Will Stalin Be Made A Saint?

Moscow, July 23: The Orthodox Church in Russia is under growing pressure to make former Soviet dictator Josef Stalin a saint if he wins a popularity poll to nominate the greatest Russian in history. 

The Communist party in St Petersburg has petitioned the Orthodox Church to canonize Stalin if he wins the poll for the 'Name of Russia' being conducted by the state-run Rossiya channel. 

The Soviet leader, who was responsible for the deaths of around 15 million people during his 31-year dictatorial rule, is in second place in online voting that seeks to nominate the greatest Russian historical figure. But with months still left for the end of the polling, Russian Communists are determined to put Stalin on top. 

Stalin has undergone a remarkable renaissance in recent years with opinion polls regularly naming him Russia's greatest post-revolution leader after Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. 

"By the end of the 21st century, icons of St Josef Stalin will be in every Orthodox Church," said Sergei Malinkovich, the Communist party leader who is driving the Stalin canonisation campaign, was quoted as saying by The Daily Telegraph newspaper of Britain. 

The London-based daily said the Communist leader's resurgence owes much to the Kremlin, which under Putin's presidency appeared to support a campaign to rehabilitate Stalin, with television documentaries, films and books released in recent years eulogising him. 

The Russian strongman destroyed thousands of churches and sent tens of thousands of clerics to the gulags and their deaths. 

Despite the church's reluctance, St Petersburg's Communists are convinced their vision will come to pass. They have already commissioned religious icons depicting Stalin with a halo round his head that have reportedly sold very well around the city. 

Bureau Report 

Two Booklets

Dear Readers,

I hope you will read the book, BITTER FRUITS OF A SWEET CAPTIVITY. This booklet has the potential, if read carefully and prayerfully, to impart a true understanding of Spiritual Sergianism. click here http://bitterfruitsofasweetcaptivity.blogspot.com

Also I hope you will read the booklet I just typed in THE TRUTH ABOUT THE RUSSIAN CHURCH ABROAD. Written in 1953. This booklet is more than just a history account from an insider. It shows us that what the antichrist spirit is doing today (regarding our Church) is just a continuation of what was happening then, down to the same tactics. It really helps to answer the question of what happened (is happening) to us. http://rocorhistory.blogspot.com

Love, Joanna

Modern Day Parisian Society

American Orthodox Institute (www.aoiusa.org) is today's "Parisian" school.
This introduction is taken from their website:
Founded in 2005, AOI is the first independent civil society institution or “think tank” to promote the views, achievements and aspirations of Orthodox Christians in the United States. AOI believes that Orthodox Christianity, and the sorely needed moral witness it provides to a pluralistic and secular society, can no longer be content with its “best kept secret” status.

Here is what the book 'Not Of This World' says about Fr. Seraphim Rose being at odds with the Orthodox scholars of his day:
"The new breed of scholars came first of all from the so-called 'Parisian' school of Orthodox thought, composed mostly of members of the Russian intelligentsia."

In the booklet 'The Truth About The Russian Church Abroad' (1975) by M. Rodzianko*, it says that according to the book 'Documents And Thoughts About Exiling Scholars From Soviet Russia In 1922' by Dr. W. Liebenov (Berlin), these (parisian) scholars were granted financial assistance from the Soviet government.

This Parisian Society went by different names. In Russia it was the "Religious-Philosophical Society". When the bolshevik upheaval occurred this society appeared again under the name of "Free Academy of Spiritual Culture". In Berlin they opened the "Religious Philosophical Academy", which later moved to Paris where it formed the "Brotherhood of Sophia".

The teachings of the "Brotherhood of Sophia", as you can guess by the name, were very obviously unOrthodox. About this 'Not Of This World' says,
"The most famous of these thinkers...defended a whole system of heretical ideas which were later condemned by the Russian Church both in the Soviet Union and in the free world. The next generation of thinkers (Fr. Seraphim's generation) was more subdued and careful; they would never fall into teachings so foreign to the Church. In many respects, however, they shared the same general approach. Some of them came to America, bringing that approach with them. Chief among them was Alexander Schmemann."

Like the "Living Church", these societies weaken the Church from within with renovations and modernism. And, today, partly by reducing Orthodoxy to a moral system (however superior to other moral systems).

One of the clues for identifying these "think-tankers" is when they exhort you to draw the heathen to Othodoxy by the example of your life. This certainly is not what drew me to Orthodoxy. The Truth drew me, both the capital "T" Truth and the lower case "t" truth. The examples I observed ate candy during the Divine Liturgy, never came to Vigils, and some were masons.

Another clue to identifying "think-tankers" is their focus on currently popular moral issues, especially if there is a hint of hope for improving our society. Here is the concluding paragraph of an article 'The Twelve Days Of Christmas' by Fr. Johannes Jacobse, President of AOI:

"Orthodox Christianity can contribute to the recovery of the moral foundation of American culture by imparting knowledge that can strengthen and deepen that foundation. It will happen, however, only if Orthodox Christians reflect this understanding in their own practice and observance of the Feasts." (www.orthodoxytoday.org/articles/JacobseChristmas.htm)

(The above is the conclusion of an article by the renovationist Fr. Johannes. The article was reprinted in my ROCOR-MP parish bulletin just months after the signing of the union.)

There is something else to notice about this conclusion of Fr.Johannes. Something even more sinister. Notice how the author does not just IGNORE the Church's end-times teachings, he actually CONTRADICTS them.

Ignoring the Church's end-times teachings is characteristic of SCOBA. End-times and Antichrist are forbidden subjects. The SCOBA leaders have ready their canned reasons designed to quickly nip off at the bud anyone's interest in end-times prophecy. One of those is, "You should think of your own end."

But it was not long ago that we, in old ROCOR, were carefully taught what to expect in the end-times and how to recognize Antichrist and the antichrist spirit. My patron, St. John Maximovitch was one of those teachers. Archbishop Averky used to interrupt himself to teach about end-times. (We are taught that things will only get worse, not better. And not to try to stop it, but to learn to recognize the antichrist spirit, so not to be fooled by it.)

It does not surprise me to see end-times teachings ignored. But this is the first time I've seen them contradicted. This article, 'The Twelve Days of Christmas', was reprinted in a ROCOR-MP parish bulletin within months after the union. ROCOR-MP has entered into this world of SCOBA. It does not appear to notice how its focus has shifted from its preserving the Truth and reflecting in the Heavenly Church, to how it compares with and reflects in the world.

*The Truth About The Russian Church Abroad, booklet by M. Rodzianko, can be read here. Click on "STUDY-ROCOR History" under LINKS or go to http://www.rocorhistory.blogspot.com

OCA Concelebrates With ROCOR-MP

Just in case anyone still is in doubt or in denial about the fact that ROCOR-MP is in fact in communion with the OCA, you can read about the 2008 Orthodox Conference in Erie (June 17-22):

"... Every day various clergy concelebrated ... Clergy from (ROCOR-MP), the Moscow Patriarchate and the Orthodox Church in America concelebrated - something that would have been unthinkable at the conference in 1986. Particularly notable was June 18, when none other than the dean of the prestigious St Vladimir's Seminary and the dean of the historic Minneapolis parish of the O.C.A. joined in concelebrating the Liturgy ..."

The above link can also be accessed through http://fatherjohn.blogspot.com/2008/07/2008-orthodox-conference-erie.html, in the first paragraph of part 3.


EP Now Denies Dual Unia Statements

PRESS RELEASE At the Patriarchate, the 5th of July 2008
From the Chief Secretariat of the Holy Synod

With respect to the recently published articles reporting that allegedly His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew believes that it is possible for the Greek Catholics (Uniates) to have a "double union", in other words, full communion with Rome as well as with Constantinople, the Ecumenical Patriarchate refutes this inaccurate statement and affirms it was never made. The Ecumenical Patriarchate repeats its position that full union in faith is a prerequisite for sacramental communion.


MP Monasteries Can't Be Agrarian

Religion News 26 June 2008, 17:20
The Bishops' Council participant calls to prevent monasteries from being turned into internet clubs and agrarian farms
Moscow, June 26, Interfax - The Moscow Patriarchate calls novitiates and monks to remember the higher essence of monkhood.

"Unfortunately, we have to acknowledge that we can hardly find those deeply realized principles of monastic being which were set by the founders and successors of their feat in the history of the Orthodox Church in today's monasteries," Archbishop of Orekhovo-Zuyevo Alexy said at one of the working groups' meetings of the Bishops' Council.

Speaking about challenges in this area, Archbishop Alexy, who is also the head of the Synodal Committee for Monastic Live, mentioned that it was important that monks went outside their monasteries on exceptional occasions only.

Equally important is that "unnecessary interior decorations, and much less luxury things are prevented from monastic cells," Archbishop Alexy said.

"Modesty, persistence and order appropriate to monastic image shall be maintained throughout. How can we speak about abstinence and spiritual growth, when monks have TV-sets and computers with Internet access in their cells," Archbishop wondered.

He also mentioned that the monk's or novitiate's access to Internet shall be justified only by his obedience (related, for instance, to maintaining the monastery's site, publishing activity, missionary, spiritual charge or any other beneficial activity or religious education).

According to Archbishop Alexy, religious people "even priests and monks" often promote "renovation statements regarding service, fasts, and relation to hierarchy and other regulations."

"Some of them, having taken their vows or deaconhood, immediately dare to object Archbishop or even Patriarch. Those who have so quickly forgotten their vows to God and church oath should be treated accordingly, including canonic measures, to prevent them from tempting others and corrupting the morals of their brothers," Archbishop Alexy said.

He also called to combine intelligence, labour and prayer in monastic life, because the monastery was not a "construction firm, agricultural business, tailor shop, fishery, bakery, publishing house, shelter, asylum or children's school."

"All the above is included in monastic obedience, but it does not mean that beneficial work have primary importance in the monastic hierarchy," Archbishop said.


MP Priest Rock Drummer

Fr Sergei Rybko Plays the Drums at a Rock Festival in Perm
Published July 1, 2008 Christian , Interfax , Orthodox life , Russian , Voice of Russia , contemporary , inspirational , music , performing arts , religious , rock
Fr Sergei Rybko, rector of St Sergius parish in Bibirevo, “the Apostle to the Counterculture”
Perm, 30 June 2008 (Interfax):

Hegumen Sergei Rybko, rector of St Sergius parish in Bibirevo, who preaches amongst rockers, hippies, bikers, and counterculture youth, played the drums at the opening of a rock festival at the abandoned Bakharevka airdrome in Perm. Accompanying him, his colleague, Fr Nikolai, played the guitar at the opening ceremony. The priests played several rock numbers, the website of the newspaper Permsky Obozrevatel (The Perm Review) reported. Earlier, Patriarch Aleksei decorated Fr Sergei with a church order for his successful missionary work. Fr Sergei related that he turned to God thanks to such legendary rock-groups as the Beatles, Pink Floyd, and Led Zeppelin. He has composed a rock-opera. “There’s a way to God and to salvation through rock music, and this road is very wide. Many of our Russian rock musicians are Orthodox people. They are turning to God more and more in their music”, Fr Sergei said.