the head of the MP,
                                                Alexis II,
                                                > given to "Izvestia" No 137, June 10, 1991, entitled "Patriarch
                                                Alexis II:
                                                > -- I Take upon Myself Responsibility for All that Happened":
                                                >
                                                > =============================
                                                >
                                                >
                                                > Pat A.: "Being a person of the Church, I must take on myself
                                                responsibility
                                                > for all that occurred in the life of my Church: not only for the
                                                good, but
                                                > also for the difficult, the sorrowful, the erroneous."
                                                >
                                                > Regarding the 1927 Declaration of Metropolitan Sergius:
                                                >
                                                > Pat. A.: "Today we can say that falsehood is interspersed in his
                                                > Declaration, which stated as its goal 'placing the Church into
                                                proper
                                                > relations with the Soviet government.' But these relations--and in
                                                the
                                                > Declaration they are clearly defined as the submission of the
                                                Church to the
                                                > interests of governmental politics--are exactly those which are
                                                incorrect
                                                > from the point of view of the Church."
                                                >
                                                > And, regarding the statements and activities of the Moscow
                                                Patriarchate
                                                > during the time of the oppression of the Church:
                                                >
                                                > Pat. A.: "Of people, then, to whom these compromises, silence,
                                                forced
                                                > passivity or expressions of loyalty that were permitted by the
                                                Church
                                                > leadership in those days, have caused pain -- of these people, not
                                                only
                                                > before God, but also before them, I ask forgiveness, understanding,
                                                and
                                                > prayers."
                                                >
                                                >
                                                >
                                                >
                                                > With love in Christ,
                                                >
                                                > Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
                                              • Kiril Bart
                                                Bishop of Kirov?? There was no Kirov at the time, that town was named Vjatka and it was renamed after Kirov (comunists leader) was killed. Subdeacon Kirill ...
                                                Message 23 of 27 , Jul 23, 2002
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                                                  Bishop of Kirov?? There was no Kirov at the time, that
                                                  town was named Vjatka and it was renamed after Kirov
                                                  (comunists leader) was killed.
                                                  Subdeacon Kirill
                                                  --- "Fr. Alexander Lebedeff" <lebedeff@...>
                                                  wrote:
                                                  > VJB wrote:
                                                  >
                                                  > >He [Metropolitan Sergius] was appointed to replace
                                                  > Archbishop Evdokim
                                                  > >(Isiderskiy), a renovationist.
                                                  > >
                                                  >
                                                  >
                                                  > This is not fully historically accurate.
                                                  >
                                                  > First of all, the surname of the renovationist
                                                  > bishop Evdokim was
                                                  > **Meshcherskiy**, not "Isiderskiy."
                                                  >
                                                  > Secondly, Evdokim (Meshcherskiy) was the Orthodox
                                                  > Ruling Bishop of Nizhny
                                                  > Novgorod from 1918 to June 3/16, 1922. From June
                                                  > 3/16, 1922 to October
                                                  > 20/November 2, 1922 he was the Renovationist Bishop
                                                  > of Nizhny Novgorod.
                                                  > From October 20/November 2, 1922 to March 31/April
                                                  > 13, 1923--he was the
                                                  > Renovationist Bishop of Odessa. From March 31/April
                                                  > 13, 1924 to September,
                                                  > 1924, he was the Renovationist Bishop of Kirov.
                                                  >
                                                  > The Orthodox (Non-Renovationist) See of Nizhny
                                                  > Novgorod was vacant from
                                                  > June 3/16, 1922 to March 18/31, 1924, when Metr.
                                                  > Sergius (Stragorodsky) was
                                                  > appointed by Patriarch Tikhon.
                                                  >
                                                  >
                                                  >
                                                  >
                                                  > With love in Christ,
                                                  >
                                                  > Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
                                                  >
                                                  >
                                                  >


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                                                • VJB
                                                  True! Kirov was not even promoted to until late 30 s to replace Zinoviev at the Leningrad Committee. v ... From: Kiril Bart To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
                                                  Message 24 of 27 , Jul 24, 2002
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                                                    True! Kirov was not even promoted to until late 30's to replace Zinoviev at the Leningrad Committee.

                                                    v
                                                    ----- Original Message -----
                                                    From: Kiril Bart
                                                    To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
                                                    Sent: Tuesday, July 23, 2002 9:05 PM
                                                    Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: He Who Restraineth


                                                    Bishop of Kirov?? There was no Kirov at the time, that
                                                    town was named Vjatka and it was renamed after Kirov
                                                    (comunists leader) was killed.
                                                    Subdeacon Kirill
                                                    --- "Fr. Alexander Lebedeff" <lebedeff@...>
                                                    wrote:
                                                    > VJB wrote:
                                                    >
                                                    > >He [Metropolitan Sergius] was appointed to replace
                                                    > Archbishop Evdokim
                                                    > >(Isiderskiy), a renovationist.
                                                    > >
                                                    >
                                                    >
                                                    > This is not fully historically accurate.
                                                    >
                                                    > First of all, the surname of the renovationist
                                                    > bishop Evdokim was
                                                    > **Meshcherskiy**, not "Isiderskiy."
                                                    >
                                                    > Secondly, Evdokim (Meshcherskiy) was the Orthodox
                                                    > Ruling Bishop of Nizhny
                                                    > Novgorod from 1918 to June 3/16, 1922. From June
                                                    > 3/16, 1922 to October
                                                    > 20/November 2, 1922 he was the Renovationist Bishop
                                                    > of Nizhny Novgorod.
                                                    > From October 20/November 2, 1922 to March 31/April
                                                    > 13, 1923--he was the
                                                    > Renovationist Bishop of Odessa. From March 31/April
                                                    > 13, 1924 to September,
                                                    > 1924, he was the Renovationist Bishop of Kirov.
                                                    >
                                                    > The Orthodox (Non-Renovationist) See of Nizhny
                                                    > Novgorod was vacant from
                                                    > June 3/16, 1922 to March 18/31, 1924, when Metr.
                                                    > Sergius (Stragorodsky) was
                                                    > appointed by Patriarch Tikhon.
                                                    >
                                                    >
                                                    >
                                                    >
                                                    > With love in Christ,
                                                    >
                                                    > Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
                                                    >
                                                    >
                                                    >


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