Moscow: How It’s Going so Far

Yours’ truly asks your forbearance when reading my dispatches from Moscow. I got up at 4:00 am today and tomorrow and find myself catnapping on the bus as we go from destination to destination.

Soooo…. it may not all be coherent.

Anyway, the weather here is humid but not as blistering hot as Oklahoma, so that’s a plus. It’d be nice if we could wear shorts but as we’re visiting monasteries that’s a non-starter. Needless to say I find myself sweating a little bit by mid-afternoon.

The food is wonderful. We’re staying at the Golden Ring hotel, right across the street from the Foreign Ministry, a humongous building built in the “Stalinist Wedding Cake” style of architecture. It’s within walking distance of the Arbat, which is a wonderful walking, dining and entertainment experience, especially at night.

In the morning we left for Donskoi Monastery, where St Tikhon is buried. We visited his cell and sang a memorial service at his reliquary. Seeing his face covered with his aer and his head covered by his cowl was a moving experience. We also saw Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s grave and sang “Memory Eternal.”

Lot’s to ponder.

The Kremlin, it’s massive cathedrals. St Basil’s. I’m still overwhelmed. Construction everywhere. (Supposedly money-laundering is financing it.) Horrendous traffic. And me, I’m just a small town boy.

More to follow. Still trying to gather my thoughts.

About GShep


  1. Tim R. Mortiss says

    I’m glad you have gotten the opportunity to go, George. So much beauty there. When we were there, in 1987, the Cathedral of Christ the Savior of course had not been rebuilt. I look for your report on that!

    We did go in November, which had its advantages….!

  2. Glad to hear you’re letting it all soak in, George. I had to cancel my plans to teach over there this summer. I envy your experience there.

    God protect you in your travels,


  3. Pat Reardon says

    I enjoyed your message too much, George. I need to add envy to the list for my next Confession.

    • Michael Bauman says

      Fr. Patrick, way off track, but I just started reading your book Reclaiming the Atonement and all I can say is thank you. I love it.

      • Pat Reardon says

        I appreciate the comment, Michael, and hope the rest of the book justifies its beginning.

  4. Peter A. Papoutsis says

    Safe travels and may I follow in your footsteps one day with my family to Holy Mother Russia. God’s speed and protection.


    • George Michalopulos says

      Folks, I’m exhausted and exhilarated all at the same time. I can barely keep up. We’re leaving for Nizhni-Novgorod tomorrow and then St Petersburg in a few days. Please be patient with me as I try to gather my thoughts.

      I will say this, the Kremlin is awesome. It’s almost as if one can feel the full weight of history there. My only regret is that they didn’t let me urinate on the tomb of Stan Drezhlo’s idol. I really had to go, too. Oh well.

      Went to Trinity-Lavra monastery this morning then Christ the Saviour this afternoon. I promise to write more later.

      • Pat Reardon says

        George says, “My only regret is that they didn’t let me urinate on the tomb of Stan Drezhlo’s idol.”

        Sorry to hear it.

      • M. Stankovich says

        If you would, keep me in your prayers at these places of which I have so often read! In the character of a pilgrimage, may God return you inspired, refreshed, rejuvenated, and safely from your journey!

    • I would be cautious about calling Russia holy. It is far from holy even though there may be some holy people. As a nation, Russia is as far from holiness as another country in the world.

      • Peter A. Papoutsis says

        No! I may have my disagreements with the MP and the Russian Orthodox Church, but Russia is Orthodox and as such she is Holy IMHO.

        As we know from experience and from our discussions on this blog not even the Church is righteous all the time, but she is still Holy as she has been sanctified by the Holy Spirit and bought by the death of Our Savior.

        No matter what the RF or the MP do that I or others may disagree with Russia will always be Holy and I will always stand with her.

        Haven’t you noticed that the reason i have voiced my disagreement with some of the things Russia and the ROC have said and done, especially in their warming up to
        Rome, is because I care about her and want her to live up to her namesake: HOLY MOTHER RUSSIA. If I didn’t care about her I wouldn’t have said a word.

        • Peter-your fanciful view of Russia is naïve. Holy means to be “set apart” and in the Christian context set apart for the service of God. If Russia views itself as a country set aside for the purpose of serving God, I stand corrected. I do not know much about the Russian government but have no knowledge of a document stating that Russia is set aside for the purpose of serving God.

          On my one occasion visit to Russia, I found her to be secular and in some ways even more so than the USA. Yes, the country has many churches and monasteries but church buildings do make a country holy. My understanding is that Russia has one of the highest rates of abortion in the world. How can a holy country condone abortion.

          Russia is a secular country that spawned the USSR and all the atrocities associated with that regime along with systematic persecution of the Church.

          You may continue to believe that Russia is holy but the reality is different.

          • George Michalopulos says

            Jonkal, I’ve finally gotten some decent internet service (I’m in St Petersburg) so I’ve been out of the loop so to speak.

            Anyway, I say this because I’m presently in Russia as well and I won’t pretend to insult anyone’s intelligence and say I’m now an expert (I most certainly am not), however, I can honestly say that if Russia is “more secular than America in some ways,” then I just don’t see it.

            There’s a level of public piety here that I can’t imagine in America anymore –and I’m from the buckle of the Bible Belt. Example: I attended Liturgy at Dieyevo monastery on Sunday at 5:30 in the morning and because me and my son missed our bus by 5 minutes, we were late by 10 minutes. Dieyevo is hundreds of miles off the beaten path, yet there were so many pilgrims at this monastery church that had I fallen asleep, I couldn’t have over even if I had wanted to.

            Another case in point: I have it on good authority that Putin really put pressure on the ROC to attend Crete. The globalists promised an easing of the sanctions. He did –in a respectful manner. And truth be told there were elements in the ROC that wanted to go as well (not necessarily liberal ones). But in the end, the ROC came to the conclusion that there were way too many land mines along the way so they held firm, even though Putin is a major benefactor. Putin respected their wishes.

            There are so many other examples of which I will write about in due time. In the meantime, I fully realize that there are massive problems here as well. It’s just that we Americans had better remove the beam in our own eyes before we remark on the splinter in Russia’s. That’s all.

            • Thanks George for sharing your impressions. Different from my experience and still not holy Russia.

              • George Michalopulos says

                johnkal, I don’t believe in “Holy Russia.” All I have seen is that it appears to be holier than America at present. Maybe not holier than America was back in the day when our leaders actually believed in God and repaired to Scripture as best they could to address the great issues of the day and Russia was the Soviet Union but we’re not there now are we?

                Think of it: the “cuckseconservative” Republicans were given the gift of Planned Parenthood’s atrocities and what did they do? Passed Obama’s budget –with full funding for PP–without so much as blinking an eye. In the meantime Speaker Ryan admires himself in the mirror every day, congratulating himself that he’s not like those poor, benighted rednecks who can no longer support their families.

                Remember Gerald R Ford? He was president for all of 2 years. And he vetoed over 38 bills that the Dem Congress sent him, sustaining all but one (if memory serves). How many vetoes has Obama exercised in the last 7+ years when the GOP controlled the Congress for at least four of those years?

                Four. That’s all –four.

                Now, I realize that I’m mixing statecraft with religiosity here but the average evangelicuck is all on board with homosexual unions mascarading as “marriage.” The only reason abortions are going down is because our population is aging and thus becoming more infertile. True, Playboy has ceased publishing nude models but that’s only because female nudity is free and only a click away on any search engine.

                Another thing what I experienced in Russia: we are travelling with three priests and they get stopped almost every day by people asking for their blessing. Mostly women I grant you but also men, not only in front of monasteries or churches but while walking on the sidewalk.

                Russia’s not perfect, I grant you that but let’s stop pretending that we are.

                Please excuse the ramble.

                • George, you are missing the point. I never stated that we, the USA, is perfect. Holy Russia does not exist– is my point. Russia is not set aside as a country to serve God.

                  • Actually, it is set aside to serve God. It is dedicated to the Theotokos and to St. Andrew. Read your history. America is not and never was so dedicated. We have an establishment clause, and that is near the heart of our problems.

                • Tim R. Mortiss says

                  George, would you please quit using this “cuck” stuff? It’s indecent. It’s worth quitting the site over. I had hoped you were over that.

                  • Ditto… as they used to say.

                  • Terry Myles says

                    Tim – couldn’t agree with you more. Orthodoxy should elevate us.

                  • Anonymouse says

                    It’s a useful word that serves a legitimate purpose. It goes back to Shakespeare’s time, maybe further. Do you know the origin of the term?


                    • M. Stankovich says

                      It seems to me totally callous and, in fact, completely unjustified to continue to use this word when Mr. Mortis’s has adequatley stated he is scandalized, and other words are sufficient to convey the message:

                      But take heed lest by any means this liberty of your’s become a stumbling block to them that are weak. For if any man see you which have knowledge sit at meat in the idol’s temple, shall not the conscience of him which is weak be emboldened to eat those things which are offered to idols; And through your knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died? But when you sin so against the brothers, and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. Why, if meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world stands, lest I make my brother to offend. 1Cor 8:10-12

                      Sorry you add to ask adult Christians so many times, Mr, Mortiss.

                  • “Cuck”?, who cares. Beauty and ugliness are in the eye.

                    • Tim R. Mortiss says

                      And in the ear and the heart.

                      You won’t hear that word and many others around my dinner table, among my children and grandchildren.

                      And “etymologies” change nothing….

                    • Funny thing about words and their origins. Sometimes words go out of use and are brought back. When that happens, it is important to reflect on the source of the reemergence.

                      And sorry, but it reflects on the use of pornography. Now, I am not suggesting George is the one that started the overuse of this word(in fact the opposite – I think he is clueless about this), but it has its recent historical foundations, not on Shakespeare, but the porn industry. And what exactly does that mean? It means the unfaithful white wife gets sexually abused. Nothing greater. And this has transcended to the unfaithful politician, etc.

                      When I see the word used, I reflect on the fact the porn industry has used this word heavily as a way to justify the sexual abuse of a white porn actress (generally by a black man). And some political pundit decided to castigate or abuse a party politician for being unfaithful to the party. That’s right, some porn watching political pundit who started using the word adopted it via his own use of pornography. We can probably think of right wing pundits who have been arrested with bags full of Viagra, but that might not be fair.

                      Now, most of you will suffer a great guffaw reading my post, but the word really needs to go away. And to be frank, saying unfaithful politician is more meaningful than cuckservative, albeit missing the derogatory tone of an unfaithful white woman having abusive sex with a black man.

                      Believe me when I tell you, this word is based on porn and it has racial undertones which will hurt the Republican party.

                      If I were a conspiracy theorist, I’d say it was planted by a liberal to keep blacks from becoming conservatives.

                      It might be a good time to reflect on the use of the word in the Bible here.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Respectfully, I must disagree with you. From the time of Chaucer, the word was never out of use, at least in refined, educated circles, or legal ones for that matter. My hunch is that when it started gaining currency again –in the socio-political sphere–its purveyors were not themselves devotees of on-line porn. I can say that mainly because the men who were using it to describe “principled” conservatives were themselves highly educated and well-read men, firmly grounded in the English literary canon. I’m thinking of Jared Taylor, John Derbyshire, Kevin MacDonald, etc. (Not that I agree with MacDonald for example, who is a self-described agnostic.)

                    • “its purveyors were not themselves devotees of on-line porn”

                      How do you presume to know this?

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Just a hunch. I’m Greek and keratas is a word of derision that we’ve always used. My memorable papou always used it in the plural (keratades) for people he didn’t particularly like. Or variants of it: ketarades tou diabolou (cuckolds of/for the devil).

                      In the case of low-class Greek venacular, such terms were popular, and this was before the internet. I imagine that well-bred Anglophones have always been familiar with this term.

                      Anyway, what’s the Biblical term you have in mind? “Adulterers” signifies the actor, not the aggrieved husband.

                    • Anonymouse says

                      Anonymous says: “Believe me when I tell you, this word is based on porn and it has racial undertones which will hurt the Republican party.”

                      The porn industry may have picked up on the word, but as I said upthread, the cuckoo-bird is the origin of the term. How so, you ask? Well, the cuckoo essentially causes other birds to raise their offspring.

                      Let’s say John and Jane are married. Along comes Bob, who has sex with Jane. Jane later gives birth to Bob’s child. And John ends up using his own resources to raise Bob’s child. In this situation, John is a cuckhold. He was “cucked” by Bob. This is not a racial concept; it also occurs among members of the same race.

                      The reason this term has entered the political sphere is obvious. John represents the Neocons/RINOs who stand idly by while their party (Jane) is ravished by liberals (Bob). Rather than fighting for what they believe in, they go along with the affair, and like a good cuckhold, embrace the result.* A “cuckservative” is a so-called conservative who is a sellout to liberalism.

                      That the pornography industry has spun a racial connotation onto this word (very recently, I would add) means nothing. As one who does not partake in pornography, I was not even aware that this was a thing until later, and people with dirty minds started shedding tears of outrage over it. (More outrage than they could seem to muster over the state of our country, I might add!)

                      *Please note, I am not making a doctrinal statement about the value of a child born out of wedlock. I’m speaking from an evolutionary standpoint for the sake of metaphor; John helps the spread of Bob’s genes at the expense of his own.

                    • Anonymous says

                      The word cuckservative has no Democratic equivalent I’ve heard of…. It also has no Biblical synonym. Its use is derogatory and emotes references to interracial, abusive porn. Ask someone else like Mortiss…

                    • Tim R. Mortiss says

                      Come on, it’s neither a matter of some specialized category of porn usage, nor does it have anything to do with “cuckold” or “cuckoo”, which itself was probably the original purported “etymology”.

                      Chaucer has naught to do with it. The question is how it is heard by an ordinary modern person with some concern for decency in language.

                      To me, a reasonably educated man in late middle age (with the near shores of old age clearly in view), it is simple: it is a combination of c*ck and f*ck. Etymologies, my a&&, ok? Do you use the word in front of your grandchildren and then discuss Chaucer when they wonder about it? I never heard this usage before George started using it here. It’s a word with an ugly, indecent sound. What a ridiculous thing to even be arguing about….

                      George, consider me and those like me to be in the category of St. Paul’s weaker brethren when you think about using this language.

                    • Does it not come from “cuckhold” which refers to the poor male victim of someone else’s adultery with his wife? Synonymous with pathetic fool. Sounds like many “conservatives” today. George, it irritates them. That is all you need to know to realize that you’re doing the right thing in using the word.

                      Cheers all

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Which is why I will continue to use it. It stings them, whether they are liberal or conservative –the Judases that they are, because they know that it is true.

                    • Anonymouse says

                      Tim, you’re wrong. You can have your own opinions, but you can’t have your own facts.

                      “Cuck” is short for “cuckold.”


                      noun (archaic). the husband of an adulteress, often regarded as an object of derision.

                      Origin: late Old English, from Old French cucuault, from cucu ‘cuckoo’ (from the cuckoo’s habit of laying its egg in another bird’s nest). The equivalent words in French and other languages applied to both the bird and the adulterer; cuckold has never been applied to the bird in English.


                      If you are weak when it comes to this word, you are free to not use it and not browse this thread wherein it is being discussed. You’re not a captive audience; no one is forcing you to read about it, or use it around your grandchildren.

                    • M. Stankovich says

                      Used in “fine educated circles?” As I pointed out in August, 2015 when this was first raised, this term is a filthy Venetian piece of racism which Shakespeare incorporated into Othello to emphasize that a “black devil” was ravishing the “white ewe lamb” to stir the audience with hated against the character: here. Fr. Patrick then asked for a reference to to my commentary here, which I then provided here. Please don’t pull unreferenced, unsupportable arguments from a collective derrière and justify the use of filth as au coutre and intellectually ironic. It is racist, crude, and you appear as crude and racist for employing it, and ignorant for defending it.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Dr S, see Anonymouse’s reply re the derivation of this term below. Nothing racial about it at all.

                • George, I am a Russophile when it comes to Orthodoxy — I’ve just been drawn to the Russian expression of Orthodoxy ever since I first encountered it roughly 30 years ago now, amd have never lost that deep love and reverence for what I’ve received.

                  But one has to remember that there is a strong superstitious streak in the Russian psyche, so I wouldn’t read too much into priests being stopped for blessings. Even if the stories from the days of Holy Russia are apochryphal: of thieves crossing themselves before breaking into a house or madames wanting molebens served for the success of a new brothel, such stories don’t come from nowhere.

                  I recently read an interview with Bp. Tikhon (of “Everyday Saints” fame), talking about his journey through America. One of the things he commented on was the piety of ordinary Americans compared to Russians. He was particularly struck by a day at a rodeo in Colorado, with a big meal with prayer, etc, favorably contrasting the behavior of the people with what he would consider to be a comparable gathering in Russia.

                  Virtually every objective social research measure still puts America as the most churched and religious country in the developed world.

                  You and I remember how it used to be, so it seems bad by comparison now, which I think can’t help but color our perceptions. Also, the trajectories of America and Russia are indeed probably opposite, but much of that is because Russia had nowhere to go but up, and America, standing head and shoulders above the rest of the west in religious belief, had nowhere to go but down in this age we are entering…

                  We don’t know where either country will end up. I pray the best for both, as I know you do.

                  • Christopher says

                    Edward says:

                    ” One of the things he commented on was the piety of ordinary Americans compared to Russians. He was particularly struck by a day at a rodeo in Colorado, with a big meal with prayer, etc, favorably contrasting the behavior of the people with what he would consider to be a comparable gathering in Russia.”

                    This is an important image and contrast, but the thing is that this America is largely gone – and in another 20, 30, 50 years it will be but a memory. This has happened in 3 generations, though it is the fruit of the underlying presuppositions of the Protestant revolution (handmaiden to the secular enlightenment).

                    I suspect (but dont’ know fer sur but all the data points in this direction) that Russia and Eastern Europe in general has come out the other side of their secular revolution (totalitarian communism) with a greater sense of an authentic Christian understanding of man and culture than America or western Europe in general. In other words, Bp. Tikhon I think is seeing a surface and shallow “religiosity” and not seeing the deeper foundations of Protestantism and our “post-protestant” culture.

                    “Virtually every objective social research measure still puts America as the most churched and religious country in the developed world.”

                    I now no longer believe in the “objectivity” of such “social research”. It just does not dig deep enough, and by definition (“science” after all has self imposed methodological limitations and can not in any way “see” or account for theology, the heart, faith, etc. etc.) is always going to be what people say about themselves. As Christians, we understand the general level of denial and delusion when it comes with sin and the actual things of the heart, so we can easily see past the surface and into the actual foundation…

                  • If Tikhon wanted a representative picture of today’s America — as opposed to a century ago — he should visit Detroit or St. Louis, not a Colorado rodeo.

                • George I agree with you. Think about what drives Americans out of their homes to go make an effort or sacrifice. It’s usually a rock concert or a ballgame or some sort of secular event. Now remember the millions, literally millions, who stood in lines for hours and for days, for the opportunity to venerate for even a few seconds the holy relic of the belt of the Virgin when it was visiting from Mount Athos. Not only did millions of Russian people stand in line for hours and days but they did so with piety singing hymns bundled up as the weather was bordering on freezing. Russian soldiers walked through the crowds handing cups of hot tea out to keep the people warm and sharing folding chairs so that the elderly in the crowd could have a few minutes to rest their legs. Even though I was only seeing the whole scene by video on my phone, I vividly recall being so moved by the sight of so many Orthodox brothers and sisters praying together before so power a relic of the All Pure One that there were tears rolling down my face. I contrast that to when a famous miracle working icon of the Virgin was brought from Rhodes to our City on a Saturday afternoon. More people from our community were at the Greek restaurant across the street from the Church than the 30 or so who took the time to start the day venerating the holy wonder working icon. Say what you want about Putin or Russian women who decide to have abortions. The overwhelming majority of Russians are pious Orthodox Christians who hold to their faith because their parents and grandparents risked their lives to keep it alive during persecutions in our lifetimes as vicious as what the Roman emperors did in the first centuries of the Church. God bless and protect Holy Russia and the brave Russian people who kept the flame of faith alive in the face of terrible persecution. Long live Holy Russia!!

                  • I prefer the protection of unborn children over the veneration of the belt of the Virgin. Russia is not holy.

                    • Michael Bauman says

                      johnkal, you have a false dichotomy. You cannot have one (protection of children) without the other: Protection of the Theotokos.

                      Beware not to have simply an ideological dedication to a cause. Without Mary, no cause bears real fruit.

                    • Couldn’t have said it better myself, Michael.

                  • Gail Sheppard says

                    I was telling George that in my mind’s eye, I see Russia as a huge bookmark in the Book of Life. It holds our place so we don’t lose the page where we can find our Faith. This thing with Crete just reinforced this image for me. It is Russia that has the power to tip the scales in our favor; it is Russia that can be relied upon to uphold our Tradition; it is Russia that houses some of our most precious artifacts, now that we have lost so much in the Middle East; it is Russia who has produced the hardiest of the Faithful, who are willing and able to withstand the elements and sit shoulder to shoulder, for hours, just to be close to a Saint or a relic; it is Russia who has priests running around in their cassocks giving blessings to everyone; it is Russia that is the home of the Imperial family and all their treasures . . . I could go on and on, but I have never been more grateful or felt more connected to Russia than I do right now. George’s pictures are amazing. I hope one day he and his family will offer to take some of us back with him when he retraces his steps. – Besides, I feel safe with George. He knows how I am and would take care of me! I feel like a little kid, but going to Russia would be a HUGE endeavor. I would absolutely do it, though. I’m sure there are others on this list who would go, as well.

                • George,

                  The difference is the trajectory. America continues to swirl down the toilet. Russia has pulled the nose up and shows no signs of crashing. With us, it is only a matter of a short time.

                  • Anonymouse says

                    Well said!

                  • I think many of you are missing the point. Outward acts of piety such as veneration of a belt or asking a priest for a blessing don’t necessarily constitute piety, yet I believe they can be. The Pharisees were very pious people but far from the Kingdom of God. Religiosity is not a substitute for faith in Jesus Christ. As I have witnessed many times, people will line up to kiss a weeping or myrrh-bearing icon but no change takes place. People want easy magical answers to the task Christians are assigned–taking up the Cross to follow Jesus and seeking first the Kingdom of God.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      johnkal, you are correct. Pietism is no substitute for genuine Christian spirituality. That being said, it does not follow that those who are pious aren’t themselves living lives of righteousness. Maybe some of those people I saw were not 100% repentant. Maybe they were on the road to repentance? I dunno, it’s possible.

                      I think it was C S Lewis who said words to this effect: you think the churches are full of hypocrites? Did you ever stop to think how bad they might be if they didn’t go to church?

                    • Actually, St. Nicodemos and St. Joseph of Arimathea were Pharisees and were very close to the Kingdom of God. You might want to reread about them.

                    • Anonymouse says

                      A person is better off asking for a priest’s blessing, even if he doesn’t believe in it, than he is not doing so.

                      Christ never chided anyone for performing rituals. Indeed, he praised the Pharisees for their tithes. He chided them for not letting the rituals change their hearts so they would perform the greater works of mercy.

                      It is easier for a person to be converted through faithful repetition of rituals than to be converted through sleeping-in on Sunday morning and eating lunch without praying first. The former can come to an understanding of what they’re doing, but the latter is not doing it and therefore will never understand it.

        • Both you and” johnkal” are WRONG.
          The Orthodox Church without love is ASDFGHJKL:qwertyuio, hog wash,
          Just ask any Ukrainian patriot.
          ” The Russian” actions speak louder than their words. You don’t have to be a flag waver to know that simple fact.”If you’re going to give Ireland back to the Irish”. Give Ukraine back to the Ukrainians.
          And remember, It’s not called The Ukraine, It’s just Ukraine. THANK YOU

          • How am I wrong.?

          • Anonymouse says

            The Ukraine is rightful Russian clay. Prove me wrong (you can’t).

            • Modern day Russia and modern day Ukraine share a common root in Kievan Rus, but their histories have diverged and their cultures have diverged over time. The fact that change may have taken place relatively recently and with the support of all sorts of other actors doesn’t change that fact. It’s no use telling a people they aren’t who they think they are. If they identify as something distinct, then they are. A case could be made if Russia and Ukraine had only separated in the 90s, but they were separated for centuries before being “reunited” under Tsarist Russia. That has an effect, and it’s no use claiming one side of that cultural divide represents the “real” common culture of the two since both parties diverged from their common root. Modern Russians and modern Ukrainians are in no real sense anything like medieval or Kieven Rus’. The same can be said of any culture, and any two cultures who sprung from a common source (e.g., Germans, Austrians, Dutch; Danes, Swedes, Norwegians, Icelanders; French, Quebecois, Acadians; Mainland and Taiwanese Chinese).

              By analogy, it’s no use me saying all English, Irish, Scottish, and Welsh are the same, culturally, even though I think they are, with local variation. However, they don’t believe they are the same, and I could argue common this and common that all day long. They believe they are all separate, quite distinct ‘nations’. Saying and doing otherwise, especially when you are the bigger group, is rightly called imperialism. (It’s a different thing when those same groups have diverged within the long-standing context of a single country, e.g., the UK, regional variation within Spain, Germany, Belgium, the U.S., etc., as opposed to once those groups area already separate, cf. those nations mentioned above.)

              Then again, there’s the old quote from sociolinguist and Yiddish scholar Max Weinreich: “A language is a dialect with an army and navy.” While the Ukraine has an army and navy, it’s no match for the military of its more imperialist neighbor.

              • Bottom line for me is that Rus’ was founded at Kiev and was Orthodox-Christianized, migrated northeast due to invasions, historically comprised what is now Russia, Belarus and the Ukraine and is therefore one. Belarus and Russia are still substantially united though technically different political entities.

                Rome established Uniatism there during the political back and forth. Being evil, Uniatism has no standing and does not deserve consideration in the discussion about the Ukraine. Rus’ is Orthodox.

                The West attempted to entice and coerce the Ukraine out of Russia’s orbit. It failed. Novorossia (Eastern Ukraine) is still in Russia’s orbit, Crimea has been retaken, and the rest of Ukraine will not be allowed to form a beachhead against Rus’. Do what you will, Russia is a nuclear power and will repel aggression by any effective means.

                And that’s that.

              • Michael Warren says

                Since Little Russians and Great Russians reunited to found the Russian Empire after Perejaslavl, that historical analysis at the get go is fraudulent revisionism. The Great Russians preserved the state, religion, language, culture, etc. of Kievan Rus’ and that is why the Little, White and Carpatho Russians reunited to it. In that reunion, the pseudomorphoses of foreign occupation and colonial oppression of Russian lands was mitigated, even overcome, in a new All-Russian synthesis, both in the Imperial and Soviet eras and now in the era of the New Russia.

          • Ukraine in Russian means “border” like “ukrai” and then “ukraina” probably “border land.” Border of all the outermost hostile enemy tribes to Russia the Mongols and Turks then also the Latin proxies Poles. German Livonian knights and then finally the Swedes were further up North. Russia fought all five of them at once and was 5 for 5. Then Peter The Great divided Scandinavia into the three butterfinger States.

            • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

              Sorry, Cy, “Ukraine” originally referred to borderlands of POLAND, not of Russia. Yes, Ukrai means AT (u) BORDER (krai).
              Rus’ and its capital, Kiev, were indeed on Poland’s border. LONG after the baptism of Rus, Peter the Great began calling Moscovy “RusSIA,”
              iT’S ALSO GOOD TO REFLECT THAT “GREATER GREECE” WAS E.G., SICILY AND SOUTH ITALY, just as Greater Russia was, e.g., Moscovy and other northern lands. Just plain GREECE was Hellas, capital Athens, just as just plain Rus was and is the territory whose capital is Kiev.

              • Terry Myles says

                Your Grace, thank you you your accurate exposition of the historical facts. Is it any wonder that fantasies like “Game of Thrones” are so popular. Write the story you want them to believe – ignore facts, they get in the way.

              • And Byzantium was “Tzargrad.” SS Cyril and Methody with the Slavonic letters derived mostly from the Greek and Roman also with alphabet symbol of words and sounds amongst tribes outside the walls of Greek Ephesus when a war took place and they became friends during battle.
                Old Story is Moscow became prosperous because the Moscow River ran all the way down to Tzargrad and there was dynamic trade. I love the Cyrilic script wrapped around the Ivan Grozniy Bell Tower in the Kremlin.
                Think it has something to do with Boris Godunov, not sure.

              • The etymology of “Ukraine” is sketchy at best. That is one version. But it is beside the point. Rus’ originally was centered at Kiev but due to invasions the center of the entity moved northeast to its present location in Moscow. That is simple historical fact. Kirill’s proper title is “Kirill, Patriarch of Moscow and of all Rus’.”

              • Michael Warren says

                Actually, the term is found in Russian Chronicles prior to the Mongol conquest attributed to Non Slavic/Slavic colonial areas tributary to Kievan Rus’. After the Mongol conquest it was applied to the area between the Dniester and the Dnieper, which had been ravaged and depopulated by the Mongols, referred to as such by Russians describing Russian territory centuries before Poland laid colonial claim to it, by the Galician-Volynian Russian successor state, by the Lithuanian Russian successor state and by the Muscovite Russian successor state which came to be historically acknowledged as the heir of Kievan Rus’. Moscow acknowledged as yhe heir to Kievan Rus’ at first by the Orthodox Church and then later by history: Galicia was conquered by Poland and Lithuania united with Poland abandoning all claims to Russian succession. So, no, the area was known as the Ukraine, a march or borderland of Rus’, referred to as such by Russians at first who had historically used the term in reference to marches, frontiers, borderlands prior to the Mongol conquest and even after recz pospolita had taken colonial possession of the Ukraine, q.v. “Slobodnaya Ukraina,” a tributary of Moscow/Rus’ and “Azovskaya Ukraina,” a tributary of the Russian Don Cossacks. Then there are the Russian Brotherhoods in Kiev, Ostrogh, Vilna, Lvov, etc. who documented the Ukraine as Russian territory while under Polish-Lithuanian colonial oppression.

                Banderofascist, quack history seems to always fail in its ahistorical, ideologically driven propaganda.

            • Estonian Slovak says

              Cy, please, you discredit yourself when you post such nonsense. In no way did Tsar Peter divide Scandanavia into “three Butterfinger states.” Norway was part of the Kingdom of Denmark until 1814. Then she became part of Sweden about the same time as Sweden lost Finland to Russia. Norway became independent of Sweden in 1905. Finland did not become a state of it’s own until after the Russian Revolution.

              • Ok, then Catherine The Great restored order out there. Russia at that time was one country with five enemies on five borders, where was Trump? Needed to build fences to keep the Mongols
                Turks Poles Franks Swedes out. Instead, a procession with a
                Virgin Mary icon then fight the invaders off.

              • Michael Warren says

                The Finnish and Baltic tribes had been tibutaries of the Varangians of Kievan Rus’ prior to German and Scandinavian conquest of some of these territories. That is how Lithuanian Rus’came to claim to be a successor of Kievan Rus’ and why Karelians, Finns, Estonians are essentially the same people divided by religion.

            • Terry Myles says

              An interesting tale, but chronologically not very accurate.

          • Hi Stan,

            We never encountered each other on line before but I recognize the tone. Welcome to the conversation.

            • Everybody on this site really needs to take a breather. It’s gotten a little wild here.

              • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                You want to talk about weird well Pope Francis just authorized a commission to look into female Decons. I’m not even giving a link to it. Just look it up. It is out there.

                As I stated before I have now come to very uncomfortable conclusions about the EP and the GOAA, but I am still will to listen and be told where I am wrong.

                This “deconesses” stuff is already in our church, once Rome sanctions it, and it will sanction it, how long do you think it will take to be sanctioned in Orthodoxy?

                Lord have mercy.

                Peter A. Papoutsis

                • Here’s my peace on GOARCH, I think there is still hope for it, as well as for the Phanar if they choose to repent. I may well go back to my GOARCH parish here in Lexington, haven’t decided. However, if I did, I would not take communion until I was satisfied that Bartholomew had repented or that GOARCH had severed communion with the Phanar. I have no doubt up to this minute that Bartholomew is in heresy.

                  • Michael Warren says

                    So you would refuse to take Communion on Mt. Athos?

                    • That is an open question, MW. The question is, “does Bartholomew’s heresy mean that those hierarchs that know about it and choose to remain in communion with him are also heretics?” Because if his heresy taints them, then knowing that they too are in heresy, I would have to refuse.

                      Without looking into it further, my gut instinct is that I would receive from those who refuse to commemorate him due to his actions at Crete and not receive from those who do commemorate him. Refusal to commemorate is the first step in letting a hierarch know that they are in error and a precursor to breaking communion. At least with that gesture, I know I am not receiving from heresiarchs or those who accept heresy.

                    • Michael Warren says

                      Until Istanbul is condemned by a council and given the opportunity for repentance, it and its dependencies are Orthodox. Does the Phanar with its Bishops teach heresy and encourage schism? Yes. But until it is condemned for it, there is One Chalice, One Body of CHRIST.

                • Actually, having thought it through further, I may visit my former parish here but will never belong to another New Calendar “Orthodox” entity again. Crete really changed my mind on what Orthodoxy is and what it isn’t and thank God for that.

                  • Michael Warren says

                    And what about the anti ecumenist Bulgarians?

                  • Misha, you should join the Pantelimon group in Boston. You would fit in perfectly. I suspect you are already a member or heavily influenced by them. Who knows?

                    • Michael Warren says

                      That’s just comments from an Eastern Rite Protestant who doesn’t know what he is talking about. Your views fit in well in liberal, Low Church Episcopalianism but even the High Churchers would find you a bit too Calvanist. So I find it ludicrous you insert yourself into any conversations about Orthodoxy, which you clearly don’t have a clue about, and become some sort of Eastern Rite Protestant pope attacking the Orthodoxy of other people with real, Orthodox formations.

        • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

          Of course Russia is Orthodox and Buddhist and Animist and Moslem, etc., and there are still active pockets of Godlessness from the old days. I wonder if our George who chose to miss the DOS Assembly, has come across any of those St Josef icons of the late Stalin. I saw a photo of one recently on Facebook.I think it would be Orthodox if Peter would refer to “Sometimes Holy Russia.”

          • Gail Sheppard says

            RE: “. . . Sometimes Holy Russia.” The Holy are perpetually hounded by the enemy; it follows them around like Simon Magus and the slave girl followed the Apostles. A Holy nation is going to be a nation of contradiction.

            • George Michalopulos says

              precisely. That’s why i believe great grace may still abound here in America. But only if persecution comes.

            • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

              Gail! What is THIS: “A Holy nation is going to be a nation of contradiction?”
              Is an evil nation, then, NOT going to be a “nation of contradiction?”

            • Michael Warren says

              More Eastern Rite Protestant russophobia unaware of history or current events.

          • I have seen Mother Matrona icons in which Stalin is depicted. However, that is a different matter. The story is that she persuaded him to lighten up on the ROC during the war.

            • Michael Warren says

              What if, as some sources suggest, Stalin was murdered by Lavrenry Beria at the insistence of the West for acting as his own Bonaparte to transform the Soviet state into a Russian Orthodox Tsardom and that the Red Symphonia was the trigger which prompted the West to act and have a hand in Stalin’s removal. Even in Khruschev’s memoirs, Stalin’s final days in the hospital have him leering at Beria et al pointing to an icon of an angel.

        • Russia was baptized long ago and has gone through her paces, seemingly moving back to the right track. America was never baptized. “Congress shall pass no law respecting the Establisment of Religion”.

          As to the Ukraine, it has always historically part of Russia, an integral part. People with short histories do not appreciate tradition. In this country we have no traditions, only habits.

          • Michael Warren says

            People who celebrate Stepan Bandera and other Uniate, NAZI collaborators to the point of placing them on their currency and renaming landmarks in their honor are representative of the most ignorant of the lunatic fringe. Those who cover up their illegitimate regimes, their persecution of Orthodox Christians, their campaigns of ethnic cleansing and Gestapo-esque police states for Red, White, and Blue uber alles are enemies of civilization already condemned at Nuremberg. The easiest way to settle the Ukrainian question is to allow democratic referendums expressing the human right of self determination. The freest way of answering the Ukrainian mova controversy is to allow people to speak in the language of their choice and not in some bastardized, artificial, half-Polish, Galician Surzhyk. The simplest way to allow the Ukraine to decide its true political course is not to have the US/EU overthrow democratically elected governments but to wage democratic political campaigns where Russky Mir, Putin, Novorossiya are on the ballot with the Vatican, Recz Pospolita, Neo Prometheanism, Orange Revolution, Banderofascism, Unia, Schism, Geiropa. Federalization and recognition of Russian as a state language are the necessary steps to democratically settling quack Ukrainian SEPARATISM once and for all.

            Let me remind the diasporan orcs of schenevmerla-this question was decided long ago by Khmelnitsky, and the Uniate janissaries lost: then the Russian Empire was founded.

  5. In Moscow I would be interested in seeing the Church of the Ascension. Interesting architecture with cupolas ascending upward. Ascension is one of the great mysteries.

  6. Really, you must use the subway to get around Moscow. Anything else, during daytime hours, is a path to madness – or at least a huge waste of time.

  7. I had a guy walk in front of me all the sudden in “Zamoskvaryechya” and drop a wod of US hundred bills out his full length coat pocket. A Japanese guy was there. I went back around the corner and told the guy you dropped something. He didn’t respond. The Japanese guy picked up the bundle panic-stricken. I said I’m out’a here. Jogged, came upon a newly restored church and there was an “otpyevania” with a crowded church. Otherwise there were some nice outdoor street fairs there. Had some other adventures along those lines.
    Also attended a full liturgy at St. Basil’s while tourists were climbing Ivan the Awesome stairwells able to see the service. Vladimirskaya Bozhematyr was not at the Tretyakov however the church adjacent to the museum.

  8. Michael Kinsey says

    Women are the ontological equals of men, spiritually. They are capable of authentically performing Holy Sacraments. But the Holy God does not set up a culture and His Church that is certain that fulfilling the calling cannot be done Justice. Women are saved in child bearing, spoken with full apostolic authority by St Paul. The genuine needs of the children and the genuine needs of the Church cannot be done with full justice to each. It’s too much, one or the other must be slighted. God does not set things up that are guaranteed to fall short of His Justice. Women should seek to pleased God alone, and serve their lovely calling. Share the Load!

    • Michael Warren says

      Then there are Holy Canons which date from Apostolic Times which state otherwise…

  9. M. Stankovich says

    Today marks the the 30th anniversary of the falling asleep in the Lord of Professor Serge S. Verhoskoy professor emeritus of Dogmatic Theology and Ethics, and Provost of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary from 1955 until his retirement in 1981.

    He was born in Sarzha Russia in 1907. He left Russia with his parents and sisters in his early youth following the Bolshevik Revolution. He completed his secondary education in Prague, Czechoslovakia before moving to Paris, France. Greatly influenced by Fr. Georges Florovsky, while studying at St. Sergius Theological Institute between 1932-36, he became known for his passion for Orthodox Tradition, grounded in the Patristic Fathers and the Holy Scripture, and he was an open and vocal critic of the popular “Russian ėmigrė intelligentsia,” to Paris. By the early 1950′s he was recognized as an important theologian and writer, and was invited by Fr. Florovsky to join him in NYC in the forming of SVS.

    Prof. Verhovskoy always seemed to live “beneath the radar,” until it was necessary for someone to step forward to speak the Truth, which he always did without hesitation – an issue for which he continually chided his students: “You are called to be Ezekiels, yet you are silent.” And when Fr. Alexander Schmemann expressly and adamantly responded to the “Sorrowful Epistle of Metropolitan Philaret (Voznesensky), stating “I trust people like… Prof. SS Verhovskoy,” he might well have duly cited him in his description of the role of the theologian:

    The theologian has no rights, no power to govern and to administer that which belongs exclusively to the hierarchy. But it is his sacred duty to supply the hierarchy and, indeed, the whole Church with the pure teaching of the Church and to stand by that truth even when it is not considered “opportune.” It must be admitted that much too often our official “academic” theology has failed to accept this “obedience” and preferred quiet complacency. It has thus become accomplice to many deviations and distortions from which the whole Orthodox Church suffers today. But again, it was not so with the Fathers. Almost to the one, they suffered from the various “power structures” of their days for their refusal to opt for the compromise or to accept silent obedience to evil. And the fact is that ultimately the Church followed them and not those who, then as today, have a thousand excellent reasons for avoiding the “abstract principles” and preferring the “demands of reality.”

    And like many great men, he was a character. He loved the “Motown Sound” and he borrowed every one of my original blues albums – from Muddy Waters to Howlin’ Wolf – and he loved nothing more than to have a student drop by for tea and discussion, day or evening, listen to us play guitars & sing the “rock” music.

    When his beloved wife, Olga, died of sudden cardiac arrest preparing to attend liturgy on Thomas Sunday, the word went out that Prof wanted students to be with him. Coming to his home on campus, a large circle of chairs was arranged in his living room, students came and went, as a samovar served tea, and he taught “dogmatic theology” – life, marriage, death, the Last Things, the Resurrection – as he told stories, wept, and laughed, and we sang, and reminisced over the course of an amazing day.

    At the end of his life I had arranged a very small favor in arranging for his care, and he called my busy office, and would not take “He cannot take your call now, ” for an answer. And when my supervisor finally was forced to interrupt me, Prof simply said, “Well, my dear, I don’t know, but you are somehow angel.” Me, Prof? It was all I could do not not to cry like a child. It was like the life affirmation you had always wanted, and the warmest hug you never expected! Memory eternal, beloved Professor, and may your soul rest with the saints!

    • May his memory be eternal!

    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

      Beautiful Michael. May his memory be eternal.

    • So Schmemann “trusted” Prof Verhovsky when it came to the “Sorrowful Epistles”? Why “trust”? You need to to do your own objective analysis. The “Sorrowful Epistles” were addressing issues. You don’t need to “trust” anything or anyone. Use your own intellect and knowledge and figure out what sounds right or not so right. “We are thy rational flock”
      …. Schmemann failed some basics. MP it’s not that they don’t have grace, we just don’t know. We don’t know if they do have grace. Stalin replaced all the bishops he murdered with his proxies. They do not have apostolic succession. So you can guess there is no grace there. St. Kirill of Kazan stated you try to get your spiritual needs satisfied there when you know it is not right .. that is craftiness.

      • Met. Philaret was completely justified in writing the Sorrowful Epistles. It is a tragedy that Schmemann, et al. did not heed the warning. The replies were full of poorly supported generalizations and baseless assertions. Sad, all in all.

        • Michael Warren says

          +Philaret was right in asserting he spoke for the entire Russian church?! Even his own father wouldn’t have thought so. Grabbe didn’t even think so when he begged Athenagoras and Iakovos for forgiveness afterwards.

      • M. Stankovich says


        Pardon me for not assuming the role of research assistant for anyone who actually wished to read Fr. Alexander Schmemann’s Response to Met. Philaret. This would have prevented you from assuming a nonsensical exercise which is always the result of speculation at comments taken out of context.

        Secondly, having known Fr. Alexander personally as an instructor, for several years as my confessor, and as the inimitable presence as the Dean of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary for the formative years of my life, I can unhesitatingly state that he never, ever wrote “replies [which] were full of poorly supported generalizations and baseless assertions.” This is a patently foolish, unlearned, and an unsupported contention arising from a superficial knowledge of Fr. Alexander and his voluminous collection of works. Alexander Schmemann was detailed, precise, analytical, scrupulously referenced and attributed; his notes & attributions in some cases exceeded in length the essay itself. Alexander Schmemann was one of the most astonishingly brilliant minds God has ever placed in my path; this is not necessarily to say that he was a friendly, warm, or a consistently nice man, but he was a brilliant Orthodox Theologian. Me point, then, was that when such a strong and forceful personality says he trusts Serge S. Verhovskoy, he was specifically referring to his integrity, to his unwavering defense of the Orthodox Faith, and ultimately, his persistence & perseverance, even unto the end.

        • “Me point, then, . . .”

          Methinks you don’t have one.

          • M. Stankovich says

            Methinks you are mocking my dyslexia, which is a cognitive disability, unlike stupidity, which is organic. You may end this from of childish response now.

            • “You may end this from of childish response now.”

              Now, AMS, are you trying to type “forum” or “form”. I don’t think it is a “forum” of childish responses, at least not mine. Perhaps you meant “form”. It seems to be selective dyslexia, at best.

      • V. Rev. Andrei Alexiev says

        Cy, it is you who are failing some basics. Never, ever did ROCOR ever state that the MP lacked grace. It may be that individual bishops stated their personal opinions, but there was never a General Statement issued .
        I have been a ROCOR priest 39 years. I remember the days of Metropolitan Philaret. I was ordained when he was First Hierarch in 1977. It is true that Stalin was a persecutor of the church, but he didn’t kill ALL the bishops. How else could 19 bishops have been found in 1944 to elect Metropolitan Sergius Patriarch? Granted, a good many of them were released from the camps for this. The free part of the Russian church couldn’t have communion with the MP, BUT THEY NEVER stated that the MP was graceless. Surely you know that when Metropolitan Philaret was an Archimandrite in China during the Communist takeover, he was a priest of the MP. Did Metropolitan Philaret ever state that during his tenure as an MP priest in China, that his Sacraments were without grace? I don’t think so.
        Who gave you authority to decide about such things, anyhow? Have you a degree from an Orthodox Seminary or Academy? You have shown yourself wrong about Russian history. You even made the heretical statement that we should “pray to Jesus so that He will pray to God for you”. It would appear to me that you aren’t even a “Google Scholar” to use an expression of Dr. Stankovich.
        I would hope you could man up and admit you’ve been wrong on some things. I’m sorry if I come across as harsh. I am a sinful and unworthy priest. I have had to take some constructive criticism from my fellow priests. I would humbly ask you to consider things carefully before you post. We may disagree about politics, Ukraine, Donald Trump; or other issues and that’s ok. However, you cannot make ignorant statements about Russian history or especially about the Holy Trinity and not expect people to call you out on them.
        Our host George may eliminate any or all parts of my post, if he feels them to be offensive.

        • M. Stankovich says

          I have written here a number of times of travelling with Abp Makary (Svistun) the three blocks from the ROC cathedral in NYC to the Synod Cathedral for Forgiveness Vespers. Our entire group was received graciously for Vespers and then the Rite of Forgiveness – where both Met. Philaret & Bp. Makary prostrated to the ground before one another asking forgiveness. I personally couldn’t imagine what to expect, and I end up in tremendous respect for both of them. Conclude for yourself if Met. Philaret and the other bishops from the ROCOR who received us believed The ROC was without Grace.

        • I did not say ROCOR pronounced the MP “WITHOUT” grace. However, ROCOR, historical ROCOR, never, never, had a position that the MP “HAD” Grace. It was left an open question. …. The historical ROCOR had anathema against MP? Believe they did. …. So are you going to ANATHEMATIZE that which maybe has Grace? …. See you have to ask some these kinds of questions that come up by way of logical deduction.

          With regard to: “pray to Jesus so that He will pray to God for you”
          Read Luke 22:31,32.
          “And the Lord said, Simon Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat.
          But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.”

          • About Met. Philaret in China there were extraordinary circumstances then. To call him a “priest of the MP” is slanderous. He was under their yoke and he resisted in all many manners of ways. There is a “FENCE” and on one side you have the Historical Russian Orthodox Church including the ROCOR and all the Hieromartyrs and Martyrs and on the other side of the “Fence” the Stalinist MP.
            Todays MP and ROCOR MP is saying this was all a “big mixup” there never should have been any kind of divide, different people took different “paths” and its all “good.” So now its all been historically revised. No. No. You cannot travel back into time and change history. On Judgement Day we will we see if Tzar Nicholas embraces Stragorodsky, Alexy and Gudyaev, …. or if he turns around and walks.

            • Estonian Slovak says

              It’s Tsar, Putz! Not Tzar. Again with the vodka?

              • I’ve seen “Czar” before, anyway, lets not get too vitriolic. I’ll have a shot of vodka and maybe you can take a Xanax.

            • Estonian Slovak says

              Why, you changed history by lying about Tsar Peter. Long as you doing it, it’s ok. What have you done for Holy Russia? You went to liturgy at St. Basil’s? I thought they had no grace. BTW, I won’t set foot in Russia until General Vlasov is pardoned. You not only set foot there, but you left a poor Japanese man to fend for himself according to your own words. You would have Sergius Stragorodsky be a confessor, but you show yourself to be a gutless wonder. Who’s the fool now, Cy? Who’s the fool now?

              • When I attended the liturgy at St. Basil Cathedral it was at a time period when there was some palpable optimism about Orthodoxy in Russia and there was the print icon of Tzar Nicholas that was Myrrh bearing and there was the general sense at the time of “vozrozhdyenie” translated “rebirth” of the Russian Orthodox Church. I was not partaking in any sacraments though they were open to me about that saying I may, mainly of course Confession and Communion. Thats that. About the Japanese guy incident, I went around the corner and told the whoever guy who plopped the wad of bills “Hey, you dropped something”!! Then go back and see the Japanese guy picked up that wad of hundreds!! You think I should of hung around to negotiate the matter with the Russian mafia or whoever that was .. you crazy !! I walked back and told the guy, loud and clear, “you dropped something” but then thats it I’m not gonna hang around to fight using my handbag and baseball cap. So I didn’t “leave him there” and for all I know he appeared out of nowhere as well, holding up the money like as though offering to split fifty fifty, now that I think of it he could have been part of the set-up, don’t know, I’m glad I didn’t hang around to sort it out or I might have never made it out of Zamoskvoryechye.

                • Following day I went to Christ Savior Cathedral when it was spic brand new. Even the deacon’s censors weren’t broken in. So on the periphery of the church interior there are all these nuns doing some kind of strict obedience quiet modest, then I saw some guy lecturing one of these quiet
                  nuns telling her how can you do all this .. Tsar glorification and all these accusations and then I stepped in and told him “you guys betrayed the Tsar” and this guy ran me all up and down that Cathedral then finally I got rid of him and heard the Vespers service.

          • Estonian Slovak says

            They never anathematised the MP, Putz! What they did do was condemn the election of Sergius as Patriarch by the 18 or so bishops. Rightly so. Ecumenism itself was anathematised. Not the MP.

            • The famous anathema on ecumenism of 1983 is all well known. Way long before that, I believe, not 100% sure, both MP and ROCOR had anathemas on one another. Maybe someone else out there may know more specifically, for sure though if you were in ROCOR and had communion in the MP that was a major breach, you would have to go to Confession and fix that or ex-communication.

              • Michael Warren says

                But it came 35 years after ecumenism was condemned by “World Orthodoxy” at the Moscow Sobor of 1948 called by the “Stalinist church of Sergius Stragorodsky” at a time when ROCOR received money from the heterodox for observing, even participating in, interfaith discussions…

                • “Condemned”? Alfaev runs all up and down the WCC with his little water bottle and laptop kissing hands and feet of any and all heterodox he can find. What a joke! Meanwhile Gundyaev signs paperwork with the pope giving him his “pledge of allegiance” to “reunite” with the arch-heretics. “1948 Moscow Sobor” is Chekist-KGB “sobor” it has ZERO relevancy or credibility with anything at all except the communist politics of the day.

                  • Michael Warren says

                    1). Alfeev feels quite a bit of heat in Russia and is walking on egg shells.
                    2). +Patriarch Kirill is the main person standing in the way of Istanbul’s Unia with Rome, head of the Russian church, the Third Rome, defending Orthodoxy.
                    3). The Moscow Sobor of 1948, whose affirmation of Orthodoxy your schismatic sect began claiming as its own twenty years later. How is it you all chose to coopt the message of the sergianists and what took you “authentic Orthodox” twenty years to be as authentic as the sergianists and the “World Orthodox”?!

                    Eastern Rite Protestants like yourself are just as wrong when they claim to be the replacement church, a sect of Protestant Restorationism, as your Syosset-Crestwood photo negatives. You are Renovationist schismatics, fomenting rebellion and reformation of Orthodoxy in the name of a conservative, ideological platform. Conservatism and liberalism are both Protestant, ideological evils in self-declared war with Orthodoxy from the margins.

              • “Maybe someone else out there may know more specifically, for sure though if you were in ROCOR and had communion in the MP that was a major breach, you would have to go to Confession and fix that or ex-communication.”

                Wrong again, Cy. There were many instances of intercommunion and no “anathemas”, only general cessation of communion. However, there were those who crossed between without incident. ROCOR never denied MP had grace. Anathema would contradict that. Show me an anathema of ROCOR against MP.

                Please just quit, you don’t know what you’re talking about.

                Here’s what the anathema against ecumenism of 1983 meant and means according to the clergy of the body that implemented it:


                • The “bar” for declaring “without grace” is very high. Lord had said “what is not possible for man is possible with the Lord.” Also there is the scriptural passage regarding the Holy Spirit as being likened to the wind. Did the Orthodox regard the Roman Catholics as being “without grace”? Off hand I don’t know that answer, have to go back and read some “old” ROCOR material from sources generally reliable. However the divide between the Catacomb Church in Russia and the State “Sergianist” church was very very real and there were many many Martyrs and Hiero-martyrs who paid a very high price for their “principal.” Terrible persecutions. Why? If the State “Sergianist” church had “grace” then why not just go along? Why go into the “catacombs” and risk the persecutions? Anyway maybe somewhere in Jordanville’s attic there might be the old anathemas stored away somewhere, its not going to be anywhere you can find on-line. Suffice to say the Catacomb Church nor the historical ROCOR had regarded the State “Sergianist” church then later the MP as “Having Grace” as I already mentioned in my post above. God only knows that definitive answer as to whether “it does or does not.” We can only go by what we know from history. Between the Tichonite Catacomb Church and the State “Sergianist” church communion was broken when Stragorodsky in 1927 did his “Declaration” and as to Stragorodsky himself being of “canonical or non-canonical” stature as bishop doesn’t matter, he was a “fallen bishop” and henceforth he no longer had valid apostolic succession. Thats the history.

                  • Cy,

                    I have no idea where you get your “information” but the ROCOR has never stated that the MP does not have grace – never, to my knowledge, Sergianist or otherwise.

                    Yes, Rome is without grace. They left the Church long, long ago.

                    • Misha,

                      Can you read ?? Already I have stated loud and clear man, LOUD AND CLEAR, I did not say the ROCOR pronounced “MP without Grace” KNOCK KNOCK !! So you do not need to keep repeating that false assertion over and over. Did not say that, OK ??

                      Said, now listen up, take a deep breath, listen, this is what I said:
                      ROCOR never never, the “historical” ROCOR, said that the MP ..
                      still listening .. “DID” have Grace !!!! Get it ??
                      There is a difference.

                    • Cy,

                      I see where your confusion lies. You can’t understand why ROCOR would acknowledge that the MP has grace but at the same time have rival organizations, even on the territory of the MP.

                      To say that ones mysteries have grace is not the same thing as to say that a local church is competent to conduct its own affairs, to spread the Gospel, to foster theosis. The MP was incompetent on these activities under Soviet rule, notwithstanding the fact that their mysteries had grace. That was the whole point of the ROCOR: the MP’s ability to steer its own ship was destroyed under the Soviets. The Soviets steered the good ship MP, not the MP itself. The head of the MP church was, temporally, no longer Christ, but the Soviet government. Thus all decisionmaking was illegitimate and called into question. God could still work through the MP insofar as it did not openly embrace heresy and subject itself to excommunication by the other local churches. However, that is a different question than whether it was competent to conduct its own affairs.

                      It was not. ROCOR was. That was the real point of ukaz 362.


                      If you read it carefully, what is being contemplated is the preservation of Supreme Church Authority of the ROC in some form, inside or outside of Russia. It refers to the possible cessation of “activity” of the Supreme Authority in Russia, the authority of the Patriarch to delegate in that event, etc.

                      Some in the OCA/metropolia went so far as to interpret the language as being tantamount to a tomos of autocephaly. This misses the point. Pat. Tikhon was not contemplating the founding of another autocephalous church. He was contemplating possible means of the survival of an active Supreme Authority in the Local Church he headed. It occurred to him not only that the dioceses abroad might be severed from contact with the MP due to the Bolshevik evil, but that exercising Supreme Authority of the ROC might be impossible within Soviet Russia.

                      * * * * *

                      2) In the event a diocese, in consequence of the movement of the war front, changes of state borders, etc., finds itself completely out of contact with the Supreme Church Administration, or if the Supreme Church Administration itself, headed by His Holiness the Patriarch, for any reason whatsoever ceases its activity, the diocesan bishop immediately enters into relations with the bishops of neighboring dioceses for the purpose of organizing a higher instance of ecclesiastical authority for several dioceses in similar conditions (in the form either of a temporary Supreme Church government or a Metropolitan district, or anything else).

                      3) Care for the organization of a Supreme Church Authority is the objective of an entire group of dioceses which find themselves in the position indicated in paragraph 2, is the indispensable obligation of the senior bishop of such a group.

                      * * * * *

                      This is precisely what the ROCOR did. In effect, primacy was restored to the MP on May 17, 2007.

                    • Misha,

                      While not saying the “MP” did not have grace, still saying it did not necessarily “have grace.” Grace or no grace let that be however as it may be. Stragorodsky was a fallen bishop. As such the “MP” which is a Stalinist construct, Patriarch Tichon and the restored Patriarchate under Tsar Nicholas ll was never called “MP,” has to be regarded as not having apostolic succession. To say that the MP “did not have heresy” is like to say Judas “did not have heresy.” So what. The 1927 Declaration was betrayal. To this present day, MP regards him as their “founding father” like Washington/Jefferson. “Canonical.” Sure they speak of “mistakes” and “hardships” and of course there really were hardships and I will not judge those, however the Martyrs and Hiero-martyrs who were there they stated their positions and those are the ones I trust and abide by. For the Russian Orthodox Church to renew Stragorodsky and his legacy has to be condemned and cast out. He has to go into the dustbin and then Apostolic Succession can be restored. Russia may need to go back to being a Synodal Church until a valid Patriarchy can be restored however it will not be an “MP” Patriarchy it will be a Patriarchy of all Russia.

                  • Michael Warren says

                    Not according to St. Tikhon or Holy New Martyr Benjamin of Krutitsk who would condemn your views as sectarian, schismatic.

                    • Then let them.

                    • Blah blah, like you know, blah blah, ….”my views”…. blah blah.

                      The soviets were ALWAYS, ALWAYS liars. “The devil is a liar and the father of lies.” Thats the soviets. God battling atheist devils. Liars.

                      They do with their propaganda falsify history, occasionally say something partially true to mix in with their lies in order to deceive further and disguise deceit however at the end of the day its all lies.

                      With the communists you never believe anything they say with their mouths and lips. You only watch their “hands” which are always doing something the exact opposite. Devils are liars its one of their chief characteristics.

                    • Michael Warren says

                      Like talking to a schismatic child who puts his fingers in his ears and shouts, “LA, LA, LA, I CAN’T HEAR YOU!!!”

                  • anonymus per Scorilo says

                    he was a “fallen bishop” and henceforth he no longer had valid apostolic succession

                    Adding to that the witness of patriarch Nicodim of Romania (who during a canonical visit to Moscow went back unexpectedly to the conference room and found the bishops in the Russian delegation taking their beards out) one can conclude that grace and valid apostolic succession were not very abundant for the rest of the ROC synod either.

                    P.S. The relation between this witnessing (martyria) and Pat. Nicodim’s subsequent martyrdom is probably more than semantic…

                    • What do personal sins have to do with the presence or absence of grace in mysteries?

                    • Michael Warren says

                      Sounds like the gossip from an Old Believer soglasie…

                    • Exactly. It was all 100% Stalinist controlled. Top to bottom
                      A thru Z.
                      No “apostolic” succession. Demonic satanic succession of minions preparing the way for the future reception of anti-christ. Just look at the MP hierarchy today? Gundyaev and the pope at Cuban Airport with Castro presiding, how many demons had to be there in that elevator lobby room? Alfeyeev, whats the latest there is he trying to re-write the Nicene Creed? Its crazy insane. Substituting “sobornaya with vsyelyenskaya” its insane. They can’t do nothing just yet however always pushing that envelope.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Cy, that’s unfair. I merely said that the Soviet dominated Church was a “moral sham.” I did not say that it lacked grace. If I believed that then the Byzantine patriarchate would have lacked all grace during the Arian domination over the Church and during the Iconoclastic centuries.

                      While I believe that it would have been better for the entire Church to go underground and withhold its moral support for Bolshevism, that was a choice not left to me but to the bishops of that Church at that time. And anyway, thanks to Hitler’s near-destruction of Stalin, it is all academic at this point.

                      The larger point is this: what will the various Orthodox Churches (acting through the Episcopal Assembly) do when the time comes for us to make our choice –Caesar or Christ? I say let’s learn from the mistakes of the Moscow patriarchate during the interwar period.

                    • Michael Warren says

                      “Stalinist” but more authentic than the “Authentic Orthodox” for decades…

                      Cy validates the comparisons between his mutually anathemizing “last Orthodox living room on earth sects watching Hal Lindsey with a foil hat on” and the most extreme of Old Believer schismatics. Same schism, different century.

                      “Authentic Orthodox” who were/are schismatic pawns of the ever so godless CIA currently working for Kenyan, “Right Believing, Orthodox, Tsar Batushka” Obama. Ridiculous, crass, schismatic stupidity. Borderline apostasy.

                      How many Orthodox Christians were killed and condemned by your “free,” Western intelligence agencies in the last hundred years? Start with Talerhoff, the February and October Revolutions and the Pontic Genocide.

                    • George,
                      You go by “anonymous per Scorilo” to whom I was making a reply? About “lacking grace” well thats what this debate here has been about going back and forth with Misha, MW and couple others. There is no claim here that the MP was definitively declared as “without grace” as I’ve stated already several times at least. But, but …. there also was not the position that it “DID” possess grace either, by historical ROCOR or the Tichonite Catacomb Church. Actually the Catacomb Church had statements regarding Stragorodsky’s State Stalinist church that go way beyond just merely opining on “grace or no grace” but that is subject matter going further into things outside of discussion here. The question you posit “Caesar or Christ” well that is a theme that has been taken up by various religious writers and the “end times” strategy of “Caesar” has been to infiltrate the Church and to falsify the Church from within rather than by means of “outward” battle. Fr. Seraphim Rose has taken up that topic the Optina Elders and some number of others. Seraphim Sarovsky also had famous prophesy about the Russian “bishops” of end times that they would be the most impious ever more so than the “Greek bishops from the times of Theodosius the Younger not even believing in the chief dogma of the Christian Faith;” The Resurrection of Christ. Quoted from the essay: THE FUTURE OF RUSSIA AND THE END OF THE WORLD

                      A Lecture given at the Youth Conference
                      of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia,
                      San Francisco, August 3, 1981
                      by Blessed Hieromonk Seraphim (Rose)

                      So in the upper echelons of orthodoxy, EP, MP, and all those others gathered in Crete for the “council” I think you can see all that, “Caesar” infiltrating the Church and creating a proxy for the Church but it won’t be the Church and “grace” will not likely be found there.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Cy, you may be victim to something of a chronological bait-and-switch here. The “impiety” of the Russian bishops in the “end-times” is a well-known prophecy. I myself do not discount it. The question is when did the “end-times” occur? It’s possible that the events of 1917-present are the end-times and the “impiety” in question referred to those Russian bishops who lived in the pre-Great War period (i.e. 1890-1918 or thereabouts).

                      What gives me pause about believing that the current crop of Russian bishops are the impious ones is the fact that they orchestrated the derailment of the so-called Great and Holy Council. And they received moral support for this extreme measure from the monks of Athos. Kudos of course must be given to the Bulgarians, Antiochenes and Georgians for being the instruments of this boycott. A shout-out must be given to the Serbs who only went under duress applied to them by their NATO-dominated government and a favorable mention must be given to the Greeks who did attend but made life miserable for the Vaticanists. Especially Hierotheos Vlachos.

                    • George, don’t think so. “End Times” are still coming however we are in the early innings here no doubt, I think that should be safe to assume. Lots of prophecies about “end-times” in the Gospels, OT, Revelations, writings of Saints and so forth and a lot of those things have yet to come about however a lot has come about, so its “early innings” though of course no one knows except only the Lord Himself of course, nevertheless the prophesies have been given to us so that we may “discern the sign of the times.”

                      Have you ever heard about the heresy of “Chiliasm?” Fr. Seraphim Rose wrote about that in his book on “Revelation” with Archbp. Averky writing commentary on the main part of the Book. Chiliasm otherwise also known as “Millennialism” is the heresy about the “1000 year reign of Christ.” Its mainly a Protestant heresy very popular nowadays actually however I have heard modern Orthodox writers saying that it is creeping its way into “World Orthodoxy.” A kind of anticipation of a day like the “Golden Age of Atlantis” with “Christ” at the helm in Jerusalem. Well you know thats not going to be Christ, you know that! Of course, anti-christ. Now as far as the “impious Russian bishops” look who’s there now? Gundyaev and his next in line deputy Alfeev! For them to be there at the top then it means there has to be a lot of rot underneath as well or how would they have ascended in the first place. They are you can sense moving in this New Age “millennialist” direction current however not so openly or explicitly just yet but with all the lavishness, vestments of every shade of the rainbow, all the wealth, houses dachas watches tobacco jewelry and all that stuff they look to be looking forward to “good times.” The Crete council? Of course they were not going to pass all their secular humanistic redefinition of Orthodoxy in just one fell swoop, that was not going to happen, however they have set bricks down for the “next Crete” coming to a theatre near you soon. Yes, of course in Russia there are and must be many truly pious clergy in the priest ranks and who knows maybe even some in the bishop ranks and no doubt among many many in the laity. So thats the “early innings” and the pious and Faithful they will still have things come before them and here in US there will be stuff coming before us as well. Thats my take. Anyway thanks by the way with your blog you always write terrific lead story.

            • Estonian Slovak says

              I apologise to Cy and anyone else offended by my harsh words. Since my sins are worse than those of the people I’ve condemned I have no business condemning anyone. I hereby withdraw my participation here.

          • V.Rev. Andrei Alexiev says

            Thank you. I read that passage both in English and Belarusian. However, I don’t see how that justifies degrading the Second Person of the Holy Trinity. Have you never heard a Moleben to Our Lord chanted in Slavonic? Wasn’t the refrain , “Sweetest Jesus, Save us”?

            • You attribute this to me, I copy/paste:

              >You even made the heretical statement that we should “pray to Jesus so that He will pray to God for you”.<

              Where did I say that? Can you find that and do a copy/paste? This is wording you invented yourself. Sorry, thats just not me.

          • If ROCOR did not believe that the MP retained grace, the reconciliation in 2007 would have been much more complicated than it was. There would have had to have been some type of reception by chrismation or something else restoring grace to the MP. There was not.

            • By 2007 it was all long ago a done deal. They already had “on board” everyone they needed, long time ago, it was all rubber stamped at that conference they had the year prior. When they hijacked Met. Vitaly and installed Laurus that was the beginning of the end. This is basic stuff to figure out and you are talking about “chrismation” you really haven’t even a clue.

              • Michael Warren says

                Yet clerics were received from the MP without any “receptions into the Orthodox Church” by +Anthony, +Anastassy, +Philaret, and +Vitaly. If the MP were graceless, that would mean your ROCOR received schismatics into Communion without penance and prayed with schismatics, canonically condemning itself to deposition, the defrocking of the ROCOR Synod of Bishops?

                • False. Wrong. Historical ROCOR did not take MP clergy in just “straight up.” ROCOR was NOT in communion with the MP. DON’T YOU GET THAT ???? …. NO COMMUNION WITH MP. NONE. ZERO. NADA. ZILCH.

                  • Michael Warren says

                    And then there were ALL those MP clerics from the DP camps in Germany and from the Chinese Metropolia. …

                    The occasional, celebrated, Cold War trickle thereafter. …

                    Nothing more to say to “Crazy Talkin’, Eastern Rite Protestant, Far Right Schism INC.”

        • Michael Warren says

          +Patriarch Sergius was the canonical head of the Russian Orthodox church from which ROCOR was in schism. His rapproachment with the Soviet state was a continuation of the policies of St. Tikhon and a necessary pastoral act to minister to the Russian Orthodox of the Soviet Union. It was his Patriarchal Russian church which condemned ecumenism at the Pan Orthodox level at the Moscow Sobor in 1948, nearly two decades before Grabbe’s ROCOR took notice of ecumenism for cold warrior purposes (after sending observers to Vatican II and the WCC for sizeable amounts of payola). Unless, of course, one considers St. John, +Metropolitan Philaret (and his father who died LOYAL TO THE MOTHER CHURCH REPENTING OF THE KARLOVTSY SCHISM) and all of the rest of the ROCOR clerics who had served in the Far East and were reconciled with the Mother Church and received from schism before fleeing abroad. One wonders how much the Moscow Sobor of 1948 influenced ROCOR, but then one reads Pravoslavnaya Rus’ and Tserkovnaya Zhizn’ from the Cold War era to witness how ROCOR inartfully set out to coopt its legitimacy by preaching replacement ecclesiology.

          Yes, Montreal, Los Angeles, Boston and the Grabbes in Manhattan did indeed belch forth screeds maintaining the Russian Mother Church, Moscow Patriarchate, was graceless. They later stirred the pot to say “World Orthodoxy” was graceless. In Los Angeles, they even maintained they “had the most grace in ROCOR.” ROCOR was out of Communion with almost every Orthodox local church except for the Serbian church and Jerusalem, either as a statement against sergianism or against ecumenism, modernism, new calendarism. Were there instances of unofficial relations, concelebrations? Yes, in the San Francisco archdiocese, sometimes in the Midwest, at Jordanville, in Europe, Australia and, ironically, Latin America. The Grabbes were constant gate crashers upon their cousin’s, Fr. Alexander Schmemann’s events, and many a soiree of the Metropolia/OCA Russian aristocrats of Long Island, not to mention sycophants to the GOA and the Phanar.

          Vlasov and his ROA in the final days of WWII VOLUNTEERED TO LINK UP WITH THE RED ARMY TO ERADICATE THE NAZI MENACE IN CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE. Vlasov wrote Stalin at stavka personally. He even used these facts in his defense when he was tried for collaborationism with the genocidal NAZI Reich. Fighting Hitler by betraying ones country is to turn ones back on the podvig of the Soviet peoples and the 20 million+ slaughtered by Adolph Hitler and his war criminals. Being an accesory to crimes against humanity, against your own people, makes you not only a traitor, but an enemy of humanity. Quislings like Vlasov were hanged in the Netherlands, France, Norway, Belgium where today there is no modern cultus clamoring for their rehabilitation (save on the fringes and in the banderofascist Ukraine or in the russophobic Baltic states and Finland). Was there a tragedy to Vlasov? An ironic one: Stalin with the war came to embrace the rhetoric and Russian nation building of his political program, leaving Vlasov to have betrayed his people to NAZI atrocities for nothing more than a political chimera Hitler would have never delivered. Many Russians in the Reich, and subsequently in the diaspora, were deceived by Vlasov to betray Russia. It is a tragedy that still today the black treason of Vlasovism is not comprehended even by the descendents of the Vlasovites. One need only read the judgements handed down at the Nuremberg Trials to understand why rehabilitation of NAZI collaborators is impossible for civilization to embrace without amnestying NAZI-ism. I would encourage sober people to rent and watch the 1961 film, Judgement at Nuremberg.

          • “Stragorodsky” rears his ugly head again out of the abyss. When Stragorodsky usurped office and then usurped the powers of the office that he usurped he was not “canonical” and his election to “Patriarchy” was and always will be only a cruel joke. As far as all the old communist rehash goes lets just drop it, I only “skim” what you write its a waste of time, heard all the lies before and there is nothing new.

            • Michael Warren says

              You can live in your own schismatic, fantasy world, but you aren’t entitled to subject others to it. Before it was shown with fact you were ignorant of history and you didn’t know what you were talking about.

              +Patriarch Sergius was appointed a deputy locum tenens to the patriarchal cathedra, deputy to Holy New Martyr Peter of Krutitsk by St. Tikhon. Holy New Martyr Peter of Krutitsk approved of +Patriarch Sergius succeeding him when he was imprisoned. The functioning, canonical Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox church canonically elected him as Patriarch, and this election was recognized by all Orthodox local churches, including the Serbian church, under whose omophorion ROCOR existed. Moreover, your +Metropolitan Philaret both recognized and commemorated the Patriarch of Moscow elected by this sergianist, to which his father died in fidelity. And the ROCOR you idolize prayed for Bishops of the Moscow Patriarchate in its petitions “for the persecuted, Russian episcopate.”

              You aren’t even any good at being a schismatic. Just stop. Be Orthodox or be some Eastern Rite Protestant Restorationist, but you have to decide. Because you can’t be both. Schism and Orthodoxy are mutually exclusive.

              • Everything you talk and say is just your own “hearsay” nothing else. You prove “nothing” and your “history” is all false. You are 100% ignorant of what all the many many Martyrs and Hiero-martyrs, canonized saints, had to say about “Met. Sergius” and all his activities and collaborations with the stalinist communists. This for you is a 100% BLANK SPOT, 100% IGNORANCE. All the many many voluminous things they have had to say is on record AND you ignore it all save for maybe one small little passage here and there you can take out of context and IGNORE all of the rest. End of the day both Stalin and Stragorodsky, two peas of the same pod, one can surmise are sitting somewhere now, same neighborhood at any rate, and would you wish to be with them where they are now ???? “at the end of the day” ???? I can tell you I would only wish to be 100 million billion trillion light years and even infinitely further from that place where stragorodky and stalin reside today and where they will for all eternity. You make your own call on that, and remember, Orthodox teaching says you are going to be held to account “for every word” and especially those concerning “Faith” so be careful.

                • Michael Warren says

                  Actually, it is documented FACT your own old ROCOR, schismatic literature used to tie itself up in “Stupid INC” circumlocution addressing.

                • M. Stankovich says


                  You are wasting your breath. You’ll learn much more by asking about the “Red Symphonia.” Now that’s an opinion worth exploring…

                  • Michael Warren says

                    Eastern Rite Protestants unite! Perhaps they will now leave the Orthodox alone and go and found their Renovationist, “restored church” and spend the next century colluding on what is Tradition and what are traditions and getting rid of everything else! I could definitely see Stankovitch and “Geronda” Panteleimon collaborating: after all they both teach “the deifying nature of gay sex.”

                    • Reality Checker says


                    • Reality Checker says

                      Mr. Michalopulos, why do you allow “Michael Warren” to continue posting that totally false and utterly disgusting libel of Dr. Stankovich? The questions of when and why you choose to exercise your highly selective moderation get more and more interesting. What is your problem?

                    • Michael Warren says

                      This is not libel, but outing of Renovationist heresy.

                  • Reality Checker says

                    Yeah, I second your suggestion that Cy ask to hear more about “Red Symphonia.” There’s a pregnant notion.

                    • Michael Warren says

                      Actually I have answered the russophobic fraud, Stankovich, and am also awaiting my comments to be made public. It seems his ad hominem roadshow still has an uncensored voice here. Funny, how his people have a problem with him being shown the door, with him being answered in kind. But I will not tolerate his Renovationist counterfeit any longer.

                      Now do tell who are you and what is your relationship to the Renovationist Stankovich?

                      Red Symphonia is not my terminology but was used prior to me to describe the relationship Stalin effectuated between Church and state with the onset of WWII. It reflects the patriotic and moral forces of the Church (The Church as an institution) acting in conjunction with the state to reinforce society and morally arm, form the citizenry as both patriotic, Soviet citizens and faithful, Orthodox Christians. The Church sharing the responsibility with the state for the moral order and structure of society in a Soviet context.

                      I understand people ignorant of Russian history are unaware of the circumstances of the restoration of the Patriarchate under Stalin, how the role assigned to the Church and the influence it had during that era was symphonic with the Soviet state, i.e. support of the war effort and role in Soviet society: a).The Moscow Sobor and the state’s role in facillitating it. b).the reopening of churches, presses, monasteries, seminaries and the state’s aid and legal code restructured to accomodate it
                      c ). The Evangelical witness the Church had and how the state facillitated it. d ). The conversion and return to Orthodoxy of atheists, Renovationists, Uniates, schismatics, etc. and state’s architecture facillitating it. Just a few examples of how Red Symphonia operated.

                      Cy believes that either none of this happened or that it was done by people he politically will not tolerate so it is not Orthodox. He also believes Orthodoxy is not Orthodox so he has to refound the Church in his living room to purify it. Then he anathemizes everyone who doesn’t recognize the Vatican office he has made of his kitchen. Stankovitch likewise despises Russian Orthodoxy because it doesn’t accomodate his Protestant vision for Reformation in Orthodoxy so he wants to impugn and discredit the clear primatial role the Russian Church has in shaping the future of Orthodoxy because it has no room for his pathetic and failed Renovationist pastiche of Orthodoxy. He demands a Vatican II Reformation and modern American denaturing of Orthodoxy and thus speaks out to the point of outright lying to forestall a Russian Orthodoxy which is going to wipe everything he stands for away. You are a Russophobe who also wants to delegitimize the Russian Church and to silence its outspoken faithful so you are insincerely trying to cast aspersions on a Russian Orthodox message you don’t like.

                    • Red Symphonia. That is the Brezhnev era Army parading the Red Square. 70’s era thirty foot missiles on trucks probably some old
                      vintage ww2 tanks and galloping officers. Problem here is that the North Koreans are more impressive. Its more like “Red Waltz” than
                      any “symphony.” Under Kreushev there were horrendous persecutions people getting crammed into railcars then released lose all your hair gulag work camp. MP was nothing or worse, stool pigeon. With Brezhnev the barbarity of LENIN STALIN KRUSHEV era piped down. So my “Red Symphonia” award goes to Brezhnev.

                    • No argument from me, Cy. The Bolsheviks were vermin, from Lenin to Gorbachev.

                    • Michael Warren says

                      Cy, how many monks now have come out and sued your “Geronda” Panteleimon for sexual battery?

                  • “Red Symphonia” like straight out of Dante. They probably have little
                    choir voices in the second circle however its in the sixth and seventh
                    circles the USSR hits stride. Dante has you in some strange gooey
                    lavender lake <<<>>> regretting all your mistakes …. paddling
                    but repentance don’t help you any now. You should have made the right
                    decisions when you had the chance. After death the soul could still do
                    stuff .. you just say to yourself Ok, “I’m Dead” ! and it was gonna happen sooner or later anyway. Have recognition of your transition. Then the toll house demons. Each station, small little things you forgot about major
                    inquisition. Fine. Have to call on the Virgin Mary. Father Seraphim Rose taught that
                    when you go into the next realm be conscious of that and know the demons have a script of everything. Admit to your mistakes.
                    Don’t lie, of course, but you can still give yourself the benefit of the doubt.

                    • Michael Warren says

                      I think that someone who speaks about Russian history by HOCNA redacted quotes of the Grabbes is about as relevant in discussing Red Symphonia as he is in discussing the embezzlements of the Grabbes and the moral witness of “Geronda” Panteleimon.

  10. Nothing of fallen man is perfect, nor was Holy Russia when there were shrines on the streetcorners, nor is Holy Russia today perfect. But there is an objective degree of holiness there which is beginning to justify the name “Holy Rus'” again. The fact that it is objective and has inspired so many to the same conclusion is what it decisive. It matters not if everyone is not in agreement. Reality does not depend on the assent of naysayers.

  11. Reality Checker says

    I’m my own roadshow. Lately I feel that my act ought to specialize in pointing out & mocking the ridiculous self-contradictions in the worldview of “post”-Soviet, “red symphonia” propagandists, such as you. You’re a fascinating case study in how infantile pooh-flinging, hypocritical name-calling, projection and generalized, belligerent arrogance and diversionary bullying can function as defense mechanisms for coping with the intellectual tension and psychic pain caused by screamingly obvious cognitive dissonance. There is also the interesting, hybrid quality of your discourse, in that it appears to display both red and brown sensibilities: the admixture of Goebbels’ playbook with the standard fare Glavit-style of agitprop. I should like to call due attention to that, too.

    As a matter of fact I should confess that I knew something about the phenomenon comically dubbed “red symphonia” that is so desperately clung to by propagandists such as you. It was a Socratic question.

    I’d like to focus first on this odd notion: the “restoration of the patriarchate under Stalin.” I must ask you: Could it be that some relevant historical context might have been omitted from your admirably succinct presentation above? (No doubt this was an innocent oversight. You’re going for pithiness.) Still, may I suggest that some more history and a few more facts might flesh things out a bit for your readers?

    So let’s fix that problem. Perhaps you’d care to share with us an educated estimate of the number of bishops and priests your boy Stalin murdered before this alleged “restoration” occurred? I’m all ears.

    • Michael Warren says

      I guess you lack reading comprehension skills. So this is going to take a little more Hooked on Phonics on your part to get.
      1 ). Russian history and political economy are a civilizational continuum. Unlike the the Uniate banderofascists you champion, Russia did not have a colonial period of cultural, linguistic, religious pseudomorphosis. Russia received Byzantine Orthodoxy in synthesis and melded the Russian worldview to it. Russia in its encounter with the Mongols and the East syncretically adapted military, cultural and political elements it deemed worthy in this encounter. Russia in the Imperial period defined its own cultural synthesis in answer to the Reformation, the Enlightenment, Industrialization. Likewise, Russian social democracy did not ultimately speak as a secular, Western European system of political economy. It emerged from the tumult of the Russian nineteenth century melding narodnik activism into its core and thereafter charting two civilizational courses, one in sync with nihlist utopianism and the other steeped in the folk character of traditions, customs, community, generational linkage which ultimately led to the affirmation of both Russian and Orthodox identity as being constituent of the new Soviet reality. Soviet atheism failed in Khruschev’s attempts to revive it in coercion and persecution. Thereafter, a toleration and recovery of Russian folk identity ensued. Freedom of conscience, aversion to atheist bigotry increasingly came to define Soviet identity to the point where currents sympathetic to Russian revival and Orthodox identity emerged in both the KGB, the Party and in the Soviet nomenklatura. The seeds for this identity were always present in Soviet society.
      2). Stalin acted as his own Bonaparte. Bonaparte was an accessory to the terror of the French Revolution. He rose as an agent of it. He also seized power from the terror of the revolution and then pursued his course of empire, transforming the French Revolution into a period of political interegnum in the continuum of French civilization. Stalin acted similarly. He gave the Lenin Oath. He was a vicious advocate of Leninist militant atheism. But he used Leninist purges to consolidate his own power. When the time came, he defined a new character to Soviet politics which found it appropriate to project a political vision of historical continuum which validated the cultural, religious, historical identity of Russia. It was here that the Soviet Union abandoned Leninism and pursued a new course. A recognized continuum of Russian civilization and cultural and religious identity. Even though Stalin died and deStalinization occured, there was never a possibility or desire to return to Pre War Leninism, and Russian Orthodox Soviets were from that point always present in the national conversation.
      3). I think anyone who traffics in legitimizing the banderofascists who were the Uniate useful idiots of Goebbels should keep quiet when addressing the Soviet period. I believe anyone who can’t critically reflect on the genocidal policies of European Colonialism or American Indian policy has no moral authority in spewing russophobic hate. I think anyone who cannot respect the sacrifice of the Soviet peoples in defeating NAZI-ism and liberating concentration camps is too insensitive to humanly appreciate how civilizational sacrifices determine civilizational greatness. Really, a person so ideologically shallow as to Red Bait but ignore the evil acts of a nation which dropped atom bombs on innocent civilians to demand the surrender and forced cultural hygiene and Americanization at gunpoint of a diverse and rich civilization only betrays the inherent bigotry and jingoistic ignorance of a barbaric imperialist.

      So you speak of cognitive dissonance and being some sort of confused and ridiculous, politically illiterate bumpkin: here you are spewing Neo Liberalism while clutching to the mythology of liberal humanism: how does colonial empire and American imperialism reconcile itself with the brotherhood of man and multiculturalism, toleration? How does genocide used as empire building justify an exceptionally just American democracy? I think you indicted yourself and your worldview: I can only pity the immoral bedlam and slavery to a ridiculous mythology you hold which is nothing but an exercise in injustice and violence on a world your kind rape, pillage and murder for the almighty dollar and the gay crusade.

      • Reality Checker says

        Ummm, oookeyydoookey Michael. Thanks.

        • Michael Warren says

          You know you can keep your lack of depth to yourself when you don’t have anything with substance to say, don’t you?

          • Reality Checker says

            How else should I reply to the lack of substance in your ideological word salad above, a parody of Orwellian Glavik-speak dressed with a red cheese vinaigrette spiced with vapid abstractions, risible reifications, loose association galore and malignant, libelous non-sequiturs.

            Now, I see you’ve sprinkled some croutons of projection on it, too. No doubt we can expect the not-so-freshly ground pepper of even more of your tiresome, hallucinatory false accusations and evil imaginings to follow. I’m sneezing in anticipation.

            I do, however, want to showcase this particularly illustrative specimen, wherein you transcend self-parody and achieve almost an apotheosis of Commie cant, hoping to cover for the blatant pseudomorphosis occurring under your own nose, apparently, in today’s RF/ROC symbiosis of kleptocracy-enabling. That “civilizational continuum” is indeed millennially old news:

            When the time came, he[Uncle Joe] defined a new character to Soviet politics which found it appropriate to project a political vision of historical continuum which validated the cultural, religious, historical identity of Russia. It was here that the Soviet Union abandoned Leninism and pursued a new course. A recognized continuum of Russian civilization and cultural and religious identity. Even though Stalin died and deStalinization occured, there was never a possibility or desire to return to Pre War Leninism, and Russian Orthodox Soviets were from that point always present in the national conversation.

            For the moment I beware of comment on this scintillating specimen of horseshite. I’ll just point out that you continue to dodge the question: How many bishops, priests, monastics and other faithful did the hero of your Satanic fairy tale sacrifice at the altar dedicated to theomachy and to his own psychotic arrogance?

            • Reality Checker says

              I gotta hand it to you, MW. Although your little contribution to the propaganda sub-genre of meta-historical Stalin/Stalinism apologetics falls comically short in terms of substance, it does sport a Marianas Trench-like profundity of horseshiteliness. And because one should always strive for a maximum of justice in these jousts with one’s interlocutors, I wanted to be sure to award your work due praise in terms of its depth.

              • I totally understand: you haven’t gotten far enough with Hooked on Phonics to understand you were not only answered but excoriated for holding morally reprobate and bigoted views so you endeavor to use four letter words to try and save face. Typical liberal, banderofascist enabler and russophobic bigot.

            • In other words… you didn’t get far enough with Hooked on Phonics to get to the level of eading comprehension to understand what you were reading. Your entire response is to say nothing and offer nothing substantive again. …your continual frauds are tiresome. I did indeed mention that Stalin was an agent of Leninist terror who was his own Bonaparte. That meant – I hope your russophobic sixth grade reading level can get this – that Stalin perpetrated the purges of ideological opponents for the revolutionary order, including religious ones, much like Bonaparte did in Revolutionary France. It is clear you lack any type of historical competence as your answers repeatedly evidence doe in headlights stupidity when met with historical facts and context. But in simpler terms what I wrote after that was the most important thing you intentionally missed: Stalin broke with the Leninist machine of nihlistic utopianism during the war after having coopted it to forge ahead with a course which validated Russian Orthodox identity and Russian cultural and historical continuum. He legitimized the Church, Russian culture, ethnicity, made it his own. Thereafter, all attempts at reinstating Leninism, either under Khrushchev or Gorbachev, never sent Russian Orthodox identity melded with Soviet political economy back into the Catacombs. Stalin’s rehabilitation lasted and did so until the end of the Soviet period, preserving Russian Orthodox historical and cultural continuum for the new Russia.

              Stalin was murdered because he was opening churches, monasteries, reuniting people to the Orthodox Chutch. Stalin ended Unia, Renovationism, “Authentic Orthodox” schism. Stalin died pledged to the rebirth and reemergence of Russian Orthodoxy. That is the point you keep dodging…the Red Symphonia your Renovationist agenda tries to say never existed.

              There was no projection on my part: I merely called an obtuse hack on Stankovitch’s russophobic bigotry. Your response validated my rebuttal and further illustrated how ridiculously inadequate you are in engaging this discussion. This discussion which was sparked by your ignorance of political science and how Russian Orthodox Soviet identity represented a very real current in Soviet society (and that of the new Russia).

              Now you have been answered again begging the question of what is your point? We can surmise by your ignorance that that point is to smugly try to skew Russian history through a russophobic filter which lacks all understanding of Russian culture and history. We know you hate Russia and are simply too stupid to formulate a legitimate reason why. Because the gist of your response boils down to a cretinous melange of four letter words seething with bigoted, now defeated, russophobic hate.

              After all, Red, White and Blue Uber Alles IS the one in our modern day financing genocide of Christians from the Sudan to Syria to Novorossiya. Your African emperor IS the one engaged in a kulturkampf to shout down then radically revise Christian morality. Your America is the one funding schism, Unia, pogroms against Orthodox Russia. So here you are trying to camouflage the atrocities of your murderous liberalism. Stalin is just a scapegoat. My Russian Orthodox social democratic politics – your obtuse ad hominrm object of emphasis – the distraction from the hateful incompetence of your murderous liberalism. Your intent is not just to hide your identity but to avoid indictment: you keep failing miserably at it…

              Thank you for conceding your incompetence in recapitulating your denunciations. Thank you for shouting yet again you are nothing but a russophobic bigot. Thank you for telling cyberspace your intent is to be disruptive to escape indictment of your murderous liberal politics to avoid the indictment of Neo-Liberal crimes against humanity and warmongering. You are an incompetent parody of a Hillary Clinton mime, so ridiculously inept as to merit an SNL skit.

              • Reality Checker says

                He legitimized the Church, Russian culture, ethnicity, made it his own. Thereafter, all attempts at reinstating Leninism, either under Khrushchev or Gorbachev, never sent Russian Orthodox identity melded with Soviet political economy back into the Catacombs. Stalin’s rehabilitation lasted and did so until the end of the Soviet period, preserving Russian Orthodox historical and cultural continuum for the new Russia.

                Stalin was murdered because he was opening churches, monasteries, reuniting people to the Orthodox Chutch. Stalin ended Unia, Renovationism, “Authentic Orthodox” schism. Stalin died pledged to the rebirth and reemergence of Russian Orthodoxy. That is the point you keep dodging…the Red Symphonia your Renovationist agenda tries to say never existed.

                Missed this, as it seems to have been published days after I was still looking at this tiresome thread.

                Solid scholarly evidence supporting your fairy-tale of Dzhugashvili revisionism, MW. Books in English, published by reputable presses.

                While we wait, others still reading this can note the bolded words above and what they signify. I’m not going to bother explaining why I highlighted this. Even if there were any truth to it . . . Either you get such things, or you don’t.

                Stalin is just a scapegoat.

                Anyone claiming to be a social democrat while engaged in passionate rhetorical gymnastics to whitewash Joseph Stalin deserves to be ignored. This is the fourth time now that he has refused to answer this question, and if he dodges it again, I’m done:

                How many bishops, priests, monastics and other faithful did the hero of your Satanic fairy tale sacrifice at the altar dedicated to theomachy and to his own psychotic arrogance?

  12. Reality Checker says

    “This is not libel, but outing of Renovationist heresy.”

    . . . I could definitely see Stankovitch and “Geronda” Panteleimon collaborating: after all they both teach “the deifying nature of gay sex.”

    Adduce just one instance, whether here or anywhere else, where M. Stankovich’s words so much as hint at his contemplating much less teaching a position as repulsive as the one of which you diabolically accuse him. Or else stand charged with libel, comical troll.

    • Michael Warren says

      Actually, it was pointed out by another contributor which took odds with the “plastic anthropology” the Renovationist Stankovitch had concocted by stringing together decontextualized, long quotes on another blog. That discussion was imported here where cereal box doctorate Stankivitch fled the discussion when he was exposed. Thereafter, he denied his own words and argument. Here you are now, Stankovitch, still fleeing your Renovationist, plastic anthropology which extols the deifying qualities of gay sex. This public forum witnessed it and how you were discredited in making the argument. You were shamed to the point, Stankovitch, to where you today have to hide behind aliases.

      • Reality Checker says

        A) Are you capable of giving a straight answer to a simple question?
        B) M. Stankovich has repeatedly asked for evidence to support your accusations. Why do you keep refusing to post any? Go back and find it, copy/paste (or link) and post it, or retract your accusations and apologize. That, or go on digging yourself into a deeper pit of libel and false accusations. (Your credibility = zip.)
        C) Get some help. You need it.
        D) I’m not M. Stankovich. Like him though I value facts and evidence.

        • Michael Warren says

          Actually, it appeared on this forum and is publicly available here and concerns him. Since you claim not to be him, it doesn’t concern you. Moreover, what is your point? You haven’t even been adult enough to tactfully answer the instances when you were substantively rebuffed here. Is drudging up the instances where Stinkovitch was shown to contrive statistics and be a fraud really going to be appreciated by someone whose public tendency is to insult those who consistently prove them wrong and call them on their fakery and erroneous, bigoted arguments?! Deal with your immediate lack of credibility and failed, liberal, russophobic argumentation.

          • Reality Checker says

            Funny, I don’t feel “substantively rebuffed.” Try again?

            What I do feel though is substantively disgusted — by your bootlicking tyrannophilia. Misha’s proudly displayed symptoms of the same disorder are similarly repulsive. Among genuine, non-chiliastic Christians, this filthy idolatry is otherwise known as “worshipping the beast.” For your information.

            Your heroes Ivan IV and Stalin had so much in common, and it’s no wonder that you (and so many “Orthodox”) would be Trump supporters, too. He’s a tyrannophile himself, judging by some of his deranged comments on the stump. I get what y’all see in him.

            • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

              Reality Checker: I feel that tyrannophilia is too weak to be accurate in this case–it should be reserved for “Misha.” TyrannoMANIA is more apt for this Rumpelstiltzkin!

              • Reality Checker says

                Your Grace, I accept your distinction and concur with your more astute and fine-tuned diagnoses. A family resemblance is obvious, but MW’s case is clearly far more advanced, even meta-rationalized. Something like Stockholm Syndrome may be going on here … further east though.
                He’s trying to integrate, maybe, but I wonder just who asked him to bear such a heavy podvig? Somehow I doubt very much it was Christ.

                Although this isn’t his first death threat it’s the least veiled one, so far, at least of those he’s issued to me:

                The liberation of Auschwitz to your kind is a crime against humanity. So what you understand as “Orthodox” or Orthodox is probably best answered at the gallows after a trial.

                I don’t know which of the serious offenses here is objectively worse, i.e., in God’s eyes: the obscenity in the first sentence or the execution threat in the second one. Subjectively, I’m actually much more offended by that first execrable slur against me. I’m amazed this moral cretin dares to call himself a Christian. In terms of the potential legal problems he seems to be cruising to, he (and/or his demonic entourage) can hide out in the ambiguity of the 2nd person pronoun (number). Arguably.

                I’m turning the other cheek for now. But the trajectory in this poster’s output is not looking good for him. He needs prayer, and he needs professional help, too.

            • Actually, I am not a Trump supporter and won’t be voting. So I guess you just fell flat in burning your strawman. Do you practice at being this obtuse or are you just a savant?

              I have written that votes for Stein or Trump are the least likely to totally plunge America into the abyss, excoriating Hillary and Johnson. Brush up on your Hooked on Phonics.

              I adequately answered uninformed, bigoted unread criticism of Ivan IV and Stalin. No one asked me my criticism of either. Although I have been clear in expressing criticism of Stalin and even pointing out his mistakes, even in this lost, liberal odyssey of yours to the land of russophobic bigots and McCarthyites. It is pretty clear and wouldn’t take much deduction to understand I venerate St. Philip of Moscow and St. Tikhon as great Saints. One could probably even Google search it. I understand you are too simply educated to appreciate when one speaks of civilizational continuum, one underscores the developments which forged that continuum’s progress. Of course, those who have the erudition of a zoological specimen from Zambia will conflate a civilizational narrative for a personal idolatry. How would you not when every third word has you reacting as if English were a third language. But Russian Orthodox civilization progresses in its development in Orthodoxy and reflecting on its advancement in the socio-economic progress of Russian Orthodox peoples and their culture. No one has said that Stalinism or Oprichnina is our model so we must go forward. What has been offered is recapitulation of a civilizational continuum indicating advances, rejecting failures, to better live Russian Orthodoxy into the future as a culture, as a state, as a global player.

              I understand you are far too morally limited to appreciate that.

              When Uniate banderofascists write “Orthodox,” I simply roll my eyes in disgust and reflect on what your type of sociopath stands for: Galician SS Divisions, Uniate Chaplains for Ukrainian guards at Auschwitz which your leaders blessed as “the holy crusade of Adolph Hitler,” child rape in the colonially subjugated banderofascist Ukraine, vivisection and trade in human organs of political dissidents, public and brutal immolation of political dissent, repression and murder of civilian populations by fascist death squads to prevent them from holding democratic referendums. Yes, you Uniate banderofascists are ORTHODOX NAZIs, no quotation marks necessary. In that, you certainly abdicate any and all moral authority in indicating what is Orthodox, “Orthodox,” or even Protestant Christianity: you are voices of evil whose testament to the world was summed up by the films of mass graves at the Nuremberg Trials, denouncing your worldview as a barbarism civilization cannot and will not tolerate. Your banderofascists openly wear SS Nachtangel swastikas and publicly declare “the defeat of Adolph Hitler at the hands of the Soviet Union was a tragedy for humanity.” The liberation of Auschwitz to your kind is a crime against humanity. So what you understand as “Orthodox” or Orthodox is probably best answered at the gallows after a trial.

              • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                George M. likes that stuff. Anybody Antiochian here know Father George well enough to contact him and ask how many times George has contacted him as he contacted Warren to encourage him to contribute more here?

            • Reading comprehension of some of our contributors here needs to be bumped up somehow. Though I think Putin is doing a great job in Russia, I have no love for the psychopathic Stalin. I see Ivan Grozny as a tragic figure, fierce warrior driven somewhat mad. Stalin, clearly beyond the pale. H*ll, even Russians in Russia recoiled from what that Georgian did after he died.

              It may be helpful if you all keep a sheet by your computers that lists the major predilections of each posting contributor. Hard to keep track of the players without a program. I’m the White Russian dude who shares the same loathing for the Bolsheviks as most of ROCOR.

              As to Trump, again, I am a monarchist. I will not be voting. I encourage no one to vote. To me it’s irrelevant. It’s weather. Plan for the possibilities. That’s it’s only significance.

              • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                Misha! What DID Stalin do after he died? [“H*ll, even Russians in Russia recoiled from what that Georgian did after he died.”]

  13. Reality Checker says

    You are a Russophobe who also wants to delegitimize the Russian Church and to silence its outspoken faithful so you are insincerely trying to cast aspersions on a Russian Orthodox message you don’t like.

    I’d like to get around to some discussion about the label “Russophobe” at some point. For now I’ll confine myself to observing how much the way you accusingly screech it reminds me very much of the way another label used to be fastened with suspiciously similar zeal onto critical, dissident persons in your beloved Soviet Union, not long ago: counterrevolutionary.

    But first, allow me to comfort you on a matter that seems to be troubling you. Far from wanting to silence “outspoken faithful” such as yourself, I rather want very much to encourage you to let it all hang out! Be as forthright and uninhibited as you please, by all means! I can’t tell you how entertaining this is, among other things. Edifying, not so much — but a hoot regardless.

    And please tell me precisely which aspects of the “Russian Orthodox message” you think I don’t like. Be specific, please, if you can. Please elaborate on my alleged insincerity as well — again, being specific if possible as to your reasons for this accusation. (You’re so rich in accusations! For a “Christian,” I mean.)

    As to “delegitimizing the Russian Church,” it is true that like many, many informed people I have serious concerns about its leadership, particularly after St. Tikhon, for perfectly obvious reasons, I think. But more to the point, maybe, I’m a veteran skeptic concerning what I regard as the totally specious ideology of symphonia, particularly with respect to the Russian empire, given the cold, hard facts of its history, which, as it happens, I know a thing or two about. I’m even more skeptical about autocracy in general, incidentally.

    It’s my pleasure to be proactive re: truth in labeling.

    • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

      Dear “Reality Checker,” I really would like to know your identity, since you are so accurate on your analyses here! In general, I disapprove of identity-hiding, which always hints at a desire not to be held accountable for one’s words.
      I believe George referred to a “symphonia” in the pre-revolutionary Russian state. It didn’t exist. Church-State relationship was really Tsar-Tsar’s Procurator relationship!
      “Symphonia” is an APOLOGETIC term for Caesaro-Papism which, in its contemporary form is clearly PUTINO-PAPISM. Some prominent Priests and Hierarchs of the Russian Church publicly have ceased commemorating Patriarch Kyril after his recent meeting with Pope Francis, while others have just publicly condemned the action. I mention this because it’s evident that the meeting was the initiative of neither the Pope nor the Patriarch, but of President Putin, made nervous by Obama, newly threatening to be friendly towards Cuba! It was a clear case of Putino-Papism, kept secret by the Patriarch even from his own Synod until he actually went to Cuba! Now the Patriarch has had to bear in silence public humiliation from within his own Church!
      Definition of “Putino-Papism”: “Bless me, your All-Holiness, and then, JUMP!” “Yes sir, my son! How high?”

      • Reality Checker says

        Yes, like you perhaps, Vladyko, I’m already thoroughly fed up with the dehumanizing consequences of 2000 years of the Roman/New Roman/Holy Roman/Third Roman/Third Reich (u.s.w.) side of this trade. The kingdom of God suffereth violence, indeed. Violence and corruption. And lies.

        I try to keep to myself my fears about where Putinopapism and its useful idiots are likely to lead us all, “in God’s name.” A world where some monstrous red/brown hybrid is on the loose is not one I’d care to live in much longer.

        • Peter A. Papoutsis says

          Just a blue run world with HTC in charge. No thanks.


          • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

            Peter: “Just a blue run world with HTC in charge.”
            You’re slipping–that’s your totally non sequitur attempt at diversion! You surely can’t really think Reality Checker is a fan of Mrs Clinton (or Trump)! WHAT AN IDEA!

            • Reality Checker says

              Your Grace, not for one second have I ever seen any sort of “moral equivalence” between Sec. Clinton and … Trump. To be clear. ‘Fan’ is short for fanatic, which I’m sure you knew. If there’s anything I’m a fanatic about in this election, it’s #NeverTrump.

              While it’s true that I’m not “a fan of” Hillary Clinton, I’m not really a fan of any American politician qua politician. (I could name a few whom I respect greatly: Sen. Russ Feingold is one real standout, for example.)

              I think HRC has many admirable qualities, particularly as a knowledgeable, experienced public policy maven. It’s a struggle to find much of anything solid to admire in Trump, especially by comparison, opposing her candidacy for this office. And his public persona at least is transmogrifying into an abomination before our eyes. This cycle’s mise-en-scène is becoming one of those watershed American Rorschach tests, both fascinating and appalling. Revealing things I’m not sure I wanted to know about too much of the populace and the general state of the union. Hadn’t even suspected things were so far gone.

              • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                Like I said a Blue run world with HRC in charge. No thanks. Evil incarnate has NO admiral qualities and if you think that she does we have nothing more to talk about.


                • Reality Checker says

                  What does “Blue run” mean? Does it have anything to do with the bunny slopes?
                  I’d love to hear all about why you think HRC is evil incarnate. Compared to other American national-level politicians, what distinguishes her in “sheer evil”? I’m genuinely curious. (Do you have mommy issues, maybe?)

                  What is it about Orthodoxy and rational, evidence-based thought? Could it be something in the incense?

                  • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                    Give me your name then we will talk. Until then go play in the sandbox with the toddlers.


                  • RC,

                    Did you see them carry her into the van yesterday at the 9/11 memorial.


                    • Reality Checker says

                      Though diagnosed with pneumonia Friday (which she’s probably had for a while), no doubt acquired mainly as a result of campaigning relentlessly against a narcissistic sociopath, exhausted, continually exposed to all manner of pathogens when in close quarters with thousands indoors, all while afflicted with hypohydrosis (a condition known to reporters for decades) which makes her very vulnerable to hyperthermia — she nevertheless attended the 9/11 commemoration service yesterday in NYC. And she became seriously overheated while standing on a warm summer morning in the sun in a dark suit (probably not prudent), unable to cool off.

                      So what’s your point? This proves she’s going to die soon from a terrible disease concealed from the populace by sinister overlords whom she serves, her every move and word controlled by a brain implant? God smote her for “sheer evil?” Or what?

            • Peter A. Papoutsis says

              Putting politics aside I cannot believe you as a bishop of our Church cannot see the sheer evil in HRC and warn the flock against her?

              I have no illustrations about Trump and exactly who and what he is, but like I said before HE is the start of the solution because the solution is in the American people finally waking up and saying enough.

              The people won with brexit.

              The people won by declaring the Globalist ecumenist council in Crete a robber council.

              The PEOPLE not Trump in November will win by voting for him.

              The People have finally awakened.

              It will either be the start of setting things right or a full police state cracking down. We shall wait and see.


              • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                Peter. Saints above! You say to me: “Putting politics aside I cannot believe you as a bishop of our Church cannot see the sheer evil in HRC and warn the flock against her?”
                A couple years after ever-memorable Archpriest Dimitri Gisetti became Rector of the Los Angeles parish, the parish secretary asked an old parishioner how she thought Fr Dimitri compared with his predecessor, ever-memorable Protopresbyter Alexander Kukulevsky. The old lady said, “Oh, he’s all right, but, you know, Father Alexander always told us how to vote, but Father Dimitri refuses to!”
                I’ve never recommended any of the Faithful vote for anyone either. Parishioners need instructions relative to their salvation, and no vote is going to save or damn their souls. or anyone else’s. I’m not a fan of Mrs Clinton’s, but I don’t think she has serious social and psychological adjustment issues or the symptoms of any of Trump’s pathologies of Narcissism, aggrandisement, etc. Further, I believe Trump will throw the election if winning means he would have to reveal his tax returns! Of course, Mrs Clinton is no more honest than G.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Dick Nixon, Mitch McConnell, Tom Cotton, Antony Wiener, Cheney, Wolfowitz, etc. But bad as she is, she’s a TOWER OF INTEGRITY compared to Trump. Nevertheless I am NOT going to send a letter to the Faithful telling them not to vote for the foolish Trump!
                By the way, I have yet to see the “sheer (sic) EVIL” in anyone but myself, Perhaps you have a greater charism of spiritual discernment than I?

                • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                  Then you should look harder. Much harder because you are confusing a massive ego, with a narcissist that knows how to hide her evil quite well.

                  Also, I don’t need my priest or Bishop to tell me who to vote for, but to teach me and show me the Gospel of Christ and it’s enemies. Then Bush & co., Clinton & co., OBama & co., would never have been elected.

                  Fortunately, Almighty God is doing your job for you, and exposing her evil himself and hopefully will show us more of her medical condition that is nowhere near being pneumonia.

                  Try again my good bishop.


                  • Reality Checker says

                    Tweeted by a fellow counselor/propagandist/4th-rate sophist. Cohen gets paid for it. Mr. Papoutsis’s incentive is more mysterious.


                  • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                    Peter, please inform us what you know about Mrs. Clinton’s medical condition that you characterized as being nowhere near pneumonia!
                    You also said this: “I cannot believe you as a bishop of our Church cannot see the sheer evil in HRC and warn the flock against her?” Peter, I have never ever ***warned*** the flock against anyone. Further, I have never ever even named anyone in church, saving only the mandatory mention of the Christian name during litanies especially those of the hierarchy as required by the service books, no, not even in a eulogy. I allowed a eulogy only at the graveside after the casket had been lowered and all services completed. Perhaps you think that when IN CHURCH St. John Chrysostom called the Byzantine Empress “Jezebel”, that was some kind of model for Orthodox clergy to follow. I don’t think so.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Your Grace, we will never know anything about Mrs Clinton’s medical condition at all, except for what will be spoon-fed to us and then with a heavy grain of salt.

                      For the record, I’ve had pneumonia (diagnosed as such on the very same day –Sept 11, 2001) and my wife quarantined me for an entire week in the guest bedroom and had as little interaction with my two sons as possible. Doctor’s orders. I was actually coughing up blood that’s when she made me go to the doctor on my lunch hour. It was a hectic day, that.

                      But no, she went to her daughter’s apartment (where two children under the age of five reside) and then on getting out, she hugged a little ragamuffin who happened to alight on the street just outside.

                      Sunday school hagiographies are written with more critical rigor.

                    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                      If you believe she had pneumonia then there is some swamp land down in Florida I can sell you.

                      If you don’t think Saint John was right in calling her out and warning his flock then you now know why he is a Saint and remembered.

                      Good night.

                    • M. Stankovich says

                      Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard. Oh, pardon me! They’re the Three Stooges!

                      From the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, and Torres, A. and Cillóniz, C. Clinical Management of Bacterial Pneumonia. Springer International Publishing: Switzerland. 2015.

                      Here you have a 68- year old female (“A disproportionate amount (76%) of the cases [of Community Acquired Pneumonia (CAP) ocurrs in people older than 50,” “Declines in the sensitivities of airway protective cough and swallowing reflexes are age-related and important risk factors for the development of pneumonia.” Ebihara S, et al. “Effect of aging on cough and swallowing reflexes: implications for preventing aspiration pneumonia.”Lung. 2012;190:29–33.) who for the past year has been exposed to crowds of individuals in unknown states of general health and under generally unsanitary conditions (e.g. the most notorious agents for the distribution of CAP, do so by a simple handshake):

                      Community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) is one of the most common infectious diseases and is an important cause of mortality and morbidity worldwide. Typical bacterial pathogens that cause CAP include Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, and Moraxella catarrhalis. However, with the advent of novel diagnostic technologies, viral respiratory tract infections are being identified as common etiologies of CAP. The most common viral pathogens recovered from hospitalized patients admitted with CAP include human rhinovirus and influenza.

                      Jain S, et al. “Community-acquired pneumonia requiring hospitalization among U.S. Adults.” N Engl J Med. 2015 Jul 30. 373 (5):415-27

                      Further, regular contact with children is associated with an increased risk of developing CAP. Two studies have reported that the presence of children in the household increased the adjusted odds ratio (OR) from 1.0 for ‘no children’ to 3.2 [104] or 3.41 [105] for three or more children. Politicians. Sum it all up: blah, blah, blah, she certainly was in the right place at the right time.

                      What do know from there: ” Patients with pneumonia often present with characteristic symptoms, such as fever, cough (particularly cough productive of sputum), hemoptysis (coughing up blood, Mr. M), dyspnea, malaise, and pleuritic pain with consolidations on the chest X-ray. Coughing is the most consistent presenting symptom of bacterial pneumonia. In elderly patients, especially those with multiple comorbidities, pneumonia may present with general weakness, decreased appetite, altered mental status, incontinence, or decompensation due to underlying diseases. Sound about right, masters of diagnosis?

                      Now, how about we wrap this all up with a study focused on what is referred to as “Mild-to-Moderate Community Acquired Pnuemonia,” and noninferiority trials in regard to the use of antibiotics; meaning is the antibiotic in question more beneficial than providing no antibiotic at all. The conclusion:

                      On the basis of the trial of levofloxacin versus ceftriaxone and/or cefuroxime, a noninferiority margin of 10% for the clinically evaluable population is justified. From the historical data from Agranat et al. , we can estimate a large treatment benefit for early clinical response, which would support a noninferiority margin 10% for clinically evaluable subjects; however, in an effort to avoid biocreep, the 10% noninferiority margin would suffice. Furthermore, on the basis of both data from the levofloxacin study and the historical data from Bullowa on clinical response in documented bacterial pneumonia, a noninferiority margin of 15% for the microbiologically evaluable or mITT population is justified. [emphasis mine]

                      I will leave the pharmacological explanation to the pharmacist here, but conclude that, in cases of “mild-to-moderate CAP,” the research bears out that it is perfectly justifiable to safely place such a patient on a quinolone-type oral antibiotic (and depending on the day she began, she probably was no longer contagious to others, ragamuffins included) as an out-patient. I don’t recall specifically – you would know better, Mr. M. – but I seem to remember a directive to maintain adequate fluid balance, and that whole Achilles Tendon thing… This ain’t Sunday school, but it’s a little more honest. And don’t
                      dog me about politics, ’cause I don’t care.

                    • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                      George, do you think there’s only one kind of pneumonia: the kind you had? Ridiculous! Our old next-door neighbor who owned a flower shop, used to contract pneumonia once or twice a year, causing him to stay home from the shop a day or two. They called it “walking pneumonia”. GET IT.? I feel that you and Peter, etc., sense your rational (!) case against Mrs Clinton is weak, and her getting sick is a chance to get at he without having to REASON at all! Grasping at straws is what one calls it!

                    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                      My good Bishop Tikhon you asked me:

                      “Peter, please inform us what you know about Mrs. Clinton’s medical condition that you characterized as being nowhere near pneumonia!”

                      Here is your answer:

                      The Hillary Clinton Criminal Conspiracy and Media Lie Machine.

                • “By the way, I have yet to see the “sheer (sic) EVIL” in anyone but myself, Perhaps you have a greater charism of spiritual discernment than I?”

                  You flatter yourself too much, Vladyka. You have yet to see it in yourself.

        • Michael Warren says

          I think russophobes who can’t even define who Putin is, respect what an Orthodox nation represents in the modern context and who traffic in Neo Liberal colonial propaganda which they can’t adequately defend define themselves as feeble hecklers embarassed by their own inadequacies and fearful of the twilight of their murderous and stupid worldviews. So you support regimes which are ideological successors to Hitler’s Third Reich and believe the height of Western Civilization is reached by soap opera sexuality and mall rat socialization. You have the audacity to speak against symphonia or Orthodox Russia?!

          • Reality Checker says

            I’ve wondered for years whether the very serious glitch guys like you suffer from is a hardware problem or a more readily fixable software issue. Guys like me aren’t fanboys or partisans of either the red or the brown camp. Try to grasp this fact.

            I note that you keep invoking the ideology of the Third Reich to libelously smear me and some others here who object to Putin’s extremely dangerous aggression in the RF’s near abroad. Recall that that ideology was essentially a racist biologism. But like Dugin, you’re a fanatic of a species of Slavic biologism, though you’re often careful to name-drop “Byzantinism” whenever you parrot the obligatory Novorossiya propaganda, thinking that helps cover your racist butt, I guess. I see what you’re up to. This Duginesque static is unoriginal. Like that propagandist and the Nazi one, Rosenberg, your worldview is essentially pagan, apostate, not Christian. FYI.

            As if “soap opera sexuality” and “mall rat socialization” were failings unique to Western Civ. When was the last time you were in Moscow? Hypocritical clown. But please proceed with your entertaining project to cloak Putinism, kleptocracy and phyletism in the garments of “Orthodoxy” and “Orthodox” nationalism. Wake us up when you discern the difference between all that rot and the Kingdom of God.

            • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

              Reality Checker, many readers here don’t realize the effects of the subjection of generations of Carpatho-Russians to AustroHungarian town sheriffs and deputies has had on their psyches. “Russia” was the Divine Rescuer who would one day release them all and give them status. They never really saw Russia up close. Now their descendants sometimes are pathologically afraid to admit that their salvation lies within themselves, not in mighty Great Russians. Even when Putin had Litvinenko murdered through polonium poisoning because he had published materials showing Putin to be a paederast, they still cling to the hopes of their hillbilly days in the AustroHungarian Empire. Likewise, many Greeks thought, under Turkish Oppression, that “Russia” was the Divine Rescuer who would one day release them all and give them status. They are also slow and reluctant to see the truth. You asked when Rumpelstiltzkin was last in Moscow. This wouldn’t change much of his fanaticism. Look at George who seems to have developed his own Potemkin Village by just visiting overflowing Churches without knowing how many of the churchgoers might have been ecclesiastical tourists or members of that strange group that proudly describe themselves as Russian Orthodox, but, when asked, say they don’t believe in God!
              America has lots of these sorts. Some teach that America is Christian!

              • Reality Checker says

                Your Grace, MW misread me to be saying something else from what I meant. It is true, as he notes, that as the Russian Empire traversed its historical way it did become more and more multi-ethnic, and its imperial cult therefore increasingly non-phyletistic in nature unlike other Orthodox churches; I didn’t claim anything else. The phyletism I was referring to was the “Russia for Russians” tribalism growing there today, which Putin the great pragmatist is using as he does everything else he can get his paws on, and quite skillfully I admit, to make something out of his terribly bad hand. (He’s a real player, for sure. It’s insane to underestimate him.) Let MW deny this tribalism is very much alive in ethnic Russians in the ROC. I’d love to see good polling on how all those atheist Russian Orthodox (sic) feel on
                the question of “Russia for Russians.”

                Dugan’s anti-Anglo Saxon/American racism (what else could it be?) is camouflaged in pagan mysticism, those obscurantist geopolitical conjurings about the evil Sea peoples (modern English, Americans, Canadians, Australians — i.e., Anglo-Saxondom) at Manichaean war with the good Land peoples, such as the Slavs and Turkic tribes and so forth. In his beneficent magnanimity he would of course make honorary Eurasians of the French and the Germans, et al., should they ally with Russia in the War against Evil, but who would come out on top in this neo-sobornost is clear enough. He is the guy behind war in Ukraine, and if WWIII or IV comes partly as a result — God help him. Michael Warren is obviously one of his American minions, judging from his fanaticism about Ukraine and all of his egregious lies and distortions about the situation in that country and his sinister revisionism re: Stalin. He claims otherwise, asserting instead that he’s just a “good” old-school narodnik Commie, but his semi-psychotic raving belies that claim.

                • George Michalopulos says

                  RC, you read too much into Dugin, especially regards the “racism” angle. While you are broadly correct re his thesi of a struggle between “sea powers” and “land powers” he is not the first to have noticed this. The present reality of this dichotomy goes back to Athens and Sparta and Carthage and Rome. But there’s no “racism” there. In fact you’re confused. Anybody who advocates a “Eurasianist” coalition cannot by definition be racist as said conglomeration would include Semites, Asians, Mongols, etc as well as whites.

                  And can we please stop with this Neoliberal/Neocon assertion that Russia is itching for WWIII. Nobody in their right mind –even in our foreign ministries–believes that. Russia is one-half of what it was during the Soviet period with serious economic challenges. All you have to do is read The New York Times (hardly a Putinist organ) and know that our State Dept was actively overthrowing the democratically-elected govt of Ukraine.

                  Any historian will tell you that Russia’s traditional (i.e. non-Soviet era) military policy vis-a-vis the West was always defensive. In fact, beginning with Alexander I, the foreign policy doctrine of Russia has always been staunchly conservative and supportive of the Congress of Vienna.

                  • Reality Checker says

                    I’m not confused. Hitler was an extremely malignant racist, and yet he wanted a ruling coalition, too, in a sort of partnership with Scandinavia and England. Nevertheless he was absolutely a “German” supremacist. Similarly, Dugin’s a “Russian” supremacist. Not claiming he espouses a virulent racist view as demonic as Hitler’s, though. Mostly, Dugin strikes me as essentially a pagan mystic. Experts in political science find his ideas riddled with errors and misunderstandings.

                    Never said “Russia” was itching for world war. I hope you won’t find me making too many sloppy generalizations like that. I said that some around Putin want war for Ukraine, want a march to Kiev — and not just Kiev. Dugin is one of them. It looks like Putin is the relatively rational and sane one next to these psychos.

                    • It looks like you are ignorant of Hitler’s plan for Reich, which used friendship “with lesser peoples” planning to dispense with it after the wars were won to consolidate the Reich. Dugin is not a Russian exclusivist, but a Eurasian traditionalist. And Putin’s plan for the Ukraine is FEDERALIZATION and Russian language used as a civil rights campaign to combat banderofascist ethnogenesis. Russians and Pro Russians living in Novorossiya (and increasingly people in other regions) want a democratic vote on ukrainianism, secession, ACCESSION to the Russian Federation. Something which you continually deny is the case as you spout outright liberal lies, steeped in political illiteracy, to support Neo NAZI atrocities, ethnic cleansing being perpetrated by the Ukrainian banderofascist, colonial regime which was installed by Western coup d’etat. The West overthrew Ukrainian democracy, independence and territorial integrity by installing a genocidal Banderofascist regime. Here you are speaking out to deprive the peoples of what was the Ukraine the democratic referendums which would assert their democratic, independent, sovereign self determination as to what they believe should be their political destiny.

                    • It looks like you are ignorant of Hitler’s plan for Reich, which used friendship “with lesser peoples” planning to dispense with it after the wars were won to consolidate the Reich. Dugin is not a Russian exclusivist, but a Eurasian traditionalist. And Putin’s plan for the Ukraine is FEDERALIZATION and Russian language used as a civil rights campaign to combat banderofascist ethnogenesis. Russians and Pro Russians living in Novorossiya (and increasingly people in other regions) want a democratic vote on ukrainianism, secession, ACCESSION to the Russian Federation. Something which you continually deny is the case as you spout outright liberal lies, steeped in political illiteracy, to support Neo NAZI atrocities, ethnic cleansing being perpetrated by the Ukrainian banderofascist, colonial regime which was installed by Western coup d’etat. The West overthrew Ukrainian democracy, independence and territorial integrity by installing a genocidal Banderofascist regime. Here you are speaking out to deprive the peoples of what was the Ukraine the democratic referendums which would assert their democratic, independent, sovereign self determination as to what they believe should be their political destiny.

                      Kiev is the Mother of Russian cities, not the capitol of Galician Uniate, polonized serfs. Yes, a war of liberation is in order to rid what was the Ukraine of a genocidal, banderofascist, colonial regime. The Nuremberg Process defines such a war AS A LEGAL AND JUSTIFIED WAR OF NATIONAL LIBERATION! Moreover, the intent is not just to liberate Kiev but even Lvov and all of Galicia from Unia and banderofascism.

                  • I spoke with Dugin once, and it was enough for me to appreciate he was very much convinced of the sole propriety of his system. At that time, he felt that pan-Turkism and pan-Islamism were useful allies in forging an anti-Western alliance. He believed Al Qaeda was a Western orchestrated false flag used for military build up and American imperial expansion. When tasked with the question of the Chechen war and unrest in Dagestan, he faulted Western intelligence agencies and their agitation. When he was reminded that these Islamists were still targeting Russian Orthodox Christians, his response was to doubt that they were real Islamists, believing that they were actually Western operatives.

                    He has changed his tune somewhat with the rise of ISIS, but not in any significant degree.

                    Dugin felt that pan- Turkism and pan-Islamism were useful and necessary allies in forging a multi-polar answer to Western unipolarism, that they were eventual constituents of a Eurasian superpower. He also felt that their traditional worldviews made them natural allies of Orthodox Russia. I voiced more sympathies for classical Eurasianism with its Orthodox emphasis: he felt that that was an overly insular point of view.

                    So Dugin is not at all a racist or Russian exclusivist: he is a traditionalist, anti-Western political philosopher, believing in a union of Asian and Eastern European peoples, all traditionalist peoples against Western imperialism.

                    He also has sympathies for Old Believerism.

                    Russia’s Holy Alliance cost Russia. Its “conservative emphasis” ended up undermining Russian civilization and ultimately led to the necessary end of the Russian Empire.

                • From the beginning Rus’ was composed of Slavs, Svandinavians, Finno-Ugric peoples, Turko-Tartars, Balts, Germans, even some Celts, Caucasian peoples. This unread russophobia is precisely liberal, russophobic parroting of banderofascist race theory penned once by Goebbels and disseminated through OUN, the Uniates and schismatics. The dimwitted scrawlings of a simply ignorant and unread bigot.

                  No more needs be said. This person has no idea what Russia is, simply the typical, liberal imbecile engaged in russophobic propaganda by prepackaged talking point.

                  Note, this banderofascist fascist avoids by four letter word “comebacks” the call for internationally monitored, democratic referendums to decide the fate of the Ukraine, a truly Uniate, Neo NAZI racist, political colony, denying self determination to the 85%+ there who are neither Galician nor Uniate and who don’t want Ukrainian ethnogenesis, the targeted victims of Ukrainian nationalist ethnic cleansing.

                  I am glad to be ignored by this type of banderofascist scum who ended up discrediting all banderofascist talking points before our very eyes. Final farewell to festering rubbish indeed!

                  • Reality Checker says

                    Gotta respond to this because it illustrates the noisemaker’s MO so neatly.

                    I observed the simple fact that a “Russia for Russians” mob in the RF exists and appears to be metastasizing. I assume MW would not deny this. Now, of course there is a mindless version of that sort of thing as well as less vacuous ones. The mindless version is anything essentially “racist.” (Incidentally, I thank MW for his instruction on the motley mix of tribes comprising the Rus’. I had no idea!. . .) Nearer the other end of the spectrum of lesser vacuousness is a revanchist, nationalistic and ultimately Russian-supremacist rabble rousing. That’s the genus of brimstone-reeking ideologue Dugin falls into. (I don’t care to address MW directly again, but perhaps someone else could ask if he detected a sulfurous stench while in Dugin’s darshana — though my suspicion is that olfactory fatigue would have been operative in this instance.)

                    Anyway, due either to severe underdevelopment in reading comprehension skills and/or general sleaziness and gross dishonesty, MW accuses me of captivity to the mindless idiocy I had merely adduced by citing the “Russia for Russians” phenomenon, wrt its more primitive manifestations. Now, due to one or both glitches, he shows himself ignorant that, far from being a “conservative” “traditionalist,” A. Dugin’s “neo-Eurasianism” proves him to be a revolutionary fascist, and an ultra-ambitious one, too. MW euphemizes Dugin’s position with this amusing specimen of polite understatement:

                    . . . I voiced more sympathies for classical Eurasianism with its Orthodox emphasis: he felt that that was an overly insular point of view.

                    So much for anything in the ballpark of “traditionalism” as understood in an Orthodox Christian phronema, obviously.

                    MW is poor writer and sadly cursed with an inability
                    to express subtle thought lucidly, both because 1) he seems not to experience such cognition and 2) clearly lacks the rhetorical tools to represent such thoughts were he ever to entertain their transient visitation.




                    • Michael Warren says

                      We have witnessed that your knowledge of Russian history, acquaintance with what constitutes Ukrainian separatism, and basic honesty in addressing either Russian ideologies or statistics is an odyssey to lands of contrived, bigoted, fringe and crazy. Whereas, critiquing a given writing style is also above your paygrade: after all, your prose is nothing but non sequiter desparation discouraged by its lack of coherence and flow. So what are you left with? Repeating bigotry and russophobic make believe to see if something can stick.

                      1). I doubt very seriously you have ever witnessed a Dugin rally or heard chants of “Russia for Russians” live. It is clear you are too ignorant to know who the actors are and what groups a, b, q, x believe in the political landscape of the New Russia.

                      Dugin is a proponent of a multinational, multiracial, Eurasian, traditionalist state. He doesn’t traffic in fascism: that would be the people you support in the Ukraine wearing Nachtangel swastikas, engaged in ethnic cleansing, raping children, extolling the merits of Bandera, Shukhevich and their very real Adolph Hitler approved nationalist ideologies. These scum are the separatists you keep mentioning whose religious and ideological views are at war with history and reality, trying to rip what was once called the Ukraine from its Russian history and cultural continuum. Dugin views fascists as Western stooges doomed to be canon fodder in the war of civilizations, precisely because they alienate the masses and their traditionalist cultures by subjugating, repressing them to the stunted, coercive and brutal agendas of authoritarian states. Traditional populism is Dugin’s answer to Western coercive statism and its repressive, colonial, authoritarian colonies. Populist, traditional self determination and evolution is his vehicle for a multi-polar world.

                      To call traditionalism “fascism” is to indict yourself as an imbecile who is unaware of what fascism believes versus what traditionalism holds to: fascism believes in authoritarian, coercive glorification of state and ethnos to project an almost religious vision of that state’s exceptionalism to neighbors and foes to force them into accepting the superiority of the fascist state’s civilization: that sounds more like Kenyan Emperor Obama/Hillary Clinton/Neo Con/Neo Liberal/banderofascism than anyone else. You get a failing grade when you say Manifest Destiny with its Monroe, Truman, Reagan doctrines is morally equivalent to “Oppressed peoples of the world, rise up, throw off your chains, remember who you are and liberate yourselves from foreign bondage.” Moses is not Mussolini.

                      Traditionalism aims at respecting the traditionally held mores and institutional structures of a given society in cooperation with other traditional societies popularly transforming and uniting all classes in society to bring about successful, self aware, popular state organisms. The Athens of Pericles, for instance. Dugin’s system relies on multipolar, popular civilizations uniting behind strong centers to resist the unipolar civilizational, economic and military colonialism of the West. It has more akin to RC liberation theology than it does to fascism.

                      Your neoliberalism in its statist, corporatist and technocratic structure has been denounced by Roshack, Chomsky, Marcuse, et al. AS BEING PRECISELY FASCISM IN OUR TIME. Dugin does not believe in “Russia for Russians.” He believes in Russia embracing Eurasia and its peoples, or “Russia with non Russians in a united Eurasia.” As I wrote his bent at that time I spoke to him was embracing the Pan-Turkists and Pan-Islamists to forge a unified, traditionalist, popular, multi-polar alliance. He even felt classical Eurasianism with its inclusive, Russian Orthodox civilizational architecture was too limited to project his traditionalist goals. Here you are yet again ever committed to propelling russophobic bigotry above substantive facts.

                      You toil clumsily to shield your political ignorance by Red Baiting, Russophobia, projecting straw men and engaging in four letter word rebuttals to cover up for your lack of honesty and actual knowledge of a given topic. You evidence lack of acquaintance with the things you denounce, lack of understanding of the things you advocate, lack of critical thinking propelling a constantly empty ideological screed. Sadly, you aren’t confused by your unread ignorance. No, you are born and nurtured by it as a willing serf to the stupidities and failures of American liberalism.

                      2). If you believe Western polls, conducted amongst unreliable samples, amongst a terrorized citizenry, you should BE MORE THAN WILLING TO embrace the notion of removing banderofascist death squads, the banderofascist colonial architecture of genocide, to 1). Try the banderofascists and their Western enablers for crimes against humanity WHILE 2). Holding democratic, internationally monitored referendums in every region of what was the Ukraine to determine what the actual, democratic self-determination of these peoples is. YOU CLAIM YOU HAVE THE POLLING ON YOUR SIDE WHILE IGNORING THAT THE UNIATE, BANDEROFASCIST REGIME YOU SUPPORT IS USING DEATH SQUADS TO SUPPRESS DEMOCRATIC REFERENDUMS AND CONDUCT A CAMPAIGN OF ETHNIC CLEANSING. Let’s have the U.N. and impartial monitors come in and hold democratic referendums. Then we will witness how well your polls turn out in your favor. You claim a demographic advantage. Let’s do it.

                      3). I am a traditionalist, blue labor, social democratic, Orthodox Christian populist, or simply a Russian Orthodox Social Democrat. I have characterized my worldview as Neo Soviet, even Red, but consistently as anti-Liberal, anti-colonialist, anti-fascist. I am not enamored of Dugin’s Neo-Eurasianism, for I have serious reservations about its utopian conceptions of traditionalist convergence. I treat Islamism as an antithesis to Orthodox Russia and a threat to peace, not a viable, long term partner.

                      Of course we understand that everything which is not secular liberal in your narrow minded universe of San Francisco values, McCulural liberalism is “fascism,” except for the very real, Hitler successor ideological movements your kind use to advance your McEmpire. If Goebbels was the ideological mastermind of the ideology of your blue and yellow orcs, that doesn’t matter because your blue and yellow orcs are expendable and will enserf other peoples on your Neo Liberal plantations. Thus the reality will be condoms, Hollywood, gay crusading, gangsta culture and the N.Y. Times for all! A world to plunder and pillage for the ministry of truth known as MSNBC.

                      It has been witnessed now for the last few days, weeks, that your worldview has continually been challenged, indicted, refuted as obsolete, ignorant, russophobic, imperialist, even massaging genocide. Your liberal worldview which seeks to impose your failed and depraved liberal vision on the world. You are the last person to speak out against an Orthodox phronema or traffic in the bugbears of racism and xenophobia. The bones constituting the colonial structure of your America Uber Alles rape of the world shout your guilt, your racism, your xenophobia, your intolerance, your hate for everyone who resists your soap opera morality and mall rat consumerism. Your crass and malformed political views and historical ignorance have you looking like a buffoon every time you write something. Adding invective to it or contriving anecdotes just makes you look desperate. Especially when you consistently fail to mask your hate, justify your ignorance or even execute your epithets with any competence. You seethe with rage because what you represent is an epithet to civilization. You have been denounced as an incompetent proponent of a worldview seen as debauched, obsolete, incompatible with human progress. Your failure is complete. All we are subject to is witnessing how inept you are in expressing your liberalism and, thus, we have become an audience to your personal breakdown.

              • “Even when Putin had Litvinenko murdered through polonium poisoning because he had published materials showing Putin to be a paederast, they still cling to the hopes of their hillbilly days in the AustroHungarian Empire.”

                My God, you are a sick little puppy aren’t you, Vladyka?

                Ну, иди с Богом. Этот тип требует молитвы и поста.



            • In other words, you have no idea what Dugin’s Neo-Eurasianism is, which calls for a civilizational exploit of Eurasianism peoples, a united, multi-racial, multi-national political entity. Hardly, Pan Slavism…But your views are definitely russophobic in expressing their ignorance and hate. (I am actually more sympathetic to classical Eurasianism which calls for a multi-national civilization and multi-racial superpower espousing a distinctively Orthodox Christian worldview. But, no, I am not really a Eurasianist or even a Slavophile but a Social Democratic, Blue Labour, Russian Orthodox populist. I don’t particularly identify with the party New Russia either and have indicated I would vote straight ticket in this year’s Russian elections for the Communist Party of Russia headed by Zyuganov).

              Your views reflect Uniate, banderofascist propaganda, deny the genocidal program of the colonial, banderofascist regime, deny its overthrow of the democratic process, deny the right of self determination and democratic referendums to the peoples of Novorossiya and other regions of what was the Ukraine. My position and that of Novorossiya is a fundamental statement of the human right to self-DETERMINATION and the democratic process to bring that about. Neither nationalist, nor racist, nor ideologically Eurasian, nor expressly Putinite. You support banderofascist, death squads fed on NAZI race theories engaging in ethnic cleansing to prevent that process from occuring. You can’t run conver for banderofascism and then say you aren’t an accesory to it. You are empowering the would be Hitlers of our time and standing against those fighting them.

              From the outset, Russian Orthodoxy embodied a multi-ethnic and multi-racial character, and it even distinguished its civilization as being an Orthodox family of many nations, races, tongues acting as an Orthodox community which accentuated the best of every people in the Love of CHRIST: that is the fundamental construct of the Third Rome which is lacking in other churches which are deemed “national.” The Russian church was never a national church or the church of one people: it is the Church of Eurasian Orthodox civilization embracing witnessing Orthodoxy as a union of races, faces, nations, tongues. It isn’t a Hellenist parody or an Arab corrective to Pan-Hellenism. It is a Catholic Church. Nothing is phyletistic about Russian Orthodoxy.

              Mall culture and soap opera morality have been imported from your McCivilization and are hallmarks of you liberal degenerate, American empire.

              So…your russophobic nonsense has once again been shown to be nothing but ignorance and hate standing with every, racist barbarian and sectarian voice for genocide, politically ignorant and oblivious to the human casualties of your murderous worldview. You are criminally ignorant, morally reprobate and demonically sectarian to the point of offering apologia for the rebirth of NAZI-ism and banderofascist genocide in our time advocating it over the Reemergence of a RUSSIAN Orthodox superpower. You keep shouting your hate as a vicious, defeated anti-Orthodox orc. Your ignorance is not bliss, no – it is the raging anger of a defeated spirit of the abyss.

              • Reality Checker says

                You are criminally ignorant, morally reprobate and demonically sectarian to the point of offering apologia for the rebirth of NAZI-ism and banderofascist genocide in our time advocating it over the Reemergence of a RUSSIAN Orthodox superpower. You keep shouting your hate as a vicious, defeated anti-Orthodox orc. Your ignorance is not bliss, no – it is the raging anger of a defeated spirit of the abyss.

                Then of course you won’t mind if I ignore you completely hereafter. окончательное прощание

              • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                From Warren: “So you support regimes which are ideological successors to Hitler’s Third Reich and believe the height of Western Civilization is reached by soap opera sexuality and mall rat socialization.”
                Check THIS out:

          • Reality Checker says

            Point-by-point rebuttal of presumptions with no or next to no foundation:

            I think russophobes who can’t even define who Putin is,

            I take it that by this you mean to castigate us as ignorant about the nature of Putin’s office and the state he leads, suggesting that we don’t know the difference between the duties and powers of an anointed Czar of the Russian Empire and those of the president of the Russian Federation’s semi-presidential “republic.” But I’m sure Vladyka does, and I do, too. The grosser differences between the two offices, in effective, de facto temporal power, have been diminishing every year since 2000 (this trend probably includes the powers of the office of PM over the time he held it, too, but I don’t know so much about that). Putin and his circle essentially control nearly all of the major media, the banks, the fuel industry and most important of all the FSB. They control the wealth. In most particulars relevant to him, the ROC sure appears to me to be jumping exactly as high as Putin tells them to jump. If you’re aware of any significant evidence to the contrary, from solid and reliable sources, I’d take a look at it with great interest.

            respect what an Orthodox nation represents in the modern context

            Please. That’s just disgusting propaganda, laughable. Russia today is not an Orthodox nation and to imagine any such thing is an hallucination. But I think you’re just lying through your teeth here, consciously & shamelessly.

            and who traffic in Neo Liberal colonial propaganda which they can’t adequately defend

            A stupid, false charge. Though I have no use for revolutionary agitators I strenuously oppose the current, disastrous neoliberal regime, although again I want to focus on exposing nonsense and lies here, not discuss my own views. (You, Misha, George and a few others are the blog’s primary hypocrites lecteurs, and thus subject to fact-checking and other scrutiny.) It would be true to say that I see Clinton as much the lesser evil in the desperate situation American voters face this cycle, and vastly preferable to the ignorant, incompetent, narcissistic, irresponsible, mobagogic, racist, hypocritical, grossly immoral & sociopathic fraud running against her. From that it doesn’t follow that I “traffic in Neo Liberal colonial propaganda.” Your reasoning is poor and without evidentiary basis. There is also the obvious point that to suppose Trump of all people would actually offer any relief to victims of the Washington Consensus is naive and unworthy of comment. Believing a word he says evinces stupidity.

            define themselves as feeble hecklers embarassed by their own inadequacies and fearful of the twilight of their murderous and stupid worldviews.

            Mere projection of your own baseless, feeble heckling. I note with special amusement that final phrase, coming as it does from the mouth of a passionate Stalin-apologist. That is too rich.

            So you support regimes which are ideological successors to Hitler’s Third Reich

            You mean the US, Israel, EU, and Ukraine since 2014, one presumes? Fatuous static, not worth attention or comment other than to say that I’m strongly critical of the first two on many levels. But again, that’s irrelevant.

            • In other words, you plead guilty as charged in full russophobic regalia. Now be adult enough to close your banderofascist propaganda down and take it elsewhere as you have been proven in post after post to not know what you are talking about, you liberal enabler of crimes against humanity. You have yet to offer one substantive, sourced rebuttal. Take your four letter word immaturity back to KOS or wherever liberal vermin congregate these days.

      • Michael Warren says


        Russian Orthodox Church revival under Putin continues

        Mark Woods

        04 February 2016

        The Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) has been expanding at the rate of nearly 1,000 churches a year, according to its head, Patriarch Kirill. Speaking at the Council of Bishops in Moscow, Kirill said the ROC now numbers 34,764 churches. Five thousand have been built or restored since 2009.

        The Church has 361 bishops, nearly 40,000 priests and deacons, 455 monasteries and 471 convents.

        The position of the ROC under the presidency of Vladimir Putin has strengthened considerably and it is increasingly identified with a nationalist agenda. Putin himself revealed in 2012 that he was illicitly baptised as an infant at the behest of his mother against the wishes of his staunchly Communist father at a time when the Church was still out of favour.

        Around 23,000 churches fell into disrepair or were demolished during Communist rule. However, Putin has sought to reverse this decline, signing orders restoring some of the Church’s large landholdings confiscated under Communism.

        The public rehabilitation of the Church – accompanied by public expressions of support for Putin… According to a 2014 Pew report, between 1991 and 2008 the share of Russian adults identifying as Orthodox Christian rose from 31 per cent to 72 per cent. …

        • Reality Checker says

          Gee, MW, you’ve omitted highly significant details again. I’m sure Fair Use norms was your reason this time, so allow me to append the rest of the last paragraph:

          The public rehabilitation of the Church – accompanied by public expressions of support for Putin – has not necessarily been accompanied by an upsurge in churchgoing. According to a 2014 Pew report, between 1991 and 2008 the share of Russian adults identifying as Orthodox Christian rose from 31 per cent to 72 per cent. But the number saying they attended church at least once a month was only seven per cent in 2008. According to Pew, “This suggests that although many more Russians now freely identify with the Orthodox Church or other religious groups, they may not be much more religiously observant than they were in the recent past, at least in terms of attendance at religious services.”

          • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

            He also failed to note what the Pew survey revealed about the percentage of “churchgoers” who don’t believe in God. Of course we have such too, but we don’t claim our churchgoers prove our country Christian!

          • In doing a comparison of “free, liberal, democratic America” (and we can include data for “free, liberal, democratic Europe, Canada, Britain, France, Scandinavia” to really accentuate the ubiquitous, russophobic, bigoted hypocrisy), we find that as “Putin’s despotic, Orthodox Russia” emerging from decades of militant atheism and secular social engineering increasingly recovers religious faith, affiliation, life, spirituality, America discards it in its liberal, democratic, secular humanist, uncoerced, New Atheist freedom and evidences the opposite trend:

            ..1 Overall, Americans have become slightly less religious – based on some key traditional gauges of religiosity – since the last Religious Landscape Study was conducted in 2007. For instance, 53% of U.S. adults now say religion is very important in their lives, down from 56% in 2007. Over the same seven-year period, the share of Americans who say they are absolutely certain that God exists has dropped from 71% to 63%. And 36% of adults report attending religious services at least weekly, down 3 percentage points since 2007.

            2 This overall drop in religiosity has been driven by the rapid growth of the religiously unaffiliated population (from 16% of all U.S. adults in 2007 to 23% in 2014) – along with the fact that these religious “nones” are becoming even more secular over time. For example, while 70% of “nones” expressed a belief in God in 2007, that figure has fallen to 61% today. At the same time, among the shrinking share of Americans who do identify with a religion, levels of religious observance have been relatively stable. Indeed, by some measures, such as frequency of sharing their faith with others and reading scripture, religious engagement has even ticked up modestly among the affiliated.

            3 As is the case with religious affiliation, generational replacement also is helping to drive lower levels of religious commitment. In other words, as older, more religiously observant generations die out, they are being replaced by far less religious young adults. One example: Two-thirds of members of the Silent generation (67%) say religion is very important in their lives, but only 38% of the youngest members of the Millennial generation – those born between 1990 and 1996 – say the same. Just 28% of these youngest Millennials report attending religious services at least weekly, compared with about half (51%) of their Silent generation counterparts. …


    • Michael Warren says

      Well, it seems, for one you have a problem with Orthodox Christian sexual morality, Russian Orthodox states, modern Orthodox nation building. You can’t even get that social democracy and Orthodox Christianity coexisted and reconciled civilizational worldviews in the Soviet Union: you seem to think that the Orthodox renewal in Russia popped up like a mushroom and when educated how inadequate and unread that russophobic point of view is act out defaming the people who out your lack of erudition, experience, substance, bondage to a tired liberal worldview and sensibilities you ooze like an MSNBC zombie. You have to be educated enough to be a cynic. When you are ignorant and hold to the views you do you aren’t a skeptic: you’re just a bigot.

  14. Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

    George! While you were in Russia, what actual steps were taken to outlaw abortion? How often did you hear or read of clergy of any rank declaring that abortion is murder? Who is leading a campaign, if any, against abortion? After all, some opine that Russia is spiritually ahead of America, yet Russia’s rate of abortions is rather higher than ours OR ANYBODY’s!


      I remember one time hearing a PBS talk show on radio
      and they were talking about how many abortions and
      clinics were out there with Obama Clinton policy making
      it widely available. Dirty secret its the men that make use
      of this availability to get the woman to go abort. Probably
      most Democrats that vote democrat are thinking abortion
      rights even late term are like the second amendment. So in
      US abortion is legal and if you’re poor the tax payers will
      cover it. Don’t know if it’s that easy in Russia.

      Above clip is Francis playing with the altar. Imagine what
      St. Simeon the Theologian might say about that, just give you
      a look, see, “iskusheniye” temptation, he is like the roman guards
      making fun of Jesus fashioning a crown of thorns.

      • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

        Cy in Russia the government PAYS FOR ABORTIONS. I believe you’ll find, if you actually look at the history, that it was the horrorof the multitudinous ILLEGAL abortions and their results that caused many to strive for legalization. I believe, Cy, that you’ll find that the abortion rate has DROPPED after legalization. It was the old “better a half loaf than none” syndrome. Many never KNEW how many illegal abortions there were! But the rate of JUST THE RATE OF KNOWN ILLEGAL ABORTIONS was higher than today’s rate of abortions.
        Neither the Russian government nor the Russian Church is trying to make abortion illegal! Expressions of horror or displeasure accomplish nothing, especially in Putin’s Russia where what counts is PUTIN, I wonder if George asked any church-goers what was being done to outlaw abortion?
        Any Russian Bishops Marching for Life? ha ha.

        • Michael Warren says

          Deutsche Welle

          Russia ponders restrictions on abortion rights

          Russian women’s reproductive rights are under threat with a new bill before parliament calling for radical changes to access to abortion. Who’s driving the pro-life bus and at what cost, asks Fiona Clark?

          Way back in 1990 one of the first articles I wrote when I arrived in Moscow was about a woman who’d had 26 abortions. She was soon usurped by a friend of mine’s mother who told me she’d had 29 over the course of her reproductive years.

          In fact in 1990 there were more than 3.9 million abortions and it’s said that during the Soviet period there were more terminations than there were lives lost in the first and second world wars combined. …

          …These days the rate is still one of the highest in the world but it has dropped considerably to about 990,000 a year, or 49 per 100 births. That means that now every third pregnancy is terminated.

          Added incentives

          The reason for the improvement? Russia has been battling a declining population since the collapse of the Soviet Union and over the past decade has introduced a number of financial and child support incentives to encourage people to have more kids. These, along with an improved economy, have to some extent worked and population growth is no longer negative. But the argument for improving demographics has provided fertile ground for pro-life supporters. Enter the “Warriors for Life” group and the Russian Orthodox Church. For the past few years they’ve been lobbying hard for changes to Russia’s liberal abortion laws.

          And now a new bill is sitting before the state parliament, or Duma, that calls for state funding for abortions to be axed. This is the first step, according to Patriarch Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, toward a total ban. Pro-life websites quote church officials saying they’d like to see abortions completely outlawed within the next two years while Warriors for Life want it banned now.

          The church is putting its stamp on the issue of abortion

          At the moment abortions are free and available up to 12 weeks of pregnancy but require a ‘social’ or medical reason for terminations from 13 to 22 weeks. If the bill is passed, women will have to pay for the procedure which will only be available in state-run clinics. Private clinics will be banned from performing them and will face hefty fines ranging from 500,000-2.5 million rubles (8,130-40,670 euros) if caught.

          The bill also aims to stop the sale of over-the-counter emergency contraception. Instead women wanting the ‘morning after pill’ will have to see a doctor and get a prescription. In addition it calls for compulsory ultrasounds for women considering an abortion because, according to one of the bill’s drafters Yelina Mizulina from the center-left Fair Russia party, statistics show that “up to 80 percent of them refuse to have the abortion when they see their child on the screen.” Media organisations are already banned from advertising abortion services.

          State and Church align

          As a sign of the growing closeness of the state and church, the Patriarch gave the first speech ever by a member of a religious order to the Duma in January this year. He said abortion was “evil” and “infanticide.” In a bid to make the prospect more appealing to the nationalistic members he played a demographics-cum-national security card to support his argument. “If we manage to cut the number of abortions by 50 percent we would have stable and powerful population growth,” he told the MPs.

          Four months later and Ms Mizulina’s bill is ready for approval. In 2013 Mizulina, an outspoken advocate for traditional family values, argued that society’s tolerance of abortion and surrogacy threatened to wipe out not just the Russian population but the whole world. …

          …The Patriarch denies there will be a flow-on effect as he’s advocating that the state charge the same as the private clinics. “The argument that a ban would cause an increase in the number of underground abortions is pure nonsense. People have to pay money for these operations and our task is to make the price of a legal infanticide the same as of the illegal one. Taxpayers must not pay for this,” he told the Duma. …

          Fiona Clark is an Australian journalist currently living in Russia. She started her career with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation as a TV news reporter in the mid-1980’s. She has spent the past 10 years working on publications such as The Lancet and Australian Doctor and consumer health websites. This is her second stint in Moscow, having worked there from 1990-92. What was to be a two-year posting is still continuing.

          • M. Stankovich says

            Date of Deutsche Welle article: 06/2015. Number of “acknowledged” medical abortions in Russia during 2015 as reported by the Russian Minister of Heath to the NY Times, “approximately 930,000.” Reasonably suspected by epidemiological watchdog groups who have seen a a less than 8% decline since 2010: greater than a 1,000,000. We will not solve this problem with Google-driven BS. Enough, already. Who are you fooling with these repeated attempts to deny the reality “on the ground?” Whatever the intentions, and whatever the operational plans, it is simply not working. And if you are the paid PR person for the RF in the west, you are a failure.

            • In 1990, there were 4000000 abortions in Russia. In 2015 less than 100000 by your OWN admission. That’s a 75% decrease. Here we have a sourced article, reflecting your liberal San Francisco values, DECLARING that THE RUSSIAN STATE AND RUSSIAN CHURCH ARE ACTING JOINTLY TO OUTLAW ABORTION AND PROPAGATE ORTHODOX MORALITY. That denounces your russophobic slanders AS BIGOTED LIES WITHOUT SUBSTANCE and DENIES you and yours any legitimacy in addressing this topic.

              Elsewhere, SOURCED INFORMATION (AKA the “Google scholarship” which DOESN’T FALL INTO THE LANDS OF MAKING UP QUOTES, STATISTICS AND OUTRIGHT LYING TO ADVANCE LIBERAL SAN FRANCISCO VALUES AS YOU HAVE FRAUDULENTLY BEEN OUTED DOING!) has indicated that contraception use amongst sexually active Russians is at 80% and increasing BUT AS IT HAS INCREASED ABORTION RATES HAVE ALSO INCREASED BECAUSE YOUR SAN FRANCISCO JUST WEAR A CONDOM VALUES HAVE ENOURAGED SEXUAL IMMORALITY, PROMISCUITY, WHICH HAS INCREASED THE AMOUNT OF CRISIS PREGNANCIES AND REMOVED MORAL BARRIERS TO ABORTION CREATING A CULTURE OF SEXUAL IMMORALITY MUCH LIKE IN SCANDINAVIA, SPAIN AND THE USA. Do shut your russophobic, ignorant, mendacious mouth and take your failed and immoral liberalism where idiots are still stupid enough to buy into your propaganda of hate and failed Crestwood Renovationist reformation. You are a hateful enemy of Orthodox morality and a pathetic opponent of traditional, Orthodox Christianity. Here you have been outed as a fraud, your ideas discredited and you thereby forfeited moral standing to engage this discussion any further.

              • M. Stankovich says

                Wow. Apparently all the moral standing necessary to engage this discussion any further is to be had by clicking [Reply]. Who knew?

                It would appear that the difference between my cereal box meta-educated MD and whatever it is you claim to hold is the ability to search the medical literature on topic, and to be honest. I actually clicked through an on all the links of the articles you cited, which you were either too arrogant or flat out too stupid to examine. Many of the linked sources are, in fact, legitimate, but tell a story completely opposite of what you present as fact. While no one should be interested, I am still laughing at the conclusion of one in particular one such source draws:

                The Orthodox Church extensively campaigns against advances in reproductive health and rights. This campaign covers all the three countries. However, in Russia the church successfully penetrated the decision making process in public health, and its overall influence on the Russian government is particularly strong.

                The latest developments related to family planning in Russia, which involve introduction of further legal restrictions in access to abortion, confirmed our guesstimates about the direction of the Russian governmental policies. We do not analyze these legal changes in this paper, but if our reasoning is correct, they will bring about a further growth in the abortion gap between the countries and may even terminate the ongoing decrease of abortion indicators in Russia.

                Divergent Trends in Abortion and Birth Control Practices in Belarus, Russia and Ukraine. Boris P. Denisov, Victoria I. Sakevich, Aiva Jasilioniene

                Good lord, Warren, they are blaming the ROC for terminating the trend of decrease in abortions in Russia! Slipped that one by you? Ha!

                Everything you need to know factually about the state of contraception in Russia I have written here, and what I believe a first step in addressing this issue of this horrible atrocity is here. You have outdone yourself in stupidity and you are disgraced. I have caught you by the scruff of your lying neck and do not need to refer anyone to some “20-40” non-existent statements. Stick to lecturing about the virtues of Joseph Stalin and keep out of my house. BANG. Such foolishness, all of this. So silly to be arguing such undeniable, indisputable facts, day after day. Enough already. And for Halloween.

                • I personally couldn’t care less about this ongoing argument, but the conclusions your source draws are fundamentally flawed, reflecting the logic of Planned Parenthood which tells us (and it is a lie) that the solution to abortion is more birth control.

                  They even employ the same deceptive language.

                  “…extensively campaigns against advances in reproductive health and rights.”

                  I am not a believer in advancing the faith by force of civil law, but the law is nevertheless pedagogical in both positive and negative ways. Would that the Church in the U.S. had the influence to campaign effectively against what the authors of this study falsely presume to be ‘advances.’

                • The facts remain:

                  1). Abortion has decreased in Russia precipitously.
                  2). The Russian Orthodox Church and government were proven to be cooperating in fighting this evil.
                  3).. In Russia, as in other nations, the increased availability of birth control has LED TO MORE ABORTIONS BY CREATING CULTURES OF PROMISCUITY.
                  4). You have been proven to manufacture your own quotes and statistics. In THIS INSTANCE, you cited a source document that was treated as dishonest in the literature I provided. Cereal box doctorate indeed. Yes, we are approaching over 50 instances of where your DISHONEST, OFTEN FABRICATED, Crestwood, meta-educated “plastic anthropologies of the deifying nature of gay sex” and all the rest of your russophobic buffoonery by liberal, Renovationist talking point DENIES YOU A LEGITIMATE VOICE IN POLITE CONVERSATION! Without the lying and the fabrications, EVERYTHING YOU SAY ENDS UP BEING CONTRIVED OR OUTRIGHT WRONG WHEN CHALLENGED BY SCRUTINY. Crestwood meta-education coupled with a cereal box doctorate does a liberal imbecile make. You are a mendacious, russophobic, Renovationist clown.
                  5).. Guttmacher, an abortionist, contraceptive GMO, in your quote STATES THAT COLLABORATION BETWEEN CHURCH AND STATE INDEED IS WHAT IS OCCURING IN RUSSIA TODAY, DESTROYING YOUR INITIAL CONTENTION THAT THE RUSSIAN CHURCH AND STATE ARE NOT ACTING TO STOP ABORTION! The quote you provided was treated by the 15 or so links I placed here which showed Guttmacher tried to pass off the increase of abortion on the ROC, but in all actuality, the increase in abortions occured as birth control started to be used with greater frequency BECAUSE JUST WEAR A CONDOM SAN FRANCISCO VALUES PROPAGANDA PROMOTES GREATER PROMISCUITY, SEXUAL IMMORALITY, WHICH CREATES MORE INSTANCES OF CRISIS PREGNANCY. US, SPANISH AND RUSSIAN STATISTICS WERE PROVIDED WHICH REINFORCED THAT POINT AND EXPOSED GUTTMACHER, the family planning think tank you carry water for like the liberal drone you are, AS COOKING THE NUMBERS TO ADVANCE ITS OWN AGENDA. You and your alternate personae have relied solely on propanda whose ultimate source and funding comes from Guttmacher. It ended up being a big lie. Your liberal, russophobic, SAN FRANCISCO VALUES house of cards fell down. You resorted to more lies and fabrications with the typically arrogant stupidity of a meta-educated hack.

                  Here you are a proven, russophobic liar with no more to say or mischaracterize. I relish saying you are found out, you poseur fraud. Shut your mouth. Take your liberal, San Francisco values lies elsewhere. Liars who even flee the scene of their crime to avoid ridicule for their russophobic AMATEURISM LACK ALL STANDING IN ENGAGING THIS DISCUSSION FURTHER. Try to get a refund for that $18.95 doctorate you got by eating Wheaties. You should have sent in for the decoder ring instead.

                  • M. Stankovich says

                    Where to begin, where to begin… Let me be especially clear that I write nothing here with the express purpose of addressing the scientific imbecile Michael Warren. He can pump out CAPS-ON insults and faggotry forever, but the fact remains, he has got more than a million legally sanctioned and government-financed medical abortions a year which he is frantically attempting to deny. Good luck with that. Further, while he continuously dismisses me as a half-assed, meta educated hack with a cereal box MD, lacking any standing worth engaging in further discussion, Michael Warren is frenzied in his manic inability to stop engaging me. I am amused.

                    To Brian, I would challenge your statement that increased availability of dependable contraceptives can result in decreased rates of abortion as “fundamentally flawed.” I would note that Google searches for the relationship between contraceptives and the rate of abortion nearly exclusively results in partisan punditry: relying on rates of contraceptive failure (e.g. by method: withdrawal, calendar prediction; device: condom without a secondary barrier such as foam; practice: inconsistent or incorrect use) or routine emergency “Plan B” availability. In actual, empirical research from, say, the National Library of Medicine, it took very little to find interesting data such a recent study comparing the relationship between contraception availability in the Czech Republic & Slovakia: without any legal restrictions to abortions, but increased availability to contraceptives after 2008, both countries “experienced a significant decrease in the abortion rate, because both states have complete statistics on abortion and identical histories of abortion legislation.” Interestingly, the authors indicate, “In the Czech Republic, improvements in family planning and increasing awareness of reproductive health have played key roles in promoting responsible sexual behavior, whereas in Slovakia, the stronger influence of the Catholic Church has contributed to the prevention of abortions.” Second, a 60-month study was conducted in Georgia where the “contraceptive prevalence among married women increased by 23% (from 39% to 48%) and the marital abortion rate declined by 15% (from 203 to 172 abortions per 1,000 woman-years).” Obviously, what is interesting here is that “promiscuity” is not a variable in that medical abortion was a form of “family planning” such that

                    Nonuse of any [contraceptive] method was the principal determinant of the high unintended pregnancy rate and that the increase in use of modern contraceptives was a significant contributor to the recent drop in abortion (explaining 54% of the decline, according to the decomposition analysis)

                    The authors conclude – as do so many in regard to similar studies of abortion in the former Soviet Bloc – “Efforts to increase availability and use of modern family planning methods in Georgia should lead to a direct and measurable decline in the abortion rate.”

                    Finally, I will return to the point I made in the first trashing of Monomakhos by Michael Warren: the current child-bearing generation of Russians consistently report that they do not see the church as a source of personal morality (as a side note, I received a reviewer’s copy of this, Women without Men: Single Mothers and Family Change in the New Russia from Cornell University Press – that’s what an $18.95 MD brings you, Mr. Warren – and I look forward to reading it). Lest someone misconstrue the point: they do not perceive the church as a source of personal morality. They are lost sheep, and the shepherd must go to them. It is somehow quite disconcerting to imagine that, on this side, Mr. Warren is attempting to sell the notion that “The Russian Orthodox Church and government were proven to be cooperating in fighting this evil,” while the government endorses and pays for the atrocity & the church is silent, and on their side… well, the the government endorses and pays for the atrocity & the church is silent.

                    • M. Stankovich says

                      I just had to mention that I came across an interesting study by a Serbian sociologist that basically speaks to everything you will read regarding the rationalization of the relationship between contraception and abortion in Serbia, Romania, Russia, the Ukraine, and so on. First, while modern and effective forms of contraception are not widely available,

                      The problem of the domination of conservative birth control in Serbia [and generalize the information] and the consequences of endemic abortion are serious and demand numerous program actions. The principal solutions are to propagate relevant knowledge, develop a network of services for contraception organized to respect the principles of efficiency in work, including specially educated doctors and various health workers in counseling for promotion of preventive behavior, complete availability of efficient contraception, getting men out of the defensive and development of their responsibility in this sphere, legal regulations of voluntary sterilization as an instrument for decreasing the number of induced abortions, especially multiple abortions.

                      And key to her argument are the generational practice of abortion, easy access, and lack of cost,

                      Special, target groups for propagating relevant knowledge are the adolescents, less educated women, housewives and blue-collar female workers, women who grew up in small towns, women with a low score on personal efficiency scale and especially women who have had abortions, namely women who had abortions as adolescents.

                      Further, research in these countries has shown the time most women are vulnerable to change their contraceptive method is immediately post-abortion

                      Thus a discussion with the doctor is of utmost importance on all relevant matters in the post-abortion phase in order to influence formation of a standpoint, as well as creating motivation, stimulating responsibility, forming a different system of values and life philosophy in the sphere of reproductive health, before the woman gets passive, returns to the same circle of occurrence and makes the same mistake.

                      Where is the church, you ask? Where is the church I ask.

                      The rationalizations offered to not to abandon abortion are remarkable, and point to the fact that “morality” is not an approachable matter of concern (and do note the number of previous abortions)

                      “I am disgusted by the preservatives”, (biology student, 21, one abortion).

                      “I am horrified by the mere thought of the preservatives”, (сlerk, 27, three abortions).

                      “I call sex with a condom – sex with gloves”, (saleswoman, 29, four abortions).

                      “A condom hurts and stings”, (administrator, 39, four abortions).

                      “A condom is such a nuisance”, (film operator, 30, six abortions).

                      “You interrupt sex to put on the condom. Where is the spontaneity?” (anesthesiologist, 36, three abortions).

                      “I used the pill only seven days. I was vomiting constantly. My eyes blurred. I felt so bad I had to call an ambulance. The doctor yelled at me”, (legal adviser, 31, four abortions).

                      I took the pill for only one day. I had a splitting headache. I thought I was going to die”, (saleswoman, 37, six abortions).

                      “The intrauterine device changes the position of the uterus”, (sales consultant, 32, five abortions).

                      “The whole uterus swells from the intrauterine device just like when you have a splinter in your hand and then it turns red and swells”, (economist, 30, five abortions).

                      “The intrauterine device creates a tumor in the uterus and that is how it prevents pregnancy”, (textile worker, 36, five abortions).

                      Where is the church, you ask? Where is the church, I ask.

                      Lack of accurate information (e.g. predicitions of side-effects from oral contraceptives); one would have to suspect intentional misinformation; consistent information that condoms are low quality, uncomfortable, and notoriously lack quality controls routine in the west, has led to failure rates and cessation rates of 53% and more, by report, replaced by nothing. Pundits such as Mr. Warren call this “San Francisco, anti-orthodox, put on a condom, promoting promiscuity.” I say a woman who is rejecting a condom because it feels like “sex with a glove on” after already having had five previous abortions, needs no instruction in promiscuity from me. And the fact that medical abortions occur at a rate 85% less than in Russia…

                      I personally had expected a better conclusion from Mirjana Rašević

                      Abortion is a realistic necessity, the only comp- letely efficient method of conception prevention and the only form of birth control based on certainty, but not probability of conception. However, apart from that, a large number of abortions in a population at the beginning of the 21st century is unacceptable.

                      but perhaps Mr. Warren can do something with it. He is, after all, a master of making something out of nothing.

                    • Michael S.,

                      I’m afraid I’ll have to subject myself to the same ridicule Michael Bauman unjustly suffered on a different thread.

                      I do not dispute the statistics. I don’t even care about the statistics. Pagans always have sacrificed – and until Christ comes to judge the earth pagans always will sacrifice – their children on altars of many kinds.

                      Our fathers (and not merely the holy ones of bygone centuries, but normal, everyday fathers of less than 100 years ago) would be thoroughly horrified and perplexed at this generation that sees children as a burden rather than a blessing, as ‘things’ that could be imagined as “unwanted,” as ‘something’ to be “prevented” by any technological means available and, if that is not possible, killed when ‘necessary.’

                      If you want to say that contraception prevents many pregnancies and therefore some abortions, I won’t argue the point. Pagans will be pagans, after all; and only the Gospel of Christ or the limits of civil law can restrain them. But all the statistics, studies, and so-called technological advances in ‘reproductive health’ only prove the severity of the sickness of our culture.

                      Yes, there would continue to be abortions if civil law forbade them, but there would be far fewer – not only because they would be more difficult to obtain, but because the law itself would teach the populace (as it once did) that such a thing was forbidden/wrong/bad for them. In other words, the law and the government enforcing it would be exercising its God-ordained function of restraining evil by force. Ours does the exact opposite in increasing measure. And those who ask, “But what about the safety of the woman who might suffer from a ‘back-alley’ abortion?” are like those who would enact OSHA laws to protect the safety of burglars.

                      No. Michael Bauman is correct, albeit in a highly unpopular way. Contraceptive technologies are no solution at all. They are every bit as disordered and reflective of a sick culture as the vaccines derived from aborted fetal stem cell lines. Have we ALL (even the Orthodox!) become so enamored of our ‘choices’ and technological means that we cannot perceive the deep rot that pervades even our own minds in the way we think about these things? To say that contraception – the refusal of God’s gifts and the selfishness of not wanting to give our life to another – is the solution to abortion is akin to saying that hoarding wealth is better than almsgiving. We expect this sort of thinking from pagans (How else can the unenlightened think?). Let us not fall prey to it ourselves no matter how ‘sensible, logical, and scientific’ it may seem to be.

                      When unenlightened (even though sometimes seemingly factually correct) ‘science’ is seen always to be the answer to our sicknesses, I cannot help but recall the life of John Nash, the famous Nobel Laureate in Economics who suffered from severe paranoid schizophrenia. What science, with all its otherwise good and useful technologies, could not heal was healed, or at least largely mitigated, by love.

                      Regardless of whose abortion rate is higher (frankly I don’t care), good for the Church for doing what is within its power not only against abortion (the manifestation of the sickness), but against the sickness itself. And no, the Russian Church is not silent on this. It is, in fact, quite vocal, a voice crying in the wilderness that is at least being heard.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Brian, you have written perhaps the most insightful and profound rebuttal to the statistical analyses put out on this subject yet. For this I thank you.

                      I for one don’t care about the arcana as much as I care about the trends and the culture. In both cases, Russia and other formerly communist lands in which Christianity has revived are on demographic, cultural and more sustainable trajectories than the dying West. The trouble with that assertion is that it is difficult to see in the short term. It won’t be apparent until several decades have passed.

                    • M. Stankovich says


                      It seems to me that the enormity of this “problem” escapes you. And I believe it escapes you specifically because Mr. Michalopulos has allowed an imbecile to insult the intelligence of everyone – including Mr. Michalopulous himself, who was forced to develop “rules” to cope with the enormity of the stupidity. I will repeat this now ad nausem: directly proportional with the fall of the threshold for truth is chaos.

                      Mr. Michalopulos, pay attention, as I will now offer you the most insightful & profound rebuttal to the statistical analyses put out on this subject yet: as acknowledged by Kyrill, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, and by the Minister of Health of the Russian Federation, there have been more than a million legal, medical abortions in the RF every year of this century, and 2016 will do nothing to disturb this trend. You don’t need to know why, or anything of the enormity and complexity as it has manifested itself socially, culturally, medically, psychologically, spiritually, and economically. Just know it exists at a level of human atrocity that Pat. Kyrill himself declared as “horrifying to consider.”

                      Understanding this level of atrocity, Brian, I am more offended by your commentary of the “moral high ground” than I am by the imbecile Michael Warren, and why? Is it possible that in all the discussions we have had you would ascribe to me faith in technology over Him who declares, “If you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you shall say to this mountain, move from here to there; and it shall move; and nothing shall be impossible to you.” (Matt. 17:20) Seriously, Brian, is that your message to me? I’ve stood in a stab-proof vest in a claustrophobic room containing nothing but a single chair and a cage, having dismissed my fifth child-sexual predator “diddler” of the day as he screamed at me to go f*** myself and tried to spit on me. It crossed my mind, “Is it my training or technique that prevents me from reaching some of these guys?” But I’m honest enough to conclude, “Then came the disciples to Jesus alone, and said, ‘Why could we not cast the demon out of him? And Jesus said to them, Because of your unbelief .” (v.19) “Let us not fall prey to it ourselves no matter how ‘sensible, logical, and scientific’ it may seem to be.” You insult me to my face.

                      My final point to you is to emphasize how an epidemiologist and physician looks at such an enormous problem that is not being adequately – and in my mind, despite this “collaboration” of the church & state in Russia that Warren is attempting to sell as “working to prevent abortion,” more than a million abortions a year, every year, for 16 continuous years is not adequate – addressed. We need to admit two things without distraction: 1) abortion is a longstanding socially acceptable form of contraception & “family planning” in Russia, and 2) on the whole, the Orthodox Church has sanctioned oral & implanted contraceptives as ethical & responsible forms of family planning for married couples. The imbecile Michael Warren has so skewed the discussion with this idiotic point, “more birth control leads to more abortion,” without acknowledging the obvious in front of our face: abortion is the major form of birth control in Russia. Aye!

                      The answer is not reliance on technology. Technology is an example of intervention in what has, essentially, become habit. And imagine – God help us – the impact of five and six medical abortions on the soul and psyche of a human being. It is unimaginable. It is a living atrocity in the “Third Rome.” It is my business to look for congruence in word and action, and if you hear “a voice crying in the wilderness that is at least being heard,” you can hear dog whistles, or perhaps voices that cry out to heaven more than a million times a year, but I personally do not.

                    • George – you are giving Brian a lot of credit for saluting a church that finally told people it was good to use condoms (the worst contraceptive for married couples let me tell you) just this last 2010 year.

                      Condoms are a horrible choice for sex between monogamous partners. I didn’t say they didn’t get used. I said they suck. You sell plenty of stuff in that drugstore that sucks, but you know that.

                      The church and pro-life are not leading anything.

                      This continued notion that a woman should be fertile or ready to conceive from the time she is 13 until the time she is 50, some 37 years or about 400 cycles or roughly 2500 days of fertility to promote some puritanical ideology is something only a conservative fantasy can allow.

                      It’d be just like a liberal fantasy suggesting the government has enough money to feed everyone for free.

                      The outcomes of either fantasy are poor.

                      Unfortunately, there will be no middle ground discoveries here because conservative men really enjoy the puritanical concepts.

                      Conservative women condemning contraceptives are few.

                      The best post on the subject so far is truly from Stankovich. Abortion could be drastically reduced tomorrow if people just used more contraceptives. Here come the puritanical insults.

                  • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                    “1). Abortion has decreased in Russia precipitously.
                    OH, Thanks for that, heh heh! Reminds one of that old comment about a fat lady, “My goodness! She’s melted down to a mere TON!”

                  • Michael Warren says

                    OVER 15 CITED SOURCES, ANALYZING STATISTICS FROM RUSSIA, SPAIN AND THE USA HAVE PROVEN THAT MORE BIRTH CONTROL LEADS TO MORE ABORTION SHOWING THAT SAN FRANCISCO VALUES, GUTTMACHER PROPAGANDA IS A BIG LIE! Subsidizing and encouraging sexual immorality, promiscuity creates cultures which rebel against the moral barriers to abortion and disproportionately adopt anything goes sexual profligacy. Just wear a condom goes hand in hand with get rid of the burden to your sexual liberation/reproductive freedom, ie your baby, in the world of Stankovitch, meta-bishop, reality, anonymous, et al.

                    Stankovich & CO simply persist in the russophobic lies after being proven to manufacture quotes, take things out of context, even openly advocate the things they denounce and delegitimize their messages as bigoted, russophobic hypocrisy:

                    1). Stankovich et al have BEEN proven to decontextualize, even manufacture quotes, to warp their meanings. Stankovich’s quotes of Fr. Florovsky have him scrawling that the phronema in Fr. Florovsky’s Neo Patristic Synthesis is really continual Reformation, that monasticism in Fr. Florovsky is escapism leading to secularization that the Neo Patristic synthesis is not brought to completion by living the life of the Fathers and acquiring the Patristic Mind in our time to achieve a contemporary, Patristic, Orthodox worldview: no, in Stankovich’s Crestwood meta-education, it is a matter of accomodation of faces, places, times, modernity and sensibilities, to relate a relevance of the Fathers to a template which accomodates their reception, i.e. meta-patristics. When Stankovich writes about Fr. Florovsky, even Fr. Schmemann rolls in his grave at the rank and agendized amateurism.

                    2). Stankovich wrote Church and state don’t cooperate in Russia in creating a new Orthodox culture. That was challenged and proven wrong. He wrote Church and state don’t fight abortion in Russia. That was proven wrong. He wrote more contraceptives would lessen the amount of abortions in Russia. The opposite was proven to be true where a spike was shown in the number of abortions after the number was declining because of the increased use of birth control. Now he includes a supposedly Serbian source from nowhere to indict the Orthodox and conservative societies of Orthodox countries as being the guilt mongers who stifle and oppress women from being sexually educated enough to use birth control and prevent crisis pregnancies to lower the number of abortions! This after in the Russian context it was shown that said conservative socities lowered abortions 75% from 1990 to 2012. Then for good measure, this Serbian study is cited along with a supposed, unsourced assertion that the Church doesn’t have as much influence amongst Russian millenials. Yet, polls show that the Russian church’s numbers amongst the populace are in the 70%+ range in its moral authority and respect, influence. This GUTTMACHER, San Francisco values cacophony can’t get its story straight. Its inherent contradictions, not to mention use of fraud and deception, leave Stankovich et al looking like desperate frauds, obtuse hacks whose greatest rebuttal is their agendized, russophobic inconsistency.. Fraud, contradictions, decontextualized quotes, discredited studies, admitted russophobic proclivities, and yet Stankovich is permitted a forum to persist in this fraud without moderation after thoroughly discrediting all of his contentions and being proven to be a fraud, a hack, motivated by russophobic propaganda?!

                    3). Eastern Rite Protestant meta-bishops who support American liberalism which has reproductive rights and abortion on demand as pillars of its political program are exposed as hypocrites, advocates for infanticide in defiance of Orthodox morality. Such morally reprobate ideologues are thoroughly discredited in addressing state funded abortion in Russia. Especially when that state funding is a hold over from a measure this meta-bishop’s liberal, political, fellow travelers in the West viewed as “progressive,” whose removal of state subsidy is opposed by said liberal, Western advocates of child murder, who subsequently denounce the collaboration of Russian church and state in fighting abortion. Such hyprocrisy spouting russophobic stupidity only morally indicts the bigots engaged.

                    • M. Stankovich says

                      All that your 15 pundit sources, analyzing statistics from Russia, Spain and the USA, have proven is that you are incapable of reading a basic scientific journal. In effect, the only thing that punditry consistently leads to – analogous to the much maligned Oryctolagus cuniculus – is more punditry. But such are the wages of google-scholarship.

                      And speaking of which, in Mr. Michalopulos’ “born-again” interest in the truth and citations when a known imbecile makes charges he cannot support, I take one last drag as I approach the stand (seriously, who didn’t see that coming?):

                      Then for good measure, this Serbian study is cited along with a supposed, unsourced assertion that the Church doesn’t have as much influence amongst Russian millenials. Yet, polls show that the Russian church’s numbers amongst the populace are in the 70%+ range in its moral authority and respect, influence.

                      I have consistently cited Z. Knox and A. Mitrofanova, ‘The Russian Orthodox Church’ in L. Leustean (ed.), Eastern Christianity and Politics in the Twenty-first Century (Routledge, 2014), pp. 38-66, and Knox, Z (2004). Russian Society and the Orthodox Church: Religion in Russia after Communism. London: Routledge.

                      Ask him, Mr. Michalopulos, in the interest of supporting his claim that “Fraud, contradictions, decontextualized quotes, discredited studies, admitted russophobic proclivities, and yet Stankovich is permitted a forum to persist in this fraud without moderation after thoroughly discrediting all of his contentions and being proven to be a fraud, a hack, motivated by russophobic propaganda?!” to provide the source of the polls that indicate, “that the Russian church’s numbers amongst the populace are in the 70%+ range in its moral authority and respect.” WAT! Am I clear, Mr. Michalopulos, that you said, “According to an ancient legal maxim, “the truth is absolute protection against libel and slander.” So, if what you are saying about X doing Y is true, then you have nothing to fear.”

        • Vladyka,

          You couldn’t care less about the abortion issue. You dislike the RF because it is “homophobic”. But that is the Law of God. What else could they be?

          • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

            Misha.Do you think the RF is homophobic? Why? I’m asking because you are the one affirming that it is (“You dislike the RF because it is “homophobic”.)
            I don’t believe that at all! If you remember the case of the murder by polonium poisoning of Litvinenko, you’ll no doubt remember that most people close to the investigation reported that the reason Putin had him bumped off was that he had published more than once information about Putin’s paedophilia!
            Why in the world do you say I “couldn’t care less about the abortion issue?” Are you claiming to be clairvoyant? I think your knickers are in a twist because I’ve referred more than once to the total failure of the government or the Church in the RF to do anything substantive about abortion, although Patriarch Kyrill is publicly against PUBLIC FUNDING of abortions (see above: ”
            “The Patriarch denies there will be a flow-on effect as he’s advocating that the state charge the same as the private clinics. “The argument that a ban would cause an increase in the number of underground abortions is pure nonsense. People have to pay money for these operations and our task is to make the price of a legal infanticide the same as of the illegal one. Taxpayers must not pay for this,” he told the Duma. …”

            His All-Holiness is concerned about “taxpayers!” That’s what I calls spiritual!

            I know that “LGBT” types say Russia is “homophobic,” as, apparently, does Misha! Who knew?

            • Goodness, Vladyka,

              It’s a veritable shell game with you, isn’t it? Putin’s pedophilia, homophobic Russia and the Russian abortion industry. Halloween indeed. Are they not legion?

              • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                Misha, where do you get “homophobic Russia” out of anything I’ve posted?

                Is there some connection between shell games and Halloween?
                And who are the “they” in your last muttering question?

        • Bishop Tikhon, US / Europe subsidize abortion. Planned Parenthood and whatever else you have, Medicaid or whoever whatever else, so its PAYED FOR in US / Europe and Canada Australia and so forth. As far as the “stats” about “known rate of illegal abortions” all could be phony propaganda lies by the pro-abortion lobbies, all of that is going to be interpretive, speculative, conjecture or just plain outright fabrication, no reason for me to trust or believe them just like I never do anything the communists ever say or write. Simple common sense logic says you make something much much easier more accessible and all paid for .. then what do you think ???? Russia has been messed up with all the many years of Communism Bolshevism and still “MPism” and so forth with a far more difficult average standard of living than “cushy” United States. So I’m not doing “comparisons” its not the same level playing field. Bottom line is this .. Dems, Libs, Progs, they are all RABID PRO ABORTION whether late term or what have you. In one of the Scandi countries a baby was born and left for over four hours on a table crying to die. All the nurses and everyone they could all hear the baby. It was beyond treacherous, it was a-human, sub-human. For me being a “Democrat” is NEVER an option. Never ever ever. You will have to answer on Judgement Day !! And why !! Dems do nothing anyway except ruin everything.
          Meanwhile any talk of “dropping abortion rates”: don’t delude yourself. All the multitudinous Obama/Hillary clinics are all plenty busy busy nothing has changed.

          • M. Stankovich says


            You miss the point: there is simply no question that medical abortion and the sale of fetal tissue and body parts is a heinous, horrific atrocity wherever it occurs and however it is funded. Duh. The issue is that some here and on other sites are insisting that there has been a “turn” in world moral leadership; that the Russian Orthodox Church has “asserted” itself as a new force of moral direction brought about by an alignment with a supportive and protective government. I simply asked how anyone can believe this is possible when such an astonishing rate of medical abortion and world-wide trafficking in fetal tissue and body parts openly occurs in Russia? It is not hidden nor denied by the Russian government! And after tens and tens of useless, Google-frenzied attempts to change the truth, what do we know? The abortion rate in Russian has literally been halved, and there are still more than a million unrestricted medical abortions in Russia every year. This is the “Third Rome?” This is the seat of the new Orthodox moral leadership? Faggotry, rules, my friend, and has a free reign to abolish the truth here. And as Muddy Waters said, “Isn’t it a pity, people? Isn’t it a cryin’ shame?” And I personally see no end in sight.

            • What “Third Rome”? Perhaps from 988 to 1917. Gundyaev/Alfayeev MP is no “Third Rome” by any kind of stretch. There is prominent prophesy of a Tsar and a Monarchy coming back to Russia around “end times” possibly and then there can be some talk about a “Third Rome” however that time is not here now in our present. Most of Russian society, people are of Soviet descendancy from not such a far distant past so that culture largely remains there. Perhaps you read through too many of MW posts and they make some kind of distorted impression upon you, I would just only skim most of them if just that.

              • Yes, we know your idea of the Third Rome is representated by the image of a Grabbe and “Geronda” Panteleimon visiting a bath house.

          • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

            Hey, Cy! Yes, we have health insurance. No one declared that that abortion is illegal or forbiddingly expensive here. However Russia-Putin groupies like to claim that the situation is better in Russia! By the way, it’s PAID FOR, not :payed for. Who knows why led to the abortion rate dropping after legalization? Could it be that, abortion being legal, pregnant women are now able without shame to discuss the possibilities with other people, like family, before actually taking the murderous step?

            • You are an advocate for abortion. So what more needs be said?

              • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                Legal abortions are preferable to illegal abortions,

                • George Michalopulos says

                  Why? In both instances the baby dies.

                  If you say because it’s safer for the mother, then you’re wrong as well. When not immediately dangerous to the patient (see Gosnell), the long-term side-effects are plain. It’s just that we don’t talk about them due to the regnant cultural orthodoxy.

                • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

                  RE: “Legal abortions are preferable to illegal abortions,”

                  That moment of candor betrays a pseudo “lesser evil” morality that is, frankly, shocking, even for the retired OCA bishop in California.

            • Paid, fine. However:

              “Paid is the standard past tense and participle of pay. Payed was historically used for the nautical senses of pay and in the phrasal verb pay out where what’s payed out is rope. The form still appears occasionally, but paid now prevails even in payed‘s traditional uses.”

              So anyway, don’t worry too much about Russia on this issue. It hits much closer too home. Now as far as your position:

              “Could it be that, abortion being legal, pregnant women are now able without shame to discuss the possibilities with other people, like family, before actually taking the murderous step?” …. Don’t buy it, just more demonically inspired liberal rationalizations.

              “Abortion rates dropping after legalization ?” What Lib source states that bull?

              At any rate Bishop Tikhon you wish to go to Judgment Day and say you are in favor of legalized abortion with no repentance that is your own decision. I can sense you have a worried “conscience” on this one as well you should.

              • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                Fewer human beings die from legal abortions than from illegal abortions, Cy. Do you accept that or not?
                You mention Islam. Many Muslims believe that the soul enters the body only in the sixth month of pregnancy BECAUSE the Book states that the babe, St John, “leapt in the womb” upon meeting Mary!” They say there is no testimony to action of a soul in the womb anywhere else in the Book! They, then, allow abortions up to, but not after, the sixth month. So, It’s not surprising then, that Muslims are fundamentalists where abortion is concerned!

                • Where did I mention ANYTHING about Islam ???? …. You are hallucinating. As far as any kind of “interpretation” of the “Book” by anyone or anybody Islam that would be millions and millions of light years and beyond from anything I would ever read or consider. Islam denies the Holy Trinity they have no place at all in discussion of Holy Scripture whatsoever for Orthodox Christian …. As far as your:

                  “Fewer human beings die from legal abortions than from illegal abortions, Cy. Do you accept that or not?” …. Huh ?? Abortion is abortion. If its an “abortion the baby dies either way !! …. I know, I know, you are referring to complications from the procedure to the mother. Abortions have not been illegal now in many decades going back to Roe v Wade so we do not even know today what an “illegal” abortion may look like compared to what they did look like back in WWll era. It would be much different altogether today than back then legal or illegal regardless, technological advances in procedure would cover and play part in either sphere, “legal or illegal” and the definition of “illegality” would also not be same either, it would most likely mean you are just not going to have masses of open clinics where you can do an abortion like as though you are going around the corner grocery store for some milk.

                  Since Roe v Wade the number of abortion procedures performed, “abortions” alright (?) just ‘abortions’ lets not befuddle, “an abortion is an abortion,” that kind of abortion, has gone way way up, skyrocketed. So if this is what you represent and stand for then that is you, liberal democrat, and I cannot have any agreement with you on this topic at all, none, zero, I have to reject one hundred percent your position (not 99.9999% however 100%).

                  • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                    Why, CY! I just pointed out a claim about Gospel-Scriptural PROOF on the equivalence of a foetus and a person that Mohammed noted but you want to ignore!
                    Oh, on the other topic–you cannot demonstrate at all that the rate of abortion increased after legalization; however you can demonstrate that fewer women died from abortions AFTER LEGALIZATION.
                    Cy I believe, teach, and confess that abortion is sin for which our canons require the same penalty as for murder. Yet I do, indeed, approve of the law of the land as being just. Our Church must forbid and does forbid its members to abort their offspring (or, as anti-abortion Greek peasants and others did right up into the 20th century, to abandon new-born female babies on a mountainside, “letting God look after them!”

                    • Bishop Tikhon, maybe you are still lost in some of the old heretical teachings of Origen and speculation of origins of souls. The Lord “knoweth and searcheth our inner being” going back to when you were only a cell. Then Embryo. Conception the potential is there.
                      Mohammed was always jealous of the fact that the Old Testament
                      all points to Christ and there are no references to him. He can only
                      be a false prophet, a major one, and if I hear “he says something” I know its probably something thats a part truth at best. I’ve read
                      some Confucius before, he was I think “orthodox” thinking back
                      in the BC’s very correct and proper with regards to interpersonal relationships.

                    • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                      Cy, where do you GET this stuff? “Mohammed was always jealous of the fact that the Old Testament all points to Christ and there are no references to him.”
                      How did you determine Mohammad was jealous of anybody?
                      That’s disgusting of you! Surely you can explain the superiority of Christianity to Islam without needing to impute character flaws in its founder!! You must judge what he utters; not his character, for it’s irrelevant. Why, you and I are as infallible as any Scripture WHENEVER WE UTTER THE TRUTH! You should not concern yourself with Mohammad’s character at all, only on what he taught, uttered; otherwise, you look desperate!

                    • Bishop Tikhon you brought Islam/Mohammad into this thread of discourse while I don’t see it as having anything to do with anything. I do not reference Islam/Mohammad for anything unless there is a matter under discussion which has something to do with it/him. However his history, character, exploits, those are all things that people have written about things that are known and material I have come across and I can remember there just being too many bad things there. That culture has zero appeal to me anyway at a personal level. There is just nothing there that I like much, maybe Tandoori chicken, all the rest is just dark stuff and depressing stuff, not my thing.

                    • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

                      The retired OCA bishop in California opines: “Cy I believe, teach, and confess that abortion is sin for which our canons require the same penalty as for murder. Yet I do, indeed, approve of the law of the land as being just.”

                      It is one thing, I suppose, to distinguish between “sin” as a religious concept and “the law of the land” as a secular juridical system. In our present political and moral climate in America we have no choice, as it were. But it is astonishing–to me, at least, as an Orthodox moral theologian–to see the retired OCA bishop in California declare in public that he “approves” of the infamous, immoral, abominable Roe v. Wade decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1973 as “just.” That is one compartmentalized, distorted, and weird (and I refrain from employing other more pertinent adjectives) understanding of the virtue of justice.

                    • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                      Fr Webster! I gave a statement beginning, “I believe, teach and confess that…” You said that I, rather, “opined…”
                      As a self-so-described “moral theologian”, you express astonishment at, and apply several pejoratives to, my approving the law of the land as just without your providing any moral-theological or other BASIS for such astonishment and such pejoratives! BTW, I did not “opine” that the law of the land is perfectly just. You impute that opinion to me, Fr. Moral Theologian.

          • How many abortions were the Grabbes responsible for with those young girls they abused using their authority and clerical rank at Synod and in the Holy Land? How much hush money was paid in the non-MP Grabbe land of continuing, Tsarist Russia to the victims of the Grabbed and “Geronda” Panteleimon? Yeah, being “Authentic Orthodox” means being authentically schismatic, deceived and deceiving.

            • You remember Bp. Gregory Grabbe, good. Of course MP can make up whatever stuff it wants to make up but they are “Pravda” and “Izvestia” rolled up into one. Lets not get desperate, Holy Fathers teach us that stuff is unseen warfare. Bp. Grabbe on Synodal photograph is right next to St. Met. Philaret they were on the same page. Bp. Grabbe no doubt would have nothing to do with Stragorodsky. Or his descendants.

        • Bishop Tikhon,
          US / Europe subsidize abortion. Planned Parenthood and whatever else have you, likely Medicaid or whoever whatever else, so its PAYED FOR in US / Europe and probably Canada Australia and so forth. As far as the “stats” about “known rate of illegal abortions” could be phony propaganda lies by the pro-abortion lobbies, all of that is going to be interpretive, speculative, conjecture. Simple common sense logic says you make something easier more accessible .. then what do you think? Russia has been messed up with all the many years of Communism Bolshevism and still
          “MPism” and so forth with a far more difficult average standard of living than “cushy” United States. So I’m not doing “comparisons” its not the same level playing field. Bottom line is this, Dems, Libs, Progs, they are all RABID PRO ABORTION late term or what have you. In one of the Scandi countries a baby was born and left for over four hours on a table to crying to die. All the nurses and everyone they could all hear the baby. For me being a “Democrat” is never an option. You will have to answer on Judgement Day !! And why !! Dems do nothing anyway except ruin everything.

    • Michael Warren says

      Hillary Clinton is the Most Radical Pro-Abortion Presidential Candidate Ever, This is Why

      MICAIAH BILGER JUL 8, 2016

      Little mainstream media attention is being given to the radical abortion position now being espoused by Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party. Their position is radical and extremely out of touch with most Americans, but general public knowledge of it could damage Clinton’s already scandalized campaign even more.
      Among the most extreme measures, Clinton and the Democratic Party are pushing to force taxpayers to fund abortions and calling specifically for support of the abortion giant Planned Parenthood, which is under investigation for selling aborted babies’ body parts.
      In an editorial this week, the Washington Examiner called out Clinton and the Democratic Party for shifting toward “abortion extremism.” They wrote:
      Back when Clinton’s husband was president, Democrats’ said abortion should be “safe, legal and rare.” This was intended to signal to voters that Democrats knew abortion was undesireable but that they were the party of compassion and wanted to make it generally be available to women.
      Today, Democrats encourage women to be proud of their abortions. The party abandoned the word “rare” in the 2008 platform, as abortion activists began claiming that the word stigmatized something that was both a benefit to society and a constitutional right.
      … The party is no longer pro-choice, as it claims. Let’s call it what it is. It is pro-abortion.
      Marching in step with the abortion industry, Clinton and the Democratic Party are now promising to try to overturn the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits direct taxpayer funding of most abortions. Upheld by the Supreme Court, the Hyde Amendment is now a target of abortion advocates who have moved from pro-choice to pro-abortion — forcing Americans not only to accept unlimited abortions before birth but also to pay for them.
      Clinton promised Planned Parenthood that she will make every effort to overturn Hyde and force taxpayers to fund abortions, if elected president. The abortion giant stands to benefit hugely if Clinton or the Democratic Party are successful.
      The proposed Democratic Party platform this year is more extreme than it has ever been, calling for a repeal of the Hyde Amendment and full-fledged taxpayer funding of abortion. The Democratic Party platform already supports legalized abortion on demand for any reason up until birth. In the latest draft of the platform, the Democratic Party also mentions the abortion giant Planned Parenthood specifically, saying it wants to “champion” the nation’s largest abortion chain and commit “to push back on all Republican efforts to defund it.”
      This pro-abortion shift is very unpopular with the American people. Most Americans do not support taxpayer funding of abortion. A new Marist poll shows that more than two-thirds of Americans oppose taxpayer funding of abortion, including a majority of women and people who identify as pro-choice. Polls consistently show that most Americans oppose most abortions.
      Even some Democratic leaders are becoming squeamish with the radical abortion shift. U.S. Senator Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, who describes himself as pro-life, criticized the radical abortion language in an interview with The Weekly Standard.
      “That’s crazy,” Manchin said. “It’s something that I know most Democrats in West Virginia and most West Virginians would not agree with. I don’t either.”

      • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

        So-o-o-o…this Hillary Clinton is more pro-abortion than President Bill Clinton? Who knew?
        I was glad to learn that “most Americans oppose ‘MOST’ abortions!”
        The loudest and clearest voice against abortion was that of Nat Hentoff, the now deceased Leftie Liberal writer for “The Village Voice.”

  15. Michael Bauman says

    Brian, thank you for understanding my point, a point that seems so patently obvious as to need no extended argument in its favor. Thank you for providing that too.

    Both science as ideology and economics(either capitalist, socialist or fascist) have become wholly utilitarian in nature. Combined with the egalitarian-iconoclastic culture a throughly anti-human approach is forged that is even darker than paganism.

    It is the philosophy of the Antichrist IMO.

    We are all infected and we must all repent and pray for God’s grace to remain human to some degree. Participating in the hypostatic humanity of the Risen Christ.

    Lord have mercy! Lord God of Hosts be with us for we have no other help in time of troubles but Thee.