Jump to content


- - - - -

ROCOR


  • Please log in to reply
50 replies to this topic

#21 Fr Raphael Vereshack

Fr Raphael Vereshack

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 4,420 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member
  • Verified Monastic Cleric

Posted 05 May 2006 - 04:27 PM

My Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As several of you are probably aware the IVth All-Diaspora Assembly of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad gathers tomorrow in San Francisco. This will take place at the cathedral of the Mother of God Icon 'Joy of All Who Sorrow' where the relics of St John of Shanghai & San Francisco also lie. The main themes of this Assembly will be devoted to the question of canonical relations between ROCOR and the Moscow Patriarchate & also to the future pastoral direction or witness of the Church Abroad.

One could say that this event is momentous in dealing with the tragic division between two parts of the Church of Christ. But it also is momentous in that these divisions reflect much deeper divisions in the Body of Christ that arose in the 20th century. So in this way the Assembly both reflects and will potentially affect the rest of the Church. It is for this reason that this gathering no matter what its outcome will certainly affect all of us in one way or another.

As we are are on the eve of the Assembly I ask all of you my dear brothers & sisters in Christ to keep the Assembly, its delegates, and the whole Church of Christ in your prayers.

In Christ- Fr Raphael
(clergy delegate for the western part of the Diocese of Canada)

PS: At the risk of embarrasing Fr David Moser I would ask that you keep him in your prayers as he is one of the clergy delegates also.

#22 M.C. Steenberg

M.C. Steenberg

    Former Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,843 posts

Posted 07 May 2006 - 01:57 PM

Dear Fr Raphael and others,

You will all be in many people's prayers during the week of this Synod. Obviously, the discussions and decisions taking place there directly effect many of us.

May it be blessed.

XB, Matthew

#23 Matthew Panchisin

Matthew Panchisin

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 589 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 07 May 2006 - 07:03 PM

I'm sure it will be.

There is a good article at the below link.

http://www.russianor...rdastalkmp.html

In Christ,

Matthew Panchisin

#24 Matthew Panchisin

Matthew Panchisin

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 589 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 08 May 2006 - 05:13 AM

Posted Image


Here's our Father Raphael at the council upper far left.

#25 Matthew Panchisin

Matthew Panchisin

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 589 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 12 May 2006 - 09:23 PM

I knew Father Raphael would straighten things out...


Here is the Resolution from the Council:

SAN FRANCISCO: May 11, 2006



We, the participants of the IV All-Diaspora Council, having gathered in the God-preserved city of San Francisco, in the blessed presence of the Protectress of the Russian Diaspora, the Kursk-Root Icon of the Mother of God, and the holy relics of Saint John of Shanghai and San Francisco, in trembling recognition of the duty laid upon us, in obedience to our Archpastor, Christ, with complete trust and love of the pastors and laity to our First Hierarch, His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus, and the Council of Bishops, attest that as loyal children of the Holy Church, we shall submit to Divine will and obey the decisions of the forthcoming Council of Bishops.

We archpastors, pastors and laymen, members of the IV All-Diaspora Council, unanimously express our resoluteness to heal the wounds of division within the Russian Church—between her parts in the Fatherland and abroad. Our Paschal joy is joined by the great hope that in the appropriate time, the unity of the Russian Church will be restored upon the foundation of the Truth of Christ, opening for us the possibility to serve together and to commune from one Chalice.

Hearing the lectures read at the Council, the reports made by the Commission on negotiations with the corresponding Commission of the Moscow Patriarchate, and the various points of view expressed during the discussions, we express our conciliar consent that it is necessary to confirm the canonical status of the Russian Church Abroad for the future as a self-governing part of the Local Russian Church, in accordance with the Regulations of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia currently in force.

From discussions at the Council it is apparent that the participation of the Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate in the World Council of Churches evokes confusion among our clergy and flock. With heartfelt pain we ask the hierarchy of the Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate to heed the plea of our flock to expediently remove this temptation.

We hope that the forthcoming Local Council of One Russian Church will settle remaining unresolved church problems.

Bowing down before the podvig [spiritual feats] of the Holy New Martyrs and Confessors of Russia, glorified both by the Russian Church Abroad and by the Russian Church in the Fatherland, we see within them the spiritual bridge which rises above the abyss of the lethal division in the Russian Church and makes possible the restoration of that unity which is desired by all.

And we, the members of the IV All-Diaspora Council, address our brothers and sisters in the faith in our renascent Homeland with the Paschal hymns: "Pascha! Let us embrace each other joyously!"

#26 Father David Moser

Father David Moser

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,581 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member
  • Verified Cleric

Posted 08 September 2006 - 06:30 PM

And now it is my joy to announce that an agreement between ROCOR and the MP has been reached and approved by the Synods of both ecclesastical bodies.

In English: http://www.russianor...6/9enaktko.html
In Russian: http://www.russianor...006/9aktko.html

There is also a pastoral epistle to the flock of ROCOR elaborating on the decision.

In English: http://www.russianor...nposlaniye.html
In Russian: http://www.russianor...9poslaniye.html

What now remains is to set a date for the ceremonial signing of the agreement and the concelebrations of the first heirarchs. That should be settled by the end of the year (next Synod meeting is in December).

Glory to God!

Fr David Moser

#27 Ted Haverson

Ted Haverson

    Junior Poster

  • Members
  • 1 posts

Posted 27 December 2006 - 03:59 PM

My Name is Ted Haverson. I live in Rochester, NY. I have become disheartened by what some of the priests are saying about the true ROCOR. I hope to address these issues soon.

#28 Peter Farrington

Peter Farrington

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 647 posts

Posted 27 December 2006 - 05:01 PM

What do you mean by the True ROCOR?

I must admit that I have been rather confused over the last couple of weeks because I seem to have been added to a mailing list from a Subdeacon in a Church that seems to have been part of ROCOR but is now part of a resistance synod which opposes the union of ROCOR with the MP?

The website I keep being directed to suggests that a large number of ROCOR in the US oppose the union???

Is this so? Is this group the one you mean by True ROCOR?

How big is it compared to ROCOR in the US?

Is it also true that the ROCOR Lesna convent in Paris has left ROCOR and joined this resistance group over the union with the MP?

I find this very confusing, since I thought that ROCOR now supported the union with the MP?

Peter

#29 Father David Moser

Father David Moser

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,581 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member
  • Verified Cleric

Posted 27 December 2006 - 05:02 PM

Ted

Welcome to Monachos. I have moved your post with questions about ROCOR into the appropriate discussion group (one specifically about ROCOR). Please ask your questions or make your observations about ROCOR whenever you are able. Both Fr Raphael and myself are ROCOR priests and have been members of this forum for some time. By coincidence we were both delegates to the IV All-Diaspora Sobor and so quite "up to date" on many of the recent events in ROCOR.

Fr David Moser

#30 Father David Moser

Father David Moser

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,581 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member
  • Verified Cleric

Posted 27 December 2006 - 05:16 PM

What do you mean by the True ROCOR?


the "true ROCOR" is a phrase sometimes used by those who wish to imply that the Synod of Bishops of ROCOR are not the "true" ROCOR but have somehow abandoned the Russian Church. I don't know how Mr Haverson is using the phrase, but this is often how it is used.

I must admit that I have been rather confused over the last couple of weeks because I seem to have been added to a mailing list from a Subdeacon in a Church that seems to have been part of ROCOR but is now part of a resistance synod which opposes the union of ROCOR with the MP?

The website I keep being directed to suggests that a large number of ROCOR in the US oppose the union???

Is this so? Is this group the one you mean by True ROCOR?

How big is it compared to ROCOR in the US?


There have always been those who have opposed this direction of the Synod of Bishops. As time passes they are becoming fewer in number but more vocal. The vast vast majority of ROCOR clergy and laity are fully behind the movement of our Synod, there are only a few "naysayers" There are schismatic splinter groups (such as "ROCiE" or "ROAC") but these groups are themselves now splintering into warring factions are are almost down to nothing themselves.

Is it also true that the ROCOR Lesna convent in Paris has left ROCOR and joined this resistance group over the union with the MP?


This bit of news is unfortunately true - not unexpected, but true.

I find this very confusing, since I thought that ROCOR now supported the union with the MP?


You thought right. There is now no question that ROCOR and the MP will confirm the final Act of Canonical Communion in May of this 2007 and that Patriarch Alexey II and Metropolitan Lavr will concelebrate together to seal this signing. According to Metr. Kyrill of the MP the exact date on which that will occur is in conjunction with the feast of the Ascension 2007.

Fr David Moser

#31 Andrew

Andrew

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 363 posts

Posted 27 December 2006 - 05:31 PM

You thought right. There is now no question that ROCOR and the MP will confirm the final Act of Canonical Communion in May of this year and that Patriarch Alexey II and Metropolitan Lavr will concelebrate together to seal this singing. According to Metr. Kyrill of the MP the exact date on which that will occur si in conjunction with the feast of the Ascension 2007.

Fr David Moser


How will the OCA factor into this? I hope the OCA and ROCOR can work together more closely in the future.

#32 Father David Moser

Father David Moser

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,581 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member
  • Verified Cleric

Posted 27 December 2006 - 05:53 PM

How will the OCA factor into this? I hope the OCA and ROCOR can work together more closely in the future.


The OCA doesn't factor into this at all. The OCA is an autocephalus Church and the reconciliation is an internal matter of the Russian Church. Neither does the GOA, the AAOA, the Serbian Patriarchate, the Jerusalem Patriarchate or any other independant Church factor into this.

That being said, now that our internal affairs are being put into order, it is likely that ROCOR will look to putting our external affairs (relationships with other national churches) into order.

Fr David Moser

#33 Matthew Panchisin

Matthew Panchisin

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 589 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 27 December 2006 - 06:14 PM

Dear Father David,

That being said, now that our internal affairs are being put into order, it is likely that ROCOR will look to putting our external affairs (relationships with other national churches) into order.


That's already happing to a great extent here in the Chicago Diocese. About 2 years ago His Grace Bishop Peter and His Emminence Archbishop Alypy met with all the other Orthodox Bishops in the area. I would be remiss to mention
that Bishop Peter really has taken the initiative in that area. I recall being at a funeral for a Greek Orthodox Christian several years ago and the Greek Orthodox chancelor following the correct protocal had Bishop Peter pray the prayer of absolution, that wouldn't have happened not so long ago. Rocor's Bishops are always warmly embraced by other Orthodox Bishops these days. Bishop Ware met with Archbishop Alypy a year ago and was very moved by the conversations, clearly he saw the work of the Holy Spirit as reconcilation is at hand, thanks be to God.

In Christ,

Matthew Panchisin

#34 Robert Hegwood

Robert Hegwood

    Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 297 posts

Posted 27 December 2006 - 06:24 PM

If I may offer a few of my observations and comments as a convert within the OCA.

Much of my first exposure to Orthodoxy and Orthodox spirituality were in the context of Russian Orthodoxy and its daughter churches. I was received by one such daughter church, the Orthodox Church in Japan. It is an old calendar communion. When it was time for me to move back to the US I wondered which jurisdiction to align myself with. At heart I was with ROCOR and the "traditionalists" on most points, and did not want an Orthodoxy lite. But when I asked my priest he said I should try and find an OCA parish. That caused me a little turmoil because OCA worshiped primarily on the new calendar and I had and still have great reservations concerning it. But the priest who first help me find Orthodoxy told me to trust the path by which God led me to the faith. It may in time lead on to more rigourous quarters of the Orthodox life but it won't leap frog me there, so I should trust God's providience at each step. This advice kept me from running off to the Holy Mountian before I was even an official catechumen. So I remembered that advice and rather than contest what my priest in Japan said, having prayed about it I decided the best path was obedience and when I got back to the states I joined an OCA parish.

Calendar Issue: I've heard a number of things from both sides of this issue, everything from the new calendar is an anathemized papist vehicle and all who use it fall under that anathema to the Church has always preferred the civil and liturgical calendar coincide. I have heard the critiques about the new calendar about the way it mars the liturgical year...especially with how some years it can all but obliterate the Apostles fast. And I've heard that within certain restraints the caldendar belongs to the realm of espiscopal authority.

And then there is the history of the implementation of the new calendar...there my mind is pretty much made up...I'm on the side of the Old Calendarists. How the NC was come up with and especially how it was imposed was less than Orthodox by any standard that I've ever seen. It was a ham handed operation from the inception. But poor administrative proceedure does not equate with heresy.

Now I don't know enough to sort though these things. Each person you talk to sounds right at the time. But once thing I've learned to be wary of from reading Church history is what I call the "cathari syndrome"....the desire to be so pure so refined in one's spiritual life it becomes disembodied and distorted. The donatists are good examples of the mindset to avoid. In the particulars of their offence against compromisers they were on the whole right...in the pastoral response they adopted (kick'em all out) they were manifestly wrong (where are they today?). And certain traditionalist arguements against the New Calendar struck me as in tone as having a lot in common with donatism. The hoi poloi of the compromisers and the half hearted were just too impure to remain in communion with and so the walls of seperation had to go up...just like in the time of St. Maximus.

The best summation of the Old Calendar/New Calendar problem was summed up for me by Elder Cleopas. He saw the holy light shining out of the chalice one Liturgy in which he served and saw that grace was with the NC churches. He said, that the decision to go to the NC as it was done was a bad decision, and that it was handled in a bad way, and those hierarchs responsible for it would answer for it, but for all that the church calendar was under the authority of the bishops and that our part was to obey.

The MP: The other area that used to give me some pause was the charges of collaberation between the MP and the Soviets and especially what the aftereffects were in the Russian Church of Patriarch Sergius unfortunate remarks for which his memory has been censured ever since. The charge was that Patriarch Sergius had gone too far and fallen into apostasy and all those who remained in communion with him or with those in communion with him took part in that apostasy. On the surface that made a certain amount of sense...but from what I read of Church problems in Byzantine history made me wonder if things were that bad with his case. Emperor and Roman families used to play spin the patriarch all time. It was a terrible and lamentable thing to be sure...but while individual men may have been remembered as being fallen that didn't necessarily mean the whole of their synod likewise fell.

Also if I recall the monastic prophecies concerning the restoration of a good Czar to Russia one of the things he is supposed to do is clean house in the Russian Church and get rid of unfaithful or lukewarm heirarchs and replace them with better more pious souls. If that is the case then the Official Russian Church of the MP despite its wounds must remain "canonical". Cleaning house is not the same as building a new one....its fixing and better ordering something that is already in place. The prophecies don't say he will make the underground Church the official Church rather he will deal with problems in the existing Church.

So that means...at least to me...that despite certain reservations, I can't write off the MP, and that ROCOR is not wrong to begin a dialogue for reunification.

The Future: But once that is done what happens? Does the OCA and ROCOR then fold into one Jurisdiction again? I think it should...and I would hope the conservatism of the ROCOR synod would filter back into some areas of the OCA...maybe they could find a diocese by diocese resolution to the calendar issue. Then maybe it will be time to talk earnestly with the Antiochians about union.

#35 Father David Moser

Father David Moser

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,581 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member
  • Verified Cleric

Posted 27 December 2006 - 07:24 PM

Rocor's Bishops are always warmly embraced by other Orthodox Bishops these days.


Not exactly true here in the west - there are still circumstances where "other Orthodox Bishops" continue to rebuff overtures by "Rocor's Bishops".

Fr David Moser

#36 Michael Astley

Michael Astley

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 562 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 27 December 2006 - 10:24 PM

Thank you Father Raphael for your very inclusive comments on my questions about ROCOR. They have helped me to see the situation in a new light. Maintaining a connection to the "Mother Churches" out of respect and admiration of a common faith which was received from them seems reasonable. Especially since Orthodoxy is yet very newly established here in comparison to the over a millenium in Russia, Eastern Europe and Greece. We iconographers certainly look to (or should imho) the iconography that developed in these countries for inspiration .And I heartily agree with you that all of us Orthodox share the same basic challenge to live our faith in what seems to have been appropriately called the "post-Christian era" regardless of what jurisdiction we are in.


Dear Sandra,

God bless you for producing icons for the faithful to venerate.

May I be so bold as to ask that, while you look towards the venerable tradition of the East for inspiration for your icons that you not forget the wonderful treasury of inconography that developed in the Orthodox West before the Schism? So many iconographers neglect this noble tradition and it is a sore shame. The result is that we often find such Saints as Ss Patrick, Colman, Aidan, George, David, &c. depicted in Eastern Vestments, in a Byzantine iconographic style and it just seems so very out of place in the same way that it would seem bizarre to depict St John Chrysostom in Western vestments, in a British iconographic style.

A few iconographers have lately begin to resuscitate the simplistic British and Western European style of iconography, and have depicted Western Saints in the vesture that they actually would have worn, and the results are truly awe-inspiring. Aidan Hart is one such iconographer. I think that it attests to the catholicity of our Church that she embraces within her bosom all of these various traditions united in the same Faith and, as an orthodox Christian here in britain, I would love to be able to more readily purchase and venerate icons that are in an Orthodox style indigenous to this part of the world. Would that more of our iconographers would make use of this style!

Perhaps something to think about.

#37 John Charmley

John Charmley

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,101 posts
  • Guest from Another Religious Tradition

Posted 28 December 2006 - 05:15 PM

Now I don't know enough to sort though these things. Each person you talk to sounds right at the time. But once thing I've learned to be wary of from reading Church history is what I call the "cathari syndrome"....the desire to be so pure so refined in one's spiritual life it becomes disembodied and distorted. The donatists are good examples of the mindset to avoid. In the particulars of their offence against compromisers they were on the whole right...in the pastoral response they adopted (kick'em all out) they were manifestly wrong (where are they today?). And certain traditionalist arguements against the New Calendar struck me as in tone as having a lot in common with donatism. The hoi poloi of the compromisers and the half hearted were just too impure to remain in communion with and so the walls of seperation had to go up...just like in the time of St. Maximus.


Dear Robert,

A most thoughtful and interesting post, which for those coming from the outside, made many things comprehensible in a way they have not always been - so thank you.

I have highlighted this one passage of particular interest because it does seem to point to a continuing tendency in the Church. Although, of course, at one level there was no 'gnostic' movement, many of the teachings which appear grouped under that head were of the sort you mention. Time and again this tendency has appeared, and it is as real now as it was in the time of the early Church.

It would seem almost as though it is one of the main ways the Evil One plays to our human pride and arrogance, turning the message of redemption and salvation to all to a narrow way known only to the congnoscenti. Several times I have been struck by a spirit of exclusivity of a sort which a British aristocrat dating his ancestry to the Conquest would be hard put to match.

The Incarnate Lord, of course, knew all this better than we did. John 9:16 has one of my favourite examples of the perils of this attitude:

16 Therefore some of the Pharisees said, This Man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath. Others said, How can a man who is a sinner do such signs? And there was a division among them.


St. Paul, who also saw plenty of this sort of thing, told the Galatians plainly enough: [Galatians 6:12-16]

6:12 As many as desire to make a good showing in the flesh, these would compel you to be circumcised, only that they may not suffer persecution for the cross of Christ.
6:13 For not even those who are circumcised keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh.
6:14 But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.
6:15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation.
6:16 And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God.


The Incarnate Lord summed up such attitudes perfectly in the parable in Luke 18:

18:10 Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector.
18:11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, `God, I thank You that I am not like other men--extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector.
18:12 `I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.'
18:13 And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, `God, be merciful to me a sinner!'
18:14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted


Holy Tradition, as ever, is a sure guide to this particular temptation, and to Our Lord's view of it.

In Christ,

John

#38 Anthony Peggs

Anthony Peggs

    Junior Poster

  • Members
  • 6 posts

Posted 28 January 2007 - 04:31 AM

Father, Bless,

i'm new to these discussions and am a Catechumen here in California at a Greek Parish........what you said worried me and so i ask:

how do you know who is in Communion?

#39 Kosta

Kosta

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,516 posts

Posted 28 January 2007 - 06:56 AM

Dear Anthony,
Regardless as to what the various jurisdictions teach; about whose canonical or not, whose schismatic or not and/or whose heretical or not, their are some Orthodox Churches which are not in communion with others. Only by researching a seperated synod and why it has seperated from its mother church can one reach a conclusion whether it is for legitimate reasons or not.

There are canons which allow for seperation, the seeker must determine whether the situation falls under those canons or whether the seperation is over false reasons.

To be canonical simply means; to be under a Right-Believing bishop with apostolic succession faithful to Orthopraxis.

#40 Fr Raphael Vereshack

Fr Raphael Vereshack

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 4,420 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member
  • Verified Monastic Cleric

Posted 28 January 2007 - 06:58 PM

Father, Bless,

i'm new to these discussions and am a Catechumen here in California at a Greek Parish........what you said worried me and so i ask:

how do you know who is in Communion?


Are you sure you didn't mean to ask Fr David about this? Fr Seraphim hasn't to my knowledge posted to this thread.

Or perhaps you could more fully describe what worries you and others could try to answer also.

In Christ- Fr Raphael




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users