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Heorhij
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« on: August 19, 2010, 06:44:31 PM »

An Assault on the Soul

An open letter of Fr. Peter Vintsukevich to His Holiness the Patriarch of Moscow and All-Russia, +KIRILL

Your Holiness,

I am writing in Russian so that you could understand me better. First of all, please let me introduce myself. I am an Orthodox Christian, and a former inmate of Stalin’s forced labor camps. In the mid-1990-s, I was the Provost of the Volyn’ Spiritual Seminary of the UOC-KP.

Yes! In a way you and I are classmates. I was honored to take classes in the same institution you took classes: in the Leningrad Spiritual Academy of the Russian Orthodox Church! Unfortunately, soon after I was admitted, I was expelled, because, as a former political prisoner, I had no right to obtain a residential permit in a big city of the USSR. Yet, I still managed to graduate from the Academy, with a degree of Div.D., in another place – in the Catacomb Church of Patriarch Tikhon. There are rumors that you, too, were somehow “persecuted,” although it did not prevent you from making a brilliant career very fast. I am sorry that I called you my classmate. Believe me, I reminded you that you and I used to go to the same school not because I wanted to share in your glory. It’s just so that you will know that I know the Church history, the Christian theology and the Canon Law just like you know them, not any less. So our conversation might become serious. Of course, you are free to not engage in polemics with some former jail bird like myself. Well, maybe you might pass this to one of your Metropolitans, +NIKON (he is from Ukraine, from the Volyn oblast!), and then maybe he will object to what I will be saying; that’s what I hope so much.

Your Holiness! In your sermons delivered in the Odesa, Dnipropetrovs’k, and Kyiv, you talked so much about the “fact” that our (Ukrainian and Russian) nations are the same one nation. You also talked so much about canonicity, and about repentance. So may I just split this really big topic into three. There is: (1) history, (2) Canon Law, and (3) ethics.

Let us begin with history. The whole point, made by you in your sermons, boils down to the following: because we, Ukrainians and Russians, are actually one people (or one nation), the claims of Ukrainians that they are entitled to their own Orthodox jurisdiction make no sense. Let me point it out straight away that the thesis that Ukrainians and Russians are the same people (or nation) has absolutely no scientific basis. From the point of view of ethnicity, our two peoples have always been exactly that – two different peoples, never the same one people. We, Ukrainians, happened to be occupied by a neighbor, who was, militarly, stronger than we were, and we have been lingering in this state of being occupied, which we hated, for about 300 years. The argument that we, Ukrainians and Russians, by our own good will, were “voluntarily” “re-united,” is a fairy tale, because the moment Ukraine agreed to come under the Moscow’s “protection” (in 1654), the Ukrainian home rule (Het’man’s rule) was destroyed, and so were the Cossack army, the printing of books in the Ukrainian language, the national culture and, finally, our most ancient among the Eastern Slavic peoples Church Metropoly. All that, including the latter, was done in a most brutal and cunning, trust-breaking, deceitful fashion. That’s what this so-called “being re-united” actually was.

Let’s see; in the first place, were we, Ukrainians and Russians, really related in terms of “blood” (ethnicity)? Well, look at the map of Eastern Europe of the 9th – 10th centuries. It tells you that Slavic tribes – Polyany, Drevlyany, Dregovychy, Radymychy, Kryvychy, Polochany, Volynyany, - inhabited what is now Ukraine and Belarus. To the east and to the north of them, there were Ugro-Finnish tribes with their entirely different language and culture; Chud’, Ves’, Merya, Cheremisy, Mordva, Perm’, Yam, and others. Nestor the Chronicle-Writer indicates exactly that (see “The Chronicle of Times,” chapter 25, paragraph 6). Those tribes had absolutely no relation to Slavs. They were not very highly developed socially and they had no government or administration of their own that would be in any way sustainable. So, they had to invite Scandinavians to rule over them (“come and rule us”). Yet, Kyiv Rus’ had no need in the “help” of this kind. By that time (9th – 10th centuries), it became so powerful as a state of Europe that it threatened even the Byzantine Empire. Sadly, in a few decades, Prince Oleg, a Scandinavian, treacherously murdered Kyiv princes Askol’d and Dir and conquered Kyiv. Yet, your Metropolitan +AGATHANGEL says, “”The Kyiv Rus’ has ALWAYS been ONE with the Great Russia (i.e. with what was to the northeast of it). Kyiv (or, as he writes “Kiev”) without the Great Russia, in the state of separation from her, can not be conceived in any case.” But… isn’t it just ridiculous? Just look – there was NO “Great Russia” in the 9th – 10th century; in fact, there was NO “RUSSIA” WHATSOEVER!!! What really existed, was Kyivan Rus’ and her people – Rusychy, Rusyny (i.e. the present-day Ukrainians and Belarussians). So, what exactly is it – stupidity? Complete ignorance? Or Ukrainophobia that simply cannot be stopped? I think it’s a mixture of all three. Stupidity always marches together with hatred and haughtiness.

OK, now let’s look at this situation from a different angle. If you Russians and we Ukrainians really are one people – why, then, did you keep annihilating us by millions? You were busy destroying our authentic culture. You imprisoned scores of our patriots and had them rot. You executed us with artificial starvation. You used all means possible to destroy us, and you continue to use the means that you consider possible still! Just ask people in the Russian heartland, how do they feel about Ukraine. Of course you will hear: “Urrgh, these Khokhly, these Banderites.” This is what your statistics says: 60% of Russian citizens consider Ukraine to be evil. Just like one hero of a Dostoyevsky novel said: “I have done this man so much evil, that’s why I hate him.” You hate us, because you have done quite a lot of evil to us.

But let us continue our historical overview. Later, in the 12th – 13th centuries, because of peculiar historical circumstances (fighting between feudal lords, Mongol-Tatar onslaught), Slavs began to oose into the lands to the east and north from Kyiv Rus’ – and so the Slavic blood began to penetrate into the veins of the above-mentioned Ugro-Finnish tribes. When Mongols destroyed Kyiv (in the 1240-s), the center of the social and political life of Eastern Slavs migrated to a more isolated and protected Northeast, and so the gradual growth of Moscow began. From us, from Kyiv Rus’, your people received the Slavic blood, the Christian faith and the education of the populace. Do you need me to tell you about who were the first Enlighteners of your lands? I don’t think so. I’ll just mention a few, in passing: +PETER, Metropolitan of Muscovy – a native of the Volyn Region of what is now Ukraine; +IOASAPH of “Begorod” (actually Bilhorod, Ukraine); +INNOCENT of Irkutsk – also a Ukrainian; +STEPHAN (Yavors’kyj) – also a Ukrainian, from Halychyna, Western Ukraine; +THEOPHAN (Prokopovych) – also a Ukrainian; even M.V. Lomonosov (a Russian, from Arkhangel’sk, the founder of the Moscow State University), not being an ethnic Ukrainian, got his education… again, in Ukraine!!!

Yes… as you say, Kyiv is the “mother of the cities of Rus’.” And how did you treat your Mother? You devastated and humiliated her from day one, once you came to have your military power.

Let me just give one exmple. In 1169, on the second week of the Great Lent, a son of Yuriy Dolgorukiy (the founder of Moscow) set the city of Kyiv on fire, which completely destroyed it. His troops massacred about one half of all Kyivites. According to Kostomarov, a historian, there was no mercy to anyone – neither to the old, nor to the little children, nor to churches, nor to monasteries; the city was looted, and everything was taken from it including Holy Icons, priestly garments, and church bells; and one famous icon, called the Most Holy Mother of God of Vysh’horod, was also stolen and never returned. Yes, for some weird reason, it is generally known as “yours,” and called the Most Holy Mother of God of Vladimir! But that’s how you always behaved. You took what you wanted. And that commander of the army of thieves, that murderer, prince Andrew “Bogolubskiy” (which means “who loves God!”), - you canonized him because, well, he… prayed! But look, in 1569 tzar Ivan the Terrible literally drowned the freedom-loving city of Novgorod in the blood of its citizens, and then took a long, long time to pray. Why not canonize him, too? And why not canonize emperor Peter I, and Stalin? After all, these, also, did a lot to “increase the might of Russia.” Also, you say that since the time of your invasion, you built a lot. Yes, you did build a lot, using our hands. St. Petersburg stands on the bones of many thousands of our Ukrainian Cossacks, whom you disarmed, enslaved and worked to death. Even to this day, those hands of Ukrainian folks, the hands that are accustomed to work, pump your Tyumen’ oil, and do many other things in your country. But enough history. History, as the saying goes, “is not about what we used to wear – rather, it is about how you stripped us naked.” That sums up the entire Ukrainian experience.

Let me now turn to another item, the Canon Law. Just what is the logic used by “spiritual fathers” from Moscow in this regard?

The Orthodox Church of Poland, which has less than 200,000 faithful, has received autocephaly. Why, then, none was granted to the nation that counts over 50 million people and has its own independent state, the nation that has a colossal authentic culture – the Ukrainian nation?

They say: the Ukrainian Orthodox Church has no autocephaly, because to get one, this Church must receive the approval of the Mother Church.

But wait. The Metropoly of Kyiv – the most ancient of all on the teritory of the Kyivan Rus’ – has always been the spiritual Mother of all Eastern Slavs. So how could it happen that Her actual DAUGHTER, the Metropoly of Moscow, became Her Mother, while the real Mother became… a slave?

Well. Everyone knows, indeed, how it happened. And you, Your Holiness, most certainly know it. And the Eastern Prelates, whom you have bought, know it - and look away, being ashamed because they know precisely, how injust this whole thing was, and is. It was very simple. “You sell. I buy.”

After the so-called “re-unification” (1654), the mighty barons of Muscovy were not satisfied that they had captured the secular power all over Ukraine. They needed the soul of the Ukrainian people. Where is this soul? Of course, in the Church. So, the government of the Tzar, and the Patriarch of Moscow – by that time, the Metropoly of Moscow had already morphed into “Patriarchy,” by the way, also due to the means that had been, well, questionable… - raised the issue of subjugating the Kyiv Metropoly to Moscow. In 1686, a delegation led by Nikita Alekseev went to Constantinople, with the goal to extract the endorsement of Eastern Prelates for the liquidation of the Kyiv ecclesiastical authonomy. The Patriarch of Constantinople, +DIONISIUS, was showered with rich gifts, and he gave in. In less than one year after this shameful deal, the Patriarch was convicted of simony and defrocked. Yet, the decision to get rid of the ecclesiastically autonomous Orthodox jurisdiction with the center in Kyiv stayed. Now, we ask you: was this decision an act that was in line with the Canon Law? Was it in line with any law? You won’t answer, of course. But you know, with what ease has the Daughter bought the right to be “known” as “Mother,” and also just what she did with her actual Mother – robbed her, humiliated her, deprived her of everything and is still keeping the Mother in outrageous captivity, spiritual slavery.  

OK, these are events of old. Yet, now, today – does Ukraine have the right to Orthodox ecclesiastical autonomy (or Autocephly), being an independent state as she is? The answer is, undoubtedly, YES. Moscow, on the other hand, has no canonical right to hold Ukrainian Orthodox faithful under her fold, save for purely political reasons of the Kremlin team. It means that you, Your Holiness, are a part of this team and the thing you do is not of God, but of the Tsar!

Let me remind our readers that the Canon Law is a sum total of judicial norms of life of the Church, which emerges from the Apostolic rules, as well as from documents of the Ecumenical Councils. The rule number 34 from the Apostolic Canons says that each nation must have its own Primate, its own first (or most senior) Hierarch; that, actually, means that a sovereign nation does have the ecclesiastical right to have her own independent ecclesiastical jurisdiction. The rule number 17 of the 4th Ecumenical Council and the rule number 38 of the 6th Ecumenical Council say that each nation, when it acquires its own independent state, is eligible for having its own independent Church (or jurisdiction). Let me quote the latter rule for you, in a Church Slavonic translation: «Аще царскою властию, вновь устроен, или впредь устроен будет град: то гражданским и земским распределениям да следует и распределение церковных дел» (in English: “If a city or country, with the power of this city’s or country’s ruler was newly established, or will be established in the future, let these civic innovations be followed by granting authority (to this newly independent civic formation) of its own ecclesiastical affairs.”)

One might ask: so, what else is needed? This Rule 38 is written in such a way that it’s as if it was written specifically for Ukraine. But it looks like there are no laws for Moscow. Those in Moscow know only one thing: the Khokhly (a demeaning name for Ukrainians. – GP) must always be under their thumb. Forever.

Generally speaking, are these Canon Laws perfect? You yourself know very well that many of them are antiquated, make no sense anymore, and that even those rules that could regulate the life of the Church aren’t really observed by anyone. Buu that’s an entirely separate conversation. The Canons are the thing made by human hands, they were written with a certain political situation in mind. For example, the 7th ruling of the First Ecumenical Council says that the primacy of honor belongs to the Patriarch of Jerusalem. Perhaps that’s how it should be, because our Lord Jesus Christ suffered and rose from the dead in Jerusalem, and it is from Jerusalem that the Gospel began to spread. However, the 3rd ruling of the Second Ecumenical Council states that the primacy of honor belongs to the Patriarch of Constantinople. Why? Very simple: the political situation in the world changed. Jerusalem became weak and Byzantium became strong.

Maybe it was the Lord Who appointed the Patriarch of Constantinople to be the Ecumenical Patriarch, and so this person is eligible to grant autocephaly to one jurisdiction and not to grant it into another. But we all know that in this issue, what decides is the “generous gift,” or, simply put, a bribe. Don’t you know how much does your Patriarchy pay him so that he would carry your politics? And note, he has been denying you canonicity for 141 years. Was it just? And why should we actually bow to all these Eastern prelates? Just our Kyiv Orthodox jurisdiction has more bishops than the Ecumenical Patriarch has parishes…

While Canoins are written by men, the Grace is shed by God. So in vain do your subordinates keep saying that we are “graceless.” If Grace only comes to those deemed “canonical,” then your Patriarchy, obviously, has been “graceless” for 141 years. But didn’t the great men of God from your Patriarchy prove otherwise? I think we should stop talking about Canons. I have perhaps tired you, Your Holiness. However, to conclude, I would like to talk about yet another thing.

Your Holiness! On the Volodymyrs’ka Hirka Hill in Kyiv, you urged us to repent. Yes, you are right: repentance is not weakness; it is a great spiritual strength. It is capable of renewing not only a person but the entire society as well. Yet, I think repentance should begin with oneself – that’s what our Savior taught us. So, will you please begin this good work on behalf of yourself and your nation?

Please repent that three hundred years ago you, in a lawless fashion, using bribery, blackmail, and treachery subjugated the most ancient Metropoly on the territory of Eastern Slavs. That for the entire three hundred years you have been humiliating us, destroying our culture, banning our language, made our children die in your imperialistic wars. Repent for the Solovki, for the dungeons for our patriots, for the GULAG, for the Holodomor, - for everything, everything! You, indeed, you, must ask forgiveness of the Ukrainian people, and other peoples, for your imperialistic takeovers. You must ask forgiveness of the Polish people because your fathers shot twenty thousand Polish prisoners near Smolensk. You must ask forgiveness of Ukrainian Eastern Rite Catholics, because the NKVD people, in agreement with you, made their priests rot in prisons. Can you personally ask this forgiveness? Can you personally show an example of a Christian humbleness and repentance? Just listen to the voice of your wonderful poet:

“Pray, repent, raise your hands to the heaven!
For all the sins of the days of old,
For all the warmongering of Cain that you have been doing
Ever since you were in your infancy!”

But no, this will never happen. Moscow never apologizes for whatever awful thing it has done. As your saying goes, “Moscow has no trust in tears.” Should maybe we repent? But we never destroyed your culture – we enriched it; we never deported you to Siberia, we never executed you by starvation, we never trampled on your freedom. Ah, well, I know, you will say that all those things were done not by you, but by Bolsheviks. So, were the Bolsheviks some sort of nomadic tribes who invaded our land and drowned it in blood? Let me remind you the words – not of some Banderite, but of your Russian philosopher, Nicholas Berdyaev, who wrote that “Bolshevism is a Russian national phenomenon” (see his “Sources and Meaning of the Russian Communism”).

I ask myself often, what is it that binds your clergy together with Communists? Indeed, the facts are out there and they are so conspicuous. The collaboration between the Patriarchy of Moscow and the theomachian political party has been going on for 85 years, beginning from Bp. +SERGIUS (Stargorodsky) to this day. Just how telling is this speech of Patriarch +ALEXIUS I, said near the coffin of Stalin:

“Iosif Vissarionovich Stalin, the Great Leader of our nation, is no longer with us. His enormous moral, society-oriented strength is gone, and our nation saw in that strength its own strength… It is due to his high authority that so much good, so much benefitial has been done to our Church by our Government… He remains unforgettable, and our Russian Orthodox Church sends Her farewell to him, for the last time, letting him go “the way of all flesh,” with a passionate prayer… To our beloved, unforgettable Iosif Vissarionovich we, sincerely, prayerfully, with passionate love, say: ‘Memory Eternal!’ “ (see “Journal of the Moscow Patriarchy,” 1953, #4).

Now, this was said by a man who himself spend quite a time in Stalin’s forced labor camps. It looks like there is some truth in the saying: “A dog who was beaten serves his owner better.” What a stinking piece of garbage! Look, - aren’t you ashamed of your Moscow Patriarchy?

Little has changed since that time. The collaboration between your hierarchs and Communists carries on. I can’t forget how one of your metropolitans, +AGATHANGEL, while being a member of the Parliament, defended the Communist empire and insisted that the monument of Lenin in the centre of Kyiv must be protected from our Ukrainian patriots who wanted to dismantle it? And just how many times did +AGATHANGEL vote together with the Red Atheists? One priest from your Patriarchy put an icon showing big image of Stalin in his church’s iconostasis. Don’t you remember that? A protopresbyter named Fr. Dmitriy Gaponov, from Donets’k, used to claim that no difference at all ever existed between Marxism and Christianity. Is that your opinion as well? And Metr. +VOLODYMYR (Sabodan), also from your Patriarchy, gave a high-ranking award to the First Communist of Ukraine, Petro Symonenko. For what good done by this man to the Church? And one of your most passionate sidekicks, Nataliya Vitrenko (the leader of the so-called “Party of Progressive Socialists” – GP), who says that she is “very Orthodox,” puts flowers to the monument of Lenin each time she arrives to Kyiv – to the monument of this harshest of all enemies of Christ. Is this the Orthodoxy you preside over? Why, why all this is happening? The answer is simple: because Communists dream about the restoration of their political empire, and you dream about restoration of your spiritual empire. Therefore, your interests match. And just what color will the empire be – Red, White – has a very secondary importance.

One more thing that I want to ask you. Why do you hold on to us, Ukrainians, so strongly? Why do you want to be our benefactor, above all? I have lived in Russia for 15 years. I traveled over many of Russia’s regions on foot, and I saw pretty much the same picture everywhere: church buildings that were demolished or “beheaded,” some of them turned into public toilets by your “God-chosen people.” You will never see anything like that in Central and Western Ukraine. In our land, every village has its own church building, whose interior is neatly decorated by embroidered clothes or towels. The city of Luts’k has about 200,000 people, but we have about thirty church buildings, and all of them are packed with faithful every single Sunday. On the other hand, in the heartland of Russia it may well be that there is one church building for the whole vast administrative district (“rayon”), and even that one church is empty always. That’s where you should apply your spiritual energy, your pastoral strength! Teach your people at least to have some respect for their holy places! And there is no need to teach us, Ukrainians, our faith – Ukraine has been, and is, praying.

As I am approaching the end of my letter, you are flying back to Moscow. Probably, you are recalling the events of your visit, and you flatter yourself that you have seen and understood Ukraine. No, you havent. All you saw was your own escort, the “paratroopers” that were closely following you from Moscow; a bunch of hysterical or psychotic old women who use to flock to the Lavra Monastery, and a bunch of politicians ready to sell themseves to the highest bidder. Those people you always have at hand. But not real Ukraine – you never saw her. You could have seen her if, for example, you visited our land during the Orange Revolution. Well, maybe you will still see her, God willing.

Your visit is a next assault on our soul.

Your Holiness, our strife is a long one, and it takes a lot of strength; but we will always be getting it. And you know, who will win? No, not those who will be in a more advantageous political or economical situation, and not those who will secure the support of all Eastern Prelates or even the entire world Orthodoxy. Those will be victorious who will deliver more of the passionate prayers to the Throne of the Almighty. Those who, by the way they live their lives, will show more truth, faith, hope, and love. At the final reckoning, the millions of those innocents whom you murdered will be victorious, because their blood cries out to the Lord. Remember, there will be the Judgment of God. Ukraine is praying.

http://www.pravoslavja.lutsk.ua/dokumenty/dokument/?newsid=1668

Translation from the original Russian, Heorhij
« Last Edit: August 19, 2010, 07:04:44 PM by Heorhij » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2010, 11:39:27 PM »

So it's been like this for how long now? Nearly 1000 years? Perhaps the Ecumenical Patriarch can address the issue when he convenes the great council he has been planning. What about the people of Ukraine? Perhaps they should petition the Ecumenical Patriarch so that the matter of autocephaly for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church can be addressed at the great council when it is finally held?

I am not sure if I understand the purpose of the letter from Fr. Peter. Surely he knows his letter will change nothing and can only serve to incite more divisive sentiment. It is good to know some of the details of the history, but the matter should be brought to the EP, and perhaps not so much to Patriarch Kyrill.
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« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2010, 04:57:48 AM »

Thank you for the translation, Heorhij. While I may disagree with Fr. Peter on many points it was extremely interesting to hear the non-Russian perspective on the issue. Smiley

Quote from: Fr. Peter[/quote
While Canoins are written by men, the Grace is shed by God. So in vain do your subordinates keep saying that we are “graceless.”

So does the MP say that non-Russian Ukrainian church's sacraments are graceless?
« Last Edit: August 23, 2010, 04:59:21 AM by Alpo » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2010, 08:22:06 AM »

So it's been like this for how long now? Nearly 1000 years? Perhaps the Ecumenical Patriarch can address the issue when he convenes the great council he has been planning. What about the people of Ukraine? Perhaps they should petition the Ecumenical Patriarch so that the matter of autocephaly for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church can be addressed at the great council when it is finally held?

I am not sure if I understand the purpose of the letter from Fr. Peter. Surely he knows his letter will change nothing and can only serve to incite more divisive sentiment. It is good to know some of the details of the history, but the matter should be brought to the EP, and perhaps not so much to Patriarch Kyrill.

Perhaps. But maybe sometimes it is better to be divisive than to be pretending that there is peace (Jeremiah 8:11). And if Fr. V. is right and it is true that HH +KIRILL is paying to HAH, then bringing this matter to HAH is useless - the only thing that can be of some use is just disseminating of this information among the Orthodox faithful of the world...
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« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2010, 08:27:20 AM »

So does the MP say that non-Russian Ukrainian church's sacraments are graceless?

Yes; I personally saw in two "UOC" (in fact MP) churches in Kyiv a sign that said, "We will not pray for unbaptised, for the Heterodox, for those who committed suicide, and for schismatics (Filaretian and other); such prayers would be meaningless." Maybe not every single priest in this jurisdiction, but quite a lot of them teach their flock that no Holy Mystery in the parish "seized" by "schismatics" has any grace. Nataliya Vitrenko, the leader of the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine and the chairperson of the so-called "Association of the Ukrainian Orthodox Women of Ukraine" (the person to whom Fr. V. refers as to the one who always lays flowers to the monument of Lenin) said recently that if you enter the Filaretian parish and lite a candle there, it means nothing because that's just a candle and no "signal" is going from it to God.  Shocked
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« Reply #5 on: August 23, 2010, 08:33:03 AM »

So it's been like this for how long now? Nearly 1000 years?

Well, at least 324 years - since the act of simony of 1686, for which Patr. +DIONISIUS was dethroned and defrocked, although his decision to make the Kyiv Metropoly into a subservient "daughter" of the Moscow Patriarchy stayed.
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« Reply #6 on: August 23, 2010, 09:11:42 AM »

Thank you for the translation, Heorhij. While I may disagree with Fr. Peter on many points it was extremely interesting to hear the non-Russian perspective on the issue. Smiley

Quote from: Fr. Peter
While Canoins are written by men, the Grace is shed by God. So in vain do your subordinates keep saying that we are “graceless.”

So does the MP say that non-Russian Ukrainian church's sacraments are graceless?

EDIT: Nope, it didn't quite work out. Today's lesson is that do NOT try to modify too old message.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2010, 09:20:16 AM by Alpo » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: August 23, 2010, 09:15:44 AM »

So it's been like this for how long now? Nearly 1000 years? Perhaps the Ecumenical Patriarch can address the issue when he convenes the great council he has been planning. What about the people of Ukraine? Perhaps they should petition the Ecumenical Patriarch so that the matter of autocephaly for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church can be addressed at the great council when it is finally held?

I am not sure if I understand the purpose of the letter from Fr. Peter. Surely he knows his letter will change nothing and can only serve to incite more divisive sentiment. It is good to know some of the details of the history, but the matter should be brought to the EP, and perhaps not so much to Patriarch Kyrill.

Perhaps. But maybe sometimes it is better to be divisive than to be pretending that there is peace (Jeremiah 8:11). And if Fr. V. is right and it is true that HH +KIRILL is paying to HAH, then bringing this matter to HAH is useless - the only thing that can be of some use is just disseminating of this information among the Orthodox faithful of the world...

What is the name of that Ruthenian bishop/priest who is fighting a similar battle for Carpatho-Russia against Kiev?
« Last Edit: August 23, 2010, 09:16:39 AM by ialmisry » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: August 23, 2010, 09:18:45 AM »

So does the MP say that non-Russian Ukrainian church's sacraments are graceless?

Sorry, I did not get your question from the first time - are you asking whether Patr. +KIRILL personally says it? I am not sure, I'll ask.
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« Reply #9 on: August 23, 2010, 09:20:13 AM »

So it's been like this for how long now? Nearly 1000 years? Perhaps the Ecumenical Patriarch can address the issue when he convenes the great council he has been planning. What about the people of Ukraine? Perhaps they should petition the Ecumenical Patriarch so that the matter of autocephaly for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church can be addressed at the great council when it is finally held?

I am not sure if I understand the purpose of the letter from Fr. Peter. Surely he knows his letter will change nothing and can only serve to incite more divisive sentiment. It is good to know some of the details of the history, but the matter should be brought to the EP, and perhaps not so much to Patriarch Kyrill.

Perhaps. But maybe sometimes it is better to be divisive than to be pretending that there is peace (Jeremiah 8:11). And if Fr. V. is right and it is true that HH +KIRILL is paying to HAH, then bringing this matter to HAH is useless - the only thing that can be of some use is just disseminating of this information among the Orthodox faithful of the world...

What is the name of that Ruthenian bishop/priest who is fighting a similar battle for Carpatho-Russia against Kiev?

I don't know. How can such "battle" be possible if the Patriarchy of Kyiv is still not even recognized?
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« Reply #10 on: August 23, 2010, 09:26:21 AM »

Quote from: Heorhij
Sorry, I did not get your question from the first time - are you asking whether Patr. +KIRILL personally says it? I am not sure, I'll ask.

I was asking what's the official policy of the MP about non-Russian Ukrainian Churches' sacraments. Does the MP officially see them as graceless? And now that you said that I'm also interested what's the patriarch Kirill's opinion on the issue if the MP hasn't made any official declerations on the issue.
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« Reply #11 on: August 23, 2010, 09:30:05 AM »

So does the MP say that non-Russian Ukrainian church's sacraments are graceless?

Yes; I personally saw in two "UOC" (in fact MP) churches in Kyiv a sign that said, "We will not pray for unbaptised, for the Heterodox, for those who committed suicide, and for schismatics (Filaretian and other); such prayers would be meaningless." Maybe not every single priest in this jurisdiction, but quite a lot of them teach their flock that no Holy Mystery in the parish "seized" by "schismatics" has any grace. Nataliya Vitrenko, the leader of the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine and the chairperson of the so-called "Association of the Ukrainian Orthodox Women of Ukraine" (the person to whom Fr. V. refers as to the one who always lays flowers to the monument of Lenin) said recently that if you enter the Filaretian parish and lite a candle there, it means nothing because that's just a candle and no "signal" is going from it to God.  Shocked

They say the same about all sacraments outside the Church.
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« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2010, 09:55:22 AM »

I might get around to the rest of this, but this caught my eye:

Your Holiness! On the Volodymyrs’ka Hirka Hill in Kyiv, you urged us to repent. Yes, you are right: repentance is not weakness; it is a great spiritual strength. It is capable of renewing not only a person but the entire society as well. Yet, I think repentance should begin with oneself – that’s what our Savior taught us. So, will you please begin this good work on behalf of yourself and your nation?..Repent...for the Holodomor, - for everything, everything! You, indeed, you, must ask forgiveness of the Ukrainian people.

The Holodomor?

The death by starvation happened 1932–1933. At least that is the conventional dating. At that time there was no Patriarch of Moscow: the Bolsheviks made sure of that, deposing and martyring Patriarch St. Tikhon and handing the Church over to control by the zombie "Living Church [sic]", which declaired excommunicate those in communion with th Patriarchal Church.  Maybe they can dig up one of those (in manner of the Ukrainian self-consecrated dead handers) "bishops" of the "Living Church" now dead (Met. Nikolai Platonov of Leningrad comes to mind), and he can apologize.

Looking at a map that documents it:

one sees it extended out of Ukraine, and yet did hit "New Russia" (the area that was added to what is now Ukraine by Czarine Catherine the Great and her favorite Potemkin, IIRC both of whom Ukrainian nationalists hate) in present day Ukraine-the Dombass region where most Russians live in Ukraine (outside of Kiev).


It seems that many Ukrainians have gone the way of the Austrians, who portray themselves as the first victims of Nazism, led by the Austrian Adolf Hitler.  (yes, Goodwin! Goodwind! given the racist arguments on ancestry in the letter, it was bound to come up sooner or later. Might as well get it out of the way).  There were plenty of Ukrainian Bolsheviks like Khrushchev.
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« Reply #13 on: August 23, 2010, 10:30:41 AM »

So it's been like this for how long now? Nearly 1000 years? Perhaps the Ecumenical Patriarch can address the issue when he convenes the great council he has been planning. What about the people of Ukraine? Perhaps they should petition the Ecumenical Patriarch so that the matter of autocephaly for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church can be addressed at the great council when it is finally held?

I am not sure if I understand the purpose of the letter from Fr. Peter. Surely he knows his letter will change nothing and can only serve to incite more divisive sentiment. It is good to know some of the details of the history, but the matter should be brought to the EP, and perhaps not so much to Patriarch Kyrill.

Perhaps. But maybe sometimes it is better to be divisive than to be pretending that there is peace (Jeremiah 8:11). And if Fr. V. is right and it is true that HH +KIRILL is paying to HAH, then bringing this matter to HAH is useless - the only thing that can be of some use is just disseminating of this information among the Orthodox faithful of the world...

What is the name of that Ruthenian bishop/priest who is fighting a similar battle for Carpatho-Russia against Kiev?

I don't know. How can such "battle" be possible if the Patriarchy of Kyiv is still not even recognized?
before the recent regime change in Kiev.

The priest's name is Fr. Dmitry Sidor
Ukraine`s minority seeks autonomy
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IGE9aTIP9jI&NR=1
Will Andy Warhols people survive in Ukraine?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bW6TFUoHuZs&feature=related
where Rusyn refugees from Ukraine who have fled to Hungary.
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« Reply #14 on: August 23, 2010, 11:04:07 AM »

To Ialmisry: "There were plenty of Ukrainian Bolsheviks like Khrushchev."

Khrushchev was an ethnic Russian. Ethnic Ukrainian Bolsheviks were Chubar, Korotchenko, et al. Kosior (the First Secretary of the Central Committee of Ukrainian SSR at the time of the Holodomor) was a Ukrainianized ethnic Pole.

Still, Berdyaev probably had a point when he wrote that "Bolshevism was a NATIONAL Russian phenomenon." After all, the world headquarters of this movement were in Moscow, in the Kremlin, where all the commands, including to deprive Ukrainian peasants of everything edible and to starve them to death, came from.
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« Reply #15 on: August 23, 2010, 11:06:07 AM »

I might get around to the rest of this, but this caught my eye:

Your Holiness! On the Volodymyrs’ka Hirka Hill in Kyiv, you urged us to repent. Yes, you are right: repentance is not weakness; it is a great spiritual strength. It is capable of renewing not only a person but the entire society as well. Yet, I think repentance should begin with oneself – that’s what our Savior taught us. So, will you please begin this good work on behalf of yourself and your nation?..Repent...for the Holodomor, - for everything, everything! You, indeed, you, must ask forgiveness of the Ukrainian people.

The Holodomor?

The death by starvation happened 1932–1933. At least that is the conventional dating. At that time there was no Patriarch of Moscow: the Bolsheviks made sure of that, deposing and martyring Patriarch St. Tikhon and handing the Church over to control by the zombie "Living Church [sic]", which declaired excommunicate those in communion with th Patriarchal Church.  Maybe they can dig up one of those (in manner of the Ukrainian self-consecrated dead handers) "bishops" of the "Living Church" now dead (Met. Nikolai Platonov of Leningrad comes to mind), and he can apologize.

Looking at a map that documents it:

one sees it extended out of Ukraine, and yet did hit "New Russia" (the area that was added to what is now Ukraine by Czarine Catherine the Great and her favorite Potemkin, IIRC both of whom Ukrainian nationalists hate) in present day Ukraine-the Dombass region where most Russians live in Ukraine (outside of Kiev).


It seems that many Ukrainians have gone the way of the Austrians, who portray themselves as the first victims of Nazism, led by the Austrian Adolf Hitler.  (yes, Goodwin! Goodwind! given the racist arguments on ancestry in the letter, it was bound to come up sooner or later. Might as well get it out of the way).  There were plenty of Ukrainian Bolsheviks like Khrushchev.

Isa, all the dark red regions shown on the map are predominantly Ukrainian-populated. Kuban' is virtually 100% ethnic Ukrainian, even though it formally belongs to the Russian Federation.
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« Reply #16 on: August 23, 2010, 12:33:13 PM »

To Ialmisry: "There were plenty of Ukrainian Bolsheviks like Khrushchev."

Khrushchev was an ethnic Russian. Ethnic Ukrainian Bolsheviks were Chubar, Korotchenko, et al. Kosior (the First Secretary of the Central Committee of Ukrainian SSR at the time of the Holodomor) was a Ukrainianized ethnic Pole.

we've dealt with the Khrushshev issue before, e.g.
Quote from: ialmisry
Quote from: stanley123
Quote from: ialmisry
Quote from: stanley123
Quote from: Orthodox
Born: 17 April 1894
Birthplace: Kalinovka, Kursk
I thought that this city was in Russia, not the Ukraine?
1894.  All of Ukraine (the Ukraine at the time), was in Russia.  Once the border was drawn, Khrushchev was on the Ukrainian side of it.
But in this city, is it true, as I thought I  read somehwehre, that more than 95% of the inhabitants are ethnic Russians,. and fewer than 5% are ethnic Ukrainians, and today it is a city in Russia?
Is now, over a century later.  At the time Khrushchev was born, it was just a celo (village, opposted to a sat, hamlet).  And at the time, the distinction of Russian/Ukrainian (or as it was officially at the time, "Little Russian") was much a urban/noble vs. peasant division.  At the time there was no Ukraine, Byelorussia, Russia (Poland and Finland, for instance, did maintain/have a distinct seperate existence).  After his birth, Nikita's parents later moved further into what would become the Ukraine.  Once Ukraine declared independence, Khrushchev was in it.

Quote
Still, Berdyaev probably had a point when he wrote that "Bolshevism was a NATIONAL Russian phenomenon."

Did Berdyaev make a distinction between Great and Little Russians? Didn't he become a Marxist in Kiev?

Quote
After all, the world headquarters of this movement were in Moscow, in the Kremlin, where all the commands, including to deprive Ukrainian peasants of everything edible and to starve them to death, came from.
Of course letting all the Russian peasants eat everything they wanted.
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« Reply #17 on: August 23, 2010, 01:27:08 PM »

Did Berdyaev make a distinction between Great and Little Russians? Didn't he become a Marxist in Kiev?

But there never was any authentic Ukrainian Marxist government. The government of the People's Republic of Ukraine (1917-1920) was overall rather leftist, but pluralist, multi-party, democratic government.

Quote
After all, the world headquarters of this movement were in Moscow, in the Kremlin, where all the commands, including to deprive Ukrainian peasants of everything edible and to starve them to death, came from.
Of course letting all the Russian peasants eat everything they wanted.
[/quote]

There were no planned, organized artificial stravations in Russia. The terrible starvation of 1921 in the Volga region was not accompanied by patroling all roads by NKVD troops who had the task to make sure that no one would escape from the dying villages. On the contrary, Lenin's government in 1921 widely publicized the tragedy in the Volga region, and received a lot of international help. (Fridtjof Nansen helped very actively, for one.) On the contrary, in Fall 1932-summer 1933 the regions of Ukraine where millions of peasants were dying from hunger were completely shut down from the world; no information came from there, save for obviously propagandistic 'reports" of Walter Durandy.
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« Reply #18 on: August 23, 2010, 02:15:54 PM »

Looking at a map that documents it:

one sees it extended out of Ukraine, and yet did hit "New Russia" (the area that was added to what is now Ukraine by Czarine Catherine the Great and her favorite Potemkin, IIRC both of whom Ukrainian nationalists hate) in present day Ukraine-the Dombass region where most Russians live in Ukraine (outside of Kiev).

Most of "our people" in the OCA were from the Carpathians (now southern Poland and extreme west of Ukraine) or from Galicia. Galicia is the area on the map that is still white, under Poland, but doesn't it also include Vynnitsa and Kmelnitsky, which are yellow? Why would the Famine not be in those places?

I visited Ukrainians in 2007. One of them was living in Kknmelnitsky, from where their family came to settle in the OCA. Also some other Ukrainians I visited in Kiev. THe lady I stayed with say they don't know whether the famine was from nature or intentionally planned by Stalin. She said her mother was living in the village and said there really was a very bad harvest then.

In the late 1960's and 1970's, the USSR was importing grain seriously from USA. I think when USSR fought the Taliban, Reagan said no more grain, as punishment for fighting freedom fighters. Now in 2010 we hear in the news about American farmers exporting grain to Russia.

It's true that Ukraine was the "breadbasket of the Soviet Union." But I can easily imagine that if there was a natural famine, Stalin, who had a strong policy of Socialism in One Country (isolationism, self-sufficiency) would not have imported grain from the hostile West in the 1930's. In fact, I think he even exported some grain for industrialization.
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« Reply #19 on: August 23, 2010, 02:41:45 PM »

Did Berdyaev make a distinction between Great and Little Russians? Didn't he become a Marxist in Kiev?

But there never was any authentic Ukrainian Marxist government. The government of the People's Republic of Ukraine (1917-1920) was overall rather leftist, but pluralist, multi-party, democratic government.

so are you saying it wasn't authentic Ukrainian, or authentic Marxist?

After all, the world headquarters of this movement were in Moscow, in the Kremlin, where all the commands, including to deprive Ukrainian peasants of everything edible and to starve them to death, came from.
Of course letting all the Russian peasants eat everything they wanted.

There were no planned, organized artificial stravations in Russia. The terrible starvation of 1921 in the Volga region was not accompanied by patroling all roads by NKVD troops who had the task to make sure that no one would escape from the dying villages. On the contrary, Lenin's government in 1921 widely publicized the tragedy in the Volga region, and received a lot of international help. (Fridtjof Nansen helped very actively, for one.) On the contrary, in Fall 1932-summer 1933 the regions of Ukraine where millions of peasants were dying from hunger were completely shut down from the world; no information came from there, save for obviously propagandistic 'reports" of Walter Durandy.

Since the map shows (at least its title says) "Rate of Population Decline 1929-33," can you connect it to what happened a decade before in the Volga region?

Quote from: ialmisry
Quote from: Heorhij
I don't know, dear sister. Look, in these maps that Ialmisry shows us, there are areas where the Russian lanuage is absolutely donimating (like in the Zaporizhzhya oblast ets.) - but these are exactly the areas where the Holodomor (the artificial famine - the way to execute ~7 - 10 million Ukrainian peasants by artificial starvation, i.e. by simply taking away everything edible from them at gunpoint) was ravaging the most intensely;
That doesn't seem to be the case.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/1/17/Holodomor_Famine_map.jpg

Quote from: Heorhij
and the areas devastated by the Holodomor were then re-populated by Russian-speaking migrants...

You would have to show a radical language/ethnicity change.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/18/Ethnographic_map_of_Slavs%2C_Lubor_Niederle.JPG
http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a4/East_Slavs_in_Russia_1897.JPG&imgrefurl=http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:East_Slavs_in_Russia_1897.JPG&usg=__84kg7PI28kQRK_ZSqQz03pCAtzg=&h=2789&w=2127&sz=1126&hl=en&start=1&tbnid=Je39FCfg358hlM:&tbnh=150&tbnw=114&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dsite:upload.wikimedia.org%2Blinguistic%2Bmap%2Brussian%2Bempire%26gbv%3D2%26hl%3Den

Btw, just because its useful, Ukraine's divisions in the Russian Empire with today's boundaries:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/22/Gubernias_de_Ucrania_-_ENG.png
and the imperial census results 1897:
Quote
Total population (Ukrainian speakers) Russian speakers
Volyn 2,989,482 (2,095,579) 104,889
Podolia 3,018,299 (2,442,819) 98,984
Kiev 3,559,229 (2,819,145) 209,427
Kherson 2,733,612 (1,462,039) 575,375
Chernigov 2,297,854 (1,526,072) 495,963
Poltava 2,778,151 (2,583,133) 72,941
Kharkov 2,492,316 (2,009,411) 440,936
Yekaterinoslav 2,113,674 (1,456,369) 364,974
Taurida 1,447,790 (611,121) 404,463

The last is where the bulk of the Zaporizhzhia oblast is.

The studies I've seen show that the Russians, Romanian/Moldovian, Poles, Germans and Bulgarians died in proportion to the percentage of their population out in the fields.  Of course, that could just be collateral damage.  The issue also involves the corrolation between Ukrainian, or "Little Russian" with the peasant estate.  Russians mostly lived in the cities, and escaped accordingly.  But a lot of the Russians in Ukraine were associated with Hetman Pavlo Skoropadskyi's decision to throw Ukraine's lot in with the White (i.e. Czarist) Russians.  It is not like the Soviet were willing to let White Russians eat while Ukrainians starved.


Quote
You guys should not be making these quasi-"objective" analyses about what has been and what is happening in Ukraine. More Ukrainians were killed by the Holodomor than Jews by the Holocaust. And yes, it's a common theme that "Communism" killed them, not Russians. But the Putin regime continues the same old theme of denying the Holodomor and denying that Ukraine is a nation and a country who has the right to decide things on her own without consulting with the "older brother." And Putin himself is a KGB officer, the direct heir of those who killed my Ukrainian brethren by starvation; and the whole point of his regime's politics is that Ukraine is "theirs." Unless you have direct relatives who, in 1932-33, were crawling in the mud and dying of hunger (I happen to have those), you should not preach to me about the "relation" of my nation to the nation that has the Kremlyad' as their legitimate rulers and ideological mentors. And the nation that has this pathetic "ROCOR" accusing my President in "Fascist leanings" as "their" Church.
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« Reply #20 on: August 23, 2010, 02:54:29 PM »

I am afraid this thread evolved into a yet another "Holodomor Revisionism," while the point Fr. Vintsukevych is making is not to "prove" that Holodomor did or did not happen. I understand the main issue is whether Moscow Patriarchy has the real, honest-to-goodness right to be called "Mother Church" of the Kyiv Orthodox jurisdiction. If, indeed, if the author claims, Nikita Alekseev BOUGHT that "right" from the then-Patriarch +DIONISIUS, then it's a great shame that the status quo remains.
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« Reply #21 on: August 23, 2010, 08:21:00 PM »

I am afraid this thread evolved into a yet another "Holodomor Revisionism," while the point Fr. Vintsukevych is making is not to "prove" that Holodomor did or did not happen. I understand the main issue is whether Moscow Patriarchy has the real, honest-to-goodness right to be called "Mother Church" of the Kyiv Orthodox jurisdiction. If, indeed, if the author claims, Nikita Alekseev BOUGHT that "right" from the then-Patriarch +DIONISIUS, then it's a great shame that the status quo remains.
because a "better" status is up for sale?

The Metropolitinate of Kiev and All Rus' was translated to Moscow, where it became the Patriarchte of Moscow. Hence Mother Church. By succession, not sale.
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« Reply #22 on: August 23, 2010, 11:57:41 PM »

I might get around to the rest of this, but this caught my eye:

Your Holiness! On the Volodymyrs’ka Hirka Hill in Kyiv, you urged us to repent. Yes, you are right: repentance is not weakness; it is a great spiritual strength. It is capable of renewing not only a person but the entire society as well. Yet, I think repentance should begin with oneself – that’s what our Savior taught us. So, will you please begin this good work on behalf of yourself and your nation?..Repent...for the Holodomor, - for everything, everything! You, indeed, you, must ask forgiveness of the Ukrainian people.

The Holodomor?

The death by starvation happened 1932–1933. At least that is the conventional dating. At that time there was no Patriarch of Moscow: the Bolsheviks made sure of that, deposing and martyring Patriarch St. Tikhon and handing the Church over to control by the zombie "Living Church [sic]", which declaired excommunicate those in communion with th Patriarchal Church.  Maybe they can dig up one of those (in manner of the Ukrainian self-consecrated dead handers) "bishops" of the "Living Church" now dead (Met. Nikolai Platonov of Leningrad comes to mind), and he can apologize.

It seems that many Ukrainians have gone the way of the Austrians, who portray themselves as the first victims of Nazism, led by the Austrian Adolf Hitler.  (yes, Goodwin! Goodwind! given the racist arguments on ancestry in the letter, it was bound to come up sooner or later. Might as well get it out of the way).  There were plenty of Ukrainian Bolsheviks like Khrushchev.

You evidently have not studied the severe difficulties the Bolsheviks in Moscow had in installing communism in Ukraine.  Communism was forced onto Ukraine at the ends of bayonets from the Red Army attacking the Ukrainian National Republic from Russia in 1918-21.  In the elections to the Constituent Assembly from Ukraine after the February Revolution in Russia, the SR's of Hrushevsky and the SD's of Vynnychenko (Ukrainian anti-Bolshevik parties) received a great majority of the votes from Ukraine - some 75+ %.  The Bolsheviks only managed some 10 % of the votes in Ukraine from the Russified cities.  Communism was so weak in Ukraine and there so little Ukrainian Bolsheviks that Moscow had to wage a temporary retreat and attempt to popularize Bolshevism in Ukraine by means of korenizatsiya or Ukrainianization which temporarily allowed Ukrainian culture in the 1920s.  It is quite easy to look at statistics for the national makeup of the Ukrainian Communist Party from 1919 onwards to realize ethnic Ukrainians were NOT the majority ethnic group in the Communist Party in Ukraine for an incredible amount of time, never mind questions of leading figures.  Your comparison of Ukrainians to being just like Austrians in claiming first victimhood this time from Russian Bolshevism is patently false and IMHO insulting.  Muraviov's Red Army troops in arriving in the capital city of Ukraine Kyiv in 1918 had people shot who simply spoke Ukrainian (5,000).

Stalin, whose daughter Svetlana, described her Georgian father as a "Great Russian Nationalist" in her memoirs, this Stalin specifically wrote to Lazar Kaganovich, his henchman in Ukraine in the 1930s, that during the Holodomor "we can lose Ukraine" because of Ukrainian resistance to Bolshevism.  If you do not believe me than believe Stalin.  Everything hinged in Stalin's eyes on Ukrainian patriotism and rebelliousness to communism which had to be broken as Stalin wrote Kaganovich.  It's printed in Yale University's recent edition of the recently declassified Stalin-Kaganovich correspondence.  Stalin is not worried about resistance to collectivization in Russia, but in Ukraine where communism's stranglehold was weak until ultimately the Holodomor destroyed substantially the Ukrainian nation.  It still had not fully recovered from that genocide.

Ukraine's leading scholar on the Holodomor, Stanyslav Kulchytsky, back during the times of the Soviet Union believed what the ComPartiya had taught them all along: that the Famine was from natural causes.  Only after the opening of the archives after the death of the Soviet Union, did he realize the enormity and purposefulness of the Holodomor Genocide.  His articles can be found in Ukrainskyj Istorychynyi Zhurnal and the Ukrainian newspaper Den'.

What further cements the Holodomor as Genocide is that on top of closing the borders from Ukraine and Kuban (Ukrainian inhabited) to the Russian Federation where the food was, the Bolsheviks decided to put an end to any Ukrainian cultural renaissance and arrested any Ukrainians who would protest the coming Russification campaign.  Skrypnyk shot himself, the writer Khvylovy too, Vasyl Lypkivsky of the UAOC and its hierarchy were arrested and killed, and the rest of the Ukrainian intelligentsia shipped off to Siberia (rozstrillene vidrodzhenya.  It was the decapitation of the elite of a nation, as would happen to the Poles later at Katyn and under the Nazis.

As the famed historian Robert Conquest makes clear in his study of the Holodomor, the hundreds of villages in Ukraine which were wiped out by Stalin's famine, were repopulated by settlers brought in from Russia.  Witnesses, Ivan Maistrenko ( a leftist), and memoirists have all pointed this out.

The Ukrainian Communist Party was then purged twice by Stalin and Khrushchev (who was Russian - Khrushchev's great granddaughter to this day does not take Ukrainian independence seriously) and a linguistic, historical, and cultural Russification policy from Moscow was enforced from then on until the collapse of the Soviet Union with Shcherbitsky doing as much damage as he could in the end.

Yuri Shapoval has written in Ukraine a book the "Commanders of the Great Famine in Ukrainian".  You can see for yourself in that book how little ethnic Ukrainians were represented in the Bolshevik Secret Police enforcing the Holodomor.  This is history.

The sad part is that the current President of Ukraine is following Putin of Russia in closing down recently declassified archives of the crimes of Stalin in Russia and Ukraine.  Putin has had the kids' history textbooks altered in Russia and the same is happening now in Ukraine under pro-Kremlin oligarch Yanukovych who stated there is nothing left to learn of the Holodomor.

If you require further elaboration I would be pleased to provide it.  Communism only managed to come to power internally in two countries: Russian and later the-then Yugoslavia.  In all other countries: Poland, Hungary, Ukraine, etc. it was enforced on the ends of Red Army bayonets.

God Bless.
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« Reply #23 on: August 24, 2010, 12:09:34 AM »


Did Berdyaev make a distinction between Great and Little Russians? Didn't he become a Marxist in Kiev?

I am afraid your mistaken.  Berdyaev was kicked out of the Soviet Union by Lenin. You seriously think the Soviets would let him back in, somehow to Kyiv?  I think you misunderstand the history of the time and region.  Berdyaev wrote of Russian Communism and its roots in Russian messianism, the narodnyky of Russia (not Ukraine), the nihilists in Russian literature, the Russian Socialist Revolutionaries' terror weapon.  Berdyaev lived out his years in exile after the Russian Revolution.  A lot of his beliefs have to do with the Russian "collectivism" in history providing the groundwork for Russian communism.
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« Reply #24 on: August 24, 2010, 12:29:40 AM »

I might get around to the rest of this, but this caught my eye:

Your Holiness! On the Volodymyrs’ka Hirka Hill in Kyiv, you urged us to repent. Yes, you are right: repentance is not weakness; it is a great spiritual strength. It is capable of renewing not only a person but the entire society as well. Yet, I think repentance should begin with oneself – that’s what our Savior taught us. So, will you please begin this good work on behalf of yourself and your nation?..Repent...for the Holodomor, - for everything, everything! You, indeed, you, must ask forgiveness of the Ukrainian people.

The Holodomor?

The death by starvation happened 1932–1933. At least that is the conventional dating. At that time there was no Patriarch of Moscow: the Bolsheviks made sure of that, deposing and martyring Patriarch St. Tikhon and handing the Church over to control by the zombie "Living Church [sic]", which declaired excommunicate those in communion with th Patriarchal Church.  Maybe they can dig up one of those (in manner of the Ukrainian self-consecrated dead handers) "bishops" of the "Living Church" now dead (Met. Nikolai Platonov of Leningrad comes to mind), and he can apologize.

Looking at a map that documents it:

one sees it extended out of Ukraine, and yet did hit "New Russia" (the area that was added to what is now Ukraine by Czarine Catherine the Great and her favorite Potemkin, IIRC both of whom Ukrainian nationalists hate) in present day Ukraine-the Dombass region where most Russians live in Ukraine (outside of Kiev).


It seems that many Ukrainians have gone the way of the Austrians, who portray themselves as the first victims of Nazism, led by the Austrian Adolf Hitler.  (yes, Goodwin! Goodwind! given the racist arguments on ancestry in the letter, it was bound to come up sooner or later. Might as well get it out of the way).  There were plenty of Ukrainian Bolsheviks like Khrushchev.

You misunderstand the map and demographics.  The cities of what you call New Russia were Russified. The cities were not hit by the Holodomor collectivization campaign.  It was the Ukrainian countryside around these cities where the mass fatalities happened.  People were always amazed at how one could walk 10 km into the villages of the Donbas and hear perfect Ukrainain being spoken.  The countryside around DniproPetrovsk, Donetsk, Zaporizhya, were ethnically Ukrainian and it was the countryside that was hit by the Holodomor.  I know family from the outskirts of Donetsk - Ukrainian patriots back then.

The only urban population to suffer during the Holodomor were the Ukrainian victims of Stalin's anti-Ukrainianization campaign which occurred concomitantly in Ukraine.

Indeed, Ukrainian historiography was changed in 1932 with an about face on the Treaty of Pereiaslav of 1654 which was now to be taught as the Fraternal Union of the Brother Russian and Ukrainian nations, and was to be so instructed in Soviet schools.
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« Reply #25 on: August 24, 2010, 01:05:27 AM »


Most of "our people" in the OCA were from the Carpathians (now southern Poland and extreme west of Ukraine) or from Galicia. Galicia is the area on the map that is still white, under Poland, but doesn't it also include Vynnitsa and Kmelnitsky, which are yellow? Why would the Famine not be in those places?

I visited Ukrainians in 2007. One of them was living in Kknmelnitsky, from where their family came to settle in the OCA. Also some other Ukrainians I visited in Kiev. THe lady I stayed with say they don't know whether the famine was from nature or intentionally planned by Stalin. She said her mother was living in the village and said there really was a very bad harvest then.

It's true that Ukraine was the "breadbasket of the Soviet Union." But I can easily imagine that if there was a natural famine, Stalin, who had a strong policy of Socialism in One Country (isolationism, self-sufficiency) would not have imported grain from the hostile West in the 1930's. In fact, I think he even exported some grain for industrialization.

Stalin exported the grain confiscated from starving Ukrainian peasants for those exports.  The West learned of the scope of the Holodomor from brave reporters like Malcom Muggeridge of Manchester.  Tons of efforts were made to send aid to the starving in Ukraine from the West.  Stalin refused them all.  Even Metropolitan Sheptytsky of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church in Polish ruled-Ukraine campaigned desperately to raise funds to feed the fellow people of Ukraine on the Soviet side.  Stalin refused all help. He knew this a death sentence.  When one communist had the guts to report to Stalin the true extent of the Famine, Stalin dismissed him as indulging in fantasies.  Come hell or highwater, Stalin was determined to break the back of Ukraine.  What need for him to accept the many offers of international help?

This breaking of Ukraine's back and the subsequent 60 year denial of any orchestrated famine in Ukraine by the Soviet authorities was quite successful.  If you brainwash a closed society for 60 years that there was no Famine, and no works could be written about it, you come across tons of people who lived in that system and whose grandparents refused to tell their children the truth of those horrible days for fear of repression.  In the 1930s, children were being awarded medals in the Soviet Union if they noticed their parents not holding the Party line or saying anything against Stalin or the Communist Party (Pavlyk Morozov anyone)  Still, Ukrainians recently started getting as many Holodomor Survivors as they could to speak to what happenned and record this before this old generation passes away.  They no longer fear telling the truth.  It will take some time to break down the lies instilled by the Regime of lies.  Hiding Secret Police archives as F.S.B. agent Putin and now Ukraine's President do will not help the process of revealing the truth.
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« Reply #26 on: August 24, 2010, 01:55:15 AM »

You evidently have not studied the severe difficulties the Bolsheviks in Moscow had in installing communism in Ukraine. 
You evidently ignore the severe difficulties the Bolsheviks had in installing communism in Moscow. It is called "the Russian Civil War."

Quote
Communism was forced onto Ukraine at the ends of bayonets from the Red Army attacking the Ukrainian National Republic from Russia in 1918-21. 
This is the Winter Palace. What's those pointy things they are carrying.




Quote
In the elections to the Constituent Assembly from Ukraine after the February Revolution in Russia, the SR's of Hrushevsky and the SD's of Vynnychenko (Ukrainian anti-Bolshevik parties) received a great majority of the votes from Ukraine - some 75+ %.  The Bolsheviks only managed some 10 % of the votes in Ukraine from the Russified cities.  Communism was so weak in Ukraine and there so little Ukrainian Bolsheviks that Moscow had to wage a temporary retreat and attempt to popularize Bolshevism in Ukraine by means of korenizatsiya or Ukrainianization which temporarily allowed Ukrainian culture in the 1920s. 

Skipping the Kiev Bolshevik Uprising of Oct 26/Nov 8 1917 are we?

Korenizatsiya was neither limited to the Ukrainians nor to the Soviets: the Poles'  Józef Piłsudski pursued it in his "Prometheism" for similar ends.

Quote
It is quite easy to look at statistics for the national makeup of the Ukrainian Communist Party from 1919 onwards to realize ethnic Ukrainians were NOT the majority ethnic group in the Communist Party in Ukraine for an incredible amount of time, never mind questions of leading figures. 

How many peasants were in it? How many were leading figures?

Quote
Your comparison of Ukrainians to being just like Austrians in claiming first victimhood this time from Russian Bolshevism is patently false and IMHO insulting. 
Roll Eyes
Quote
Muraviov's Red Army troops in arriving in the capital city of Ukraine Kyiv in 1918 had people shot who simply spoke Ukrainian (5,000).

Stalin, whose daughter Svetlana, described her Georgian father as a "Great Russian Nationalist"

Can't be: he was Georgian, just like those Russians in Moscow were Finno-Uralic, or so the letter of the OP would have us believe.

Quote
in her memoirs, this Stalin specifically wrote to Lazar Kaganovich, his henchman in Ukraine in the 1930s, that during the Holodomor "we can lose Ukraine" because of Ukrainian resistance to Bolshevism.  If you do not believe me than believe Stalin. 

Now why would I want to do that?

Quote
Everything hinged in Stalin's eyes on Ukrainian patriotism and rebelliousness to communism which had to be broken as Stalin wrote Kaganovich.  It's printed in Yale University's recent edition of the recently declassified Stalin-Kaganovich correspondence.  Stalin is not worried about resistance to collectivization in Russia, but in Ukraine where communism's stranglehold was weak until ultimately the Holodomor destroyed substantially the Ukrainian nation.  It still had not fully recovered from that genocide.
Compare the maps above.

Ukraine's leading scholar on the Holodomor, Stanyslav Kulchytsky, back during the times of the Soviet Union believed what the ComPartiya had taught them all along: that the Famine was from natural causes.  Only after the opening of the archives after the death of the Soviet Union, did he realize the enormity and purposefulness of the Holodomor Genocide.  His articles can be found in Ukrainskyj Istorychynyi Zhurnal and the Ukrainian newspaper Den'.

What further cements the Holodomor as Genocide is that on top of closing the borders from Ukraine and Kuban (Ukrainian inhabited)[/quote]

Where the Russian White Guard did the Ice March? In the 1897 census, 859,122 (49.1%) spoke "Little Russian" and 732,283. (41.1%) "Great Russian." The populations were not distinguished. 30 years later in the Soviet census the figures were 1,644.518 (49.2%) for Ukrainian, and 1,428,587 (42.7%) for Russian.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ukrainians_in_the_Kuban#Russian_census_figures

Quote
to the Russian Federation where the food was, the Bolsheviks decided to put an end to any Ukrainian cultural renaissance and arrested any Ukrainians who would protest the coming Russification campaign.  Skrypnyk shot himself, the writer Khvylovy too, Vasyl Lypkivsky of the UAOC and its hierarchy were arrested and killed, and the rest of the Ukrainian intelligentsia shipped off to Siberia (rozstrillene vidrodzhenya.  It was the decapitation of the elite of a nation, as would happen to the Poles later at Katyn and under the Nazis.

yeah, life was grand for the anti-Soviet Russian intelligentsia under Stalin. Heck, it was grand for socialist Russian intelligentsia, as Gorky and others found out.

Quote
As the famed historian Robert Conquest makes clear in his study of the Holodomor, the hundreds of villages in Ukraine which were wiped out by Stalin's famine, were repopulated by settlers brought in from Russia.  Witnesses, Ivan Maistrenko ( a leftist), and memoirists have all pointed this out.

The Ukrainian Communist Party was then purged twice by Stalin and Khrushchev (who was Russian - Khrushchev's great granddaughter to this day does not take Ukrainian independence seriously)

What about his great grandfathers?

Ask the Romanians about his redrawing of Ukraine's borders.

And who was Lydia Shevchenko?

Quote
and a linguistic, historical, and cultural Russification policy from Moscow was enforced from then on until the collapse of the Soviet Union with Shcherbitsky doing as much damage as he could in the end.

Yuri Shapoval has written in Ukraine a book the "Commanders of the Great Famine in Ukrainian".  You can see for yourself in that book how little ethnic Ukrainians were represented in the Bolshevik Secret Police enforcing the Holodomor.  This is history.

The sad part is that the current President of Ukraine is following Putin of Russia in closing down recently declassified archives of the crimes of Stalin in Russia and Ukraine.  Putin has had the kids' history textbooks altered in Russia and the same is happening now in Ukraine under pro-Kremlin oligarch Yanukovych who stated there is nothing left to learn of the Holodomor.

If you require further elaboration I would be pleased to provide it.  Communism only managed to come to power internally in two countries: Russian and later the-then Yugoslavia.  In all other countries: Poland, Hungary, Ukraine, etc. it was enforced on the ends of Red Army bayonets.

You conveniently ignore both the White Army and the Chetniks, Bela Kun, the SPD, etc.
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« Reply #27 on: August 24, 2010, 01:59:18 AM »


Did Berdyaev make a distinction between Great and Little Russians? Didn't he become a Marxist in Kiev?

I am afraid your mistaken.  Berdyaev was kicked out of the Soviet Union by Lenin. You seriously think the Soviets would let him back in, somehow to Kyiv?  I think you misunderstand the history of the time and region.  Berdyaev wrote of Russian Communism and its roots in Russian messianism, the narodnyky of Russia (not Ukraine), the nihilists in Russian literature, the Russian Socialist Revolutionaries' terror weapon.  Berdyaev lived out his years in exile after the Russian Revolution.  A lot of his beliefs have to do with the Russian "collectivism" in history providing the groundwork for Russian communism.
Berdyev was kicked out on the Philosopher's ship in 1922. He was born in Kiev in 1874, went to Kiev University in 1894.

So did he distinguish between Great and Little Russians?
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« Reply #28 on: August 24, 2010, 08:21:24 AM »

Isa, please stop obfuscating the thread. I beg you, let us discuss what is relevant to Orthodoxy here. The main claim of the open letter is that we, the Orthodox, must look again at the situation that was created by the act of simony of 1686, for which Patr. +DIONISIUS was, less than in a year, dethroned and defrocked: the ecclesiastical independence of the Kyiv Metropoly was SOLD (yes, not because of the "transfer" of anything to Moscow), because the then-Patriarch made some decision after a representative of the Tzar, Nikita Alekseev, gave him a huge bribe. Again, this is what Fr. Vintsukevych writes in his letter. Let us analyze this. If you prove that Fr. V. is wrong, so be it, but you haven't done it yet, and neither anyone else.
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« Reply #29 on: August 24, 2010, 10:21:16 AM »

Isa, please stop obfuscating the thread. I beg you, let us discuss what is relevant to Orthodoxy here. The main claim of the open letter is that we, the Orthodox, must look again at the situation that was created by the act of simony of 1686, for which Patr. +DIONISIUS was, less than in a year, dethroned and defrocked: the ecclesiastical independence of the Kyiv Metropoly was SOLD (yes, not because of the "transfer" of anything to Moscow), because the then-Patriarch made some decision after a representative of the Tzar, Nikita Alekseev, gave him a huge bribe. Again, this is what Fr. Vintsukevych writes in his letter. Let us analyze this. If you prove that Fr. V. is wrong, so be it, but you haven't done it yet, and neither anyone else.
It that was the main claim
An Assault on the Soul

An open letter of Fr. Peter Vintsukevich to His Holiness the Patriarch of Moscow and All-Russia, +KIRILL

Your Holiness,

I am writing in Russian so that you could understand me better. First of all, please let me introduce myself. I am an Orthodox Christian, and a former inmate of Stalin’s forced labor camps. In the mid-1990-s, I was the Provost of the Volyn’ Spiritual Seminary of the UOC-KP.

Yes! In a way you and I are classmates. I was honored to take classes in the same institution you took classes: in the Leningrad Spiritual Academy of the Russian Orthodox Church! Unfortunately, soon after I was admitted, I was expelled, because, as a former political prisoner, I had no right to obtain a residential permit in a big city of the USSR. Yet, I still managed to graduate from the Academy, with a degree of Div.D., in another place – in the Catacomb Church of Patriarch Tikhon. There are rumors that you, too, were somehow “persecuted,” although it did not prevent you from making a brilliant career very fast. I am sorry that I called you my classmate. Believe me, I reminded you that you and I used to go to the same school not because I wanted to share in your glory. It’s just so that you will know that I know the Church history, the Christian theology and the Canon Law just like you know them, not any less. So our conversation might become serious. Of course, you are free to not engage in polemics with some former jail bird like myself. Well, maybe you might pass this to one of your Metropolitans, +NIKON (he is from Ukraine, from the Volyn oblast!), and then maybe he will object to what I will be saying; that’s what I hope so much.

Your Holiness! In your sermons delivered in the Odesa, Dnipropetrovs’k, and Kyiv, you talked so much about the “fact” that our (Ukrainian and Russian) nations are the same one nation. You also talked so much about canonicity, and about repentance. So may I just split this really big topic into three. There is: (1) history, (2) Canon Law, and (3) ethics.

Let us begin with history. The whole point, made by you in your sermons, boils down to the following: because we, Ukrainians and Russians, are actually one people (or one nation), the claims of Ukrainians that they are entitled to their own Orthodox jurisdiction make no sense. Let me point it out straight away that the thesis that Ukrainians and Russians are the same people (or nation) has absolutely no scientific basis. From the point of view of ethnicity, our two peoples have always been exactly that – two different peoples, never the same one people. We, Ukrainians, happened to be occupied by a neighbor, who was, militarly, stronger than we were, and we have been lingering in this state of being occupied, which we hated, for about 300 years. The argument that we, Ukrainians and Russians, by our own good will, were “voluntarily” “re-united,” is a fairy tale, because the moment Ukraine agreed to come under the Moscow’s “protection” (in 1654), the Ukrainian home rule (Het’man’s rule) was destroyed, and so were the Cossack army, the printing of books in the Ukrainian language, the national culture and, finally, our most ancient among the Eastern Slavic peoples Church Metropoly. All that, including the latter, was done in a most brutal and cunning, trust-breaking, deceitful fashion. That’s what this so-called “being re-united” actually was.

Let’s see; in the first place, were we, Ukrainians and Russians, really related in terms of “blood” (ethnicity)? Well, look at the map of Eastern Europe of the 9th – 10th centuries. It tells you that Slavic tribes – Polyany, Drevlyany, Dregovychy, Radymychy, Kryvychy, Polochany, Volynyany, - inhabited what is now Ukraine and Belarus. To the east and to the north of them, there were Ugro-Finnish tribes with their entirely different language and culture; Chud’, Ves’, Merya, Cheremisy, Mordva, Perm’, Yam, and others. Nestor the Chronicle-Writer indicates exactly that (see “The Chronicle of Times,” chapter 25, paragraph 6). Those tribes had absolutely no relation to Slavs. They were not very highly developed socially and they had no government or administration of their own that would be in any way sustainable. So, they had to invite Scandinavians to rule over them (“come and rule us”). Yet, Kyiv Rus’ had no need in the “help” of this kind. By that time (9th – 10th centuries), it became so powerful as a state of Europe that it threatened even the Byzantine Empire. Sadly, in a few decades, Prince Oleg, a Scandinavian, treacherously murdered Kyiv princes Askol’d and Dir and conquered Kyiv. Yet, your Metropolitan +AGATHANGEL says, “”The Kyiv Rus’ has ALWAYS been ONE with the Great Russia (i.e. with what was to the northeast of it). Kyiv (or, as he writes “Kiev”) without the Great Russia, in the state of separation from her, can not be conceived in any case.” But… isn’t it just ridiculous? Just look – there was NO “Great Russia” in the 9th – 10th century; in fact, there was NO “RUSSIA” WHATSOEVER!!! What really existed, was Kyivan Rus’ and her people – Rusychy, Rusyny (i.e. the present-day Ukrainians and Belarussians). So, what exactly is it – stupidity? Complete ignorance? Or Ukrainophobia that simply cannot be stopped? I think it’s a mixture of all three. Stupidity always marches together with hatred and haughtiness.

OK, now let’s look at this situation from a different angle. If you Russians and we Ukrainians really are one people – why, then, did you keep annihilating us by millions? You were busy destroying our authentic culture. You imprisoned scores of our patriots and had them rot. You executed us with artificial starvation. You used all means possible to destroy us, and you continue to use the means that you consider possible still! Just ask people in the Russian heartland, how do they feel about Ukraine. Of course you will hear: “Urrgh, these Khokhly, these Banderites.” This is what your statistics says: 60% of Russian citizens consider Ukraine to be evil. Just like one hero of a Dostoyevsky novel said: “I have done this man so much evil, that’s why I hate him.” You hate us, because you have done quite a lot of evil to us.

But let us continue our historical overview. Later, in the 12th – 13th centuries, because of peculiar historical circumstances (fighting between feudal lords, Mongol-Tatar onslaught), Slavs began to oose into the lands to the east and north from Kyiv Rus’ – and so the Slavic blood began to penetrate into the veins of the above-mentioned Ugro-Finnish tribes. When Mongols destroyed Kyiv (in the 1240-s), the center of the social and political life of Eastern Slavs migrated to a more isolated and protected Northeast, and so the gradual growth of Moscow began. From us, from Kyiv Rus’, your people received the Slavic blood, the Christian faith and the education of the populace. Do you need me to tell you about who were the first Enlighteners of your lands? I don’t think so. I’ll just mention a few, in passing: +PETER, Metropolitan of Muscovy – a native of the Volyn Region of what is now Ukraine; +IOASAPH of “Begorod” (actually Bilhorod, Ukraine); +INNOCENT of Irkutsk – also a Ukrainian; +STEPHAN (Yavors’kyj) – also a Ukrainian, from Halychyna, Western Ukraine; +THEOPHAN (Prokopovych) – also a Ukrainian; even M.V. Lomonosov (a Russian, from Arkhangel’sk, the founder of the Moscow State University), not being an ethnic Ukrainian, got his education… again, in Ukraine!!!

Yes… as you say, Kyiv is the “mother of the cities of Rus’.” And how did you treat your Mother? You devastated and humiliated her from day one, once you came to have your military power.

Let me just give one exmple. In 1169, on the second week of the Great Lent, a son of Yuriy Dolgorukiy (the founder of Moscow) set the city of Kyiv on fire, which completely destroyed it. His troops massacred about one half of all Kyivites. According to Kostomarov, a historian, there was no mercy to anyone – neither to the old, nor to the little children, nor to churches, nor to monasteries; the city was looted, and everything was taken from it including Holy Icons, priestly garments, and church bells; and one famous icon, called the Most Holy Mother of God of Vysh’horod, was also stolen and never returned. Yes, for some weird reason, it is generally known as “yours,” and called the Most Holy Mother of God of Vladimir! But that’s how you always behaved. You took what you wanted. And that commander of the army of thieves, that murderer, prince Andrew “Bogolubskiy” (which means “who loves God!”), - you canonized him because, well, he… prayed! But look, in 1569 tzar Ivan the Terrible literally drowned the freedom-loving city of Novgorod in the blood of its citizens, and then took a long, long time to pray. Why not canonize him, too? And why not canonize emperor Peter I, and Stalin? After all, these, also, did a lot to “increase the might of Russia.” Also, you say that since the time of your invasion, you built a lot. Yes, you did build a lot, using our hands. St. Petersburg stands on the bones of many thousands of our Ukrainian Cossacks, whom you disarmed, enslaved and worked to death. Even to this day, those hands of Ukrainian folks, the hands that are accustomed to work, pump your Tyumen’ oil, and do many other things in your country. But enough history. History, as the saying goes, “is not about what we used to wear – rather, it is about how you stripped us naked.” That sums up the entire Ukrainian experience.

Let me now turn to another item, the Canon Law. Just what is the logic used by “spiritual fathers” from Moscow in this regard?

The Orthodox Church of Poland, which has less than 200,000 faithful, has received autocephaly. Why, then, none was granted to the nation that counts over 50 million people and has its own independent state, the nation that has a colossal authentic culture – the Ukrainian nation?

They say: the Ukrainian Orthodox Church has no autocephaly, because to get one, this Church must receive the approval of the Mother Church.

But wait. The Metropoly of Kyiv – the most ancient of all on the teritory of the Kyivan Rus’ – has always been the spiritual Mother of all Eastern Slavs. So how could it happen that Her actual DAUGHTER, the Metropoly of Moscow, became Her Mother, while the real Mother became… a slave?

Well. Everyone knows, indeed, how it happened. And you, Your Holiness, most certainly know it. And the Eastern Prelates, whom you have bought, know it - and look away, being ashamed because they know precisely, how injust this whole thing was, and is. It was very simple. “You sell. I buy.”

After the so-called “re-unification” (1654), the mighty barons of Muscovy were not satisfied that they had captured the secular power all over Ukraine. They needed the soul of the Ukrainian people. Where is this soul? Of course, in the Church. So, the government of the Tzar, and the Patriarch of Moscow – by that time, the Metropoly of Moscow had already morphed into “Patriarchy,” by the way, also due to the means that had been, well, questionable… - raised the issue of subjugating the Kyiv Metropoly to Moscow. In 1686, a delegation led by Nikita Alekseev went to Constantinople, with the goal to extract the endorsement of Eastern Prelates for the liquidation of the Kyiv ecclesiastical authonomy. The Patriarch of Constantinople, +DIONISIUS, was showered with rich gifts, and he gave in. In less than one year after this shameful deal, the Patriarch was convicted of simony and defrocked. Yet, the decision to get rid of the ecclesiastically autonomous Orthodox jurisdiction with the center in Kyiv stayed. Now, we ask you: was this decision an act that was in line with the Canon Law? Was it in line with any law? You won’t answer, of course. But you know, with what ease has the Daughter bought the right to be “known” as “Mother,” and also just what she did with her actual Mother – robbed her, humiliated her, deprived her of everything and is still keeping the Mother in outrageous captivity, spiritual slavery.
 

OK, these are events of old. Yet, now, today – does Ukraine have the right to Orthodox ecclesiastical autonomy (or Autocephly), being an independent state as she is? The answer is, undoubtedly, YES. Moscow, on the other hand, has no canonical right to hold Ukrainian Orthodox faithful under her fold, save for purely political reasons of the Kremlin team. It means that you, Your Holiness, are a part of this team and the thing you do is not of God, but of the Tsar!

Let me remind our readers that the Canon Law is a sum total of judicial norms of life of the Church, which emerges from the Apostolic rules, as well as from documents of the Ecumenical Councils. The rule number 34 from the Apostolic Canons says that each nation must have its own Primate, its own first (or most senior) Hierarch; that, actually, means that a sovereign nation does have the ecclesiastical right to have her own independent ecclesiastical jurisdiction. The rule number 17 of the 4th Ecumenical Council and the rule number 38 of the 6th Ecumenical Council say that each nation, when it acquires its own independent state, is eligible for having its own independent Church (or jurisdiction). Let me quote the latter rule for you, in a Church Slavonic translation: «Аще царскою властию, вновь устроен, или впредь устроен будет град: то гражданским и земским распределениям да следует и распределение церковных дел» (in English: “If a city or country, with the power of this city’s or country’s ruler was newly established, or will be established in the future, let these civic innovations be followed by granting authority (to this newly independent civic formation) of its own ecclesiastical affairs.”)

One might ask: so, what else is needed? This Rule 38 is written in such a way that it’s as if it was written specifically for Ukraine. But it looks like there are no laws for Moscow. Those in Moscow know only one thing: the Khokhly (a demeaning name for Ukrainians. – GP) must always be under their thumb. Forever.

Generally speaking, are these Canon Laws perfect? You yourself know very well that many of them are antiquated, make no sense anymore, and that even those rules that could regulate the life of the Church aren’t really observed by anyone. Buu that’s an entirely separate conversation. The Canons are the thing made by human hands, they were written with a certain political situation in mind. For example, the 7th ruling of the First Ecumenical Council says that the primacy of honor belongs to the Patriarch of Jerusalem. Perhaps that’s how it should be, because our Lord Jesus Christ suffered and rose from the dead in Jerusalem, and it is from Jerusalem that the Gospel began to spread. However, the 3rd ruling of the Second Ecumenical Council states that the primacy of honor belongs to the Patriarch of Constantinople. Why? Very simple: the political situation in the world changed. Jerusalem became weak and Byzantium became strong.

Maybe it was the Lord Who appointed the Patriarch of Constantinople to be the Ecumenical Patriarch, and so this person is eligible to grant autocephaly to one jurisdiction and not to grant it into another. But we all know that in this issue, what decides is the “generous gift,” or, simply put, a bribe. Don’t you know how much does your Patriarchy pay him so that he would carry your politics? And note, he has been denying you canonicity for 141 years. Was it just? And why should we actually bow to all these Eastern prelates? Just our Kyiv Orthodox jurisdiction has more bishops than the Ecumenical Patriarch has parishes…

While Canoins are written by men, the Grace is shed by God. So in vain do your subordinates keep saying that we are “graceless.” If Grace only comes to those deemed “canonical,” then your Patriarchy, obviously, has been “graceless” for 141 years. But didn’t the great men of God from your Patriarchy prove otherwise? I think we should stop talking about Canons. I have perhaps tired you, Your Holiness. However, to conclude, I would like to talk about yet another thing.

Your Holiness! On the Volodymyrs’ka Hirka Hill in Kyiv, you urged us to repent. Yes, you are right: repentance is not weakness; it is a great spiritual strength. It is capable of renewing not only a person but the entire society as well. Yet, I think repentance should begin with oneself – that’s what our Savior taught us. So, will you please begin this good work on behalf of yourself and your nation?

Please repent that three hundred years ago you, in a lawless fashion, using bribery, blackmail, and treachery subjugated the most ancient Metropoly on the territory of Eastern Slavs. That for the entire three hundred years you have been humiliating us, destroying our culture, banning our language, made our children die in your imperialistic wars. Repent for the Solovki, for the dungeons for our patriots, for the GULAG, for the Holodomor, - for everything, everything! You, indeed, you, must ask forgiveness of the Ukrainian people, and other peoples, for your imperialistic takeovers. You must ask forgiveness of the Polish people because your fathers shot twenty thousand Polish prisoners near Smolensk. You must ask forgiveness of Ukrainian Eastern Rite Catholics, because the NKVD people, in agreement with you, made their priests rot in prisons. Can you personally ask this forgiveness? Can you personally show an example of a Christian humbleness and repentance? Just listen to the voice of your wonderful poet:

“Pray, repent, raise your hands to the heaven!
For all the sins of the days of old,
For all the warmongering of Cain that you have been doing
Ever since you were in your infancy!”

But no, this will never happen. Moscow never apologizes for whatever awful thing it has done. As your saying goes, “Moscow has no trust in tears.” Should maybe we repent? But we never destroyed your culture – we enriched it; we never deported you to Siberia, we never executed you by starvation, we never trampled on your freedom. Ah, well, I know, you will say that all those things were done not by you, but by Bolsheviks. So, were the Bolsheviks some sort of nomadic tribes who invaded our land and drowned it in blood? Let me remind you the words – not of some Banderite, but of your Russian philosopher, Nicholas Berdyaev, who wrote that “Bolshevism is a Russian national phenomenon” (see his “Sources and Meaning of the Russian Communism”).

I ask myself often, what is it that binds your clergy together with Communists? Indeed, the facts are out there and they are so conspicuous. The collaboration between the Patriarchy of Moscow and the theomachian political party has been going on for 85 years, beginning from Bp. +SERGIUS (Stargorodsky) to this day. Just how telling is this speech of Patriarch +ALEXIUS I, said near the coffin of Stalin:

“Iosif Vissarionovich Stalin, the Great Leader of our nation, is no longer with us. His enormous moral, society-oriented strength is gone, and our nation saw in that strength its own strength… It is due to his high authority that so much good, so much benefitial has been done to our Church by our Government… He remains unforgettable, and our Russian Orthodox Church sends Her farewell to him, for the last time, letting him go “the way of all flesh,” with a passionate prayer… To our beloved, unforgettable Iosif Vissarionovich we, sincerely, prayerfully, with passionate love, say: ‘Memory Eternal!’ “ (see “Journal of the Moscow Patriarchy,” 1953, #4).

Now, this was said by a man who himself spend quite a time in Stalin’s forced labor camps. It looks like there is some truth in the saying: “A dog who was beaten serves his owner better.” What a stinking piece of garbage! Look, - aren’t you ashamed of your Moscow Patriarchy?

Little has changed since that time. The collaboration between your hierarchs and Communists carries on. I can’t forget how one of your metropolitans, +AGATHANGEL, while being a member of the Parliament, defended the Communist empire and insisted that the monument of Lenin in the centre of Kyiv must be protected from our Ukrainian patriots who wanted to dismantle it? And just how many times did +AGATHANGEL vote together with the Red Atheists? One priest from your Patriarchy put an icon showing big image of Stalin in his church’s iconostasis. Don’t you remember that? A protopresbyter named Fr. Dmitriy Gaponov, from Donets’k, used to claim that no difference at all ever existed between Marxism and Christianity. Is that your opinion as well? And Metr. +VOLODYMYR (Sabodan), also from your Patriarchy, gave a high-ranking award to the First Communist of Ukraine, Petro Symonenko. For what good done by this man to the Church? And one of your most passionate sidekicks, Nataliya Vitrenko (the leader of the so-called “Party of Progressive Socialists” – GP), who says that she is “very Orthodox,” puts flowers to the monument of Lenin each time she arrives to Kyiv – to the monument of this harshest of all enemies of Christ. Is this the Orthodoxy you preside over? Why, why all this is happening? The answer is simple: because Communists dream about the restoration of their political empire, and you dream about restoration of your spiritual empire. Therefore, your interests match. And just what color will the empire be – Red, White – has a very secondary importance.

One more thing that I want to ask you. Why do you hold on to us, Ukrainians, so strongly? Why do you want to be our benefactor, above all? I have lived in Russia for 15 years. I traveled over many of Russia’s regions on foot, and I saw pretty much the same picture everywhere: church buildings that were demolished or “beheaded,” some of them turned into public toilets by your “God-chosen people.” You will never see anything like that in Central and Western Ukraine. In our land, every village has its own church building, whose interior is neatly decorated by embroidered clothes or towels. The city of Luts’k has about 200,000 people, but we have about thirty church buildings, and all of them are packed with faithful every single Sunday. On the other hand, in the heartland of Russia it may well be that there is one church building for the whole vast administrative district (“rayon”), and even that one church is empty always. That’s where you should apply your spiritual energy, your pastoral strength! Teach your people at least to have some respect for their holy places! And there is no need to teach us, Ukrainians, our faith – Ukraine has been, and is, praying.

As I am approaching the end of my letter, you are flying back to Moscow. Probably, you are recalling the events of your visit, and you flatter yourself that you have seen and understood Ukraine. No, you havent. All you saw was your own escort, the “paratroopers” that were closely following you from Moscow; a bunch of hysterical or psychotic old women who use to flock to the Lavra Monastery, and a bunch of politicians ready to sell themseves to the highest bidder. Those people you always have at hand. But not real Ukraine – you never saw her. You could have seen her if, for example, you visited our land during the Orange Revolution. Well, maybe you will still see her, God willing.

Your visit is a next assault on our soul.

Your Holiness, our strife is a long one, and it takes a lot of strength; but we will always be getting it. And you know, who will win? No, not those who will be in a more advantageous political or economical situation, and not those who will secure the support of all Eastern Prelates or even the entire world Orthodoxy. Those will be victorious who will deliver more of the passionate prayers to the Throne of the Almighty. Those who, by the way they live their lives, will show more truth, faith, hope, and love. At the final reckoning, the millions of those innocents whom you murdered will be victorious, because their blood cries out to the Lord. Remember, there will be the Judgment of God. Ukraine is praying.

http://www.pravoslavja.lutsk.ua/dokumenty/dokument/?newsid=1668

Translation from the original Russian, Heorhij
Fr. V. obfuscated it well.
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« Reply #30 on: August 24, 2010, 10:39:05 AM »

So, again, please, let's discuss just this for now:

"After the so-called “re-unification” (1654), the mighty barons of Muscovy were not satisfied that they had captured the secular power all over Ukraine. They needed the soul of the Ukrainian people. Where is this soul? Of course, in the Church. So, the government of the Tzar, and the Patriarch of Moscow – by that time, the Metropoly of Moscow had already morphed into “Patriarchy,” by the way, also due to the means that had been, well, questionable… - raised the issue of subjugating the Kyiv Metropoly to Moscow. In 1686, a delegation led by Nikita Alekseev went to Constantinople, with the goal to extract the endorsement of Eastern Prelates for the liquidation of the Kyiv ecclesiastical authonomy. The Patriarch of Constantinople, +DIONISIUS, was showered with rich gifts, and he gave in. In less than one year after this shameful deal, the Patriarch was convicted of simony and defrocked. Yet, the decision to get rid of the ecclesiastically autonomous Orthodox jurisdiction with the center in Kyiv stayed. Now, we ask you: was this decision an act that was in line with the Canon Law? Was it in line with any law? You won’t answer, of course. But you know, with what ease has the Daughter bought the right to be “known” as “Mother,” and also just what she did with her actual Mother – robbed her, humiliated her, deprived her of everything and is still keeping the Mother in outrageous captivity, spiritual slavery."

Your comments, thoughts?
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« Reply #31 on: August 24, 2010, 01:09:14 PM »

Usucaption?
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« Reply #32 on: August 24, 2010, 03:01:49 PM »

Usucaption?

What's that? Huh
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« Reply #33 on: August 24, 2010, 03:54:09 PM »


A legal term, Heorhij.  It is much like squatter's rights (although more complex).  Essentially, one could say that the Russian Church's dominance in Ukraine is established by usucaption since the Russian Church was defacto recognized as the official Church of the Orthodox Ukrainian people for a time sufficient that later protest would be moot.  If you subscribe to the theory of usucaption in this case (and I am not saying that I do, although it is an interesting argument), you would in essence be saying "The Russian Orthodox Church (MP) had been the official Church of Ukraine for long enough that it has established it right to be such.  No complaint was upheld by any Synod to the contrary, nor did the EP have any major objection during this time, further confirming such."  I know that you do not agree with this, so I am offering this post only as an explanation and not an argument.
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« Reply #34 on: August 24, 2010, 05:38:53 PM »


A legal term, Heorhij.  It is much like squatter's rights (although more complex).  Essentially, one could say that the Russian Church's dominance in Ukraine is established by usucaption since the Russian Church was defacto recognized as the official Church of the Orthodox Ukrainian people for a time sufficient that later protest would be moot.  If you subscribe to the theory of usucaption in this case (and I am not saying that I do, although it is an interesting argument), you would in essence be saying "The Russian Orthodox Church (MP) had been the official Church of Ukraine for long enough that it has established it right to be such.  No complaint was upheld by any Synod to the contrary, nor did the EP have any major objection during this time, further confirming such."  I know that you do not agree with this, so I am offering this post only as an explanation and not an argument.

Thank you.
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« Reply #35 on: August 25, 2010, 02:34:20 AM »

I want to add that even if I think that the ROC is a 'rightful' Church in Ukraine I don't oppose to the autocephaly for Ukraine but they are better ways to achieve that than digging out 300-year-old documents and trying to undermine them when no one during that 300 years did that.
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« Reply #36 on: August 25, 2010, 08:01:20 AM »

I want to add that even if I think that the ROC is a 'rightful' Church in Ukraine I don't oppose to the autocephaly for Ukraine but they are better ways to achieve that than digging out 300-year-old documents and trying to undermine them when no one during that 300 years did that.

What are these "better ways?"
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« Reply #37 on: August 25, 2010, 08:04:44 AM »

Asking gently?

For sure not schisms, allying with Eastern Catholics and Church sieges.
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« Reply #38 on: August 25, 2010, 08:30:23 AM »

Asking gently?

For sure not schisms, allying with Eastern Catholics and Church sieges.

Yes, asking gently and waiting for a POSITIVE answer (not "what not to do," but "what to do"). And BTW, nobody is "allying" with our dear brothers and sisters in Christ, Eastern Catholics.
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« Reply #39 on: August 25, 2010, 08:51:45 AM »

Really?
http://cerkiew.net.pl/Wiadomosci/wiadomoscjedna.php?polaczenie=wiad_1281090709&cerkiew=cerkiew
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,29245.0.html
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« Reply #40 on: August 25, 2010, 09:11:44 AM »


Working together on a construction project does not mean "allying" in a spiritual, doctrinal sense.

Still, let's not deviate from the question. What are these "better ways" to build a Ukrainian Orthodox jurisdiction that would be:

a) canonical (i.e. in the Eucharistic unity with the whole Orthodox world); and

b) Ukrainian (i.e. autocephalous, completely independent of Moscow in administrative as well as cultural and historical sense - for example, celebrate the Day of All Saints of Ukraine - while the present-day "Ukrainian" Orthodox Church does not celebrate such a day, instead celebrating "Дeнь Всeх Cвятых, в зeмлe РOCCИЙCКОЙ Просиявших")?
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« Reply #41 on: August 25, 2010, 09:15:36 AM »

Petition of the Synod of UOC to the Holy Synod of ROC.
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« Reply #42 on: August 25, 2010, 09:23:20 AM »

Petition of the Synod of UOC to the Holy Synod of ROC.

Impossible. Again, the currently existing "U"OC is NOT Ukrainian and it is the biggest enemy of the idea we are discussing.
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« Reply #43 on: August 25, 2010, 09:28:36 AM »

Petition of the Synod of UOC to the Holy Synod of ROC.
Was there supposed to be a link?
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« Reply #44 on: August 25, 2010, 09:29:57 AM »

Petition of the Synod of UOC to the Holy Synod of ROC.

Impossible. Again, the currently existing "U"OC is NOT Ukrainian and it is the biggest enemy of the idea we are discussing.
No, that would be the Lviv patriarchate plopping itself down in Kiev.

I'm curious.  How isn't it Ukrainian?  How is Met. Volodymyr not Ukrainian?
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Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
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