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Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: Why the MP Apologetics?

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  • Fr. Alexander Lebedeff
    ... The recent posts by Vladimir Kozyreff and Irina Pahlen continue to portray the idea that the motivations of the renegade clergy in France and Belgium are
    Message 1 of 73 , Oct 2, 2002
      >Vladimir Kozyreff wrote:

      >Those who did write more recent things "in the same vein" were
      >defrocked, excommunicated and called schismatic. But they did
      >write "in the same vein" (the traditional one). Their honour is thus
      >safe and Christ will not be ashamed of them before his heavenly

      The recent posts by Vladimir Kozyreff and Irina Pahlen continue to portray
      the idea that the motivations of the renegade clergy in France and Belgium
      are completely pure--that they are simply defenders of the truth and the
      historical positions of the ROCOR who are being unjustly persecuted for
      their standing in the faith.

      This is a simplistic and utterly naive view.

      In reality, the whole ROCiE split was manufactured by a motley collection
      of "avantiuristy" pursuing their own personal agendas--and not by
      principled defenders of the truth.

      Former Bishop Varnava single-handedly virtually destroyed the credibility
      of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia in Russia, by openly
      endorsing the neo-fascist Pamyat' organization and participating in some of
      its most outrageous "actions," such as the shameful "avtoprobeg" around
      Moscow, where brown-shirted and jack-booted goons with Nazi-like armbands
      rode around Moscow in open trucks, waving fascist banners.

      Former Bishop Varnava also blessed one of his priests to participate in the
      Pamyat' "raid" at the editorial offices of "Moskovskij Komsomolets," where
      the jack-booted goons stormed the offices, ripped out the phones and
      terrorized the staff.

      And, former Bishop Varnava completely embarrassed the Church Abroad by
      signing, on official ROCOR stationery, a letter to the head of the
      uncanonical "Autonomous Ukranian Church" in which he offered to create an
      alliance between the Church Abroad and this schismatic body.

      Add to this that Bishop Varnava confused the entire situation of the
      parishes in Russia, by single-handedly rescinding suspensions and
      depositions imposed by other bishops of the Church Abroad there, and
      allying himself with disreputable and disgraced clerics.

      This is your "Pillar of Truth," Vladimir?

      And look at his associates in the Mansonville schism!

      A renegade monk from Jordanville, who ran away spouting lies and vitriol
      against the monastery he had been tonsured in--now he is a "bishop."

      A former Moscow Patriarchate clergyman who so messed up matters in the Holy
      Land while he was Head of the Ecclesisatical Mission there that we are
      still reeling from his grievous mistakes in judgement.

      A renegade priest who had run away from the Church Abroad into the HOCNA
      schism, writing all kinds of lies and distortions--and who, several years
      later, claimed to repent, and, although he had been deposed from holy
      orders, was with great condescension and love by the bishops of the Church
      Abroad, was restore to the priesthood--only to once again turn on the
      bishops who had forgiven him--and once again run away into schism.

      Another key player is a priest who, together with his son, in the presence
      of nine witnesses, attacked an elderly great-grandmother right in front of
      our Cathedral and beat her. Nine witnesses watched this "priest" knock the
      elderly woman to the ground and beat her with his fists. I was called to
      the scene and arrived to see the police there talking to a severely
      battered lady, who had to be taken to the hospital. I have photographs
      taken that day that show the severe bruises and lacerations on her
      arms--the outside of her forearms--clearly what are called "defensive
      wounds." This renegade priest was also instrumental in robbing our church
      of all of its documents--articles of incorporation, deeds, parish archives
      and photographs, building plans for the cupola project, bank books and
      financial statements--and icons, liturgical books, and music, among
      truckloads of other items belonging to the parish that he simply came and
      took. This man's reputation was so unsavory, that every one of his brothers
      and sisters--all five of them--wrote a petition to Metropolitan Vitaly
      begging him not to allow this man to be ordained to the priesthood-- a
      petition that was accompanied by another petition by the man's spiritual
      father of many years, also informing the Metropolitan of serious canonical
      impediments to the ordination of this man. Unfortunately, Metropolitan
      Vitaly ordained him anyway.

      Another player is a priest who left the Synod with the Panteleimonites,
      manipulated his parish meeting to take the parish with him--who, after
      years of writing derogatory statements about Metropolitan Vitaly and the
      Synod of the ROCOR--suddenly leaves HOCNA, remanipulates his Parish
      Council, and takes the parish into ROCiE, becoming one of its ideologues.

      Another key player, Father German Ivanov-13, has openly disagreed with the
      Mansonville ROCiE positions regarding the question of grace among New
      Calendarists and the relationship with Metropolitan Cyprian, so it is clear
      that there is no "unity of standing in the truth" between the European and
      North-American branches of the tiny ROCiE.

      Add to this the confusion between the Mansonville ROCie and the ROCiE
      bishops in Russia--Lazarus and Benjamin--and you have quite a "kettle of fish."

      No wonder they cannot even agree on a date for a Sobor, which they probably
      will not be able to have, since the Russian bishops will insist on having
      their newly-consecrated bishops participating, while the other parts of the
      ROCiE will be totally opposed to this.

      Meanwhile, "Bishop" Vladimir has been evicted from Canada and is banned
      from reentering it, so he could not even participate in such a Sobor.

      Another point.

      The ROCiEs in Europe have made hay about how cruel Bishop Ambrose is in
      attempting to evict the renegade Fr. Nicholas Semenoff from his home
      "together with his children."

      They fail to mention that Fr. Nicholas Semenoff's children are all grown.

      Meanwhile, the ROCiEs completely heartlessly evicted the loyal ROCOR priest
      in Parish from his home--a priest who **does** have small children.

      This is the kind of hypocricy that is being perpetrated by these
      "principled defenders of the truth."

      The whole thing is simply a power grab.

      The notorious loose cannon, former Bishop Varnava, had seen that his
      "number was up"--that he had no chance of becoming the new Ruling Bishop of
      Western Europe, and that he was probably going to be sanctioned by the
      other bishops for his outrageous behavior.

      So he, together with a couple of equally nefarious accomplices, staged this
      operation, whisking the elderly Metropolitan Vitaly away from the Synod in
      New York, and, taking advantage of his frailty and senility, creating the
      uncanonical structure known as ROCiE.

      This is not a matter of ecclesiology or ideology or "standing for the truth."

      All of that is a smoke-screen, meant to mislead the naive faithful.

      These conniving individuals tried to manipulate Metropolitan Vitaly while
      he was still First Hierarch, getting him to sign several "Statements"
      critical of the Sobor Resolutions of 2000 that he had himself signed and
      getting him to remove sanctions that had been placed against them by the Synod.

      They knew that they could not continue doing this, so they jumped ship and
      set up their own little clacque, where they could do what they wished, with
      no one responsible to answer to.

      That's all it is.

      "Defenders of the true faith," my foot!

      With love in Christ,

      Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
    • Joshua Fraese
      ... theological ... incorrect. ... in the ... without ... (valid in ... the ... provide a ... by ... professes ... Dear Hristofor, Metropolitan Anthony wrote
      Message 73 of 73 , Oct 11, 2002
        --- In orthodox-synod@y..., Hristofor <hristofor@m...> wrote:
        > I have said it before, but I will say it again: I have no
        > background, so whatever I say or _beleive_ may be correct or
        > However, what you have just said sounds patently absurd.
        > First of all, I think what you are saying applies to all baptisms
        in the
        > Orthodox Church and not just those preformed by heretics and those
        > Grace: the Sacrament of Baptism becomes "finalised or complete"
        (valid in
        > your words) by confessing the True Faith (done by the godparent if
        > person is a baby), Chrismation and Communing. Can you please
        provide a
        > quote from the Holy Fathers where they speak of receiving a baptism
        > heretics, which then becomes a valid Sacrament "when the person
        > the true faith and becomes part of the true Church."?

        Dear Hristofor,

        Metropolitan Anthony wrote an outstanding essay on the subject of the
        reception of converts. I've taken the liberty of quoting from it

        "Every mystery has two sides - the visible and the invisible. The
        second is administered only within the true Church by faith and
        sincere prayer, according to the words of the Apostle Peter: "The
        like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the
        putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good
        conscience toward God) but the resurrection of Jesus Christ" (1
        Pet. 3:21). And the same thought is found also in the teaching of St.
        John Damascene. For those who are baptized without faith "the water
        remains water" only. Heretics and schismatics, having the visible
        side of baptism, chrismation and holy orders, are entirely devoid of
        those gifts of grace which are bound up with these mysteries for
        believers within the true Church. Therefore, certain of them, for the
        alleviation of the rupture in their spiritual life and for "the
        edification of many," are permitted to enter the Church without
        the visible side of the mysteries or holy orders (that is, by the
        second or third rite), but through the operation of another
        sacramental act in which they receive the grace of baptism,
        chrismation and holy orders. (For example, for Roman Catholics,
        Nestorians and Donatists.)"

        You can read this essay in its entirety at:

        I hope this selection helps clear things up a bit - if not, read the
        whole essay - Metropolitan Anthony really goes into the patristic
        theology of the issue and explains the Orthodox thinking behind the
        usage of economia.

        - Joshua Fraese
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