Axios! Fr Alexander Webster Confirmed as Dean of Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary

Source: Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia On May 3, 2017, at a regular session of the Synod of Bishops of the Russian Church Abroad, the V. Rev. Archpriest Alexander Webster was confirmed by the Synod as dean of Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary, having been nominated by the Board of Trustees of HTOS. A priest of almost 35 years, a retired US Army chaplain with the rank of Colonel, holding degrees from the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia University, Harvard Divinity School, and … [Read more...]

Trump Unbound? Some Thoughts

HAS THERE BEEN A COUP IN THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION? It's been awhile since I've commented on the political situation. Lots of exciting things have taken place at stately Monomakhos Manor and I'm just now starting to get my bearings. Truth be told, I wanted to see how things were playing out. After about five months of solid joy, things took an ominous turn (in my opinion) with the Tomahawk missile strike on Syria. There was a very real fear that the Neocons who destroyed the Bush 43 … [Read more...]

A Conversation Between Dr. Jean Claude Larchet and Archpriest Peter Heers [VIDEO]

Read the interview on Orthodox Ethos. … [Read more...]

Milwaukee Priest Excommunicates Parish Council Treasurer

Source: The National Herald MILWAUKEE, WI – Rev. John Ketchum, priest of the Annunciation Church in Milwaukee, WI, excommunicated Parish Council Treasurer Patricia Galanis at the beginning of Holy Week, on April 8, the Saturday of Lazarus, for reasons, he said, of “disobedience to the Ecclesiastical Authority, the priest of the parish.” Galanis is the wife of former AHEPA Supreme President John Galanis. The parish is upset and nine of the fifteen members of the parish council including the … [Read more...]

Bully Pulpit (and Pen)

A few of you have asked Your's Truly why he hasn't waded in on the conversion of Hank Hanegraaff to the Orthodox Church. More specifically, the scabrous essay written by the purveyors of the Pulpit and Pen blog. But first, a caveat. As you may know by now, I have been very charitable in the past to all Christian confessions. I've never viewed it as my job to castigate other denominations, especially when we've got enough problems of our own. You know, beam, splinter, eye. I will … [Read more...]

Three Trojan Horses: Insider Attempts to Disorient the Orthodox

Source: Touchstone Magazine Reprinted with permission of the author. By Fr. Alexander F.C. Webster The benighted Pan-Orthodox Council in Crete in June 2016 reminded Orthodox Christians that the rock of Orthodox faith and practice has been splitting for decades. The fissures are particularly evident among the approximately one million Orthodox Christians in the United States. What is unconventional about the tone of the conflict is the aggressive ad hominem rhetoric of the … [Read more...]

Good and Holy Friday

I know that I said we here at Monomakhos would be going dark until after Easter. But I came across this picture on Breitbart today. It moved me, so much so that I felt the need to post it this morning. I pray that your spiritual struggle is profitable and that we will all experience a renewed joy in three days' time. http://www.breitbart.com/faith/2017/04/14/christians-celebrate-good-friday/ Kali Anastasi! … [Read more...]

As We Prepare for Holy Week…

...please take the time to watch this short video. It's about the life in a men's monastery in Abkhazia. Serenity abounds. The silence, the sounds of nature permeates everything. It's life as it should be (instead of the interminable white noise of our electronic devices and roar of motors going off non-stop). No wonder men and women are flocking to the monasteries, whether as pilgrims or as novices. With this post, Monomakhos goes dark until after Easter. Kali Anastasi! to … [Read more...]

Gorsuch: An Unalloyed Victory

I was going to post this essay on Friday afternoon when it became clear that Neil Gorsuch was confirmed by the Senate. Instead, I was moved (shaken really) to write my thoughts on the Tomahawk missiles that were launched against the Assad regime the night before. I will write more about that incident and what it means for Russo-American relations as well as Trump's nationalist agenda at a future time, shortly after Easter. This is because I plan on going dark early this week in honor of … [Read more...]

Lord Have Mercy

This is not good. One of the many reasons I voted for Trump was because he saw the folly of Neoconservatism and the folly of endless war. Running in a Republican primary, he did the unthinkable and called out the last Republican president (George W Bush) for removing Saddam Hussein. If nothing else, he saw that the instability that was unleashed by Saddam's removal led to the destabilization of Europe. And now --this. I'm hoping (praying actually, and fervently) that yesterday's … [Read more...]

“The Patriarch’s Room”

This is the title of an excellent Israeli documentary. It was produced by Danae Elon and it won he New York Jewish Film Festival award. I received this trailer from two of my sources (one in Greece). Honestly, I don't know what it was that necessitated the removal of the previous Patriarch of Jerusalem but given all the instability and chaos in the world, I'm not sure we can take most things at face value. Like the recent sarin attack in Syria, it's possible that in the case of Patriarch … [Read more...]

Fixing the Seminary: Holy Cross Students Go Public With Complaints

We here at Monomakhos have been approached again by concerned students at Holy Cross. As you know, there has been a festering situation there involving members of the faculty and administration. In order to be more fair, we have now decided not to take sides in this issue as it is our opinion that it is more complex that we previously believed. From our earlier reportage, it appeared that we took the side of the students and in this sense, we erred. And thus, apologize. To put our … [Read more...]

Yevgeny Yevtushenko: RIP

Just a little over an hour ago, I found out that Yevgeny Yevtushenko, the acclaimed Russian poet, passed away. I beg everyone's forbearance for the hurried nature of what follows but there's no way I can do justice to such a larger-than-life figure in so short a time. But here goes: Several years ago, I had the pleasure of meeting the Yevtushenko who had recently taken up residency at the University of Tulsa. Shocked, really when I thought about it. Here was the world's greatest living … [Read more...]

Paratrooper Priests and Inflatable Churches

Stories like this makes Monomakhos happy. We used to do things like this. Now I imagine the Army would only be allowed to do this if gay marriages could be performed there. Sigh. On another note, it looks like our foreign policy in Syria has decided to abandon neoconservatism. For all the Russian hacking nonsense, the grownups under Tillerson are coming to grips with reality and abandoning America's slavish adherence to "democracy uber alles". Give peace a chance! What a novel idea. … [Read more...]

The Council of Crete: a Critique by Fr Peter Heers

Almost before the ink was dry on the proceedings of the last year's Cretan Council, dissatisfaction was immediately apparent. For one thing, if one listened to its cheerleaders, we were told that the "success" was "in the meeting taking place at all", or some such blather. That's what those who play poker call a "tell". In the political sphere, whenever I hear such breathless announcements, I know that there was no substance whatsoever. There were other problems as well. We reported … [Read more...]

This Time, the Archbishop Gets it Right

What a difference an election makes. Eight years ago, His Eminence, Archbishop Demetrios Trakatellis of the GOA, did not cover himself in glory when he grovelled before President Obama, calling him "another Alexander the Great". Yesterday (which was Greek Independence Day), His Eminence spoke glowingly about President Trump and the role that Greeks have played in American history. Specific mention was made about the Greek mercenaries who augmented the first Marine expeditionary force in … [Read more...]

Not a Good Sign

You gotta hand it to the Phanar. They've been dealt a bad hand ever since 1453 but they've always managed to find a way to not play it if at all possible. On the other hand, on those occasions in which they do play it, it tends to make matters worse for Constantinople. According to the semi-official website of the Moscow Patriarchate (Pravoslavie.ru/english/101923.htm), His Holiness, Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople is stoking anti-Muscovite embers in Ukraine, widely dropping hints … [Read more...]

The Abdication: Some Thoughts on the 100th Anniversery

Yesterday was the centennial of the day that ended the Church Age. I'm speaking of the forced abdication of Tsar Nicholas II of Russia. Liberals, Democrats and other assorted Republicans finally got their wish when a delegation of them forced Nicholas' train to a standstill and presented him with the instrument of abdication. Nicholas was at the end of his tether and because of the disastrous Great War, saw no way out. Worse, his heir, Tsarevich Alexei was a hemophiliac, a fact that … [Read more...]

Watching Official Narratives Die in Real Time

I realize that it's a bit premature to celebrate the existence of the Internet. Don't get me wrong, it's been a boon of gigantic proportions. It's every bit as revolutionary as Johann Gutenberg's invention of the printing press way over half a millennium ago. But like all inventions, there's always a downside. As Wikileaks just proved with its release of Vault 7, our electronic gadgets can (and often are) used against us. Smartphones, smart TVs and our web-browsers can be turned on at … [Read more...]

This is How the Long Game is Played

I've long marveled at the capacity of the Russians to play the Long Game. This includes the ability to provoke at the right point, absorb painful setbacks, feign defeat and then come roaring back consolidating their gains on the geostrategic battlefield. Syria is one such battlefield, Ukraine is another. First, let us consider the consolidation of the eastern Ukraine by the Russians. Oh, you haven't heard? While no one was looking, Vladimir Putin got the eastern part of that country. … [Read more...]