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Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: The Orthodox Episcopate of the Russian persecuted Ch...

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  • VladMoss@aol.com
    So Patriarch Alexis renounced sergianism over 10 years ago. Let s see... At the beginning of 1991, the hierarchs of the Moscow patriarchate headed by Alexis II
    Message 1 of 10 , Nov 27, 2002
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      So Patriarch Alexis renounced sergianism over 10 years ago. Let's see...

      At the beginning of 1991, the hierarchs of the Moscow patriarchate headed by
      Alexis II declared: "We are obliged to emphasise that the declaration of 1927
      contains nothing contrary to the word of God or heretical, and which might
      therefore constitute a reason for departing from the organ of ecclesiastical
      administration that accepted it. .. For us what is important is a principled
      Christian position on the question of the relationship of the Church to the
      state… Therefore the practice of our Church, too, contains nothing that would
      demean its dignity by somehow identifying it with one or another political
      regime…"

      In other words: there's nothing wrong with the declaration, so there's
      nothing to repent of.

      Several months after the August, 1991 putsch, in an interview with the
      newspaper Izvestia Patriarch Alexis said something different: "Today we can
      say that unrighteousness was mixed into his (Metropolitan Sergius')
      declaration. The declaration's aim was to place the Church in a correct
      position in relation to the Soviet government. But these relations were
      clearly described in the declaration as those of the subjection of the Church
      to the interests of state politics - which is incorrect from the point of
      view of the Church".

      In other words: yeah, the declaration wasn't perfect...

      At the same time patriarch Alexis was not prepared to condemn the declaration
      outright: "The declaration is a dark page in our history. But it exists and
      to tear it out of history is impossible. People more impartial than we will
      at some time deliver their judgement on how inevitable its reception was at
      that time. But today we are completely in a position to declare that it is
      not this declaration that lies at the base of the contemporary relations of
      Church and state."

      In other words: I'm not


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • for4z@aol.com
      Fr. Protopresbyter George Grabbe (Bishop Gregory, of blessed memory) wrote: We have seen, that the Decleration of Metropolitan Sergius was a betrayel to the
      Message 2 of 10 , Nov 28, 2002
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        Fr. Protopresbyter George Grabbe (Bishop Gregory, of blessed memory) wrote:
        "We have seen, that the Decleration of Metropolitan Sergius was a betrayel to
        the very existence of the Church; that it was a tribute to apostasy and a
        union with its servers. For this reason it can be acknowledged as being
        worse than any heresy." (taken from The Truth of the Russian Church in the
        Homeland and Abroad, by Protopresbyter George Grabbe, St. Job of Pochaev
        Press, Jordanville, 1989)

        I would like to state, that I did not post this quotation to somehow suggest
        how we should currently approach the MP or its hierarchs, or to personally
        judge Met. Sergius or his followers. Nor does this particular quotation
        comment at all on my personal view on the situation. Bishop Gregory Grabbe's
        writings differ to those of several archpriests on this list......I hope this
        adds to the discussion.

        -Nick Zaharov
      • Fr. John R. Shaw
        ... betrayel to ... and a ... being ... in the ... Pochaev ... Fr. George Grabbe was consecrated a bishop some years before 1989. He was ordered into
        Message 3 of 10 , Nov 29, 2002
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          > Fr. Protopresbyter George Grabbe (Bishop Gregory, of blessed memory)
          wrote:
          > "We have seen, that the Decleration of Metropolitan Sergius was a
          betrayel to
          > the very existence of the Church; that it was a tribute to apostasy
          and a
          > union with its servers. For this reason it can be acknowledged as
          being
          > worse than any heresy." (taken from The Truth of the Russian Church
          in the
          > Homeland and Abroad, by Protopresbyter George Grabbe, St. Job of
          Pochaev
          > Press, Jordanville, 1989)

          Fr. George Grabbe was consecrated a bishop some years before 1989. He
          was ordered into retirement by Metropolitan Vitaly in 1986. After that,
          he wrote in a tone increasingly critical of the Church Abroad, and is
          said to have left it in his will that none of her bishops should take
          part in his funeral when he died (none did).

          However, I suspect that the book you quote above may be his full-length
          reply, written in 1961, to Prof. S. V. Troitsky's "O Nepravde
          Karlovatskago Raskola"-- which, in turn, had been written in response
          to Fr. Michael Polsky's book. Thus it was part of a polemical series,
          based on the situation as it existed in the postwar "iron curtain"
          years.

          When reading the Scriptures and especially the Epistles of St. Paul and
          the other Apostles, one must always understand who was writing to whom,
          and under what circumstances.

          In Christ
          Fr. John R. Shaw
          >
          > I would like to state, that I did not post this quotation to somehow
          suggest
          > how we should currently approach the MP or its hierarchs, or to
          personally
          > judge Met. Sergius or his followers. Nor does this particular
          quotation
          > comment at all on my personal view on the situation. Bishop Gregory
          Grabbe's
          > writings differ to those of several archpriests on this list......I
          hope this
          > adds to the discussion.
          >
          > -Nick Zaharov
          >
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        • for4z@aol.com
          Vladimir Kozyreff wrote: ...you mix up personal sins which are always forgivable and matters of faith for which no compromise is acceptable. We are not
          Message 4 of 10 , Nov 29, 2002
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            Vladimir Kozyreff wrote:

            "...you mix up personal sins which are
            always forgivable and matters of faith for which no compromise is
            acceptable. We are not judging people here, we are judging a
            proposal. That proposal is unorthodox." (See V. Kosyreff's first posting of
            11/28 for the remaining text).

            Vladimir Kozyreff has made an excellent point. The issue deserves a
            thoughtful response from someone who can correctly represent the position of
            our Church. I am not one qualified to do so. However, I would like to add
            other thoughts/questions for clarification and response as well.

            When I attended "Russian School" in Los Angeles in the 1960's, we were taught
            that the Church must always be free of internal interference or control by
            secular governments. We were also taught that Segianism was, in fact, a pact
            with the Soviet regime whereby the future hierarchy of that portion of the
            Church was screened and selected with the approval, if not outright control,
            of the secular government. We were taught that Christ is the head of the
            Church and that no other single member of the Church can dare act alone to
            save the Church and, particularly, that the foundation of the Church cannot
            be altered. We were taught that the Church in the Soviet Union had, in fact,
            strayed from the true Church by accepting internal interference/control by
            the Soviet authorities. If this was all true, then it remains for that
            portion of the Church in Russia today to reverse course and correct the
            mistakes of the past, not to continue making excuses for those mistakes. It
            remains for that portion of the Church outside of Russia to protect that
            which it has been responsible for protecting and not to enjoin itself to
            those same mistakes for the sake of false unity. This is what we were taught
            by an archbishop of our Church. Is there someone reading this who can
            provide authoritative comment on the official position of our Church if it is
            different than what we were taught above? If so, has this position CHANGED
            from before or was the position different then from what we were taught?

            Yours in Christ,
            Eugene Zaharov
          • Fr. Alexander Lebedeff
            I believe that the answers to Eugene Zaharov s questions can be found in the documents that I posted just earlier--particularly the words of Metropolitan
            Message 5 of 10 , Nov 29, 2002
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              I believe that the answers to Eugene Zaharov's questions can be found in
              the documents that I posted just earlier--particularly the words of
              Metropolitan Anastassy at the Sobor of 1953 (a time when no one can say
              that the entire truth about the subjugation of the Church in the Soviet
              Union was unknown to Metropolitan Anastassy).

              Metropolitan Anastassy clearly calls the clergy and the faithful of the
              Moscow Patriarchate "our own." (His exact words were, "If we accept in such
              a manner [i.e. by condescension and economia, A.L.] those foreign to us,
              then how can we not accept our own?"

              Metropolitan Anastassy continues:

              "Only a heresy that is accepted by the whole Church defiles the whole
              Church. In the current case the people are not held to answer for the line
              of action taken by their leaders, and the whole Church, as it is, remains
              undefiled."

              In Russian:

              "Tol'ko jeres' priniataja vseju Tserkovju, porochit vsiu Tserkov'. V dannom
              sluchae narod ne otvechajet za liniju povedenija rukovoditelej i vsia
              Tserkov', kak takovaja, ostajetsia neoporochennoj."

              So--if the "line of action" taken by the leaders of the Moscow
              Patriarchate, i.e. Sergianism, according to Metropolitan Anastassy, does
              not cause the Church, as a whole, to become defiled--then what is the
              question here?

              Let me share some more words of Metropolian Anastassy, from the Minutes of
              Sobor of Bishops of 1953, where some sharp discussion took place among the
              bishops regarding the relationship of the Church Abroad toward the American
              Metropolia and the Paris Exharchate (the Eulogians), both of which had
              broken away from the Church Abroad. Some bishops advocated an
              uncompromisingly strict position, while others strove for reunification.

              After hearing all the discussions, Metropolitan Anastassy, as was his wont,
              summed up the question and expressed his weighty opinion, saying:

              "We must be directed by the words of Christ, 'as you wish that others would
              treat you, so you should act', and 'be wise like serpents and be meek as
              doves.' Yesterday two opposing points of view were expressed: the point of
              view of love without truth, and that of cold truth without love. The real
              truth is found in the combintaion of love and truth."

              Metropolitan Anastassy continues:

              "Archbishop John [(Maximovich). A.L.] spoke very well, that we confess the
              truth, but this does not mean, that all others err. Even if we were the
              only ones with the knowledge of the truth, then it would be needful for us
              not to pride ourselves, but to fear the temptation of pride. And correctly
              it was noted that Fr. Konstantin [(Zaitseff, the Editor of Pravoslavnaja
              Rus', A.L.] often irritates his opponents. They do not have the fulness of
              the truth, there are deviations, but this does not mean that they are
              graceless. In regards to them we must preserve objective calmness. The
              question of restoration of unity must stand separately. We must strive
              toward such unity even now on the same principles of the Temporary
              Statutes, on which we stand even now. It is just, however, that every unity
              begins with personal contact: 'Let us love one another, that with one mind
              we may confess.' But it is as if we are sad that the sharpness of
              jurisdictional quarrels has been weakened. But our goal us unity. Certain
              boundaries had been required as an educational measure. Now, when those in
              the American Metropolia have rejected many extreme positions, we still
              sharpen the question and speak of them as if they were heretics, with whom
              we do not want to have any contact.. . ."

              The last cited words of Metropolitan Anastassy can clearly be applied to
              the current situation of the Moscow Patriarchate-- now, when those in the
              Moscow Patriarchate "have rejected many extreme positions, we still sharpen
              the question and speak of them as if they were heretics, with whom we do
              not want to have any contact.. . ."

              As to the final questions posed by Eugene Zaharov, it is certainly clear
              that the Archbishop of whom he spoke, under whose tutelage I also grew up
              and shared Eugene's experiences in the Los Angeles Parochial School in the
              60's--this Archbishop did not share the irenic positions expressed by
              Metropolitan Anastassy, and which represented the true historical
              perspective of the Russian Church Abroad. He was of the camp that preached,
              in the words of Metropolitan Anastassy, "cold truth without love."

              Let us repeat what Metropolitan Anastassy stated unequivocally: "Our goal
              is unity."

              **That** is the historical position of the Church Abroad.

              And, as Metropolitan Anastassy wrote:

              "It is just, however, that every unity begins with personal contact: 'Let
              us love one another, that with one mind we may confess.'"

              The personal contacts now taking place between representatives of the two
              separated parts of the Russian Church--in the homeland and abroad--are thus
              a clear mandate of Metropolitan Anastassy and completely in keeping with
              the historical position of the Church Abroad.







              With love in Christ,

              Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
            • for4z@aol.com
              I appreciate the additional information provided by Father Alexander with respect to Metropolitan Anastassy s opinion on the matter. Although such an opinion
              Message 6 of 10 , Nov 29, 2002
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                I appreciate the additional information provided by Father Alexander with
                respect to Metropolitan Anastassy's opinion on the matter. Although such an
                opinion is always important to consider, it is, nonetheless his personal
                opinion unless voted by the Sobor of Bishops. Therefore, my questions remain
                unanswered. What is the official position of ROCOR with respect to the MP as
                determined by the Sobor of Bishops of ROCOR over the years. Have particular
                decisions by the Sobor been made and published? What are those decisions?
                This is the reference frame I am looking for and which may be helpful to
                others as well. Can anyone provide this information?

                Yours in Christ,
                Eugene Zaharov
              • Fr. Alexander Lebedeff
                ... Actually, there was a Resolution by the Sobor of Bishops after each of the Summations given by Metropolitan Anastassy: POSTANOVILI: Prinyat k svedeniju i
                Message 7 of 10 , Nov 30, 2002
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                  Regarding:

                  >I appreciate the additional information provided by Father Alexander with
                  >respect to Metropolitan Anastassy's opinion on the matter. Although such an
                  >opinion is always important to consider, it is, nonetheless his personal
                  >opinion unless voted by the Sobor of Bishops.

                  Actually, there was a Resolution by the Sobor of Bishops after each of the
                  Summations given by Metropolitan Anastassy:

                  "POSTANOVILI: Prinyat' k svedeniju i rukovodstvu slova Predsedatelia."

                  "RESOLVED: To accept for consideration and direction the words of the
                  President."

                  These resolutions make the views expressed by Metropolitan Anastassy far
                  more than just expressions of personal opinion.

                  One can also not overestimate the esteem and respect for the opinions of
                  Metropolitan Anastassy that the other bishops of the Synod Abroad had.


                  > Therefore, my questions remain
                  >unanswered. What is the official position of ROCOR with respect to the MP as
                  >determined by the Sobor of Bishops of ROCOR over the years.


                  The official position of the Church Abroad was vis-a-vis the MP was most
                  fully expressed in the Epistle of the Sobor of Bishops of the Church Abroad
                  in 1933, which, according to Archbishop Nikon, was penned by Metropolitan
                  Anastassy.

                  It can be found in both Russian and English on the Synod web site.

                  In English:

                  http://www.russianorthodoxchurch.ws/english/pages/history/1933epistle.html

                  In Russian:

                  http://www.russianorthodoxchurch.ws/Poslania/poslanie.sobor.1933.html

                  Here are some quotes:

                  "As regards relations toward the Mother Church, the Russian ecclesial
                  organization abroad has considered itself no more than a branch of the
                  latter, bound organically to the whole body of the Church of Russia, even
                  though temporarily deprived only of outward unity with the latter in
                  ecclesiastical administration."

                  "To the present day the entire Church organization abroad has considered
                  and still considers itself an extraordinary and temporary institution,
                  which must be abolished without delay after the restoration of normal
                  social and ecclesiastical life in Russia."

                  "We are taking fully into account the extraordinary difficulties of the
                  position of Metropolitan Sergius, who is now the de facto head of the
                  Church of Russia, and are aware of the heavy burden of responsibility for
                  the fate of the latter, which lies upon him. No one, therefore, has the
                  audacity to accuse him for the mere attempt to enter into dialogue with the
                  Soviet regime so as to obtain legal standing for the Church of Russia. Not
                  without foundation does the deputy locum tenens of the Patriarchal Throne
                  say in his aforementioned Declaration that only "armchair dreamers can
                  think that such a vast community as our Orthodox Church, with all its
                  organization, can exist peacefully in a country while walling itself off
                  from the authorities." While the Church exists on earth, it remains closely
                  bound up with the fates of human society and cannot be imagined outside
                  time and space. It is impossible for it to refrain from all contact with a
                  powerful societal organization such as the government; otherwise it would
                  have to leave the world."


                  As far as concrete resolutions of a Sobor of the Church Abroad, read the
                  Resolution of the 1923 Sobor of Bishops:

                  "Representatives of dioceses found beyond the boundaries of Russia jointly
                  express the voice of the free Russian Church Abroad, but neither any
                  individual person, nor the Sobor of hierarchs of these dioceses represents
                  an authority, which would have the rights that are held in their fullness
                  by the All-Russian Church represented by its lawful hierarchy. All of the
                  Russian Orthodox bishops found beyond the borders of Russia are an
                  inseparable part of the autocephalous Moscow Patriarchate."

                  Read also the Resolution of the Sobor of Bishops of the Church Abroad of 1938:

                  "There was DISCUSSION about concelebration with clergy found in the
                  jurisdiction of Metropolitan Sergius and his Synod.

                  "METROPOLITAN ANASTASSY points out that clergy who arrive from Russia who
                  had been part of the named jurisdiction are immediately allowed into
                  prayerful communion, and he brings up the opinion of Metropolitan Kyrill,
                  found in his Epistle printed in "Church Life," that the sin of Metropolitan
                  Sergius does not extend to the clergy subordinate to him.

                  "IT WAS RESOLVED: To recognize that there are no obstacles to prayerful
                  communion and concelebration with the clergy of Metropolitan Sergius."

                  [In Russian,

                  POSTANOVILI: Priznat', chto ne imeetsia prepiatstvij k molitvennomu
                  obshcheniju i sosluzheniju s dukhovenstvom Mitropolita Sergija."]

                  The Sobor of Bishops of the Church Abroad in 1946, wrote:


                  "The Higher Church Administration in Russia in the person of the current
                  Head of the Russian Church Patriarch Alexey ["v litse nyneshniago Glavy
                  Russkoi Tserkvi Patriarkha Aleksiia"] has more than once already addressed
                  the bishops abroad with an exhortation to enter into canonical submission
                  to the Patriarchate, but, listening to the directions of our pastoral
                  conscience, we do not find it morally possible to acquiesce to these
                  appeals as long as the Higher Church Administration in Russia is found in
                  an unnatural union with the atheistic power and as long as the whole
                  Russian Church is deprived of true freedom, which is inherent in it by its
                  Divine nature." (Signed by Metropolitan Anastassy and all the Bishops of
                  the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia and dated April 27/May 10 1946).


                  From the Official Epistle of the Hierarchical Sobor, dated June 4/17,
                  1964, signed by Metropolitan Philaret and all of the bishops of the Church
                  Abroad, which clearly demonstrates that grace and the Holy Mysteries abide
                  in the Moscow Patriarchate:

                  "They [the god-opposing Communists] have contrived a new, truly diabolical
                  plan in
                  their war against the faithful: it is now forbidden by the godless government
                  of the USSR for children and young men and women from the ages of 3 to 18
                  to be allowed into God's churches and to be communed with the Body and
                  Blood of Christ. And in order to mock the Church even more, this directive
                  by the authorities has to be enforced by the clergymen themselves -- they
                  are the ones who must prohibit youth from approaching the Chalice of Christ
                  and demand the removal of children and youth from the churches".

                  and


                  "But the true situation is this: not many clergymen are left in the USSR,
                  not many open churches are left, the faithful rarely can attend services.
                  And now even at these rare services, which Christians, if they are not
                  extremely old men and women, attend at the risk of being tagged by the
                  active Soviet "watchers" and thus lose their jobs--parents cannot bring
                  their young children, who, in their tender childhood and youth, so need
                  graceful communion to the Fountain of life--to Christ the Savior, just as
                  young little saplings need the light and the warmth of the sun."


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

                  I could go on with more quotations from official Sobor documents, from the
                  Sobors of 1974, 1981, 1987, 1991, 1994, etc., right up to 2001, but the
                  questions concerned the **historical** position of the Church Abroad--and I
                  believe the quotations above are fully illustrative of that position.

                  Reading all of these Resolutions and official Sobor Epistles--from the
                  20's, 30's, 40's, 50's, 60's, etc.--one does not find a single statement
                  that the Moscow Patriarchate is graceless or that its Mysteries are
                  invalid, or that it is outside the Church.

                  And all of these Resolutions and Epistles underline the **temporary**
                  nature of the Church Abroad, and the need to strive towards the eventual
                  unity of the Church of Russia,


                  With love in Christ,

                  Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
                • Kiril Bart
                  I m looking for famous letter of Fr. Roman Lukianov, where he warned ROCOR that it will become a sect if not unified with MP. Does anyone have a link to share?
                  Message 8 of 10 , Dec 2, 2002
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                    I'm looking for famous letter of Fr. Roman Lukianov,
                    where he warned ROCOR that it will become a sect if
                    not unified with MP. Does anyone have a link to share?
                    Also I would be appreciated if someone can provide me
                    with sermon of late Vl. Mitrophan about Israel in our
                    Church.
                    Thank you, sinful subdeacon Kirill

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                  • goossir
                    Dear kirill, Please find hereunder the text from http://www.bostonrusschurch.org/index_en.html and a reply to it in:
                    Message 9 of 10 , Dec 3, 2002
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                      Dear kirill,

                      Please find hereunder the text from
                      http://www.bostonrusschurch.org/index_en.html and a reply to it in:
                      http://www.monasterypress.com/pathroca.html
                      Irina P.

                      --Mitred Archpriest Roman Lukianov, Parish Rector,
                      THE PATH OF THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH ABROAD
                      Observations and Thoughts of an Old Priest.

                      (Translated and revised by the Author)

                      In connection with the recent turmoil within the Russian
                      Orthodox Church Abroad, I think it would be beneficial to share
                      certain observations and reflections. Recently there has been much
                      talk about the path followed by the ROCA. Now it has become obvious
                      that the «straight» path which some people refer to, has led in the
                      end to a schism within the ROCA. This schism has been ripening over
                      many years. In order to understand what is going on, one should
                      look first of all at the Guideposts that actually have determined
                      the course of the ROCA throughout its history.

                      The First Guidepost was Ukaz (Decree) No. 362 of Patriarch Tikhon,
                      dated Nov. 20, 1920, paragraph 2: «In the event that a diocese, as
                      a result of movement of the front lines, or changes of state
                      borders, finds itself out of communication with the highest church
                      authority, or that the highest church authority itself, headed by
                      the Holy Patriarch, for some reason terminates its activity, the
                      diocesan bishop should immediately contact the bishops of the
                      adjacent dioceses in order to organize a higher level of church
                      administration for several dioceses which find themselves in similar
                      circumstances (in the form of a temporary church government or a
                      metropolitan district, or in some other way)».

                      This Ukaz was formulated at the time of the Civil War in
                      Russia, whose consequence was the departure abroad of a sizeable lay
                      flock (estimated at over a million), and of a substantial number of
                      clergy and bishops.

                      The Second Guidepost on the path of the ROCA were the early Sobors
                      (Councils) of Bishops Abroad, presided over by Metropolitan Anthony
                      (Khrapovitsky): the First Sobor in Constantinople in 1920, in which
                      34 bishops participated in person or in writing; the First Sobor of
                      representatives of the entire ROCA, held in the town of Sremskii
                      Karlovtsi in Serbia in 1921; and the Sobor of Bishops Abroad on
                      September 13, 1922, which estabilished a Temporary Synod of Bishops,
                      based on the above-quoted Ukaz No. 362 of Patriarch Tikhon. At
                      those Sobors, which led to the formal establishment of the Russian
                      Orthodox Church Abroad, were represented parishes in Europe, the
                      Balkans, the Near and Far East, North and South America, including
                      the soon-to-be-separated Metropolitan Districts: one known as the
                      Paris Metropolia, presently under the Patriarch of Constantinople,
                      and the other known today as the Orthodox Church in America in the
                      USA.

                      The Third Guidepost was the Resolution of the Sobor of Bishops of
                      the ROCA, in September of 1927, which rejected the Declaration of
                      Metropolitan Sergius and defined the following rule: «The part of
                      the All-Russian Church located abroad must cease all administrative
                      relations with the church administra-tion in Moscow…until
                      restoration of normal relations with Russia and until the liberation
                      of our Church from persecutions by the godless Soviet authorities…
                      The part of the Russian Church that finds itself abroad considers
                      itself an inseparable, spiritually united branch of the Great
                      Russian Church. It does not separate itself from its Mother Church
                      and does not consider itself autocephalous.» This Resolution makes
                      it clear that the emigre Hierarchs, while rejecting what later
                      became known as «Sergianism», did not separate the part of the
                      church that was abroad from that in the homeland, thus showing
                      compassion to those who did not withstand the terror. At about that
                      time evolved the concept of the three parts of the Russian Church:
                      the «Church enslaved», that is, the Moscow Patriarchate;
                      the «Catacomb Church», i.e, the secret, persecuted, underground
                      Church of confessors within the borders of the Soviet Union; and
                      the «Russian Orthodox Church Abroad», which was the free voice of
                      the whole Russian Church.

                      The Fourth Guidepost was the adoption of the Temporary Polozheniye
                      (Fundamental Law) of the ROCA by the General Sobor of Bishops on
                      September 22-24, 1936. Its first paragraph states: «The Russian
                      Orthodox Church Abroad, which consists of dioceses, spiritual
                      missions, and parishes outside Russia, is an inseparable part of the
                      Russian Orthodox Church, which exists temporarily under autonomous
                      administration». This Sobor, in effect, established an orderly
                      administrative leadership of the ROCA for the entire period of its
                      independent existence.

                      The Fifth Guidepost is defined by the Reply of the Blessed
                      Metropolitan Anastassy in 1945, and of the Bishops' Sobor in Munich
                      in 1946, in response to the address of the Patriarch of Moscow
                      Aleksey I, who called for reunification after the Second World War.
                      During this terrible period of manhunts by Soviet agents for
                      displaced persons and non-returnees all across Western Europe,
                      Metropolitan Anastassy, reasserting the necessity for the continued
                      existence of independent ROCA, writes: «The bishops, the clergy and
                      the laymen, subordinate to the jurisdiction of the Synod of Bishops
                      Abroad, never broke canonical, prayer, or spiritual unity with their
                      Mother Church.» The Sobor of Bishops in its message, writes to the
                      Patriarch of Moscow: «We trust that…on the bones of martyrs a new
                      free Russia will arise, strong in Orthodox truth and brotherly love…
                      then all of her scattered sons, without any pressure or force, but
                      freely and joyfully, will strive to return from all over into her
                      maternal embrace. Recognizing our unbroken spiritual bonds with our
                      homeland, we sincerely pray to the Lord that he may speedily heal
                      the wounds inflicted upon our homeland by this heavy, although
                      victorious, war, and bless it with peace and well-being.» This
                      message was signed by Metropolitan Anastassy, three archbishops, and
                      ten bishops.

                      The Sixth Guidepost, and probably the most important one in our
                      days, is the Corporate Charter in the USA of our Church Abroad,
                      which was signed by its most prominent Hierarchs, Metropolitan
                      Anastassy, Archbishop Vitaly (Maximenko), Archbishop Tikhon,
                      Archbishop Hieronim, Bishop Seraphim, and Bishop Nikon, and
                      registered in the State of New York on April 30th, 1952. It states:

                      «II. The principal aim and purpose of the corporation
                      shall be to provide for the administration of dioceses, missions,
                      monasteries, churches and parishes of the Russian Orthodox Church,
                      which are located in the United States of America, the Dominion of
                      Canada and other countries which are outside of the Soviet Union and
                      the satellites of the Soviet Union, but including dioceses,
                      missions, monasteries and churches which recognise the corporation
                      as the supreme ecclesiastical authority over them.

                      «III. The corporation in its corporate functions and
                      operation, and all of its trustees and officers, shall maintain no
                      relations whatever with the Russian ecclesiastical authorities and
                      organizations within the boundaries of the Soviet Union and the
                      satellites of the Soviet Union, so long as the said countries, or
                      any of them, shall be subject to Communist rule.»

                      Further on, the next paragraph of the Charter refers to
                      Ukaz #362 of Patriarch Tikhon of November 20, 1920, and its
                      acceptance by the Sobor of Bishops on November 24, 1936. This

                      demonstrates that Metropolitan Anastassy and all Bishops,
                      signatories of the Charter, just as, in their time, Metropolitan
                      Anthony and the founding Bishops of the Russian Church Abroad,
                      accepted the fact that the validity of the Ukaz of Patriarch Tikhon,
                      which, in effect, is his Patriarchal Blessing, is limited in time.
                      In turn, they also Blessed the time-limited independent existence of
                      the Russian Church Abroad until the fall of the Communist regime.

                      The Seventh Guidepost is again the Polozheniye
                      (Fundamental Law) of the Russian Church Abroad, revised and approved
                      by the Sobor of Bishops, presided over by Metropolitan Anastassy, in
                      1956. Its paragraph #1 states: «The Russian Orthodox Church Abroad
                      is an inseparable part of the Local (Pomestnoy) Orthodox Church,
                      temporarily self-governing until the fall in Russia of the godless
                      authorities, in compliance with the Decision of Holy Patriarch
                      Tikhon and the Highest Church Council of the Church in Russia of
                      7 /20 November 1920, #362.» The same Paragraph is repeated word for
                      word in the Polozheniye, reviewed and re-approved in 1964.

                      In 1956 the Reply of Metropolitan Anastassy was reprinted by Holy
                      Trinity Monastery. The same themes were voiced by Archbishop Vitaly
                      (Maximenko) of blessed memory, in his work «Motifs of My Life».
                      Archbishop Andrew (Fr.Adrian) used to refer to the Church Abroad as
                      a temporarily self-governing Diocese of the Russian Church. Holy
                      Archbishop John of Shanghai and San Francisco wrote: «The Russian
                      Church Abroad does not separate itself spiritually from the
                      suffering Mother Church. She offers up prayers for her, preserves
                      her spiritual and material wealth, and in due time will reunite with
                      her, when the reasons which have caused the separation will have
                      vanished.» Similar statements were made by many other archpastors,
                      priests and writers in the church press. It is from them that our
                      generation, which came into the Church after the end of the Second
                      World War in 1945, has acquired the understanding of the temporary
                      existence of the independent Russian Church Abroad until the
                      liberation of Russia from the Communist yoke. The calls of
                      Metropolitans Anastassy and Philaret of blessed memory to abstain
                      even from conventional contacts with the representatives of the
                      Moscow Patriarchate had to do with the period of the 1960s and
                      1970s, when the Soviet government began to use the Church for its
                      own ends througout the Western world. And Metropolitan Vitaly was
                      completely correct when he said that we cannot declare that the
                      Church in Russia is without Grace, but certain specific deeds of its
                      clergy, performed on orders of the godless authorities in order to
                      harm the Church, are, of course, graceless.

                      In 1991 the Communist regime fell and the totalitarian
                      Soviet state ceased to exist. The leftovers of the Soviet mentality
                      and even of the State government still remain, but the country and
                      the Church consider themselves free and feel free, and there is no
                      more party ideology to interfere with Church communications.
                      Therefore, with the fall of the Soviet government and cessation of
                      terror in 1991, there also ended the time span, blessed by Holy
                      Patriarch Tikhon and the founding Archpastors of the Russian
                      Orthodox Church Abroad for the existence of ROCA as a separate
                      entity.

                      The Path marked by the abovementioned Guideposts began
                      to be subtly changed with the secret (and canonically questionable)
                      consecration of Bishop Varnava (Barnabas) in about 1984. A new
                      ideology began to be evident, subtly but deeply russophobic. Under
                      the guise of restoring the archpastorship of the Catacomb Church,
                      new church bodies began to be created within Russia, subordinate to
                      the Church Abroad. The old Catacomb Church, which was highly
                      respected as the Church of true confessors, was soon forgotten. The
                      new ideology promoted the idea that the Russian Church Abroad is the
                      only true Church, and the bearer of the restoration of the Church in
                      Russia. This led to estrangement and unnecessary confrontations
                      between the Russian Church Abroad and the Mother Church, and then to
                      a strange set of attitudes and actions on the part of some ROCA
                      bishops, first in Russia, and more recently abroad. Now that these
                      bishops and their followers have expelled themselves from the Church
                      Abroad and created their own church organizations, the Church Abroad
                      has regained freedom of opinion and an opportunity to return to the
                      path blessed by Holy Patriarch Tikhon and the Founding First
                      Hierarchs and Archpastors of blessed memory.

                      The new obstacles to normal relations that have been
                      brought forward within our Church Abroad, such as the absence of
                      repentance, failure to glorify the Royal New Martyrs, Sergianism,
                      and participation in the ecumenical movement, have today ceased to
                      be insurmountable. Back in 1993 His Holiness, Patriarch of Moscow
                      and All Russia, Alexey II and the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox
                      Church proclaimed, before God and the Russian people, repentance for
                      the sin of regicide. Their Epistle on the 75th anniversary of the
                      murder of Emperor Nicholas II and his family states: «With
                      augmented prayer and great pain in our hearts we commemorate this
                      sad Anniversary… The sin of regicide, which took place amid the
                      indifference of the citizens of Russia, has not been repented of by
                      our people. Being a transgression of both the law of God and civil
                      law, this sin weighs extremely heavily upon the souls of our people,
                      upon its moral conscience. And today, on behalf of the whole
                      Church, on behalf of her children, both reposed and living, we
                      proclaim repentance before God and the people for this sin. Forgive
                      us, O Lord! We call to repentance all of our people, all of our
                      children, regardless of their political views and opinions about
                      history, regardless of their attitude toward the idea of Monarchy
                      and the personality of the last Russian Tsar. Repentance of the sin
                      committed by our forefathers should become for us a banner of
                      unity. May today's sad date unite us in prayer with the Russian
                      Orthodox Church Abroad, with whom we so sincerely desire restoration
                      of spiritual unity in faithfulness to the Spirit of Christ... .»
                      The call was, unfortunately, ignored.

                      The Royal New Martyrs were glorified, and Sergianism and
                      ecumenism rejected, by the Jubilee Sobor of Bishops of the Russian
                      Orthodox Church in the year 2000. Sergianism, being in fact not a
                      doctrine but a mode of behavior, was rejected in the
                      chapter «Fundamental Conceptions of Society» in the published Acts
                      of the Sobor, and ecumenism in the chapter «Fundamental Principles
                      of Relations of the Orthodox Church to the Heterodox.» In October
                      of 2001, in his «Brotherly Epistle to the Sobor of Bishops of the
                      Russian Church Abroad,» His Holiness, Patriarch Alexey II again
                      called for mutual forgiveness and restoration of liturgical
                      communion. The answer of the ROCA Sobor of Bishops was only mildly
                      encouraging.

                      Just as in the Church in Russia the veneration of the
                      Royal New Martyrs was widely practiced by believers long before
                      their official glorification, so it is that parishioners of the
                      Church Abroad, when they visit Russia, pray, confess, and partake of
                      Holy Communion in their beloved churches and monasteries of the
                      Moscow Patriarchate, and have humbly done so for many years, without
                      making an issue of it. And after visiting Russia, many of our
                      clergy, including American converts to Orthodoxy, state in private
                      conversations that those who say there is no Grace in the churches
                      of the Moscow Patriarchate do not know what they are talking about.
                      As no one has wanted to provoke the ill winds of dissension within
                      our ranks, it has been customary not to make such observations
                      publicly. However, now that the bearers of ill winds have expelled
                      themselves from the Church, showing no respect for anyone including
                      the Sobor of Bishops, the possibility has arisen again, and perhaps
                      for the last time, of restoring God-pleasing spiritual unity and
                      normal relations with the whole Mother Church.

                      Sinful individuals and bad deeds have always existed,
                      exist now, and will continue to exist both there, in Russia, and
                      here in our midst. But a division which was lawful, must not be
                      allowed to evolve into sectarian schism, a phenomenon much discussed
                      and feared by many of our priests and parishioners, both, Russians
                      and Americans. If the Russian Church Abroad is allowed to become «a
                      broken-off vine», it will be doomed to a slow but inevitable drying
                      out, an atrophy from which no collection of selected quotations from
                      the Canons will save us. On the other hand, the restoration of
                      Eucharistic and Canonical unity with the Mother Church, with an
                      autonomous administration of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of
                      Russia, appears to be the natural next Guidepost in the current
                      History of the Church of the Great Russian Exodus into Diaspora.


                      Archpriest Roman Lukianov

                      December 11,
                      2001 Boston

                      New Martyr Metropolitan Seraphim

                      (Chichagov) of St. Petersburg.

                      Emphases are the author's.


                      References: Óêàç Ïàòðèàðõà Òèõîíà ¹ 362, 1920 ã. [Ukase of
                      Patriarch Tikhon No. 362, 1920.]
                      Ïîëîæåíèÿ ...1936, 1956 è 1964 ãã. [Statutes… 1936, 1956, and
                      1964.]
                      Îòâåò Ìèòð. Àíàñòàñèÿ â 1945 ã. Äæîðäàíâèëü, 1956 ã. [Reply of
                      Metr. Anastassy in 1945. Jordanville, 1965.]
                      Corporate Charter of the Russian Church Abroad, 1952, New York, N.Y.
                      Ðóññêàÿ Ç. Ö., Àðõèåï. Èîàíí (Ìàêñèìîâè÷), Äæîðäàíâèëü, 1991 ã.
                      [The Russian Church Abroad, Archbishop
                      John (Maximovich), Jordanville, 1991.]
                      Îáçîð Èñòîðèè Ð.Ö., Ïðîô. È.Ì.Àíäðååâà, Äæîðäàíâèëü, 1952 ã.
                      [Survey of the History of the Russian Church,
                      Professor I. M. Andreev, Jordanville, 1991.]
                      Ìîòèâû Ìîåé Æèçíè, Àðõèåï. Âèòàëèé (Ìàêñèìåíêî). [Motifs of My
                      Life, Archbishop Vitaly (Maximenko).]
                      Îáðàùåíèÿ Ñâÿòåéøåãî Ïàòðèàðõà Àëåêñèÿ II, 1993, 2001 ãã. [Addresses
                      of All-Holy Patriarch Alexey II, 1993, 2001.]

                      - In orthodox-synod@y..., Kiril Bart <kirbart@y...> wrote:
                      > I'm looking for famous letter of Fr. Roman Lukianov,
                      > where he warned ROCOR that it will become a sect if
                      > not unified with MP. Does anyone have a link to share?
                      > Also I would be appreciated if someone can provide me
                      > with sermon of late Vl. Mitrophan about Israel in our
                      > Church.
                      > Thank you, sinful subdeacon Kirill
                      >
                      > __________________________________________________
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                      > Yahoo! Mail Plus - Powerful. Affordable. Sign up now.
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                    • elisabeth shohov
                      I certainly may in fact be able to procure a copy if I can track it down. But before I do, I would like to know beforehand what exactly why you have such an
                      Message 10 of 10 , Jan 18, 2003
                      • 0 Attachment
                        I certainly may in fact be able to procure a copy if I can track it down. But before I do, I would like to know beforehand what exactly why you have such an interest in the sermon. Thanks, E
                        Kiril Bart <kirbart@...> wrote: I'm looking for famous letter of Fr. Roman Lukianov,
                        where he warned ROCOR that it will become a sect if
                        not unified with MP. Does anyone have a link to share?
                        Also I would be appreciated if someone can provide me
                        with sermon of late Vl. Mitrophan about Israel in our
                        Church.
                        Thank you, sinful subdeacon Kirill

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