Valentin was once a monk in the Church of Russia who for some reason switched to the Russian Church Abroad (Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, or ROCOR for short), which at the time (immediately post-Soviet) was setting up church vs. church (yet both are in the Orthodox communion!) in the mother country.
- Metropolitan Valentin left the MP, after becoming fully aware of it's heterodoxy and when he was asked by his superiors to comprimise his confession by participating in ecumenical activities. This caused him to reflect, and come to the realization that he could no longer remain in the MP's juristiction.
- The MP and ROCOR existing in one and the same "church" is a fantasy of recent origin in the ROCOR. A lot of the confusion in ROCOR regarding it's relationship to the Serbs and Jerusalem, has to do with a profound lack of discipline in ROCOR in years past. Because of it's close friendships with the Serbs, many had a sentemental attachment which ignored the events of 1965 (when the EP Athenagoras pretended to lift the anathemas of the Church from the Papacy), which caused ROCOR to separate itself from "world Orthodoxy" as such. This is precisely why up until recently, public concelebrations with Serbian clergy were very controversial events
when they did happen - precisely because the ROCOR was not in communion with them, nor the JP for that matter.
- The adamant insistance upon such "unbroken ties" with the JP and Serbian heirarchies, is of relatively recent import. This much is evidenced by the 1983 Anathema
of the ROCOR against the pan-heresy of ecumenism, which condemned not only ecumenists themselves, but those who maintained communion with them
. It is quite incredible then, to affirm beyond this point ('83) that the ROCOR would be in communion with the Serbian or Jerusalem Patriarchates, as both were either involved in ecumenical activities (as the Serbs certainly are to this day) or maintain uninterupted relations with other ecumenism mired bodies. The above rationale is unavoidable, even when one takes for granted the modern insistance by the ROCOR that her anathema against ecumenism
was only of "local importance" (applied only to the ROCOR itself) - since said anathema would forbid their relations with ecumenists.
- That ROCOR was establishing parishes in Russia proper, either indicates that it did not recognize the MP as a Church, OR is an incredible act of duplicity (to knowingly set up a rival heirarchy on another legit heirarchy's "turf".) There are no other options than this.
V. became the Church Abroad's bishop - in Russia.
But he broke with them.
And set up shop on his own - the Russian Orthodox Autonomous Church, or ROAC, a church not recognized by anybody in the Orthodox communion. A Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Orthodoxy.
You're leaving alot
out of here, and I cannot believe it is unintentional - you're not THIS ignorant. Even if you stipulated you did not agree with the reasoning for said break, or even portrayed it in a negative light, your total omission of ROAC's rationale for existing is very
- Metropolitan Valentin (along with most of his fellow heirarchs in Russia itself, please keep in mind - this was not a one man "operation" as such) and others broke with the ROCOR, because of radical changes in ROCOR's orientation and teaching in the mid 90's.
- The first ill signs, involved the ROCOR's establishment of relations with the Cyprianite TOC of Greece. Said "Metropolitan" Cyprian was an excommunicate from the GOC of Greece (Greek Old Calendarists), who at one time held their doctrine regarding the heresy of ecumenism (and the consequences of said heresy - namely, heretics are not members of Christ, which is an apostolic affirmation), but in later times changed his mind, and had himself clandestinely "consecrated" to the episcopate. He began to teach a different teaching on the subject, one which has been aptly characterized by it's opponents as the "holy heretic" teaching. Namely, that "church" bodies which have officially taught, assimilated, and are in communion with heresy, can yet still somehow be recognized as genuine parts of the Church of Christ. This teaching, is actually a form of ecumenism's branch-theorism, and is actually explicitely condemned by ROCOR's own anathema against ecumenism. Hence, at least for someone fully accepting the ROCOR's legitimacy and stand up to that time, the union with the Cyprianites was inadmissable.
As bad as the union with the Cyprianite's themselves, was ROCOR's official statement from then Metropolitan Vitaly, that the Cyprianite's ecclessiology was synonymous with that of the ROCOR - a manifestly false statement, though definately true of the ROCOR's leadership from thereon in.
- Along with this, has been the steadily building momentum in the ROCOR's recent leadership, towards union with the MP - despite it's continued problems due to it's Soviet past, and the fact that it is definately in communion with heresy, and heavily involved in the ecumenical movement. This has yet to be consumated, but it's well known that there is now a dominating, powerful faction in ROCOR pushing for this.
- Only in a neo-papist ecclessiology (and all of the legal postivism that goes along with said ecclessiology, with it's dictatorial "truth of the moment") would the above information (ROCOR's new orientation, self anathematization) be deemed "irrelevent" to ROAC's necessary existance as a body that has broken ties with the ROCOR heirarchy. Judases who kiss off the dogmas and holy canons of the Orthodox Church, are not themselves "Orthodox" in anything but name - hence I fail to see how ROAC's refusal to have anything to do with heretics can make it an "Orthoxy outside of Orthodoxy" (a bizarre statement if there ever was one!).
And - AFAIK this is public record so I can repeat it - he was convicted in Russia for sex offences involving young men. I don't know if that was appealed or overturned so I assume it still stands.
There are several things that need to be said of this scandal.
- The charges themselves were false, being instigated by those inside the MP, who have actively persecuted ROAC chapels, clergy, and parishoners in Russian proper. The MP, being a Soviet institution, thinks nothing of using Soviet tactics, including nationalist thugs and criminals to assault the ROAC. In fact, Metropolitan Valentin has been told, very explicitly, that the charges would have "disappeared" if he had simply returned to the care of the MP. Given the documented arsons and vandalizations (which are shocking and disgusting in their details) which go on up until this day in Russia itself, and what we know of the MP's manner of operation abroad (ROCOR itself should know of this very well! The forgetfulness of it's current leadership is very telling), this is not hard to believe at all.
- While this will probably not matter to many who claim to be "canonical Orthodox" (yet who ignore the Canons, oddly enough), the entire manner of Metropolitan Valentin's accusation, including WHO was making the accusations, and their quality, do not at all meet the canonical requirements
to so much as hold an ecclessiastical trial, let alone convict Vladyka Valentin in the sight of Holy Mother Church. Hence, from an ecclessial standpoint, this is very much a non-issue. However, it is worth saying that because of the way this is used to confused people, Metropolitan Valentin (who has always maintained his innocence) to this day is working to have his name cleared.
And more recently the ex-Orthodox metropolitan has been trolling the US picking up a few people from the Church Abroad.
So, Joe Zollars, which ROAC church do you belong to? Attend? Visit? How do you find the services? To your liking?
(Not to pry into people's churchgoing, but since Mr Z online repeatedly, loudly has identified himself with this group recently, these are fair questions, if a bit blunt.)
Given your past retiscence at answering any direct questions about your ecclessiastical affiliations, I find the above prying to be quite hypocritical on your part.
For what it's worth, by the grace of God, I am a catechumen with the ROAC. Unfortunately, at the moment I am geographically far from a parish, though given the amount of interest and steady stream of petitions Vladyka Gregory of Denver is receiving from people to enter the ROAC (both those leaving fallen "Orthodox" churches, and even many who are leaving other forms of heresy - I've already spoken to several former-papists, like myself, who have approached the ROAC), it probably will not be too long before a local mission can be established. These are the difficult realities of this age of apostacy.