Church Russian Orthodox Church

DanielH

Ostrich
Orthodox
There was a story going around that Valaam Monastery was requiring their monks to be vaccinated. This did not end up being the case, sounds like there may have been some hierarchical intervention.
His Holiness Patriarch Kirill has not endorsed mandatory vaccinations in monasteries of the Russian Orthodox Church. At this time, no monks or laborers have been expelled from the monastery.
 

Soto

 
Banned
I don't understand how someone who reads the Bible and believes in it can become an Orthodox Christian or a Roman Catholic.

So many Church Fathers go against what the Bible teaches.

The veneration (which verges on, and often becomes worship) of Mary is essentially blasphemy and anathema to what the Bible and Jesus himself repeats on multiple occasions in Scripture.

The same goes for Icon veneration.

I'm not against Icons if they help a person visualize and keep their faith, but to put them at the center of worship, with all the extraneous elements of these liturgical services that historically are a syncretism of paganism and Christianity is absurd.

The stained glass doesn't matter. The beards don't matter. The funny clothes and gold smothered churches don't matter.

Everything that Jesus himself detested is being replicated by Catholics and the Orthodox. A new set of Pharisees.
 

budoslavic

Eagle
Orthodox
Gold Member
This video was from the 8th International Faith & Word media conference at Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow, Russia. During the question and answer session afterwards, an Orthodox priest from America asked whether the Russian Church can provide assistance to Orthodox Christians immigrating to Russia.

Also, one could see Steven Segal in the audience. He was sitting in the front row with his wife.


Transcript:

Greetings, your Holiness,

I am Fr. Joseph Gleason, an Orthodox priest from America. I serve as a pligrim assisting in Rostov Veliky, just 200 kilometers north of Moscow, and I am the editor for the news website, Russian Faith.

Two years ago, my wife and eight children and I left America and moved to Russia, to Rostov.

In the past two years, many people in Western Europe and America have been intrigued, and have come to visit us in Rostov, because they too are considering moving to Russia. Like us, they see many moral crises in their home countries, and they see Russia as a better place to raise their families.

But they are intimidated by the very difficult paperwork and bureaucratic processes that a foreigner must go through, to immigrate to Russia.

Would it be possible for the Russian Orthodox Church to make a request of the Russian Government, to simplify the immigration process, to help people who are leaving their home countries and are coming to Russia because of moral crises like these? — Because, these are our brothers and sisters who are Orthodox Christians!

Patriarch Kirill's response:

Of course, the topic of immigration, of foreign citizens arriving in Russia — it is not a simple topic.

Immigrants come to Russia from many different countries, and of course most of them are not Orthodox Christians, and therefore no, I don’t think the church can take the initiative to change or to simplify the citizenship process, in general. Nor can we change the process for entering Russia, for those who are seeking citizenship.

But what you are talking about, Orthodox Christians leaving the United States — it is a completely different category. People who want to come to Russia and live in Russia because of their Faith, this is a completely different category, and I don't think it is a mass phenomenon. So, I am not able to answer your question in general.

However, I would like to say that in particular cases, the church could take part, in order to make the immigration process as easy as possible, to the extent that the church is able to influence the situation.

So when it comes to Orthodox priests, and when it comes to Orthodox families, and cases where the Church can vouch for someone, then I think we could start some negotiations with the authorities, so that such people could quickly fulfill their dreams and settle in Russia.

Although what I am saying now is not an official statement, since I am simply listening and thinking, I hope we can work with the relevant state authorities whenever we receive such requests.
 

budoslavic

Eagle
Orthodox
Gold Member

Russian Church Spokesman Explains Why Americans Are Moving to Russia - "The U.S. Is a Country of Victorious Minorities"​

RT's "Not Alone" project received a request from Orthodox families from the United States and Canada to help them relocate to Russia. It was initiated by Joseph Gleason, an American priest who converted to Orthodoxy himself and moved his family to the Yaroslavl region several years ago. As the main reason for the move Joseph names commitment to traditional values and pressure in the U.S. on those who adhere to them. In an interview with RT, Vladimir Legoyda, chairman of the Russian Orthodox Church's Synodal Department for Relations with Society and the Media, shared his views on what pushed the foreigners to take such a serious step.

Vladimir Romanovich (VR), we have been approached by American Orthodox families in the "Not Alone" project with a request to help them relocate to Russia. Is this important from a media perspective?

VR: I think it's important that RT is not limited to the classic functions of the media — to inform, educate or entertain. In your work, such a pronounced social dimension is very good. Because if there is any such dimension in the media today, it is politicized and, it seems to me, more likely to have a destructive function for society. But actually helping to support people — that is really valuable.

Thank you. And how many Orthodox foreigners are coming to Russia? From what countries?

VR: We do not have complete statistics, but we can say that dozens of such families are ready to move to Russia. The pandemic has slowed this process down.

Is it possible to say that this is becoming or has become a trend?

VR: If you analyze the situation in the United States, it has to do with the nation's process of actively accepting LGBT values, same-sex marriages, and so on. As this process intensified, people began to think about moving to other countries, including Russia. About ten years ago this process became more active, more visible. This is largely due to the whole notion of "traditional values" and the desire of people to bring up their children precisely in such guidelines, and also due to the fact that it is becoming more and more difficult to do so. I think that 15-20 years is the horizon when things start to change. And so people who don't accept that, have started to think about what they're going to do next.

Would you say they are persecuted for their religious beliefs?

VR: Moving is a very serious issue. And people aren't looking for economic preferences. They are not leaving because they want to raise their standard of living. They are aware that, economically, the United States is a richer country than Russia. Maybe they do not feel persecuted yet. But they are willing to sacrifice some domestic comfort in order to raise their children as they see fit, without the societally imposed values that they do not accept.

Why do they choose Russia?

VR: Certainly not because they think it's perfect. But then again, they consider it a point of principle for them to educate their children in the faith they believe is right, to instill in them the values they believe are right.

Of course, they don't want their children to be told about the concept of gender in sex education classes in schools. When simple terms like "dad" and "mom" go away. It's not like they are dealing with fairy tales.

I have heard from our bishops, who took part in various discussions at international forums, and this was 50 years ago, the following: they said then that the time is not far off when there will be a serious shift in values, the legalization of same-sex marriage and so on. And they were told, "No way, that will never happen." Now, within a few decades, the situation has changed. And now we are saying that the legalization of pedophilia is on the horizon. And they say to us, "Come on. You know, this is different, this will never happen." And we could have been comforted if we had not had the same conversations about LGBT a few decades ago.

America, in this sense, is a country of victorious minorities. The situation began with the protection of rights, but has developed into a dictatorship.

It turns out that we are still holding on in this sense.

VR: Yes. But the important thing to understand here is that any culture, as a system of values, has certain lines that you cannot cross. "This is good, and that is evil." "This is good, and that is bad." And we need to be clearly aware that when we talk about what a family is, we are touching on fundamental things for society. People just don't realize that the very topic of gender is a tectonic shift for Christian civilization.

Our culture, as experts say, stands on three pillars: Rome, Athens, and Jerusalem. Jerusalem is Christianity, Rome is Roman law, Athens is Greek philosophy and art.

For centuries these foundations have gone nowhere. And now we have come to the point where they have begun to erode. These processes, of course, do not bypass our country. But we are the last trench in this sense, since there is the concept that "Moscow is the third Rome." How long can we hold out?

This is all very serious. This is not a ridiculous fight against traditional values. From the time of Socrates to modern times, civilization has stood on these foundations. And now those foundations are wavering. One should not underestimate the importance of such changes.

The Russian Orthodox Church, among other things, does a lot to preserve Christian values and ideals in our country. Do you see this trend of Orthodox foreigners coming to Russia as a positive result of their work?

VR: As for the concept of sin, it is important to understand that the Church will not support any sin. Whether it be sodomy, or adultery, or murder.

Of course, we warmly welcomed the amendment to the Constitution that marriage is a union between a man and a woman.

Many such things could be listed. But in general, there is little serious analysis in our media and expert community of what changes have taken place in recent decades and what role the Church has played in them. I personally miss this kind of analysis. There is either parade-duty praise or obligatory rejection. In fact, it would be very interesting to conduct such an analysis. I think it would show that Orthodoxy and church life have had a very serious impact on our society. Maybe not in the way we want, but there are fundamental and profound changes, they do not happen quickly. The church generally works on the long haul.

How does this translate, in your opinion?

VR: Fifteen years ago I asked V.A. Fadeev, the editor-in-chief of Expert magazine, what place morality occupies in the media agenda. He honestly said no. But now questions of what it means to forgive, for example, are being raised more and more often. What is permissible and what is morally impermissible. These questions are becoming at the center of the public media agenda. And this is also about the influence of the Church.

Many government officials say that they are Orthodox people, so they cannot accept one point of view or another. Ten years ago this was impossible. It is clear that the Church played a role in this.

I don't want to exaggerate it. Many who call themselves Orthodox now see Orthodoxy as a cultural value rather than their own religiosity. And there are not many people who motivate their actions by faith. But there are, and their numbers are growing. The church is becoming the touchstone against which life is measured. Not in everything, of course. Some of the claims that people make about the Church are justified. But there is also the information struggle against the Church, which has become a serious public force.

In 2014, the synod adopted a document concerning principles for dealing with migrants. Tell us more about how the Church helps them.

VR: The document dealt with the general situation and was a response to the new realities. Globalization, migration flows, people are forced to move. It's clear that the Church can't stay away. It is important to understand that when a church document is adopted, it must work on the territory of canonical responsibility, in different countries. If we talk about Russia, we are talking about humanitarian aid, access to medical services and language learning. As for the arrival of coreligionists, this is more a question of diocesan relations. And in each case it is decided differently — depending on what is really needed for the family.

In 2018, American priest Joseph Gleason asked Patriarch Kyrill at the Faith and Word festival to help Orthodox families from the United States and Canada obtain Russian citizenship. Since then, has the ROC been able to somehow assist these people in obtaining documents?

VR: The Patriarch responded that we would help if these particular families approached us. For anyone who asks us, of course we will respond appropriately and provide any possible assistance.
 

DanielH

Ostrich
Orthodox
I don't understand how someone who reads the Bible and believes in it can become an Orthodox Christian or a Roman Catholic.

So many Church Fathers go against what the Bible teaches.
Orthodox Church Fathers wrote and compiled what you now know as the Bible, although Protestants removed some books.
The veneration (which verges on, and often becomes worship) of Mary is essentially blasphemy and anathema to what the Bible and Jesus himself repeats on multiple occasions in Scripture.
Luke Chapter 1:
26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,
27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.
28 And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.
Was the Archangel Gabriel worshipping Mary? No, and neither do we.
The same goes for Icon veneration.

I'm not against Icons if they help a person visualize and keep their faith, but to put them at the center of worship, with all the extraneous elements of these liturgical services that historically are a syncretism of paganism and Christianity is absurd.
We don't worship the wood and stone they are painted on. We worship Christ, who is at the center of worship, and we salute His angels and his mother and ask them to pray for us, just as one may ask a friend to pray for them, or as a soldier salutes the flag of the country they love. We ask for their prayers as the Church is not the Church of the dead but of the living. Moses and Elijah appeared with Christ at His Transfiguration. In another parable, Abraham rebukes the rich man in Sheol. The saints are alive in Christ and they can hear our prayers.
The stained glass doesn't matter. The beards don't matter. The funny clothes and gold smothered churches don't matter.
Just as one may set out flowers and light a candle for the one they love at dinner, we light candles and decorate our churches in honor of the One we love.

Furthermore, 2 Chronicles chapter 3 details the construction of Solomon's temple which includes gold, precious stones and angels:

1Then Solomon began to build the house of the LORD at Jerusalem in mount Moriah, where the LORD appeared unto David his father, in the place that David had prepared in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.2And he began to build in the second day of the second month, in the fourth year of his reign.
3Now these are the things wherein Solomon was instructed for the building of the house of God. The length by cubits after the first measure was threescore cubits, and the breadth twenty cubits.
4And the porch that was in the front of the house, the length of it was according to the breadth of the house, twenty cubits, and the height was an hundred and twenty: and he overlaid it within with pure gold.
5And the greater house he cieled with fir tree, which he overlaid with fine gold, and set thereon palm trees and chains.
6And he garnished the house with precious stones for beauty: and the gold was gold of Parvaim.
7He overlaid also the house, the beams, the posts, and the walls thereof, and the doors thereof, with gold; and graved cherubims on the walls.
8And he made the most holy house, the length whereof was according to the breadth of the house, twenty cubits, and the breadth thereof twenty cubits: and he overlaid it with fine gold, amounting to six hundred talents.
9And the weight of the nails was fifty shekels of gold. And he overlaid the upper chambers with gold.
10And in the most holy house he made two cherubims of image work, and overlaid them with gold.
11And the wings of the cherubims were twenty cubits long: one wing of the one cherub was five cubits, reaching to the wall of the house: and the other wing was likewise five cubits, reaching to the wing of the other cherub.
12And one wing of the other cherub was five cubits, reaching to the wall of the house: and the other wing was five cubits also, joining to the wing of the other cherub.
13The wings of these cherubims spread themselves forth twenty cubits: and they stood on their feet, and their faces were inward.
14And he made the vail of blue, and purple, and crimson, and fine linen, and wrought cherubims thereon.
15Also he made before the house two pillars of thirty and five cubits high, and the chapiter that was on the top of each of them was five cubits.
16And he made chains, as in the oracle, and put them on the heads of the pillars; and made an hundred pomegranates, and put them on the chains.
17And he reared up the pillars before the temple, one on the right hand, and the other on the left; and called the name of that on the right hand Jachin, and the name of that on the left Boaz.
Everything that Jesus himself detested is being replicated by Catholics and the Orthodox. A new set of Pharisees.
In the parable of the Pharisee and the Publican, the Publican's prayer is thus, in contrast to the vain prayers of the Pharisees: God be merciful to me, a sinner. Likewise we Orthodox Christians pray for mercy with the Jesus prayer "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner."

Thank you for the opportunity you've given me to re-educate myself on some of the fundamentals of the Orthodox Church. God bless you.
 

Eusebius Erasmus

Pelican
Orthodox
The same goes for Icon veneration.

I'm not against Icons if they help a person visualize and keep their faith, but to put them at the center of worship, with all the extraneous elements of these liturgical services that historically are a syncretism of paganism and Christianity is absurd.

Icons are necessary, because they remind us that we ourselves are icons (Gr. eikonoi) of God, who Himself became an icon for our sakes. The relevant Scriptures are Genesis 1:27 and John's Gospel 1.

In the Old Testament, God commands the Israelites to make icons: the mercy seat on the Ark of the Covenant (Exodus 25:18-21).

Furthermore, excavations of the first Christian churches show that they used icons.

John of Damascus has a further defence of icons; see On Holy Images.

Of course, we do not worship icons themselves, but we cannot worship without them; if you do not fill your senses with pleasant and holy images, then Satan will show you evil and corrupt icons of the world: pornography, extravagant mansions, violence, etc.
 
Last edited:

Hermetic Seal

Pelican
Orthodox
Gold Member
I don't understand how someone who reads the Bible and believes in it can become an Orthodox Christian or a Roman Catholic.

So many Church Fathers go against what the Bible teaches.

It's perfectly understandable when one realizes that "what the Bible teaches" actually means "what my particular interpretation of the Bible that arose in the mid-1500s and is marketed as 'what the Bible teaches'."

The stained glass doesn't matter. The beards don't matter. The funny clothes and gold smothered churches don't matter.

Try again. Most Orthodox churches don't even have stained glass windows. But all of this "stuff" you mention helps to draw the worshiper's focus toward God and upon heavenly realities. "Four bare walls and a sermon" is a modern innovation foreign to historical Christianity, where even catacomb churches had iconography and decoration.

Further, such iconoclasm is simply neo-gnosticism, as it abstracts Christianity into a set of vague rational assents with no real presence or impact on the physical world. Is it any wonder that so many so-called Christians go to church on Sunday, hear a flashy sermon and some power ballads (or, if it's your preference, dour hymns on a piano and an angry man in an ill-fitting suit), and then go out and live like God doesn't exist the rest of the week? That is the fruit of a version of the faith that treats Christianity like a product to be sold and consumed instead of an entire way of living (which the Orthodox practices help to cultivate.)

Everything that Jesus himself detested is being replicated by Catholics and the Orthodox. A new set of Pharisees.

You've never actually talked to an Orthodox priest, have you? You will find that they are quite unlike Pharisees. Stop judging on superficial, perceived similarities, and make a right judgment.
 

Soto

 
Banned
I'm not obsessed with superficialities, in fact it's quite the opposite.

The manner of clothing, the timing of certain fasts and festivities...none of these are from the Bible. They were made up by men to give structure and now it manifests as a sense of tradition, which I see can be very appealing, and in and of itself isn't against Christianity, but to proclaim these events as being decreed by God is false.
 

nagareboshi

Woodpecker
Orthodox
The 4th of July isn’t in the Bible but you celebrate it anyway

If you can venerate your country according to the tradition of men then I don’t see how it’s contradictory at all to follow the traditions passed down from the apostles themselves

It’s not like you’re some monk living in the desert. Protestants are always so puritanical when it comes to matters of faith but then they recite the pledge of allegiance as if there’s no problem
 

Eusebius Erasmus

Pelican
Orthodox
I'm not obsessed with superficialities, in fact it's quite the opposite.

The manner of clothing, the timing of certain fasts and festivities...none of these are from the Bible. They were made up by men to give structure and now it manifests as a sense of tradition, which I see can be very appealing, and in and of itself isn't against Christianity, but to proclaim these events as being decreed by God is false.

The manner of clothing is not important? What's your limiting principle? Do you think it's okay for priests, bishops, and deacons to appear in church wearing booty shorts and crop tops (God forbid!)?

As for the timing of fasts and feasts, you clearly don't read Christian history. We know, for example, that Easter was celebrated in the Bible (Acts 12:4), but different churches celebrated on different dates. The Council of Nicea set a single date for the entire Church to promote unity.

Fasting is prescribed by Jesus Himself (Matthew 6:16), but you'll find that the Orthodox Church is not Pharisaic when it comes to fasting.

Your use of the word 'superficiality' is telling, since it suggests that the physical world is not at all important in God's plan for salvation, which makes no sense: why did Jesus come in the flesh, if not to redeem the Fallen world, both physical and spiritual?
 

DanielH

Ostrich
Orthodox
I'm not obsessed with superficialities, in fact it's quite the opposite.

The manner of clothing, the timing of certain fasts and festivities...none of these are from the Bible. They were made up by men to give structure and now it manifests as a sense of tradition, which I see can be very appealing, and in and of itself isn't against Christianity, but to proclaim these events as being decreed by God is false.
1625160909355.png
This is what Old Testament priests were commanded to wear in Exodus 28. Christ fasted, and established a Church at Pentecost (which the Apostles commemorated annually as seen in Acts, as well as Pascha).

None of us have any idea what you're talking about. You have to be more specific and if you state what religion you are maybe we can understand where you're coming from.
 

Soto

 
Banned
Jesus said when you fast, not "if". So of course fasting is mandatory, I do it all the time.

And no, I don't celebrate the 4th of July, I think America is mostly a Masonic state and its history is of no real importance to me, although I do appreciate being American. I don't light up fire crackers and wave the flag. I often forget the 4th of July even happened.

If an SJW liberal celebrates the 4th of July, yet wants to censor everyone they disagree with, and I, not celebrating the fourth of July, wish that there be freedom of speech and the right to pursue liberty and happiness, who is more American?

This is analogous to the heart of Jesus' message. If you lust after another man's wife, is not the sentiment the same of the man who commits it? This central message seems to be lost on so many, yet quoting the very words of Jesus holds almost no merit here apparently. Just tell me the dream of some monk in a monastery somewhere and we'll let that supercede what was written in the Bible.
 

Eusebius Erasmus

Pelican
Orthodox
This is analogous to the heart of Jesus' message. If you lust after another man's wife, is not the sentiment the same of the man who commits it? This central message seems to be lost on so many, yet quoting the very words of Jesus holds almost no merit here apparently. Just tell me the dream of some monk in a monastery somewhere and we'll let that supercede what was written in the Bible.
Your understanding of Orthodox theology is awful.

Nothing an individual monk or Church Father says is canonical. Indeed, a number of Church Fathers commit errors (example: Augustine's doctrine of Original Sin). We refer to Patristic tradition, especially when the Fathers agree and there is an ecumenical council to clarify doctrinal issues.

The Head of the Orthodox Church is Jesus Christ -- not any particular monk, priest, deacon, or bishop.
 

budoslavic

Eagle
Orthodox
Gold Member
I'm not obsessed with superficialities, in fact it's quite the opposite.

The manner of clothing, the timing of certain fasts and festivities...none of these are from the Bible. They were made up by men to give structure and now it manifests as a sense of tradition, which I see can be very appealing, and in and of itself isn't against Christianity, but to proclaim these events as being decreed by God is false.
Jesus said when you fast, not "if". So of course fasting is mandatory, I do it all the time.
1. You avoided answering the "What religion are you?" question.
2. Your posts doesn't make sense with no knowledge & understanding of the early works & history of the Catholic and/or Orthodox churches.
3. Are you an Atheist?

Edit.
4. Provide citations, (Bible) quotes, scriptures, sources, etc. to back up your claims. Otherwise, nobody is going to take your posts seriously.
 
Last edited:

DanielH

Ostrich
Orthodox
Titus 3:10 "A man that is an heretic after the first and second admonition reject"

Soto, if we're heretics in your eyes, you've admonished us several times so you can go ahead and stop, and we'll reciprocate. If you want to concede some points that you may have been wrong on, or be a little charitable towards us I welcome that.
 

Soto

 
Banned
I don't believe in denominations.

While many say the Bible is too complicated to understand for the laymen, I generally disagree. It certainly has immense complexities, but the bulk of it is straightforward, even the parables of Christ. There are many layered meanings that even the most versed would struggle to try and comprehend, but for the most part, it is a self-evident and clear message.

I don't adhere to the councils set up by men, that distorted the message of the Gospels and made them a political tool of the Roman state.

Just because a certain tradition is older doesn't mean it is closer to the truth.

When Christianity became the only religion of the Roman Empire in the 380s by decree, pagans came in and infused their customs and beliefs into these communities.

Hence, many depictions of mother Mary holding Jesus are simply a transmutation of the Egyptian goddess Isis holding her child Horus, etc. etc.

Mary worship, subliminally, is mostly about worshipping Isis.
 

Eusebius Erasmus

Pelican
Orthodox
I don't believe in denominations.

Neither do we Orthodox. We are the original Church.


I don't adhere to the councils set up by men, that distorted the message of the Gospels and made them a political tool of the Roman state.

Does this mean you do not accept the Council of Jerusalem (Acts 15)?


Mary worship, subliminally, is mostly about worshipping Isis.

Orthodoxy never worships Mary. You are attacking a Straw Man.
 
Top