ВЕРНОСТЬ - FIDELITY № 140 - 2010

FEBRUARY / ФЕВРАЛЬ 18

            CONTENTS - ОГЛАВЛЕНИЕ

1.  КТО ТАМ ШАГАЕТ ПРАВОЙ?  ЛЕВОЙ, ЛЕВОЙ, ЛЕВОЙ.  В. Виноградов

2 К НАРОДУ РОССИИА.Н.

3.  HOW  THE  MOSCOW  PATRIARCHATE  FELL  FROM  GRACE. Dr. Vladimir Moss.

4 “THERE IS NONE THAT WATCHETH OUT FOR MY SOUL” Dr. Vladimir Moss

5.  ABOUT “ROCOR UNITED”. Seraphim  Larin

6.   РОССИЙСКАЯ ДУХОВНАЯ МИССИЯ В ПЕКИНЕ (КИТАЙ).  М. К. (Осень 1938 г.)

7.  В  ЗАЩИТУ БЕЛОГО ДЕЛА. Еп. Новгородский Дионисий

8 СЕРДЦЕ РВЕТСЯ ЗА РОССИЮ. С.С. Аникин

9.  ВОТКИНСКОЕ НАРОДНОЕ ВОССТАНИЕ. С. Простнев. (Продолжение см. No. 137, 139)

10.  ПЛЕТЕМ МЫ ЖИЗНИ ПАУТИНКУ…  Александр Б.

11.  ДУМА О ТРЕЗВОСТИ, ТРЕЗВЕНИИ И ТРЕЗВОМ ОБРАЗЕ ЖИЗНИ. С.С. Аникин

12.  ПОЧТИ ПО И.А. КРЫЛОВУ

13.  СТОЙКО БОРЯСЬ ЗА ИСТИНУ И РОССИЮ.   Дмитрий Барма

   
* * * 

КТО ТАМ ШАГАЕТ ПРАВОЙ?  

ЛЕВОЙ, ЛЕВОЙ, ЛЕВОЙ!

 В. Виноградов

                                                                                                       

 

“Лучший, талантливейший поэт советской эпохи” Владимир Владимирович Маяковский, конечно же, не мог, как безбожничек, и предположить, что требуя шагать в ногу с советским временем, раскрывал этими словами главную состав-ляющую духа последних времен, когда шагать в ногу со временем будут требо-вать уже не поэты, не “товарищ маузер”,  а… люди, всегда учащiеся и никогда не могущие дойти до познанiя истины, противящiеся истине, развращённые умомъ, невежды въ вере! Конечно же, они не приказным тоном: “Кто там шагает правой?” - будут не принимать всякое правое, то есть, православное дело. Нет, они, люди погибели, будут отвращаться правды, они будут её бояться, будут убегать от правды: “Левой! Левой! Левой!” - только и будут умолять они.  И правда, таким образом, просто, не найдёт себе пристанища.  

Въ ногу со временемъ мы не пойдёмъ! -

- обещался архиепископ Аверкий. Ясно, что “мы” - это Русская Зарубежная Церковь. А что преподнесла жизнь? Только покинул земное пристанище послед-ний иерарх Зарубежной Церкви, немогущий идти в ногу со временем, митро-полит Виталий, как дружным хором большинство тех, кто только что поддакивал ему, заголосило: “Левой! Левой! Левой!”. Ибо духъ последнего времени проник и в тех, кто, казалось, никогда не пойдёт в ногу со временем. То есть, прельстились и избранные! То есть, те, кто не просто хорошо, а в совершенстве знал о все-общем отступлении. Кто знал, как Зарубежную Церковь укреплял Сам Господь Христосъ, говоря: Держи, что имеешь…. Ярчайший пример тому Марк Берлин-ский. Как никто он давал точнейшее определение сергианского отступления, и, вдруг, легко расстался со всеми своими убеждениями и сам примкнул к серги-анскому отступлению, уведя за собой большую часть некогда казавшихся верными устоям Зарубежной Церкви. А уж что говорить о панурговом стаде электората РФ? “Левой! Левой! Левой” - только и слышится из каждого теле-визионного ящика, из каждого радиоприёмника, из каждой газетёнки, не говоря уж о глянце. “Только левой” - повторяют панурговцы за своими учителями из СМИ. И уже сами не приемлют ничего правого!

Об отступающем народе, а не только о тех, кто вводил народ в заблуждение, с плачем говорили многие подвижники. Приведём лишь слова святителя Луки Войно - Ясенецкого:

О Мать моя, святая Церковь! Кто повинен в твоем поругании? Только ли строители новой жизни церкви земного царства, равенства, социальной спра-ведливости и изобилия плодов земных?

Нет, должны мы сказать с горькими слезами, не они одни, а сам народ наш, сами служители Церкви! Не они ли вызвали гнев народа своим корыстолюбием, а часто даже неверием! Не обратили ли многие из них служение Господу Iисусу Христу в доходное ремесло? Не они ли до сих пор ничему не научились, не покаялись перед Богом с ручьями слез в грехах своих? Не ради ли их доселе хулится имя Христово?

Виноват и сам народ!?

Но можно ли использовать слово “виноват” для процесса отступленiя, если отступленiе попущено Богомъ?

Если есть совершеннейшее указание апостола Павла, какими будут люди последних времен в своей массе:

Въ послэднiе дни наступятъ времена тяжкiя. Ибо люди будутъ самолюби-вы, сребролюбивы, горды, надменны, злорэчивы, родителям непокорны, неблаго-дарны, нечестивы, недружелюбны, непримирительны, клеветники, невоздер-жанны, жестоки, не любящiе добра, предатели, наглы, напыщенны, болэе сласто-любивы, нежели боголюбивы, имэющiе видъ благочестiя, силы же его отрекшi-еся. (2 Кор.3,1-5)

После этого, казалось бы, какие нострадамусы? Какие ванги? Какие глобы? Нет, только глобы, только ванги, только нострадамусы! А не Господь Христосъ, скурпулёзнейшим образом предсказавший всё будущее человечества, не апостол Павел, ещё глубже раскрывший предсказания Господа, нет! Только маги, только ведьмы, только проходимцы, потому что уже настало время, когда здравого ученiя не принимають, но по своимъ прихотямъ избирають себе учителей, которые льстили бы слуху; и отъ истины отвратили слухъ и обратились къ баснямъ (2 Кор. 4, 3) . 

    Р.Ф.

 

* * * 

                                                           К НАРОДУ РОССИИ

                                                                                                           А.Н.

                                                                            Вставай народ порабощённый

                                                                            Несчастной Родины моей,

                                                                            Так долго был ты угнетённый

                                                                            Базбожной сворой палачей.

                                                                                    Расправь смелее свои плечи

                                                                                    И «стену»  грудью пробури

                                                                                    Возьми ты КРЕСТ своей эмблеиой,

                                                                                    А «серп и молот» прогони!

                                                                            Что дал тебе тот серп и молот?

                                                                            Твои он руки надорвал.

                                                                            Всегда народ трудолюбивый

                                                                            Любовь к труду ты потерял.

                                                                                    Настало время пробужденья

                                                            Ты к Богу тянешься опять.

                                                            Не смог режим тот окаянный

                                                            Не смог души твоей сломать.

                                                    Ты к вере, к Богу обратился

                                                    Своею чистою душой,

                                                    Вставай же в бой с ордой поганой

                                        Смой начисто с земли родной!

                                                                                    И перестань ты покланяться

                                                                                    Сушоной мумии в Москве.

                                                                                    Ты уничтож его портреты

                                                            И статуи по всей стране.

                                                    Что дал России идол лысый-

                                                    Нужду и голод, кровь и кровь.

                                                    Но вот народ встал  от спячки

                                                    Страдать не хочет вновь и вновь.

                                                            Прийдите, люди, к покаянью

                                                            За тяжкий грех, кровавый грех,

                                                            Молитесь искренно и с верой

                                                            И Бог помилует вас всех.

                                                    Вы совершили грех тяжелый

                                                    Под властью зла обезумев,

                                                    Настало время покаянья

                                                    Молитва, слёзы смоют грех.

                                                            Убит помазанник наш Божий,

                                                            Пролил он кровь с семьей своей

                                                            И милионы жертв невинных

                                                            Пошли тернистой той тропой.

                                                                 Australia

 
* * * 
 

HOW  THE  MOSCOW  PATRIARCHATE  FELL  FROM  GRACE

Dr. Vladimir Moss.

     After the death of Patriarch Tikhon in April, 1925, and the arrest and imprisonment of the patriarchal locum tenens, Metropolitan Peter of Krutitsa, in December, 1925, True Orthodoxy in Russia was without a first-hierarch living in freedom and able to administer the Church. By the middle of 1926, Metropolitan Sergius (Stragorodsky) of Nizhni-Novgorod had established himself as the leading Russian hierarch, although he was neither patriarch nor patriarchal locum tenens, but only a deputy of Metropolitan Peter. As such, he did not have the authority to undertake any important steps in Church matters without the express authorization of Metropolitan Peter.

     Lev Regelson has argued[1] that Metropolitan Peter’s action in appointing deputies was not canonical, and created misunderstandings that were to be ruthlessly exploited later by Metropolitan Sergius. A chief hierarch does not have the right to transfer the fullness of his power to another hierarch as if it were a personal inheritance: only a Council representing the whole Local Church can elect a leader to replace him. Patriarch Tikhon’s appointment of three locum tenentes was an exceptional measure, but one which was nevertheless entrusted to him by – and therefore could claim the authority of – the Council of 1917-18. However, the Council made no provision for what might happen in the event of the death or removal of these three. In such an event, therefore, patriarchal authority ceased, temporarily, in the Church; and there was no canonical alternative, until the convocation of another Council, but for each bishop to govern his diocese independently while maintaining links with neighbouring dioceses, in accordance with the Patriarch’s ukaz no. 362 of November 7/20, 1920.

     In defence of Metropolitan Peter it may be said that it is unlikely that he intended to transfer the fullness of his power to Metropolitan Sergius, but only the day-to-day running of the administrative machine. In fact he explicitly said this later, in his letter to Sergius dated January 2, 1930.[2] Moreover, in his declaration of December 6, 1925, he had given instructions on what should be done in the event of his arrest, saying that “the raising of my name, as patriarchal locum tenens, remains obligatory during Divine services.”[3] This was something that Patriarch Tikhon had not insisted upon when he transferred the fullness of his power to Metropolitan Agathangelus in 1922. It suggests that Metropolitan Peter did not exclude the possibility that his deputy might attempt to seize power from him just as the renovationists had seized power from the patriarch and his locum tenens in 1922, and was taking precautions against just such a possibility.

     The critical distinction here is that whereas the patriarchal locum tenens has, de jure, all the power of a canonically elected Patriarch and need relinquish his power only to a canonically convoked Council of the whole local Church, the deputy of the locum tenens has no such fullness of power and must relinquish such rights as he has at any time that the Council or the locum tenens requires it. Nevertheless, the important question remains: why did Metropolitan Peter not invoke ukaz no. 362 and announce the decentralization of the Church’s administration at the time of his arrest? Probably for two important reasons:

(1)      The restoration of the patriarchate was one of the main achievements of the Moscow Council of 1917-18,  and had proved enormously popular. Its dissolution might well have dealt a major psychological blow to the masses, who were not always educated enough to understand that the Church could continue to exist either in a centralized (though not papist) form, as it had in the East from 312 to 1917, or in a decentralized form, as in the catacombal period before Constantine the Great and during the iconoclast persecution of the eighth and ninth centuries.

(2)      The renovationists – still the major threat to the Church in Metropolitan Peter’s eyes – did not have a patriarch, and their organization was, as we have seen, closer to the synodical, state-dependent structure of the pre-revolutionary Church. The presence or absence of a patriarch or his substitute was therefore a major sign of the difference between the true Church and the false for the uneducated believer.

     There is another important factor which should be mentioned here by way of introduction. Under the rules imposed upon the Church administration by Peter the Great in the eighteenth century, the Ruling Synod was permitted to move bishops from one see to another, and even to retire, ban or defrock them, in a purely administrative manner. This was contrary to the Holy Canons of the Church, which envisage the defrocking of a bishop only as a result of a full canonical trial, to which the accused bishop is invited to attend three times. Peter’s rules made the administration of the Church similar to that of a government department – which is precisely what the Church was according to his Reglament. It enabled the State to exert pressure on the Church to move and remove bishops in the speediest and most efficient manner, without the checks and balances – and delays – that following the Holy Canons would have involved. This was bad enough in itself, even when the State was kindly disposed towards the Church. It was catastrophic when the State became the enemy of the Church after 1917… Now Patriarch Tikhon, while not rescinding Peter’s rules, had opposed the pressure of the State, on the one hand, and had preserved the spirit of sobornost’, or conciliarity, on the other, consulting his fellow bishops and the people as far as possible. But the danger remained that if the leadership of the Church were assumed by a less holy man, then the combination of the uncanonical, Petrine rules, on the one hand, and an increase of pressure from the State, on the other, would lead to disaster…

     The fall of the Moscow Patriarchate took place as a result of a decisive movement by Metropolitan Sergius and a small group of likeminded hierarchs towards a reconciliation between the Orthodox Church and the God-hating Soviet power and their close collaboration in support of the revolution. It was not authorized by Metropolitan Peter, who remained in prison until his martyric death in 1937. And it was in any case contrary both to the dogmatic teaching of the Orthodox Church, and to the anathema of Patriarch Tikhon of January 19 / February 1, 1918 - which was supported by the Local Council of the Russian Church then in session in Moscow - against any such collaboration. It was imposed upon the Church without any conciliar consultation, and the dissidents – who included most of the senior bishops – were ruthlessly disposed of – forcibly retired, banned or defrocked – without the possibility of a trial by their fellow-bishops or appeal against the verdict. The decisions of Sergius and Synod were still more ruthlessly followed up by Soviet power, which cast all those who opposed “our Sergius” into prison or exile, where the great majority of them perished.

*

     Of course, the Soviets would have preferred to act through the canonical leader of the Church, Metropolitan Peter, rather than a deputy. For that would have given their take-over of the Church greater “canonicity”. However, in December, 1926, when the Soviet official Tuchkov proposed to Metropolitan Peter, who was in prison in Suzdal, that he renounce his locum tenancy, Peter refused, and then sent a message to everyone through a fellow prisoner that he would “never under any circumstances leave his post and would remain faithful to the Orthodox Church to death itself”.[4]

     This was a blow to the Soviets: while continuing to try and persuade Metropolitan Peter – through the well-known methods of torture – to change his mind, they would have to try and find another man to act as the Judas of the Russian Church. Fortunately for them, however, on January 1, 1927, while he was in Perm on his way to exile on the island of Khe in Siberia, Metropolitan Peter confirmed Sergius as his deputy. This suited the Soviets perfectly, because Sergius was well-known even from the pre-revolutionary period for his “leftist” views, and had even been a leader of the pro-Soviet renovationist schism in 1922.

     Though he came to regret this decision, Metropolitan Peter was not able to revoke it officially from his remote exile. And the Soviets wasted no time in imprisoning Sergius, so as to remind him, if he needed reminding, who the real powers in the land were… After three months in prison, Sergius emerged in April a devoted servant of the revolution…

     While Sergius was in prison, Archbishop Seraphim of Uglich had been managing affairs as his deputy. At the beginning of March he was summoned from Uglich to Moscow and interrogated for three days by the GPU. Evidently, they were thinking that if Seraphim might also be useful to them, they might not need Sergius…

     But they were mistaken. Seraphim was offered a Synod, and indicated who should be its members. Seraphim rejected this list, and put forward his own list of names, which included Metropolitan Cyril of Kazan, probably the most authoritative hierarch in Russia and one of Patriarch Tikhon’s three locum tenentes (the others were Metropolitan Agathangel of Yaroslavl and Metropolitan Peter of Krutitsa).

     “But he’s in prison,” they said.

     “Then free him,” said the archbishop.

     The GPU then presented him with conditions for the legalization of the Church by Soviet power. This would have involved surrendering the Church into the power of the atheist. Arfed Gustavson writes: “He refused outrightly without entering into discussions, pointing out that he was not entitled to decide such questions without the advice of his imprisoned superiors. When he was asked whom he would appoint as his executive deputy he is said to have answered that he would turn over the Church to the Lord Himself. The examining magistrate was said to have looked at him full of wonder and to have replied:

     “’All the others have appointed deputies…’

     “To this Seraphim countered: ‘But I lay the Church in the hands of God, our Lord. I am doing this, so that the whole world may know what freedom Orthodox Christianity is enjoying in our free State.’”[5]

     Another account of this dialogue was given by Archbishop Seraphim’s senior subdeacon, Michael Nikolaevich Yaroslavsky: “For 100 days Vladyka Seraphim happened to rule the whole of the Russian Orthodox Church. This was in 1926. Metropolitan Sergius was in prison, everybody was in prison…

     “And so, as he had been put in charge, Vladyka told me that at that time the authorities offered him, as the Primate of the Church, a Synod of bishops. He did not agree and immediately received three years in Solovki camp. He did not betray the Church, but… declared the autocephaly of each diocese, since each Church Primate was another candidate for prison…”[6]

     This was a decisive moment, for the central hierarch of the Church was effectively declaring the Church’s decentralization. And not before time. For with the imprisonment of the last of the three possible locum tenentes there was really no canonical basis for establishing a central administration for the Church before the convocation of a Local Council. But this was prevented by the communists. As we have seen, the system of deputies of the deputy of the locum tenens had no basis in Canon Law or precedent in the history of the Church. And if it was really the case that the Church could not exist without a first hierarch and central administration, then the awful possibility existed that with the fall of the first hierarch the whole Church would fall, too…

     The communists also wanted a centralized administration; so Tuchkov now turned to Metropolitan Agathangelus with the proposal that he lead the Church. He refused. Then he turned to Metropolitan Cyril with the same proposal. He, too, refused. The conversation between Tuchkov and Metropolitan Cyril is reported to have gone something like this:-

     “If we have to remove some hierarch, will you help us in this?”

     “Yes, if the hierarch appears to be guilty of some ecclesiastical transgression… In the contrary case, I shall tell him directly, ‘The authorities are demanding this of me, but I have nothing against you.’”

     “No!” replied Tuchkov. “You must try to find an appropriate reason and remove him as if on your own initiative.”

     To this the hierarch replied: “Eugene Nikolayevich! You are not the cannon, and I am not the shot, with which you want to blow up our Church from within!”[7] 

*

     On April 2, 1927 Metropolitan Sergius emerged from prison, ready to be the shot that would blow up the Orthodox Church from within… He was released from prison on condition that he did not leave Moscow – although before his arrest he had not had the right to live in Moscow. However, the investigation of his case was not discontinued, showing that the authorities still wanted to keep him on a leash... Five days later, Archbishop Seraphim handed over to him the government of the Russian Church. And another six days later, on April 13, Metropolitan Sergius announced to Bishop Alexis (Gotovtsev), who was temporary administrator of the Moscow diocese, that he had assumed the post of deputy of the patriarchal locum tenens.[8]

     On May 16 Sergius asked the NKVD for permission to hold a preliminary meeting with six or seven hierarchs with a view to inviting them to become members of a Synod and then to petition the government for registration of the Synod. The NKVD immediately agreed, acknowledging receipt of one rouble for the certificate. “Thus a one-rouble certificate inaugurated the history of the legalized Moscow Patriarchate.”[9]

     On May 18 the meeting took place, and the hierarchs agreed to convert their meeting into a temporary Patriarchal Holy Synod. The members of this Synod, according to Archbishop Seraphim’s subdeacon, were precisely those hierarchs that had been suggested to Archbishop Seraphim, but whom he had rejected… As the Catholic writer Deinber points out, “when the names of the bishops invited to join the Synod were made known, then there could be no further doubts concerning the capitulation of Metropolitan Sergius before Soviet power. The following joined the Synod: Archbishop Sylvester (Bratanovsky) – a former renovationist; Archbishop Alexis Simansky – a former renovationist, appointed to the Petrograd see by the Living Church after the execution of Metropolitan Benjamin [Kazansky]; Archbishop Philip [Gumilevsky] – a former beglopopovets, i.e. one who had left the Orthodox Church for the sect of the beglopopovtsi; Metropolitan Seraphim [Alexandrov] of Tver, a man whose connections with the OGPU were known to all Russia and whom no-one trusted…”[10]

     On May 20, the OGPU officially recognized this Synod, which suggested that Metropolitan Sergius had agreed to the terms of the legalization of the Church by Soviet power which Patriarch Tikhon and Metropolitan Peter had rejected. One of Sergius’ closest supporters, Bishop Metrophanes of Aksaisk, had once declared that “the legalization of the church administration is a sign of heterodoxy”… In any case, on May 25 Metropolitan Sergius and his “Patriarchal Holy Synod” now wrote to the bishops enclosing the OGPU document and telling them that their diocesan councils should now seek registration from the local organs of Soviet power. Some hierarchs hastened to have their diocesan administrations legalized. But as it turned out, the OGPU was in no hurry to register diocesan councils before their membership had been established to the OGPU’s satisfaction…

     “In 1929, when the results were already obvious, [the Catacomb] Bishop Damascene (Tsedrik) wrote this in his ‘Letter to the Legalized Ones’: ‘Fathers and brothers! While it is still not too late, do think and look into the essence of the ‘legalization’ that was graciously granted to you, lest you should later bitterly repent of the mistake that all of you with Metropolitan Sergius at your head are now committing! What you are accepting under the name of ‘legalization’ is, in essence, an act of bondage that guarantees you no rights whatsoever, while imposing upon you some grievous obligations. It would be naïve to expect anything other than that. The Communist Soviet Power is frank and consistent. It openly declared itself hostile to religion and set the destruction of the Church as its goal. It never stops stating openly and clearly its theomachistic tasks through its top governmental representatives and all of its junior agents. This is why it is very naïve and criminal to believe that the so-called legalization by the Soviets is even partially seeking the good of the Church.”[11]

     In June, 1927 Sergius wrote to Metropolitan Eulogius of Paris directing him to sign a declaration of loyalty to the Soviet power. He agreed… On July 14, in ukaz 93, Sergius demanded that all clergy abroad should sign a formal pledge to cease criticizing the Soviet government. It also stated that any clergyman abroad who refused to sign such would no longer be considered to be a part of the Moscow Patriarchate. This ukaz, which completely contradicted his previous ukaz of September 12, 1926, which blessed the hierarchs abroad to form their own independent administration, even included the actual text of the pledge that was to be signed: “I, the undersigned, promise that because of my actual dependence upon the Moscow Patriarchate, I will not permit myself in either my social activities nor especially in my Church work, any expression that could in the least way be considered as being disloyal with regard to the Soviet government.”[12]

     The clergy abroad were given until October 15 to sign this pledge. The ROCOR Council of Bishops, in their encyclical dated August 26, 1927, refused this demand and declared: "The free portion of the Church of Russia must terminate relations with the ecclesiastical administration in Moscow [i.e., with Metropolitan Sergius and his synod], in view of the fact that normal relations with it are impossible and because of its enslavement by the atheist regime, which is depriving it of freedom to act according to its own will and of freedom to govern the Church in accordance with the canons."[13]

     However, Metropolitan Eulogius of Paris, agreed to sign, “but on condition that the term ‘loyalty’ means for us the apoliticisation of the émigré Church, that is, we are obliged not to make the ambon a political arena, if this will relieve the difficult situation of our native Mother Church; but we cannot be ‘loyal’ to Soviet power: we are not citizens of the USSR, and the USSR does not recognise us as such, and therefore the political demand is from the canonical point of view non-obligatory for us…”[14]

     The impossible demands that Sergius’ appeal for loyalty to the Soviet Union placed on hierarchs living outside the Soviet Union was pointed out by the future hieromartyr, Archbishop John of Latvia, to Metropolitan Eleutherius of Lithuania: “As far as I know you, your co-pastors and flock, the question of loyalty to the USSR and the openly antitheist authorities in power there can be resolved sincerely by you only in a negative sense. But if you and your flock were not such as I know you to be, the confession of loyalty to the USSR and the authorities in power there would still be impossible for you from a juridical point of view. And you and your co-pastors and flock are obliged under oath to be faithful citizens of the Lithuanian Republic. Simultaneous fidelity both to Lithuania and the USSR is juridically unthinkable. But even if it were not a question of loyalty in the sense of fidelity to the USSR where the ‘appeal’ [of Metropolitan Sergius] was born, but in the sense of benevolence towards the USSR, then all the same you, as a faithful son of Lithuania, cannot in the future and in all cases promise benevolence towards the USSR…”[15]

     On July 5, 1928, the Hierarchical Synod of ROCOR decreed: “The present ukaz [of Sergius] introduces nothing new into the position of the Church Abroad. It repeats the same notorious ukaz of his Holiness Patriarch Tikhon in 1922, which was decisively rejected by the whole Church Abroad in its time.”[16] In response to this refusal, Metropolitan Sergius expelled the hierarchs of the Russian Church Abroad from membership of the Moscow Patriarchate. So the first schism between the Russian Church inside and outside Russia took place as a result of the purely political demands of Sergius’ Moscow Patriarchate.  

*

     On July 16/29, Metropolitan Sergius issued the infamous Declaration that has been the basis of the existence of the Sovietized Moscow Patriarchate ever since, and which was to cause the greatest and most destructive schism in the history of the Orthodox Church since the fall of the Papacy in the eleventh century.

     Several points should be noted about this document. First Sergius pretended that Patriarch Tikhon had always been aiming to have the Church legalized by the State, but had been frustrated by the émigré hierarchs and by his own death. There is a limited truth in this – but it was not the émigré hierarchs that frustrated the patriarch, nor did he want the kind of legalization Sergius wanted… Then he went on: “At my proposal and with permission from the State, a blessed Patriarchal Synod has been formed by those whose signatures are affixed to this document at its conclusion. Missing are the Metropolitan of Novgorod, Arsenius, who has not arrived yet, and Archbishop Sebastian of Kostroma, who is ill. Our application that this Synod be permitted to take up the administration of the Orthodox All-Russian Church has been granted. Now our Orthodox Church has not only a canonically legal central administration but a central administration that is legal also according to the law of the State of the Soviet Union. We hope that this legalization will be gradually extended to the lower administrative units, to the dioceses and the districts. It is hardly necessary to explain the significance and the consequences of this change for our Orthodox Church, her clergy and her ecclesiastical activity. Let us therefore thank the Lord, Who has thus favoured our Church. Let us also give thanks before the whole people to the Soviet Government for its understanding of the religious needs of the Orthodox population. At the same time let us assure the Government that we will not misuse the confidence it has shown us.

     “In undertaking now, with the blessings of the Lord, the work of this Synod, we clearly realize the greatness of our task and that of all the representatives of the Church. We must show not only with words but with deeds, that not only people indifferent to the Orthodox Faith or traitors to the Orthodox Church can be loyal citizens of the Soviet Union and loyal subjects of the Soviet power, but also the most zealous supporters of the Orthodox Church, to whom the Church with all her dogmas and traditions, with all her laws and prescriptions, is as dear as Truth and Life.

     “We want to be Orthodox, and at the same time to see the Soviet Union as our civil Fatherland, whose triumphs and successes are also our triumphs and successes, whose failures are our failures. Every attack, boycott, public catastrophe or an ordinary case of assassination, as the recent one in Warsaw, will be regarded as an attack against ourselves…”

     Protopriest Lev Lebedev comments on this: “This murder in Warsaw was the murder by B. Koverdaya of the Bolshevik Voikoff (also known as Weiner), who was one of the principal organizers of the murder of the Imperial Family, which fact was well known then, in 1927. So Sergius let the Bolsheviks clearly understand that he and his entourage were at one with them in all their evil deeds up to and including regicide.” [17]

     Metropolitan Sergius continued: “Even if we remain Orthodox, we shall yet do our duties as citizens of the Soviet Union ‘not only for wrath but also for conscience’s sake’ (Romans 13.5), and we hope that with the help of God and through working together and giving support to one another we shall be able to fulfil this task.

     “We can be hindered only by that which hindered the construction of Church life on the bases of loyalty in the first years of Soviet power. This is an inadequate consciousness of the whole seriousness of what has happened in our country. The establishment of Soviet power has seemed to many like some kind of misunderstanding, something coincidental and therefore not long lasting. People have forgotten that there are no coincidences for the Christian and that in what has happened with us, as in all places and at all times, the same right hand of God is acting, that hand which inexorably leads every nation to the end predetermined for it. To such people who do not want to understand ‘the signs of the times’, it may also seem that it is wrong to break with the former regime and even with the monarchy, without breaking with Orthodoxy… Only ivory-tower dreamers can think that such an enormous society as our Orthodox Church, with the whole of its organisation, can have a peaceful existence in the State while hiding itself from the authorities. Now, when our Patriarchate, fulfilling the will of the reposed Patriarch, has decisively and without turning back stepped on the path of loyalty, the people who think like this have to either break themselves and, leaving their political sympathies at home, offer to the Church only their faith and work with us only in the name of faith, or (if they cannot immediately break themselves) at least not hinder us, and temporarily leave the scene. We are sure that they will again, and very soon, return to work with us, being convinced that only the relationship to the authorities has changed, while faith and Orthodox Christian life remain unshaken… ”[18]

     An article in Izvestia immediately noted the essence of the declaration – a return to renovationism: “The far-sighted part of the clergy set out on this path already in 1922”.[19] So “sergianism”, as Sergius’ position came to be known, was “neo-renovationism”, and therefore subject to the same condemnation as the earlier renovationism of “the Living Church” received - anathema. As recently as November, 2008 the True Orthodox Church of Russia[20] has defined sergianism as “a neo-renovationist schism”.

     The radical error that lay at the root of this declaration lay in the last sentence quoted, in the idea that, in an antichristian state whose aim was the extirpation of all religion, it was possible to preserve loyalty to the State while “faith and Orthodox Christian life remained unshaken”. This attitude presupposed that it was possible, in the Soviet Union as in Ancient Rome, to draw a clear line between politics and religion. But in practice, even more than in theory, this line proved impossible to draw. For the Bolsheviks, there was no such dividing line; for them, everything was ideological, everything had to be in accordance with their ideology, there could be no room for disagreement, no private spheres into which the state and its ideology did not pry. Unlike most of the Roman emperors, who allowed the Christians to order their own lives in their own way so long as they showed loyalty to the state, the Bolsheviks insisted in imposing their own ways upon the Christians in every sphere: in family life (civil marriage only, divorce on demand, children spying on parents), in education (compulsory Marxism), in economics (dekulakization, collectivization), in military service (the oath of allegiance to Lenin), in science (Darwinism, Lysenkoism), in art (socialist realism), and in religion (the requisitioning of valuables, registration, commemoration of the authorities at the Liturgy, reporting of confessions by the priests). Resistance to any one of these demands was counted as "anti-Soviet behaviour", i.e. political disloyalty. Therefore it was no use protesting one's political loyalty to the regime if one refused to accept just one of these demands. According to the Soviet interpretation of the word: "Whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one has become guilty of all of it" (James 2.10), such a person was an enemy of the people. Metropolitan Sergius’ identification of his and his Church’s joys and sorrows with the joys and sorrows of Soviet communism placed the souls of the millions who followed him in the most serious jeopardy. [21]

     The publication of Sergius’ Declaration was greeted with a storm of criticism. Its opponents saw in it a more subtle version of renovationism. Even its supporters and neutral commentators from the West have recognized that it marked a radical change in the relationship of the Church to the State.

     Thus Professor William Fletcher comments: “This was a profound and important change in the position of the Russian Orthodox Church, one which evoked a storm of protest.”[22] According to the Soviet scholar Titov, “after the Patriarchal church changed its relationship to the Soviet State, undertaking a position of loyalty, in the eyes of the believers any substantial difference whatsoever between the Orthodox Church and the renovationists disappeared.”[23] According to Archimandrite (later Metropolitan) John (Snychev), quoting from a renovationist source, in some dioceses in the Urals up to 90% of parishes sent back Sergius’ declaration as a sign of protest.”[24] Again, Donald Rayfield writes: “In 1927… Metropolitan Sergi formally surrendered the Orthodox Church to the Bolshevik party and state.”[25]

     On September 14/27, the bishops imprisoned on Solovki had issued a statement, denouncing Sergius’ Declaration: “The subjection of the Church to the State’s decrees is expressed [in Sergius’ declaration] in such a categorical and sweeping form that it could easily be understood in the sense of a complete entanglement of Church and State… The Church cannot declare all the triumphs and successes of the State to be Her own triumphs and successes. Every government can occasionally make unwarranted, unjust and cruel decisions which become obligatory to the Church by way of coercion, but which the Church cannot rejoice in or approve of. One of the tasks of the present government is the elimination of all religion. The government’s successes in this direction cannot be recognized by the Church as Her own successes… The epistle renders to the government ‘thanks before the whole people to the Soviet government for its understanding of the religious needs of the Orthodox population’. An expression of gratitude of such a kind on the lips of the head of the Russian Orthodox Church cannot be sincere and therefore does not correspond to the dignity of the Church… The epistle of the patriarchate sweepingly accepts the official version and lays all the blame for the grievous clashes between the Church and the State on the Church…

     “In 1926 Metropolitan Sergius said that he saw himself only as a temporary deputy of the patriarchal locum tenens and in this capacity as not empowered to address pastoral messages to the entire Russian Church. If then he thought himself empowered only to issue circular letters, why has he changed his mind now? The pastoral message of Metropolitan Sergius and his Synod leads the Church into a pact with the State. It was considered as such by its authors as well as by the government. Sergius’ action resembles the political activities of the ‘Living Church’ and differs from them not in nature but only in form and scope…”[26]

     According to different sources, 17 or 20 or 26 bishops signed this epistle. However, the majority of the bishops on Solovki did not consider Sergius’ declaration a reason for breaking communion with him. Metropolitan Cyril of Kazan wrote to an unknown person that the Solovki bishops wanted to wait for the repentance of Sergius “until the convening of a canonical Council… in the assurance that the Council could not fail to demand that of him”.[27]

 

*

     Although the church revolution engineered by Metropolitan Sergius and supported by the Soviets was conceived and first brought to fruition in the centre, in Moscow, it could not hope to succeed on a large scale if it did not also triumph in the other capital of Russian life, Petrograd – or Leningrad, as the communists now called it. The revolutionaries must have had good hopes of succeeding also in Petrograd. After all, it had been the birthplace of the political revolution in 1917, and had also been pivotal in the renovationists’ church revolution in 1922-23. But by the Providence of God it was precisely in revolutionary Petrograd that the fight-back began. Let us go back a little in time to see how this came to pass.[28]

     By the end of 1925 the Episcopal council of vicar-bishops that had ruled the Petrograd diocese since the martyric death of Metropolitan Benjamin in 1922 ceased its existence – three bishops were arrested: Benedict (Plotnikov), Innocent (Tikhonov) and Seraphim (Protopopov). There remained only Bishop Gregory (Lebedev). Also in the city were Bishop Sergius (Druzhinin) and Bishop Demetrius (Lyubimov). These three were all thoroughly Orthodox bishops, who would lead the Catacomb Church after 1927 and suffer martyric deaths. However, in the spring of 1926 there returned from exile two Petrograd vicar-bishops, Nicholas (Yarushevich) and Alexis (Simansky). These two bishops, together with Metropolitan Sergius, would form the core of the apostate Moscow Patriarchate in the 1940s. Alexis had already betrayed the faith once, by removing the anathema placed by Metropolitan Benjamin on the renovationist Vvedensky. Now he, Nicholas and a group of clergy led by Protopriest Nicholas Chukov, who became Metropolitan Gregory of Leningrad after the war, they represented the neo-renovationist tendency in the city who wanted to improve relations with the Soviets and get the Church legalized by them.

     Fr. Michael Cheltsov, the future hieromartyr, describes the incipient schism between these two groups of bishops: “Alexis, led by the group of Fr. Chukov and co., decided to push through the matter of negotiations with Soviet power over legalization through the common participation of all the bishops and even through a decision by the bishops alone. Gregory gave no reply to his invitation and did not go. Demetrius at first suggested going, and Gregory advised him to go. Sergius of Narva, flattered by this for him unexpected beckoning into the midst of the bishops, was staying with me and Bishop Demetrius and on our joint advice was at the meeting. The three bishops did not constitute an assembly. Alexis and Nicholas, who were both sympathetic to legalization and wanted it fervently, could not consider Sergius as their equal, and therefore without the other two considered that the meeting had not taken place. Sergius also spoke about the necessity of a meeting of all the bishops, but introduced the desire to bring to this meeting some of the city protopriests. The meeting ended with nothing. But for the two bishops – Alexis and Demetrius – it was clear that Gregory and Demetrius were not with them, but against them.”

     “Two groups became clearly delineated: Alexis and Nicholas, and Gregory and Demetrius. Sergius, in view of his closeness to [Protopriest Basil] Veriuzhsky [rector of the zealot Cathedral of the Resurrection “on the Blood”] and to me, also joined the group of Gregory…”[29]

     In August, 1926 Bishop Alexis was transferred to the see of Novogord, and Archbishop Joseph (Petrovykh) of Petrograd was appointed Metropolitan of Petrograd. This appointment was greeted with great joy by the faithful. However, the Soviets refused Joseph permission to go to Petrograd - he served there only once, on September 12, the feast of St. Alexander Nevsky, and never returned to the city again. In the meantime, he appointed the little-known Bishop Gabriel (Voyevodin) as his deputy.

     Meanwhile, Bishop Alexis received permission from the Soviets to stay in Petrograd and began to serve in the churches of his friends in the city. This was opposed by Bishops Gregory and Demetrius, who obtained from Metropolitan Joseph that bishops from other sees (i.e. Alexis) should not be allowed to serve in the city without the permission of Bishop Gabriel. But Bishop Alexis paid not attention to the metropolitan and continued to serve – to the distress of the faithful.

     At the beginning of the Great Fast, 1927 Bishops Gregory and Gabriel were arrested and cast into prison. Since Metropolitan Joseph was still in exile in Ustiuzhna, Bishop Nicholas began to administer the diocese as being the senior bishop by ordination, and in April received official permission to do this from Metropolitan Sergius in Moscow. On his return to Petrograd, Bishop Nicholas began to act authoritatively and brusquely towards his fellow hierarchs, and in August he obtained the forcible retirement of Bishop Sergius from his see.

     The previous month Metropolitan Sergius’ Declaration had been published, and Bishop Nicholas tried to get it distributed and read out in church. However, there was widespread resistance to this. When Fr. Nicholas Chukov read it out, there was a great commotion in the church. And when one of the deans, the future Hieromartyr Fr. Sergius Tikhomirov, received it, he immediately sent it back to Nicholas and resigned his deanery. “Whether the epistle was read out somewhere or not,” writes Fr. Michael Cheltsov, “the mood among the Peterites against Metropolitan Sergius and to a significant extent against our Nicholas was sharply negative. Their Orthodoxy, especially of the former, was subjected to powerful doubt, and trust in them was undermined. Our clergy, if they read the epistle, were all against it.”[30]

     However, it was not the Declaration so much as the actions undertaken by Metropolitan Sergius against Metropolitan Joseph that stirred the Petrograd flock into action. On September 12 (or 17) Metropolitan Joseph was transferred to the see of Odessa by decree of Sergius’ Synod.

     On September 17, 1927, Metropolitan Sergius, probably acting under pressure from the authorities, transferred Metropolitan Joseph from Petrograd to Odessa. On September 28, Metropolitan Joseph wrote to Sergius that he refused to accept it, saying that he saw in it “an evil intrigue by a clique which did not want him to be in Leningrad”. Then he wrote to Tuchkov asking that he be allowed to administer the Leningrad diocese. Finally he wrote to Sergius again rebuking him and his Synod for “a woefully servile obedience to a principle alien to the Church”. He said that he regarded his transfer as “anti-canonical, ill-advised and pleasing to an evil intrigue in which I will have no part”. He clearly saw in it the hand of the OGPU, to which Metropolitan Sergius was simply giving in.

     On October 21, Sergius directed all the clergy in Russia to commemorate the Soviet authorities, and not the bishops who were in exile. This measure greatly increased the anxiety of the faithful. The commemoration of the Soviet authorities was seen by many as the boundary beyond which the Church would fall away from Orthodoxy. And the refusal to commemorate the exiled hierarchs implied that the hierarchs themselves were not Orthodox and constituted a break with the tradition of commemorating exiled hierarchs that extended back to the time of the Roman catacombs. Sergius was in effect cutting the faithful off from their canonical hierarchs.

     One of the leaders of the opposition, the future hieromartyr and possibly bishop, Mark Novoselov, saw in these events the third step in the revolution’s destruction of the Church. The first step was the revolution’s depriving the Church of Her civil protector, the Orthodox Christian Emperor in 1917, “thereby doubling the significance of the pastors”. The second step was its depriving the Church of the possibility of convening Councils, by which it “increased their [the pastors’] significance tenfold, since it made every bishop the real guardian of Orthodoxy in his province. The third step took place in 1927, when “under the form of the gift of legalization the Church was deprived of this Her head,” which increased the significance of the true pastors still more.

     Sergius’ act of October 21 “depersonalized” the Liturgy, according to Mark, by “1) casting into the shade the person of Metropolitan Peter through (a) ceasing to commemorate him as ‘our Lord’ and (b) placing the name of Metropolitan Sergius next to it, that is, two names in one patriarchal place, which is both contrary to the spirit of the canons and deprives the name of the head of the Russian Church – and the personal name of Metropolitan Peter - of its very symbolical meaning; 2) introducing the commemoration of the impersonal name of the authorities, … and 3) casting into oblivion the names and persons who shone out in their confessing exploit.”[31]

     Hieromartyr Mark pointed out that, while transfers of bishops took place frequently in tsarist Russia, those were in the context of a single Church family, when Russia was as it were “one diocese”. But the transfers in Soviet times were far more dangerous; for when the people were deprived of their confessing bishop, whom they knew and loved, there was no guarantee that his replacement – if there was a replacement – would be Orthodox.

     On October 25, Bishop Nicholas (Yarushevich) proclaimed in the cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ in Petrograd the decision of the Provisional Synod to transfer Metropolitan Joseph (Petrovykh) from Petrograd to Odessa (the secular authorities had already forbidden Metropolitan Joseph to return to the city). In the same decision Bishops Demetrius and Seraphim were forbidden to leave the diocese “without the knowledge and blessing” of Bishop Nicholas (Yarushevich). This caused major disturbances in Petrograd. However, Metropolitan Sergius paid no attention to the disturbances in Petrograd. Taking upon himself the administration of the diocese, he sent in his place Bishop Alexis (Simansky). So already, only three months after the declaration, the new revolutionary cadres were being put in place… Then, on October 31, Archimandrite Sergius (Zenkevich) was consecrated Bishop of Detskoe Selo, although the canonical bishop, Gregory (Lebedev), was still alive but languishing in a GPU prison. From that moment many parishioners stopped going to churches where Metropolitan Sergius’ name was commemorated, and Bishop Nicholas was not invited to serve.[32]

     On October 30 Metropolitan Joseph wrote to Sergius: “You made me metropolitan of Leningrad without the slightest striving for it on my part. It was not without disturbance and distress that I accepted this dangerous obedience, which others, perhaps wisely (otherwise it would have been criminal) decisively declined… Vladyko! Your firmness is yet able to correct everything and urgently put an end to every disturbance and indeterminateness. It is true, I am not free and cannot now serve my flock, but after all everybody understands this ‘secret’… Now anyone who is to any degree firm and needed is unfree (and will hardly be free in the future)… You say: this is what the authorities want; they are giving back their freedom to exiled hierarchs on the condition that they change their former place of serving and residence. But what sense or benefit can we derive from the leap-frogging and shuffling of hierarchs that this has elicited, when according to the spirit of the Church canons they are in an indissoluble union with their flock as with a bride? Would it not be better to say: let it be, this false human mercy, which is simply a mockery of our human dignity, which strives for a cheap effect, a spectre of clemency. Let it be as it was before; it will be better like that. Somehow we’ll get to the time when they finally understand that the eternal, universal Truth cannot be conquered by exiles and vain torments… One compromise might be permissible in the given case… Let them (the hierarchs) settle in other places as temporarily governing them, but let them unfailingly retain their former title…  I cannot be reconciled in my conscience with any other scheme, I am absolutely unable to recognize as correct my disgustingly tsarist-rasputinite transfer to the Odessa diocese, which took place without any fault on my part or any agreement of mine, and even without my knowledge. And I demand that my case be immediately transferred from the competence of your Synod, in whose competence I am not the only one to doubt, for discussion by a larger Council of bishops, to which alone I consider myself bound to display my unquestioning obedience.”   

*

     On November 24 an important meeting took place in the flat of Protopriest Theodore Andreyev, at which it was decided to write several letters to Sergius. A few days later one such letter, composed by Fr. Theodore and Mark (Novoselov), was read out in the flat of Bishop Demetrius. On December 12 a meeting took place in Moscow between Metropolitan Sergius and his leading opponents from Petrograd which deserves to be described in detail because it marked the decisive make-or-break point between Sergius’ Moscow Patriarchate and what became known as the True Orthodox or Catacomb Church.    

     Bishop Demetrius, Protopriest Basil Veryuzhsky, I.M. Andreyevsky and Professor Sergius Semyonovich Abramovich-Baranovsky were received in Moscow by Metropolitan Sergius. Bishop Demetrius handed him an appeal by six Petrograd bishops; Fr. Basil gave him one written in the name of the clergy, which had been written by Protopriest Theodore Andreyev; and Andreyevsky gave him one written in the name of the church intelligentsia and written by Professor Abramovich-Baranovsky. The letters called on Sergius to abandon his present church policy, stop transferring bishops arbitrarily and return to the position adopted by Patriarch Tikhon.[33]

     Sergius read everything slowly and attentively, but occasionally broke off to make a comment.

     “Here you are protesting, while many other groups recognize me and express their approval,” he said. “I cannot take account of everyone and please everyone and each group. Each of you judges from your bell-tower, but I act for the good of the Russian Church.”

     “We also, Vladyko,” we objected, “want to work for the good of the whole Church. And then: we are not just one of many small groups, but express the church-social opinion of the Leningrad diocese composed of eight bishops – the better part of the clergy. I express the opinion of hundreds of my friends and acquaintances and, I hope, thousands of likeminded scientific workers of the Leningrad diocese, while S.A. represents broad popular circles.

     “You are hindered in accepting my appeal by a counter-revolutionary political ideology,” said Metropolitan Sergius, “which was condemned by his Holiness Patriarch Tikhon,” and he got out one of the papers signed by his Holiness Patriarch Tikhon.

     “No, Vladyko, it is not our political convictions, but our religious conscience that does not allow us to accept that which your conscience allows you to accept. We are in complete agreement with his Holiness Patriarch Tikhon (in the indicated paper). We also condemn counter-revolutionary speeches. We stand on the point of view of the condemnation of your declaration made by Solovki. Do you know this epistle from Solovki?”

     “This appeal was signed by one man (Bishop Basil Zelentsov), but others approve of me. Do you know that I was accepted and approved by Metropolitan Peter himself?”

     “Forgive us, Vladyko, that is not quite right. It was not the metropolitan himself. But did you hear this through Bishop Basil?”

     “Yes, but how do you know?”

     “We know this from the words of Bishop Basil. Metropolitan Peter said that he ‘understands [ponimaiet]’, but does not ‘accept [prinimaiet] you. But has Metropolitan Peter not written anything to you?”

     “You must know that I have no communications with him!” said Metropolitan Sergius.

     “They why, Vladyko, do you say that Metropolitan Peter himself recognized you?”

     “Well, what’s special in commemorating the authorities?” said Metropolitan Sergius. “Since we recognized them, we also pray for them. Did we not pray for the tsar, for Nero and the rest?”

     “But is it possible to pray for the Antichrist?” we asked.

     “No, that is impossible.”

     “But can you vouch that this is not the power of the Antichrist?”

     “I can vouch for it. The Antichrist must come for three and a half years, but in this case ten years have already passed.”

     “But after all, is this not the spirit of the Antichist, who does not confess that Christ has come in the flesh?”

     “This spirit has always been with us from the time of Christ to our days. What antichrist is this, I do not recognize him!”

     “Forgive us, Vladyko, you ‘do not recognize him’. Only an elder can say that. But since there is the possibility that this is the antichrist, we do not pray [for him]. Besides, from the religious point of view our rulers are not an authority.”

     “How not an authority?”

     “A hierarchy is called an authority when not only someone is subject to me, but I myself am subject to someone higher than myself, etc., and all this goes up to God as the source of every authority!”

     “Well, that’s a subtle philosophy!”

     “The pure in heart simply feel this. But if one reasons, then one must reason subtly, since the question is new, profound, complex and subject to conciliar discussion, and not such a simplified understanding as you give it.”

     “But prayer for those in exile and prison is excluded because they have made a political demonstration out of this.”

     “And when, Vladyko, will the tenth beatitude be repealed? After all, it, too, can be seen as a demonstration.”

     “It will not be repealed, it is part of the liturgy!”

     “Prayer for the exiles is also part of the liturgy!”

     “My name must be raised in order to distinguish the Orthodox from ‘Borisovschina’, who commemorate Metropolitan Peter but do not recognize me.”

     “But do you know, Vladyko, that your name is now pronounced in the renovationist churches?”

     “That’s only a trick!”

     “Then ‘Borisovschina’ is also a trick!”

     “Well, what about the Synod, what don’t you like about it?”

     “We do not recognize it, we don’t trust it, but we trust you for the time being. You are the deputy of the Patriarchal locum tenens, but the Synod is some kind of personal secretariat attached to you, is it?”

     “No, it is a co-ruling organ.”

     “So without the Synod you yourself can do nothing?”

     “[after a long period not wanting to reply] Well, yes, without conferring with it.”

     “We ask you to report nothing about our matter to the Synod. We do not trust it and do not recognize it. We have come personally to you.”

     “Why don’t you like Metropolitan Seraphim?”

     “Can it be that you don’t know, Vladyko?”

     “That’s all slander and gossip.”

     “We haven’t come to quarrel with you, but to declare to you from the many who have sent us that we cannot, our religious conscience does not allow us to recognize, the course that you have embarked on. Stop, for the sake of Christ, stop!”

     “This position of yours is called confessing. You have a halo…”

     “But what must a Christian be?”

     “There are confessors and martyrs. But there are also diplomats and guides. But every sacrifice is accepted! Remember Cyprian of Carthage.”

     “Are you saving the Church?”

     “Yes, I am saving the Church.”

     “The Church does not need salvation, but you yourself are being saved through her.

     “Well, of course, from the religious point of view it is senseless to say: ‘I am saving the Church’. But I’m talking about the external position of the Church.”

     “And Metropolitan Joseph?”

     “You know him only from one side. No, he categorically cannot be returned.”

     According to another account, Bishop Demetrius - who was then 70 years old - fell to his knees before Sergius and exclaimed:

     "Vladyka! Listen to us, in the name of Christ!"

     Metropolitan Sergius immediately raised him up from his knees, seated him in an armchair, and said in a firm and somewhat irritated voice:

     "What is there to listen to? Everything you have written has been written by others earlier, and to all this I have already replied many times clearly and definitely. What remains unclear to you?"

     "Vladyka!" began Bishop Demetrius in a trembling voice with copious tears. "At the time of my consecration you told me that I should be faithful to the Orthodox Church and, in case of necessity, should also be prepared to lay down my own life for Christ. And now such a time of confession has come and I wish to suffer for Christ. But you, by your Declaration, instead of a path to Golgotha propose that we stand on the path of collaboration with a God-fighting regime that persecutes and blasphemes Christ. You propose that we rejoice with its joys and sorrow with its sorrows... Our rulers strive to annihilate religion and the Church and rejoice at the successes of their anti-religious propaganda. This joy of theirs is the source of our sorrow. You propose that we thank the Soviet government for its attention to the needs of the Orthodox population. But how is this attention expressed? In the murder of hundreds of bishops, thousands of priests, and millions of faithful. In the defilement of holy things, the mockery of relics, in the destruction of an immense number of churches and the annihilation of all monasteries. Surely it would be better if they did not give us such 'attention'!"

     "Our government," Metropolitan Sergius suddenly interrupted the bishop, "has persecuted the clergy only for political crimes."

     "That is a slander!" Bishop Demetrius cried out heatedly.

     "We wish to obtain a reconciliation of the Orthodox Church with the governing regime," Metropolitan Sergius continued with irritation, "while you are striving to underline the counter-revolutionary character of the Church. Consequently, you are counter-revolutionaries, whereas we are entirely loyal to the Soviet regime!"

     "That is not true!" exclaimed Bishop Demetrius heatedly. "That is another slander against the confessors and martyrs, those who have been shot and those who are languishing in concentration camps and in banishment... What counter-revolutionary act did the executed Metropolitan Benjamin perform? What is 'counter-revolutionary' in the position of Metropolitan Peter of Krutitsa?"

     "And the Karlovtsy Council [of the Russian Church in exile], in your opinion, also did not have a political character?" Metropolitan Sergius interrupted him again.

     "There was no Karlovtsy Council in Russia," Bishop Demetrius replied quietly, "and many martyrs in the concentration camps knew nothing of this Council."

     "I personally," continued the bishop, "am a completely apolitical man, and if I myself had to accuse myself to the GPU, I couldn't imagine anything of which I am guilty before the Soviet regime. I only sorrow and grieve, seeing the persecution against religion and the Church. We pastors are forbidden to speak of this, and we are silent. But to the question whether there is any persecution against religion and the Church in the USSR, I could not reply otherwise than affirmatively. When they proposed to you, Vladyka, that you write your Declaration, why did you not reply like Metropolitan Peter, that you can keep silence, but cannot say what is untrue?"

     "And where is the untruth?" exclaimed Metropolitan Sergius.

     "In the fact," replied Bishop Demetrius, "that persecution against religion, the 'opium of the people' according to Marxist dogma, not only exists among us, but in its cruelty, cynicism and blasphemy has passed all limits!"

     On December 15 Tuchkov, having received a secret report from Petrograd on this meeting with Sergius, wrote the following in his own handwriting: “To Comrade Polyansky. 1. Tell Leningrad that Sergius had a delegation with such-and-such suggestions. 2. Suggest that the most active laymen be arrested under some other pretenses. 3. Tell them that we will influence Sergius that he ban certain of the oppositional bishops from serving, and let Yarushevich then ban some of the priests.”[34]

     Having failed to convince Metropolitan Sergius, on December 26 Bishops Demetrius of Gdov and Sergius of Narva separated from Sergius: “for the sake of the peace of our conscience we reject the person and the works of our former leader, who has unlawfully and beyond measure exceeded his rights”.

     Sergius soon began issuing bans against the True Orthodox bishops. But the True Orthodox paid no attention to them. On December 30 Archbishop Demetrius wrote to Fr. Alexander Sidorov, a priest in Moscow, who had been threatened with defrocking: “May the Lord help you to remain in peace and unanimity in the firm confession of the purity and truth of the Orthodox faith, helping each other with love in everything. Do not be disturbed by any bans that the apostates from the faith of Christ are preparing for you. Any ban or defrocking of you by Metropolitan Sergius, his synod or bishops for your stand in the Truth has not reality for you. As long as there remains just one firmly Orthodox bishop, have communion with him. If the Lord permits it, and you remain without a bishop, then may the Spirit of truth, the Holy Spirit, be with you all, inspiring you to solve all the questions which you may encounter on your path in the spirit of True Orthodoxy.”

     Again, on January 4/17, 1928 he wrote “to Father Superiors” that he was breaking communion in prayer with Metropolitan Sergius “until a complete Local Council of the Russian Church, at which will be represented the entire active episcopate - i.e. the present exile-confessors - shall justify by its conciliar authority our way of acting, or until such time as Metropolitan Sergius will come to himself and repent of his sins not only against the canonical order of the Church, but also dogmatically against her person (blaspheming against the sanctity of the exploit of the confessors by casting doubt on the purity of their Christian convictions, as if they were mixed up in politics), against her conciliarity (by his and his Synod's acts of coercion), against her apostolicity (by subjecting the Church to worldly rules and by his inner break - while preserving a false unity - with Metropolitan Peter, who did not give Metropolitan Sergius authorization for his latest acts, beginning with the epistle (Declaration) of July 16/29, 1927). 'Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions' (II Thessalonians 2.7).[35]

     On Christmas Day, 1927/28, Metropolitan Joseph officially supported the actions of Bishops Demetrius and Sergius. In a letter to a Soviet archimandrite, he rejected the charge of being a schismatic, accused Sergius of being a schismatic, and went on: “The defenders of Sergius say that the canons allow one to separate oneself from a bishop only for heresy which has been condemned by a Council. Against this one may reply that the deeds of Metropolitan Sergius may be sufficiently placed in this category as well, if one has in mind such an open violation by him of the freedom and dignity of the Church, One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic. But beyond this, the canons themselves could not foresee many things, and can one dispute that it is even worse and more harmful than any heresy when one plunges a knife into the Church’s very heart – Her freedom and dignity?… ‘Lest imperceptibly and little by little we lose the freedom which our Lord Jesus Christ, the Liberator of all men, has given us as a free gift by His Own Blood’ (8th Canon of the Third Ecumenical Council)… Perhaps I do not dispute that ‘there are more of you at present than of us’. And let it be said that ‘the great mass is not for me’, as you say. But I will never consider myself a schismatic, even if I were to remain absolutely alone, as one of the holy confessors once was. The matter is not at all one of quantity, do not forget that for a minute: ‘The Son of God when He cometh shall He find faith on the earth?’ (Luke 18.8). And perhaps the last ‘rebels’ against the betrayers of the Church and the accomplices of Her ruin will be not only bishops and not protopriests, but the simplest mortals, just as at the Cross of Christ His last gasp of suffering was heard by a few simple souls who were close to Him…”[36] 

*

     Meanwhile, antisergianist groups were forming in different parts of the country. Thus between October 3 and 6, 1927 an antisergianist diocesan assembly took place in Ufa, and on November 8 Archbishop Andrew of Ufa issued an encyclical from Kzyl-Orda in which he said that “even if the lying Sergius repents, as he repented three times before of renovationism, under no circumstances must he be received into communion”. This encyclical quickly circulated throughout Eastern Russia and Siberia.  

     In November, Bishop Victor of Glazov broke with Sergius. He had especially noted the phrase in the declaration that “only ivory-tower dreamers can think that such an enormous society as our Orthodox Church, with the whole of its organisation, can have a peaceful existence in the State while hiding itself from the authorities.” To Sergius himself Bishop Victor wrote: “The enemy has lured and seduced you a second time with the idea of an organization of the Church. But if this organization is bought for the price of the Church of Christ Herself no longer remaining the house of Grace-giving salvation for men, and he who received the organization ceases to be what he was – for it is written, ‘Let his habitation be made desolate, and his bishopric let another take’ (Acts 1.20) – then it were better for us never to have any kind of organization. What is the benefit if we, having become by God’s Grace temples of the Holy Spirit, become ourselves suddenly worthless, while at the same time receiving an organization for ourselves? No. Let the whole visible material world perish; let there be more important in our eyes the certain perdition of the soul to which he who presents such pretexts for sin will be subjected.” And he concluded that Sergius’ pact with the atheists was “not less than any heresy or schism, but is rather incomparably greater, for it plunges a man immediately into the abyss of destruction, according to the unlying word: ‘Whosoever shall deny Me before men…’ (Matthew 10.33).”[37]

     At the same time antisergianism began to develop in the Ukraine with the publication of the “Kievan appeal” by Schema-Archbishop Anthony (Abashidze), Bishop Damascene of Glukhov and Fr. Anatolius Zhurakovsky. They wrote concerning Sergius’ declaration: “Insofar as the deputy of the patriarchal locum tenens makes declarations in the person of the whole Church and undertakes responsible decisions without the agreement of the locum tenens and an array of bishops, he is clearly going beyond the bounds of his prerogatives…”[38] In December the Kievans were joined by two brother bishops – Archbishops Averky and Pachomius (Kedrov).[39]

     The Kievans were supported by the famous writer Sergius Alexandrovich Nilus, who wrote to L.A. Orlov in February, 1928: “As long as there is a church of God that is not of  ‘the Church of the evildoers’, go to it whenever you can; but if not, pray at home… They will say: ‘But where will you receive communion? With whom? I reply: ‘The Lord will show you, or an Angel will give you communion, for in ‘the Church of the evildoers’ there is not and cannot be the Body and Blood of the Lord. Here in Chernigov, out of all the churches only the church of the Trinity has remained faithful to Orthodoxy; but if it, too, will commemorate the [sergianist] Exarch Michael, and, consequently, will have communion in prayer with him, acting with the blessing of Sergius and his Synod, then we shall break communion with it.”

     On February 6, 1928 the hierarchs of the Yaroslavl diocese, led by Metropolitan Agathangel, signed an act of separation from Metropolitan Sergius. Metropolitan Joseph also signed the document. Two days later he announced to his Petrograd vicars, pastors and flock that he was taking upon himself the leadership of the Petrograd diocese. This persuaded the authorities to arrest him on February 29, and send him again to the Nikolo-Modensky monastery. On March 11 Metropolitan Sergius and his Synod placed Metropolitan Joseph under ban.

     In the birth of the Catacomb Church in 1927-28 we can see the rebirth of the spirit of the 1917-18 Council. In the previous decade, the original fierce tone of reproach and rejection of the God-hating authorities, epitomized above all by the anathematization of Soviet power, had gradually softened under the twin pressures of the Bolsheviks from without and the renovationists from within. Although the apocalyptic spirit of the Council remained alive in the masses, and prevented the Church leaders from actually commemorating the antichristian power, compromises continued to be made – compromises that were never repaid by compromises on the part of the Bolsheviks. However, these acts did not cross the line separating compromise from apostasy. That line was passed by Metropolitan Sergius when he recognized the God-cursed power to be God-established, and ordered it to be commemorated while banning the commemoration of the confessing bishops. At this point the spirit of the Council flared up again in all its original strength. For, as a “Letter from Russia” put it many years later: “It’s no use our manoeuvring; there’s nothing for us to preserve except the things that are God’s. For the things that are Caesar’s (if one should really consider it to be Caesar and not Pharaoh) are always associated with the quenching of the Spirit.”[40] Again, as Protopresbyter Michael Polsky wrote: “The Orthodoxy that submits to the Soviets and has become a weapon of the worldwide antichristian deception is not Orthodoxy, but the deceptive heresy of antichristianity clothed in the torn raiment of historical Orthodoxy…”[41]

     Already by 1928 Metropolitan Sergius’ church was a Sovietized institution. We see this in the official church calendar for 1928, which included among the feasts of the church: the memory of the Leader of the Proletariat Vladimir Ilyich Lenin (on the 32nd Sunday after Pentecost), the Overthrow of the Autocracy (in the Third Week of the Great Fast), the memory of the Paris Commune (the same week), the Day of the Internationale and the Day of the Proletarian Revolution.[42]

     By the end of the 1920s there were vigorous groups of True Orthodox Christians in every part of the country, with especially strong centres in Petrograd, Moscow, Kiev, Voronezh, the North Caucasus, Kazan, Ufa, Orenburg and the Urals… It remained now to unite these scattered groups under a common leadership, or, at any rate, under a common confession, through the convening of a Council of the Catacomb Church… Now we can infer from a remark of Hieromartyr Maximus of Serpukhov, the first secretly consecrated bishop of the Catacomb Church, that there was some Catacomb Council in 1928 that anathematized the Sergianists.[43] Another source has described a so-called “Nomadic Council” attended at different times by over 70 bishops in 1928 which likewise anathematized the Sergianists. But hard evidence for the existence of this council has proved hard to obtain,[44] and there are reasons for suspecting the authenticity of the council protocols.[45]

     A “Little Council” of Catacomb bishops took place in Archangelsk in 1935 and proclaimed: “We declare Metropolitan Sergius, who has violated the purity of the Orthodox faith, who has distorted the dogma of Salvation and of the Church, and who has caused a schism and blasphemed against the Church of Christ and Her confessors, and in scattering the Church has also blasphemed against the Holy Spirit, to be deprived of communion in prayer with us and with all the Orthodox bishops of the Russian Church. We commit him to ecclesiastical trial and ban him from serving. The bishops who think like Metropolitan Sergius are accepted by us into canonical and prayerful communion in accordance with the rite of reception from renovationism.”[46]

     How many bishops supported Sergius? Out of the approximately 150 Russian bishops in 1927, 80 declared themselves definitely against the declaration, 17 separated from Sergius but did not make their position clear, and 9 at first separated but later changed their mind.[47]

     On August 6, 1929 Sergius’ synod declared: “The sacraments performed in separation from Church unity… by the followers of the former Metropolitan Joseph (Petrovykh) of Leningrad, the former Bishop Demetrius (Lyubimov) of Gdov, the former Bishop Alexis (Buj) of Urazov, as also of those who are under ban, are also invalid, and those who are converted from these schisms, if they have been baptized in schism, are to be received through Holy Chrismation.”[48]

     However, as even the sergianist Bishop Manuel (Lemeshevsky) had to admit: “It is the best pastors who have fallen away and cut themselves off…”[49]

     In 1929, the Bolsheviks began to imprison the True Orthodox on the basis of membership of a “counter-revolutionary church monarchist organization, the True Orthodox Church”. The numbers of True Orthodox Christians arrested between 1929 and 1933 exceeded by seven times the numbers of clergy repressed from 1924 to 1928.[50] Then in 1929 5000 clergy were repressed, three times more than in 1928; in 1930 – 13,000; in 1931-32 – 19,000.[51]

     Vladimir Rusak writes: “The majority of clergy and laymen, preserving the purity of ecclesiological consciousness, did not recognize the Declaration… On this soil fresh arrests were made. All those who did not recognize the Declaration were arrested and exiled to distant regions or confined in prisons and camps. [In 1929] about 15 hierarchs who did not share the position of Metropolitan Sergius were arrested. Metropolitan Cyril, the main ‘opponent’ of Metropolitan Sergius, was exiled to Turukhansk in June-July. The arrest procedure looked something like this: an agent of the GPU appeared before a bishop and put him a direct question: what is your attitude to the Declaration of Metropolitan Sergius? If the bishop replied that he did not recognize it, the agent drew the conclusion: that means that you are a counter-revolutionary. The bishop was arrested.”[52]

     It is hardly a coincidence that this took place against the background of the collectivization of agriculture and a general attack on religion[53] spearheaded by Yaroslavsky’s League of Militant Godless (who numbered 17 million by 1933). Vladimir Rusak writes: “1928, the beginning of collectivisation. Stalin could no longer ‘leave the Church in the countryside’. In one interview he gave at that time he directly complained against ‘the reactionary clergy’ who were poisoning the souls of the masses. ’The only thing I can complain about is that the clergy was not liquidated root and branch,’ he said. At the 15th Congress of the party he demanded that all weariness in the anti-religious struggle be overcome.”[54]

     Also in 1928, economic cooperatives and all philanthropic organizations were banned.[55] But this was only the beginning: the real killer was collectivization, which, together with the artificial famine that followed, claimed as many as 14 million lives. Collectivization can be seen as an attempt to destroy religion in its stronghold, the countryside, by destroying the economic base of village life and forcing all the villagers into communes completely dependent on the State. The peasants, led by their priests, put up a fierce opposition to it, and many were brought to trial and sentenced to the camps.

     Husband writes: “On 8 April 1929, the VtsIK and Sovnarkom declaration ‘On Religious Associations’ largely superseded the 1918 separation of church and state and redefined freedom of conscience. Though reiterating central aspects of the 1918 separation decree, the new law introduced important limitations. Religious associations of twenty or more adults were allowed, but only if registered and approved in advance by government authorities. They retained their previous right to the free use of buildings for worship but still could not exist as a judicial person. Most important, the new regulations rescinded the previously guaranteed [!] right to conduct religious propaganda, and it reaffirmed the ban on religious instructions in state educational institutions. In effect, proselytising and instruction outside the home were illegal except in officially sanctioned classes, and religious rights of assembly and property were now more circumscribed.”[56]

     “Henceforth,” writes Nicholas Werth, “any activity ‘going beyond the limits of the simple satisfaction of religious aspirations’ fell under the law. Notably, section 10 of the much-feared Article 58 of the penal code stipulated that ‘any use of the religious prejudices of the masses… for destabilizing the state’ was punishable ‘by anything from a minimum three-year sentence up to and including the death penalty’. On 26 August 1929 the government instituted the new five-day work week – five days of work, and one day of rest – which made it impossible to observe Sunday as a day of rest. This measure deliberately introduced ‘to facilitate the struggle to eliminate religion’.

     “These decrees were no more than a prelude to a second, much larger phase of the antireligious campaign. In October 1929 the seizure of all church bells was ordered because ‘the sound of bells disturbs the right to peace of the vast majority of atheists in the towns and the countryside’. Anyone closely associated with the church was treated like a kulak and forced to pay special taxes. The taxes paid by religious leaders increased tenfold from 1928 to 1930, and the leaders were stripped of their civil rights, which meant that they lost their ration cards and their right to medical care. Many were arrested, exiled, or deported. According to the incomplete records, more than 13,000 priests were ‘dekulakised’ in 1930. In many villages and towns, collectivisation began symbolically with the closure of the church, and dekulakization began with the removal of the local religious leaders. Significantly, nearly 14 percent of riots and peasant uprisings in 1930 were sparked by the closure of a church or the removal of its bells. The antireligious campaign reached its height in the winter of 1929-30; by 1 March 1930, 6,715 churches had been closed or destroyed. In the aftermath of Stalin’s famous article ‘Dizzy with Success’ on 2 March 1930, a resolution from the Central Committee cynically condemned ‘inadmissible deviations in the struggle against religious prejudices, particularly the administrative closure of churches without the consent of the local inhabitants’. This formal condemnation had no effect on the fate of the people deported on religious grounds.

     “Over the next few years these great offensives against the church were replaced by daily administrative harassment of priests and religious organizations. Freely interpreting the sixty-eight articles of the government decree of 8 April 1929, and going considerably beyond their mandate when it came to the closure of churches, local authorities continued their guerrilla war with a series of justifications: ‘unsanitary condition or extreme age’ of the buildings in question, ‘unpaid insurance’, and non-payment of taxes or other of the innumerable contributions imposed on the members of religious communities. Stripped of their civil rights and their right to teach, and without the possibility of taking up other paid employment – a status that left them arbitrarily classified as ‘parasitic elements living on unearned wages’ – a number of priests had no option but to become peripatetic and to lead a secret life on the edges of society.”[57]

     Religious life did not cease but rather intensified in the underground. Wandering bishops and priests served the faithful in secret locations around the country. Particular areas buzzed with underground activity. Thus Professor Ivan Andreyevsky testified that during the war he personally knew some 200 places of worship of the Catacomb Church in the Leningrad area alone. Popovsky writes that the Catacomb Church “arose in our midst at the end of the 20s. First one, then another priest disappeared from his parish, settled in a secret place and began the dangerous life of exiles. In decrepit little houses on the outskirts of towns chapels appeared. There they served the Liturgy, heard confessions, gave communion, baptized, married and even ordained new priests. Believers from distant towns and regions poured there in secret, passing on to each other the agreed knock on the door.”[58]

     Even patriarchal sources have spoken about the falsity of Sergius’ declaration, the true confession of those who opposed him, and the invalidity of the measures he took to punish them. Thus: “Amidst the opponents of Metropolitan Sergius were a multitude of remarkable martyrs and confessors, bishops, monks, priests… The ‘canonical’ bans of Metropolitan Sergius (Stragorodsky) and his Synod were taken seriously by no one, neither at that time [the 1930s] nor later by dint of the uncanonicity of the situation of Metropolitan Sergius himself…”[59] And again: “The particular tragedy of the Declaration of Metropolitan Sergius consists in its principled rejection of the podvig of martyrdom and confession, without which witnessing to the truth is inconceivable. In this way Metropolitan Sergius took as his foundation not hope on the Providence of God, but a purely human approach to the resolution of church problems… The courage of the ‘catacombniks’ and their firmness of faith cannot be doubted, and it is our duty to preserve the memory of those whose names we shall probably learn only in eternity…”[60]

 

*

     This persecution began to arouse criticism in the West – specifically, from Pope Pius XI and the Archbishop of Canterbury. On February 14, 1930 the Politburo decided “to entrust to Comrades Yaroslavsky, Stalin and Molotov the decision of the question of an interview” to counter-act these criticisms. The result was two interviews, the first to Soviet correspondents on February 15 and published on February 16 in Izvestia and Pravda in the name of Sergius and those members of his Synod who were still in freedom, and a second to foreign correspondents three days later.

     In the first interview, which is now thought to have been composed entirely by the Bolsheviks with the active participation of Stalin, but whose authenticity was never denied by Sergius[61], it was asserted that “in the Soviet Union there was not and is not now any religious persecution”, that “churches are closed not on the orders of the authorities, but at the wish of the population, and in many cases even at the request of the believers”, that “the priests themselves are to blame, because they do not use the opportunities presented to them by the freedom to preach” and that “the Church herself does not want to have any theological-educational institutions”.[62]

     This interview, writes Fr. Stefan Krasovitsky, “was especially absurd and scandalous in the eyes of the simple people in that the universally venerated chapel of the Iveron Icon of the Mother of God had just been destroyed. As N. Talberg writes, ‘the Russian people, fearing not even the chekists, demonstrated their attitude to him (Metropolitan Sergius)… When Metropolitan Sergius went to serve in one of the large churches of Moscow, the crowd whistled at him in the streets, which had never happened before in spite of the most desperate agitation of the atheists. Bishop Pitirim, one of those who had signed the declaration in the press, was also whistled at and met in the same way. Paris-Midi for March 5 (№ 1392) informed its readers of the insults Metropolitan Sergius had been subjected to by his flock in Moscow. Vozrozhdenie for March 6 (№ 178) printed the report of the Berlin Lokale Anzeiger to the effect that when Metropolitan Sergius ‘came out of the altar to serve the Liturgy, the crowd began to whistle and showered him with brickbats: “traitor”, “Judas”, “coward”, etc. The noise was so great that Metropolitan Sergius was not able to serve and went into the crowd to pacify them. But the aroused parishioners tried to tear his vestments from him, spat at him and wanted to take off his patriarchal cross. Metropolitan Sergius had to leave the church. He tried to serve the Liturgy in another church, but the believers boycotted his service.’ The Roman newspaper Today (№ 64), reporting the same incident, added that ‘not one person’ appeared at the service arranged by Metropolitan Sergius for the other church.”[63]

     Commenting on the interview, Archbishop Andrew of Ufa wrote: “Such is the opinion of the false-head of the false-patriarchal church of Metropolitan Sergius… But who is going to recognize this head after all this? For whom does this lying head remain a head, in spite of his betrayal of Christ?… All the followers of the lying Metropolitan Sergius… have fallen away from the Church of Christ. The Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church is somewhere else, not near Metropolitan Sergius and not near ‘his Synod’.”[64]

     In May, 1932, Stalin declared an anti-religious five-year plan: by 1936 the last church was to be closed, and by 1937 the name of God would no longer be pronounced in the Soviet Union. By the beginning of 1933 half the churches in the land had been closed or destroyed.[65] But the census of 1937 established that two-thirds of the peasantry and one-third of the city-dwellers still maintained their faith in God. This impressive figure owed nothing to Sergius’ pact with the State, which divided the faithful and gave the atheists a powerful weapon against them.

     In 1933 Metropolitan Sergius stated officially that he “as the deputy of Metropolitan Peter, had not only the temporary authority of the First Hierarch but the Patriarchal Power as well”. He also declared that Metropolitan Peter, the lawful First Hierarch, did not have the right “to interfere in the administration of the Church or even correct the mistakes of his deputy.” [66] As a result of this shocking statement, Bishop Athanasius (Sakharov) of Kovrov broke communion with Sergius, as he stated in a letter to him on his return from exile in December, 1933.

     In April, 1934 Sergius’ Synod gave him the title of Metropolitan of Kolomna – Metropolitan Peter’s see – thereby making him in effect an “adulterer bishop”. In 1935 Metropolitan Peter returned to Moscow and met Metropolitan Sergius. The latter asked him to recognize the new construction of Church life and to agree to the convening of a Council. On his side, Metropolitan Peter demanded that Sergius return Church power to him. Sergius refused, and Peter returned to the camps. In August, 1936, the NKVD spread the rumour that Metropolitan Peter had died. The Sergianist Synod promptly – and completely uncanonically – passed a resolution transferring the rights and duties of the patriarchal locum tenency to Metropolitan Sergius. In fact, Metropolitan Peter was not martyred until October, 1937. So at this point Sergius not only de facto, but also de jure usurped the position of the canonical leader of the Russian Church.

 

*

     In view of this further departure of Metropolitan Sergius from the holy canons, it may be asked what was the reaction of the leading hierarchs of the Catacomb Church – Metropolitan Peter of Krutitsa, the patriarchal locum tenens and de jure leader of the Church, Metropolitan Joseph of Petrograd, her de facto leader, and Metropolitan Cyril of Kazan, the first locum tenens appointed by Patriarch Tikhon and the favoured candidate of the Russian episcopate for the role of patriarch.

     Metropolitan Peter’s attitude was particularly important to ascertain in view of the fact that both the True Orthodox and the sergianists formally acknowledged him as the Church’s first hierarch. Earlier, Bishop Damascene of Glukhov had claimed to have made contact with him through his cell-attendant, who reported that Metropolitan Peter expressed disapproval of Sergius’ policies. Thus on January 22, 1928 he wrote to a certain N. “For a first-hierarch such an appeal [as Sergius’ declaration] is inadmissible. Moreover, I don’t understand why a Synod was formed from (as I can see from the signatures under the appeal) unreliable people. Thus, for example, Bishop Philip is a heretic… In this appeal a shadow is cast upon me and the patriarch, as if we had political relations with abroad, whereas the only relations were ecclesiastical. I do not belong to the irreconcilables, I allowed everything that could be allowed, and it was suggested to me in a more polite manner that I sign the appeal. I refused, for which I was exiled. I trusted Metropolitan Sergius, and I see that I was mistaken.”

     On September 17, 1929, the priest Gregory Seletsky wrote to Metropolitan Joseph of Petrograd on behalf of Archbishop Demetrius (Lyubimov): “I am fulfilling the request of his Eminence Archbishop Demetrius and set out before you in written form that information which the exiled Bishop Damascene has communicated to me. He succeeded in making contact with Metropolitan Peter, and in sending him, via a trusted person, full information about everything that has been taking place in the Russian Church. Through this emissary Metropolitan Peter said the following to him: ’1. You Bishops must yourselves remove Metropolitan Sergius. ’2. I do not bless you to commemorate Metropolitan Sergius during Divine services…”[67]

     In December, 1929 Metropolitan Peter wrote to Sergius: “Your Eminence, forgive me magnanimously if by the present letter I disturb the peace of your Eminence’s soul. People inform me about the difficult circumstances that have formed for the Church in connection with the exceeding of the limits of the ecclesiastical authority entrusted to you. I am very sorry that you have not taken the trouble to initiate me into your plans for the administration of the Church. You know that I have not renounced the locum tenancy, and consequently, I have retained for myself the Higher Church Administration and the general leadership of Church life. At the same time I make bold to declare that your remit as deputy was only for the management of everyday affairs; you are only to preserve the status quo. I am profoundly convinced that without prior contact with me you will not make any responsible decision. I have not accorded you any constituent right as long as I retain the locum tenancy and as long as Metropolitan Cyril is alive and as long as Metropolitan Agathangelus was alive. Therefore I did not consider it necessary in my decree concerning the appointment of candidates for the deputyship to mention the limitation of their duties; I had no doubt that the deputy would not alter the established rights, but would only deputize, or represent, so to speak, the central organ through which the locum tenens could communicate with his flock. But the system of administration you have introduced not only excludes this: it also excludes the very need for the existence of the locum tenens. Such major steps cannot, of course, be approved by the consciousness of the Church. I did not admit any qualifications limiting the duties of the deputy, both from a feeling of deep reverence and trust for the appointed candidates, and first of all for you, having in mind at this point your wisdom. It is burdensome for me to number all the details of negative evaluations of your administration: the resounding protests and cries from believers, from hierarchs and laypeople. The picture of ecclesiastical division that has been painted is shocking. My duty and conscience do not allow me to remain indifferent to such a sorrowful phenomenon; they urge me to address your Eminence with a most insistent demand that you correct the mistake you have made, which has placed the Church in a humiliating position, and which has caused quarrels and divisions in her and a blackening of the reputation of her leaders. In the same way I ask you to suspend the other measures that have increased your prerogatives. Such a decision of yours will, I hope, create a good atmosphere in the Church and will calm the troubled souls of her children, while with regard to you it will preserve that disposition towards you which you deservedly enjoyed both as a Church figure and as a man. Place all your hope on the Lord, and His help will always be with you. On my part, I as the first-hierarch of the Church, call on all clergy and church activists to display, in everything that touches on the civil legislation and administration, complete loyalty. They are obliged to submit unfailingly to the governmental decrees as long as they do not violate the holy faith and in general are not contrary to Christian conscience; and they must not engage in any anti-governmental activity, and they are allowed to express neither approval nor disapproval of their actions in the churches or in private conversations, and in general they must not interfere in matters having nothing to do with the Church...”[68]

     On February 13/26, 1930, after receiving news from Deacon K. about the true state of affairs in the Church, Metropolitan Peter wrote to Sergius: "Of all the distressing news I have had to receive, the most distressing was the news that many believers remain outside the walls of the churches in which your name is commemorated. I am filled with spiritual pain both about the disputes that have arisen with regard to your administration and about other sad phenomena. Perhaps this information is biassed, perhaps I am not sufficiently acquainted with the character and aims of the people writing to me. But the news of disturbances in the Church come to me from various quarters and mainly from clerics and laymen who have made a great impression on me. In my opinion, in view of the exceptional circumstances of Church life, when normal rules of administration have been subject to all kinds of distortion, it is necessary to put Church life on that path on which it stood during your first period as deputy. So be so good as to return to that course of action that was respected by everybody. I repeat that I am very sad that you have not written to me or confided your plans to me. Since letters come from other people, yours would undoubtedly have reached me..."

     On August 17, 1930, after again refusing to renounce the locum tenancy, Metropolitan Peter was imprisoned in the Tobolsk and Yekaterinburg prisons in solitary confinement with no right to receive parcels or visitors.

     On March 11, 1931, after describing the sufferings of his life in Khe (which included the enmity of three renovationist priests), he posed the following question in a letter to J.B. Polyansky: "Will not a change in locum tenens bring with it a change also in his deputy? Of course, it is possible that my successor, if he were to find himself incapable of carrying out his responsibilities directly, would leave the same person as his deputy - that is his right. But it is certain, in my opinion, that the carrying out of his duties by this deputy would have to come to an end at the same time as the departure of the person for whom he is deputizing, just as, according to the declaration of Metropolitan Sergius, with his departure the synod created by him would cease to exist. All this and other questions require thorough and authoritative discussion and canonical underpinning... Be so kind as to bow to Metropolitan Sergius on my behalf, since I am unable to do this myself, and send him my fervent plea that he, together with Metropolitan Seraphim and Archbishop Philip, to whom I also bow, work together for my liberation. I beseech them to defend, an old man who can hardly walk. I was always filled with a feeling of deep veneration and gratitude to Metropolitan Sergius, and the thought of some kind of worsening of our relations would give me indescribable sorrow."

     We have no direct evidence for Metropolitan Peter’s views after 1931. Indirectly, however, we can infer that his attitude towards Metropolitan Sergius hardened. For, as Professor Ivan Andreyev witnesses, “approval of the position of Metropolitan Joseph [whose views on Sergius were known to be uncompromisingly severe] was received from the exiled Metropolitan Peter of Krutitsa and from Metropolitan Cyril”.[69] Moreover, “from the fact that in the last years secret relations were established between Metropolitan Peter and Metropolitan Joseph, we may conjecture that Metropolitan Peter gave his blessing, in the event of his death, to Metropolitan Joseph’s heading the Russian Church in his capacity as Extraordinary Locum Tenens. This right was accorded to Metropolitan Joseph, as is known only to a few, by a Decision of the Local Council of 1917-18 dated January 25, 1918.”[70]

 

*

     Metropolitan Cyril, like Metropolitan Peter, at first took a relatively “lenient” attitude towards the sergianists. Thus in 1934 he wrote: “If we reproach them for not resisting, and, therefore, of belonging to heresy, we risk depriving them of the psychological opportunity to reunite with us and losing them forever for Orthodoxy.” This relative leniency has been exploited by those who wish to make out that the MP is a true Church even now, nearly eighty years after Sergius’ declaration. However, there are several reasons for thinking that Cyril was less “moderate” than he has been made out.

     First, as his correspondent, another Catacomb hierarch said, he was being “excessively cautious” because of his insufficient knowledge of the Church situation from his position in exile. Secondly, he was in the unique position of being the only legal locum tenens that was able to correspond and reason with Sergius. He therefore naturally steered the dialogue to the theme of the canonical rights of the locum tenentes and their deputies, convicting Sergius of usurpation of the power of the First Hierarch. Concentrating on the canonical-administrative aspect of the matter, without entering into the dogmatic aspect of Sergius’ subordination to the atheists, was bound to lead to a less serious estimate of his sin. Nevertheless, in 1934 he wrote that while the Sergianist priests administered valid sacraments, Christians who partook of them knowing of Sergius’ usurpation of power and the illegality of his Synod would receive them to their condemnation.

    Several points made by Metropolitan Cyril in his correspondence with Metropolitan Sergius are of vital importance in evaluating the status of the Moscow Patriarchate.

     The first is the priority of “the conciliar hierarchical conscience of the Church”. As he wrote in 1929: “Church discipline is able to retain its validity only as long as it is a true reflection of the hierarchical conscience of the Conciliar [Sobornoj] Church; discipline can never take the place of this conscience”. Sergius violated the hierarchical, conciliar conscience of the Church by his disregard of the views of bishops equal to him in rank.

     The second is that a hierarch is justified in breaking communion with a fellow hierarch, not only for heresy, but also in order not to partake in his brother’s sin. Thus while Metropolitan Cyril did not consider Sergius to have sinned in matters of faith, he was forced to break communion with him because “I have no other means of rebuking my sinning brother”. If clergy have mutually opposing opinions within the Church, then their concelebration is for both “to judgement and condemnation”.[71]

     Again, in November, 1929, Metropolitan Cyril refused to condemn Metropolitan Joseph and his supporters, who had broken communion with Sergius; and he did not agree with the bishops in exile in Tashkent – Arsenius (Stadnitsky), Nicodemus (Krotkov), Nicander (Fenomenov) and others – who condemned Joseph, considering their hopes of convening a canonical Council to be “naivety or cunning”.[72]

     Thirdly, while Metropolitan Cyril did not deny the sacraments of the sergianists, he did so only in respect of those clergy who had been correctly ordained, i.e. by non-sergianist hierarchs.

     A fourth point made by the metropolitan was that even when such a break in communion occurs between two parties, both sides remain in the Church so long as dogmatic unanimity is preserved. But this immediately raised the question: had Sergius only sinned “administratively”, by transgressing against the canons, as Metropolitan Cyril claimed (until 1934, at any rate), or had he sinned also “dogmatically”, by transgressing against the dogma of the One Church, as Archbishop Demetrius of Gdov, among others, claimed?[73]

     In about the middle of the 1930s Metropolitan Cyril issued an epistle in which he called on the Catacomb hierarchs to confirm his candidacy as the lawful patriarchal locum tenens in the case of the death of Metropolitan Peter. We know the reaction of one hierarch, Archbishop Theodore of Volokolamsk, to this epistle. He was not enthusiastic, because he considered that in times of persecution a centralized administration was not obligatory for the Church.[74] In any case, at some time in the 1930s, as we have seen, both Metropolitan Peter and Metropolitan Cyril came to accept that Metropolitan Joseph should lead the Russian Church in the event of Metropolitan Peter’s death.

     Metropolitan Cyril’s position hardened towards the end of his life. Thus in March, 1937 he wrote: “With regard to your perplexities concerning Sergianism, I can say that the very same questions in almost the same form were addressed to me from Kazan ten years ago, and then I replied affirmatively to them, because I considered everything that Metropolitan Sergius had done as a mistake which he himself was conscious of and wished to correct. Moreover, among our ordinary flock there were many people who had not investigated what had happened, and it was impossible to demand from them a decisive and active condemnation of the events. Since then much water has flowed under the bridge. The expectations that Metropolitan Sergius would correct himself have not been justified, but there has been enough time for the formerly ignorant members of the Church, enough incentive and enough opportunity to investigate what has happened; and very many have both investigated and understood that Metropolitan Sergius is departing from that Orthodox Church which the Holy Patriarch Tikhon entrusted to us to guard, and consequently there can be no part or lot with him for the Orthodox. The recent events have finally made clear the renovationist nature of Sergianism. We cannot know whether those believers who remain in Sergianism will be saved, because the work of eternal Salvation is a work of the mercy and grace of God. But for those who see and feel the unrighteousness of Sergianism (those are your questions) it would be unforgiveable craftiness to close one’s eyes to this unrighteousness and seek there for the satisfaction of one’s spiritual needs when one’s conscience doubts in the possibility of receiving such satisfaction. Everything which is not of faith is sin…”[75]

     This is an important document, for it shows that by 1937 Metropolitan Cyril considered that enough time had passed for the ordinary believer to come to a correct conclusion concerning the true, “renovationist” – that is, heretical – nature of Sergianism. So from 1937, in Metropolitan Cyril’s opinion, “the excuse of ignorance” was no longer valid. What had been involuntary ignorance in the early days of the schism was now (except in exceptional circumstances caused by, for example, extreme youth or mental deficiency) witting ignorance – that is, indifference to the truth or refusal to face the truth. 

*

     On November 20, 1937, Metropolitans Joseph and Cyril were shot together in Chimkent. Following on the shooting of Metropolitan Peter on October 10, this meant that all of the holy patriarch’s locum tenentes, both “ordinary” and “extraordinary”, were now dead… The martyrdom of the last de jure and de facto leaders of the Catacomb Church meant that the True Russian Church’s descent into the catacombs, which had begun in the early 20s, was completed. From now on, with the external administrative machinery of the Church destroyed, it was up to each bishop – sometimes each believer – individually to preserve the fire of faith, being linked with his fellow Christians only through the inner, mystical bonds of the life in Christ. Thus was the premonition of Hieromartyr Bishop Damascene fulfilled: “Perhaps the time has come when the Lord does not wish that the Church should stand as an intermediary between Himself and the believers, but that everyone is called to stand directly before the Lord and himself answer for himself as it was with the forefathers!”[76]

     This judgement was supported by ROCOR at its Second All-Emigration Council in 1938: “Since the epoch we have lived through was without doubt an epoch of apostasy, it goes without saying that for the true Church of Christ a period of life in the wilderness, of which the twelfth chapter of the Revelation of St. John speaks, is not, as some may believe, an episode connected exclusively with the last period in the history of mankind. History show us that the Orthodox Church has withdrawn into the wilderness repeatedly, from whence the will of God called her back to the stage of history, where she once again assumed her role under more favourable circumstances. At the end of history the Church of God will go into the wilderness for the last time to receive Him, Who comes to judge the quick and the dead. Thus the twelfth chapter of Revelation must be understood not only in an eschatological sense, but in a historical and educational sense as well: it shows up the general and typical forms of Church life. If the Church of God is destined to live in the wilderness through the Providence of the Almighty Creator, the judgement of history, and the legislation of the proletarian state, it follows clearly that she must forego all attempts to reach a legalization, for every attempt to arrive at a legalization during the epoch of apostasy inescapably turns the Church into the great Babylonian whore of blasphemous atheism. The near future will confirm our opinion and prove that the time has come in which the welfare of the Church demands giving up all legalizations, even those of the parishes. We must follow the example of the Church prior to the Council of Nicaea, when the Christian communities were united not on the basis of the administrative institutions of the State, but through the Holy Spirit alone.”[77]

     Perhaps the most striking and literal example of the Church’s fleeing into the wilderness is provided by Bishop Amphilochius of Yenisei and Krasnoyarsk, who in 1930 departed into the Siberian forests and founded a catacomb skete there in complete isolation from the world.

     However, the catacomb situation of the Church did not mean that it could no longer make decisions and judgements. Thus in this period the following anathema attached to the Order for the Triumph of Orthodoxy in Josephite parishes was composed: “To those who maintain the mindless renovationist heresy of sergianism; to those who teach that the earthly existence of the Church of God can be established by denying the truth of Christ; and to those who affirm that serving the God-fighting authorities and fulfilling their godless commands, which trample on the sacred canons, the patristic traditions and the Divine dogmas, and destroy the whole of Christianity, saves the Church of Christ; and to those who revere the Antichrist and his servants and forerunners, and all his minions, as a lawful power established by God; and to all those… who blaspheme against the new confessors and martyrs (Sergius of Nizhni-Novgorod, Nicholas of Kiev and Alexis of Khutyn), and to… the renovationists and the other heretics – anathema.”[78]

     Again, Divine Providence convened a Council of the Catacomb Church in July, 1937, in the depths of Siberia:- “In the last days of July, 1937, in the Siberian town of Ust-Kut, on the River Lena (at its juncture with the River Kut), in the re-grouping section of the house of arrest, there met by chance: two Metropolitans, four Bishops, two Priests and six laymen of the secret Catacomb Church, who were on a stage of their journey from Vitim to Irkutsk, being sent from Irkutsk to the north.

     “It was difficult to anticipate a similarly full and representative gathering of same-minded members of the Church in the near future. Therefore those who had gathered decided immediately to open a ‘Sacred Council’, in order to make canonical regulations concerning vital questions of the Catacomb Church. The time of the Council was, as it seemed, limited to four hours, after which the participants in the Council were sent in different directions.

     “The president was Metropolitan John (in one version: “Bishop John”), and the Council chose the layman A.Z. to be secretary. The resolutions of the Council were not signed: A.Z. gave an oath to memorize the decisions of the Council and to pass on to whom it was necessary whatever he remembered exactly, but not to speak at all about what he confused or could not remember exactly. A.Z. in his time succeeded in passing on the memorised decisions of the Church. His words were written down and became Canons of the Church. Among these Canons were some that are especially necessary for the Church:

     “1. The Sacred Council forbids the faithful to receive communion from the clergy legalized by the anti-Christian State.

     “2. It has been revealed to the Sacred Council by the Spirit that the anathema-curse hurled by his Holiness Patriarch Tikhon is valid, and all priests and Church-servers who have dared to consider it as an ecclesiastical mistake or political tactic are placed under its power and bound by it.

     “3. To all those who discredit and separate themselves from the Sacred Council of 1917-18 – Anathema!

     “4. All branches of the Church which are on the common trunk – the trunk is our pre-revolutionary Church – are living branches of the Church of Christ. We give our blessing to common prayer and the serving of the Divine Liturgy to all priests of these branches. The Sacred Council forbids all those who do not consider themselves to be branches, but independent from the tree of the Church, to serve the Divine Liturgy. The Sacred Council does not consider it necessary to have administrative unity of the branches of the Church, but unity of mind concerning the Church is binding on all.”[79]

     Thus Sergius was to be condemned, not only because he was a usurper of ecclesiastical authority (although he was that), nor because he violated the sacred canons (although he did that), but because he imposed on the Church an heretical attitude towards the antichristian authorities. As Hieromartyr Bishop Mark (Novoselov) said during interrogation: “I am an enemy of Soviet power – and what is more, by dint of my religious convictions, since Soviet power is an atheist power and even anti-theist. I believe that as a true Christian I cannot strengthen this power by any means… [There is] a petition which the Church has commanded to be used everyday in certain well-known conditions… The purpose of this formula is to request the overthrow of the infidel power by God… But this formula does not amount to a summons to believers to take active measures, but only calls them to pray for the overthrow of the power that has fallen away from God.”[80]

     Again, in another catacomb document dating from the 1960s we read: “Authority is given by God in order to preserve and fulfill the law… But how should one look on the Soviet authority, following the Apostolic teaching on authorities [Romans 13]? In accordance with the Apostolic teaching which we have set forth, one must acknowledge that the Soviet authority is not an authority. It is an anti-authority. It is not an authority because it is not established by God, but insolently created by an aggregation of the evil actions of men, and it is consolidated and supported by these actions. If the evil actions weaken, the Soviet authority, representing a condensation of evil, likewise weakens… This authority consolidates itself in order to destroy all religions, simply to eradicate faith in God. Its essence is warfare with God, because its root is from Satan. The Soviet authority is not authority, because by its nature it cannot fulfill the law, for the essence of its life is evil.

     “It may be said that the Soviet authority, in condemning various crimes of men, can still be considered an authority. We do not say that a ruling authority is totally lacking. We only affirm that it is an anti-authority. One must know that the affirmation of real power is bound up with certain actions of men, to whom the instinct of preservation is natural. And they must take into consideration the laws of morality which have been inherent in mankind from ages past. But in essence this authority systematically commits murder physically and spiritually. In reality a hostile power acts, which is called Soviet authority. The enemy strives by cunning to compel humanity to acknowledge this power as an authority. But the Apostolic teaching on authority is inapplicable to it, just as evil is inapplicable to God and  the  good,  because evil is outside God; but  the  enemies  with hypocrisy can take refuge in the well-known saying that everything is from God. This Soviet anti-authority is precisely the collective Antichrist, warfare against God…”[81]

     The Ust-Kut Council may be seen as confirming the sixth canon of the “Nomadic Council” of 1928, which defined the essence of Sergianism as its recognition of Soviet power as a true, God-established power. It also harks back to the seventh canon of that Council, which declared: “The anathema of January 19, 1918 laid by Patriarch Tikhon and the Holy Council on the former Christians who became blasphemers, is confirmed. Since Soviet power is a blaspheming and Christ-persecuting power, the action of the anathema very much applies to the God-fighting power, and one must pray not for it, but for the deliverance of people from the bitter torment of the godless authorities and for the suffering land of Russia. We establish the reading of a special prayer for the persecuted and much-suffering Church after the service.”[82] 

*

     If Metropolitan Sergius thought that his betrayal of the True Orthodox Christians would “save the Church”, the next few years would prove him terribly wrong. From 1935 the Bolsheviks began to repress all the clergy, sergianist as well as True Orthodox. According to Russian government figures, in 1937 alone 136,900 clergy were arrested, of whom 106,800 were killed; while between 1917 and 1980, 200,000 clergy were executed and 500,000 others were imprisoned or sent to the camps. The rate of killing slowed down considerably in the following years. In 1939 900 clergy were killed, in 1940 – 1100, in 1941 – 1900, in 1943 – 500. In the period 1917 to 1940 205 Russian hierarchs “disappeared without trace”; 59 disappeared in 1937 alone.[83] By 1939 there were only four bishops even of the sergianist church at liberty, and only a tiny handful of churches open, in the whole of the country. By 1938, according to T. Martynov, most of the 180,000 priests from before the revolution had been killed.[84]

     The situation was no better with regard to churches. There were no churches at all in Belorussia (Kolarz), “less than a dozen” in Ukraine (Bociurkiw), and a total of 150-200 in the whole of Russia.[85] In all, the numbers of functioning Orthodox churches declined from 54,692 in 1914 to 39,000 at the beginning of 1929 to 15, 835 on April 1, 1936.[86]

     And yet the census of 1937 established that one-third of city-dwellers and two-thirds of country-dwellers still confessed that they believed in God.  Stalin’s plan that the Name of God should not be named in the country by the year 1937 had failed…

     But what of the future? What hopes did the Christians of the Catacomb Church nurture with regard to a deliverance from their terrible sufferings? If some, like Bishop Maximus of Serpukhov, were pessimistic about the future, thinking that the very last days of the world had been reached[87], others prophesied the resurrection of Holy Russia before the end, such as Bishop Victor of Glazov. Eldress Agatha of Belorussia, who was starved to death by the authorities in 1939 at the age of 119, told her spiritual children concerning the Soviet Church: “This is not a true church. It has signed a contract to serve the Antichrist. Do not go to it. Do not receive any Mysteries from its servants. Do not participate in prayer with them.” And then she said: “There will come a time when churches will be opened in Russia, and the true Orthodox Faith will triumph. Then people will become baptized, as at one time they were baptized under St. Vladimir. When the churches are opened for the first time, do not go to them because these will not be true churches; but when they are opened the second time, then go – these will be the true churches. I will not live to see this time, but many of you will live to this time. The atheist Soviet authority will vanish, and all its servants will perish…”[88]

     However, the immediate outlook at the end of the thirties was bleak indeed. E.L., writing about Hieromartyr Bishop Damascene, comments: “He warmed the hearts of many, but the masses remained… passive and inert, moving in any direction in accordance with an external push, and not their inner convictions… The long isolation of Bishop Damascene from Soviet life, his remoteness from the gradual process of sovietization led him to an unrealistic assessment of the real relations of forces in the reality that surrounded him. Although he remained unshaken himself, he did not see… the desolation of the human soul in the masses. This soul had been diverted onto another path – a slippery, opportunistic path which led people where the leaders of Soviet power – bold men who stopped at nothing in their attacks on all moral and material values – wanted them to go… Between the hierarchs and priests who had languished in the concentration camps and prisons, and the mass of the believers, however firmly they tried to stand in the faith, there grew an abyss of mutual incomprehension. The confessors strove to raise the believers onto a higher plane and bring their spiritual level closer to their own. The mass of believers, weighed down by the cares of life and family, blinded by propaganda, involuntarily went in the opposite direction, downwards. Visions of a future golden age of satiety, of complete liberty from all external and internal restrictions, of the submission of the forces of nature to man, deceitful perspectives in which fantasy passed for science… were used by the Bolsheviks to draw the overwhelming majority of the people into their nets. Only a few individuals were able to preserve a loftiness of spirit. This situation was exploited very well by Metropolitan Sergius…”[89]

     Sergius has had many apologists. Some have claimed that he “saved the Church” for a future generation, when the whirlwind of the persecution had passed. This claim cannot be justified, as we have seen. It was rather the Catacomb Church, which, as Alexeyev writes, “in a sense saved the official Church from complete destruction because the Soviet authorities were afraid to force the entire Russian Church underground through ruthless suppression and so to lose control over it.”[90] As St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco wrote: “The Declaration of Metropolitan Sergius brought no benefit to the Church. The persecutions not only did not cease, but also sharply increased. To the number of other accusations brought by the Soviet regime against clergy and laymen, one more was added – non-recognition of the Declaration. At the same time, a wave of church closings rolled over all Russia… Concentration camps and places of forced labor held thousands of clergymen, a significant part of whom never saw freedom again, being executed there or dying from excessive labors and deprivations.”[91]

     Others have tried to justify Sergius by claiming that there are two paths to salvation, one through open confession or the descent into the catacombs, and the other through compromise. Sergius, according to this view, was no less a martyr than the Catacomb martyrs, only he suffered the martyrdom of losing his good name. [92] However, this view comes close to the “Rasputinite” heresy that there can be salvation through sin – in this case, the most brazen lying, the sacrifice of the freedom and dignity of the Church and Orthodoxy, and the betrayal to torments and death of one’s fellow Christians! Thus Hieromartyr Sergius Mechev was betrayed by "Bishop" Manuel Lemeshevsky. [93] And more generally, Metropolitan Sergius' charge that all the catacomb bishops were "counter-revolutionaries" was sufficient to send them to their deaths.[94]

     Sergianists are constantly trying to prove that the declaration of Metropolitan Sergius, though disastrous for the Church, was nevertheless motivated by the purest of feelings. Apart from the inherent improbability that an action motivated by the purest of feelings - and therefore inspired by the Grace of God - would bring disaster, both physical and spiritual, to thousands, if not millions of people, we have seen that Sergius was an opportunist from the beginning, from well before the revolution.

     Further proof of this is provided in the Memoirs of Princess Natalya Vladimirovna Urusova: "The personality of Metropolitan Sergius was of the basest, crawling before the authorities. Many people asked each other: 'Does Metropolitan Sergius really take part in the persecutions and the destruction of churches?' Some did not admit that he took an active part in this, but, unfortunately, they were wrong. He completely sold himself to satan. I can cite a case personally known to me which confirms the fact of his participation in these works.

     "In the church of St. Nicholas the Big Cross there chanted in the choir a young girl, very humble and nice. The whole of her family was religious, and consequently did not recognize the sergianist church. We got to know each other, and I and Andryusha would often go to their dacha near Moscow. Verochka worked in the main post office in Moscow, she was welcoming and good-looking. Once there came to her department on service matters a GPU boss. He was attracted to her and began to talk with her. To her horror and that of her family, he asked for their address. Unexpectedly he came to the dacha, thoroughly frightening everyone, of course. After all, it was impossible ever to know the intentions of these terrible people. Having said hello, he brought out a box of pastries, which no simple mortal could get at that time, and gave it to Verochka, asking her to accept him as a guest. He began to come often and to court her. Probably everyone was quietly and secretly crossing themselves, praying to be delivered from this guest. But there was nothing to be done. He looked about 30, with quite an interesting appearance. Almost immediately they set off on a walk without Verochka's father and mother, while Andryusha and I hurried to leave. Verochka said that she could have liked him, but the single thought that he was not only the boss of a GPU department, but, as he himself said, in charge of Church affairs, repulsed and horrified her. He proposed to her. She refused. 'How can I be your wife, when you are not only not a believer, but a persecutor of the Church, and I can never under any circumstances agree with that.' During their conversations he tried by every means to draw her away from faith in God, but she was unbending, the more so in that she was one of the beloved spiritual children of the murdered Fr. Alexander. He did not give up, but threatened to shoot her and himself. Moreover, he once even got out his revolver and pointed it at her. He continued to visit her. The family's situation was terrible. They couldn't think of sleeping or eating. They spoke only about one thing: how it would all end, with his taking revenge or his leaving them in peace? Verochka rushed around like a trapped bird trying to extricate herself from the claws of a hawk. Once when she was working (at the post office) she was summoned and given a note to go immediately to the GPU at the Lubyanka... It turned out to be his office. He ordered her to take up the telephone receiver. Then he took up another and summoned Metropolitan Sergius. "Listen to the conversation," he told her. The conversation was about the destruction of one of the churches in Moscow. Sergius not only did not register any protest, but took part in this terrible affair and gave his agreement. "Did you hear?" said the boss. "That's the kind of clergy you bow down to." She replied that this conversation could not shake her faith in God, and that even before she had not recognized Metropolitan Sergius, while now she was convinced that she had not been mistaken about him… “[95]

     Sergius made the basic mistake of forgetting that it is God, not man, Who saves the Church. This mistake almost amounts to a loss of faith in the Providence and Omnipotence of God Himself. The faith that saves is the faith that “with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19.26). It is the faith that cries: “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses, but we will call upon the name of the Lord our God” (Psalm 19.7). This was and is the faith of the Catacomb Church, which, being founded on “the Rock, which is Christ” (I Corinthians 10.7), has prevailed against the gates of hell.

     But Sergius’ “faith” was of a different, more “supple” kind, the kind of which the Prophet spoke: “Because you have said, ‘We have made a covenant with death, and with hell we have an agreement; when the overwhelming scourge passes through it will not come to us; for we have made lies our refuge, and in falsehood we have taken shelter’; therefore thus says the Lord God,… hail will sweep away the refuge of lies, and waters will overwhelm the shelter. Then your covenant with death will be annulled, and your agreement with hell will not stand; when the overwhelming scourge passes through you will be beaten down by it…” (Isaiah 28.15, 17-19)

     Through Sergius, the Moscow Patriarchate made an agreement with hell. We know already that it will not stand in God’s eyes. We await its being crushed by it…    

        United Kingdom

        January 30 / February 12, 2010.

        Feast of the Holy Three Hierarchs.

.....................................................................................................................................

[1] Regelson, Tragedia Russkoj Tserkvi, 1917-1945 (The Tragedy of the Russian Church, 1917-1945), Paris: YMCA Press, 1977.

[2] M.E. Gubonin, Akty Sviateishego Patriarkha Tikhona, Moscow, 1994, p. 677.

[3] Gubonin, op. cit., p. 422.

[4] Regelson, op. cit., p. 408.

[5] Gustavson, The Catacomb Church, Jordanville: Holy Trinity Monastery, 1960.

[6] Tape recorded conversation with Protopriest Michael Ardov in 1983, Church News, vol. 13, № 11 (112), p. 6. According to the same source, Vladyka Seraphim mentioned Metropolitan Cyril. “But he is behind bars,” Tuchkov said. “He is behind your bars, and you must release him,” said Seraphim.

     “According to a letter written by Archbishop Seraphim a few days after his Lubyanks interview, Tuchkov said to him ‘at parting’: ‘We don’t harbour evil thoughts; we are releasing you and assign to you Uglich as your place of residence; you can officiate wherever you want, but under no circumstances can you govern. You should neither appoint, nor transfer, nor dismiss, nor reward.’ ‘But what about enquiries from the dioceses, current affairs,’ asked Archbishop Seraphim. ‘You cannot stop life, it will claim its own.’ ‘Well, you can make purely formal replies. After all, you have declared autonomy. So what do you want? You have left no deputies. So you should act accordingly: you must not send around any papers on the new government system. You can write to the dioceses that “since I have refused to govern, you should manage on your own in your localities.” But it comes into your head to write something, send it to me with a trusted man, I’ll look through it and give you my opinion… As for now, goodbye. We’ll buy you a ticket and see you to the railway station. Go back to Uglich and sit there quietly.’” (in Fr. Alexander Mazyrin, “Legalizing the Moscow Patriarchate in 1927: The Secret Aims of the Authorities”, Social Science: A Quarterly Journal of the Russian Academy of Sciences, no. 1, 2009, p. 3. The article was first published in Russian in Otechestvennaia Istoria, no. 4, 2008).

[7] Regelson, op. cit., p. 413.

[8] Mazurin, op. cit., p. 5. In later years, after Sergius’ betrayal of the Church, Archbishop Seraphim is reported to have reasserted his rights as patriarchal locum tenens. See Michael Khlebnikov, “O tserkovnoj situatsii v Kostrome v 20-30-e gody” (On the Church Situation in Kostroma in the 20s and 30s), Pravoslavnaia Zhizn’ (Orthodox Life), 49, № 5 (569), May, 1997, p. 19.

[9] Mazurin, op. cit., p. 6.

[10] Regelson, op. cit., p. 415; Gubonin, op. cit., p. 407.

[11] Mazyrin, op. cit., p. 10.

[12] Quoted in Protopriest Alexander Lebedeff, “Is the Moscow Patriarchate the ‘Mother Church’ of the ROCOR”, Orthodox@ListServ. Indiana.Edu, 24 December, 1997.

[13] Monk Benjamin, “Letopis’ Tserkovnykh Sobytij Pravoslavnoj Tserkvi nachinaia s 1917 goda” (A Chronicle of Church Events of the Orthodox Church beginning from 1917), http://www.zlatoust.ws/letopis.htm, p. 171.

[14] Protopriest Vladislav Tsypin, Istoria Russkoj Tserkvi 1925-1938 (A History of the Russian Church, 1925-1938) Moscow: Monastery of the Meeting of the Lord, 1999, p. 383. Monk Benjamin (op. cit., p. 172) writes that on September 13, Metropolitan Eulogius wrote to Sergius asking that he be given autonomy. On September 24 Sergius replied with a refusal.

[15] “Pis’mo Sviaschennomuchenika Ioanna, arkhiepiskopa Rizhskago (1934 g.), arkhiepiskopu Litovskomu i Vilenskomu Elevferiu” (A Letter of Hieromartyr John, Archbishop of Riga (1934) to Archbishop Eleutherius of Lithuania and Vilnius), Pravoslavnaia Zhizn’, 676, August, 2008, pp. 30-31.

[16] Tsypin, op. cit., p. 384.

[17] Lebedev, “Dialogue between the ROCA and the MP: How and Why?”, Great Lent, 1998.

[18] Regelson, op. cit., pp. 431-32.

[19] Izvestia, in Protopriest Benjamin Zhukov, Russkaia Pravoslavnaia Tserkov’ na Rodine i za Rubezhom (The Russian Orthodox Church in the Homeland and Abroad), Paris, 2005, p. 40.

[20] At its Council in Odessa under the presidency of Archbishop Tikhon of Omsk and Siberia.

[21] St. John Cassian writes: “You should know that in the world to come also you will be judged in the lot of those with whom in this life you have been affected by sharing in their gains or losses, their joys or their sorrows…” (cited by S. Brakus, [ROCElaity] FW: Communists and Spies in cassocks, January 8, 2007).

[22] Cited in Fletcher, The Russian Orthodox Church Underground, 1917-1971, Oxford University Press, 1971, p. 57.

[23] Cited in Fletcher, op. cit., p. 59.

[24] Regelson, op. cit., p. 434.

[25] Rayfield, Stalin and his Hangmen, London: Viking, 2004, p. 123.

[26] Regelson, op. cit., p. 440. The Solovki bishops affirmed the civic loyalty of the Orthodox Church to the Soviet State. But, as M.B. Danilushkin points out, “the tone of these affirmations was fundamentally different than in the Declaration of Metropolitan Sergius. Recognizing necessity – mainly the inevitability of civil submission to the authorities – they decisively protested against the unceremonious interference of the authorities into the inner affairs of the Church, the ban on missionary activity and the religious education of children, firmly expressing their position that in this sphere there could be no compromise on the part of the Church. Although the Declaration of Metropolitan Sergius recognized the religious persecutions in the USSR, it called, not the state, but the believers, to peace. In this consists the fundamental difference between the two documents…” (Istoria Russkoj Tserkvi ot Vosstanovlenia Patriarshestva do nashikh dnej (A History of the Russian Church from the Reestablishment of the Patriarchate to our Days), vol. I, St. Petersburg, 1997, p. 291).

[27] Nicholas Balashov, “Esche raz o ‘deklaratsii’ i o ‘solidarnosti’ solovchan” (Again on the ‘declaration’ and on ‘the solidarity of the Solovkans’), Vestnik Russkogo Khristianskogo Dvizhenia (Herald of the Russian Christian Movement), 157, III-1989, pp. 197-198.

[28] In this section I am particularly indebted to the work of Lydia Sikorskaya, Svyaschennomucheniki Sergij, episkop Narvskij, Vasilij, episkop Kargopolskij, Ilarion, episkop Porechskij. Tainoye sluzhenie Iosiflyan (Holy Hieromartyrs Sergius, Bishop of Narva, Basil, Bishop of Kargopol, Hilarion, Bishop of Porech), Moscow: Bratonezh, 2009, pages 78 et seq.

[29] Cheltsov, “V chem. Prichina tserkovnoj razrukhi v 1920-1930 gg.” (The Reason for the Church Collapse in 1920-1930), Minuvshee, Moscow and St. Petersburg, 1994, issue 17, p. 447.

[30] Cheltsov, op. cit., p. 457.

[31] Novoselov, “Oblichenie netserkovnosti sergianskikh printsipov ‘poslushania’ i ‘edinstva Tserkvi’” (A Rebuke of the non-ecclesiastical nature of the sergianist principles of ‘obedience’ and ‘the unity of the Church’), www.romanitas.ru.

[32] V.V.Antonov, “Otvet na Deklaratsiu” (Reply to the Declaration), Russkij Pastyr’ (Russian Pastor), № 24, 1996, p. 73.

[33] In this section I am indebted especially to Lydia Sikorskaya, Svyaschennomuchenik Dmitrij Arkhiepiskop Gdovskij (Holy Hieromartyr Demetrius, Archbishop of Gdov), Moscow, 2008.

[34] Monk Benjamin, op. cit., p. 175.

[35] http://catacomb.org.ua/modules.php?name=Pages&go=page&pid=777.

[36] I.M. Andreyev, Russia's Catacomb Saints, Platina, Ca.: St. Herman of Alaska Press, 1982, p. 100.

[37] Cited in Andreyev, op. cit., pp. 141-43.

[38] Regelson, op. cit., p. 435.

[39] Archbishop Ambrose (von Sievers), “Katakombnaia Tserkov’: ‘Kochuiuschij’ Sobor 1928 g.” (The Catacomb Church: The ‘Nomadic’ Council of 1928), Russkoe Pravoslavie (Russian Orthodoxy), № 3 (7), 1997, p. 3.

[40] Russkaia Mysl’ (Orthodox Thought), 3143, March 17, 1977.

[41] Polsky, O Tserkvi v SSSR (On the Church in the USSR), New York – Montreal, 1993, p. 13.

[42] Pravoslavnoe obozrenie (Orthodox Review), St. Petersburg, №10 (23), 1999, p. 2.

[43] His words, as reported by Protopresbyter Michael Polsky (Novie Mucheniki Rossijskie, Jordanville, 1949-57, vol. II, p. 30), were: “The secret, desert, Catacomb Church has anathematized the ‘Sergianists’ and all those with them.”

[44] Our information about this Council is based exclusively on Archbishop Ambrose (von Sievers), “Katakombnaia Tserkov’: Kochuiushchij Sobor 1928 g.” (“The Catacomb Church: The ‘Nomadic’ Council of 1928”), Russkoe Pravoslavie (Russian Orthodoxy), № 3 (7), 1997 ®, whose main source is claimed to be the archives of the president of the Council, Bishop Mark (Novoselov), as researched by the Andrewite Bishop Evagrius. Some historians, such as Pavel Protsenko (“Skvoz’ mif ob ‘Istinnoj Tserkvi’”, Russkij Pastyr’, 35, III-1999, pp. 84-97), dismiss the authenticity of the Council completely. Others, such as Osipova (“V otvet na statiu ‘Mif ob “Istinnoj Tserkvi”’” (In Reply to the Article, “The Myth of ‘the True Church’”), Russkoe Pravoslavie (Russian Orthodoxy), № 3 (7), 1997, pp. 18-19) and Danilushkin (op. cit., p. 534) appear to accept the existence of this Council. But it is difficult to find anything other than oblique supporting evidence for it, and von Sievers has refused to allow the present writer to see the archives. A Smirnov (perhaps von Sivers himself) writes that the “non-commemorating” branch of the Catacomb Church, whose leading priest was Fr. Sergius Mechev, had bishops who “united in a constantly active Preconciliar Convention” and who were linked with each other by special people called ‘svyazniki’” (“Ugasshie nepominaiushchie v bege vremeni” (The Extinguished Non-Commemorators in the Passing of Time), Simvol (Symbol), № 40, 1998, p. 174).

[45] “We cannot believe that in the Act of that Council, which was allegedly undersigned by 70 hierarchs of the Greco-Russian Church, the Savior’s name was written as Isus, the way Old Rite Believers wrote it, and the way Ambrosius himself does. Furthermore, the hierarchs could not have unanimously excommunicated the Council of 166-1667 as ‘an assembly of rogues’. The Council could not have agreed to recognize all Onomatodox believers as ‘true believers’, thus easily ending the stalemate unresolved by the Council of 1917-1918. The procedure of assignment by hierarchs of casting vote powers to their proxies, which violated the provisions of the 1917-1918 Local Council, could not have been adopted without any deliberation or objections at all. The seventy attending hierarchs could not have been unaware of the fact that only the First Hierarch, Metropolitan Peter, had the power to convene a Local Council…” (Vertograd (English edition), December, 1998, p. 31).

[46] M.V. Shkarovsky, Sud’by iosiflyanskikh pastyrej. Iosiflyanskoye dvizhenie RPTs v sud’bakh ego uchastnikov. Arkhivniye dokumenty (The Destinies of the Josephite Pastors. The Josephite Movement of the ROC in the Destinies of its Participants. Archive Documents), St. Petersburg, 2006, p. 542.“Novie dannia k zhizneopisaniu sviashchennomuchenika Fyodora, arkhiepiskopa Volokolamskogo, osnovannia na protokolakh doprosov 1937 g.” (New Data towards a Biography of Hieromartyr Theodore, Archbishop of Volokolamsk), Pravoslavnaia Zhizn’ (Orthodox Life), 48, № 8 (584), August, 1998, pp. 6-7.

[47] Pravoslavnaia Rus' (Orthodox Russia), 14 (1587), July 15/28, 1997, p. 7 ®. These figures probably do not take into account all the secret bishops consecrated by the Ufa Autocephaly. In 1930 Sergius claimed he had 70% of the Orthodox bishops (not including the renovationists and Gregorians), which implies that about 30% of the Russian episcopate joined the Catacomb Church (Pospielovsky, "Mitropolit Sergij i raskoly sprava" Metropolitan Sergius and the schisms from the right), Vestnik Russkogo Khristianskogo Dvizhenia (Herald of the Russian Christian Movement), № 158, I-1990, p. 70). According to the Catholic Bishop Michel D’Erbigny, once the Vatican’s representative in Russia, three quarters of the episcopate separated from him; but this is probably an exaggeration (D’Erbigny and Alexandre Deubner, Evêques Russes en Exil – Douze ans d’Epreuves 1918-1930 (Russian Bishops in Exile – Twelve Years of Trials, 1918-1930), Orientalia Christiana, vol. XXI,  67)

[48] The area occupied by the “Bujevtsy” in Tambov, Voronezh and Lipetsk provinces had been the focus of a major peasant rebellion against Soviet power in 1921. It continued to be a major stronghold of True Orthodoxy for many decades to come. See A.I. Demianov, Istinno Pravoslavnoe Khristianstvo, 1977, Voronezh University Press ®; "New Information on the True Orthodox Christians", Radio Liberty Research, March 15, 1978, pp. 1-4; Christel Lane, Christian Religion in the Soviet Union, London: George Allen & Unwin, 1978. ch. 4; "Registered and unregistered churches in Voronezh region", Keston News Service, 3 March, 1988, p. 8.

[49] Michael Shkarovsky, “Iosiflianskoe Dvizhenie i Oppozitsia v SSSR (1927-1943)” (The Josephite Movement and Opposition in the USSR (1927-1943)), Minuvshee (The Past), № 15, 1994, p. 450.

[50] I.I. Osipova, “Istoria Istinno Pravoslavnoj Tserkvi po Materialam Sledstvennago Dela” (The History of the True Orthodox Church according to Materials from the Interrogation Process), Pravoslavnaia Rus’ (Orthodox Russia), 14 (1587), July 15/28, 1997, p. 2. According to Slovar’ Ateista (The Dictionary of the Atheist) (Moscow, 1964), “613 priests and monks” entered the True Orthodox Church.

[51] I.I. Ospova, O Premiloserdij… Budi s nami neotstupno…Vospominania veruiuschikh Istinno-Pravoslavnoj (Katakombnoj) Tserkvi. Konets 1920-kh – nachalo 1970-kh godov. (O Most Merciful One… Remain with us without fail.  Reminiscences of believers of the True-Orthodox (Catacomb) Church. End of the 1920s – beginning of the 1970s), Moscow, 2008 ®.

[52] Rusak, Svidetel’stvo Obvinenia, Jordanville, 1987, p. 175; Gubonin, op. cit., p. 409.

[53] Although the Protestants had welcomed the revolution and thus escaped the earlier persecutions, they were now subjected to the same torments as the Orthodox (Pospielovsky, "Podvig very", op. cit., pp. 233-34).

[54] Rusak, op. cit., part I, p. 176 ®.

[55] M.I. Odintsev, “Put’ dlinoiu v sem’ deciatiletij; ot konfrontatsii k sotrudnichestvu” (A Path Seven Decades Long: from Confrontation to Cooperation), in Na puti k svobode sovesti (n the Path to Freedom of Conscience), op. cit., p. 41.

[56] W. Husband, “Godless Communists”, Northern University of Illinois Press, 2000, p. 66.

[57] Werth, “A State against its People”, in Stéphane Courtois, Nicolas Werth, Jean-Louis Panné, Andrzej Packowski, Karel Bartošek, Jean-Louis Margolin, The Black Book of Communism, London: Harvard University Press, 1999, pp. 172-173.

[58] Grabbe, op. cit., p. 79.

[59] Gubonin, op. cit., pp. 809, 810.

[60] Danilushkin, op. cit., pp. 297, 520.

[61] Igor Kurlyandsky, “Nash Otvet Rimskomu Pape: kak tt. Stalin, Yaroslavsky i Molotov v 1930 godu pisali ‘interview’ Mitropolita Sergia i ego Sinoda” (Our Reply to the Pope of Rome: How Comrades Stalin, Yaroslavsky and Molotov wrote the ‘interview’ of Metropolitan Sergius and his Synod in 193), Politicheskij Zhurnal (The Political Journal), 183-184, 21, April, 2008;http://www.politjournal.ru/index.php?action=Articles&dirid=50&tek=8111&issue=218

[62] Grabbe, op. cit., p. 78; Monk Benjamin, op. cit., vol. 2, pp. 10-11.

[63] Krasovitsky, Sergianskij raskol v perspective preodolenia (The Sergianist Schism in the Perspective of Its Overcoming),  Moscow,  samizdat, p. 25.

[64] Zelenogorsky, M. Zhizn’ i deiatel’nost’ Arkhiepiskopa Andrea (Kniazia Ukhtomskogo) (The Life and Activity of Archbishop Andrew (Prince Ukhtomsky), Moscow, 1991, p. 216. According to Archbishop Bartholomew (Remov), who never joined the Catacomb Church, the whole activity of Metropolitan Sergius was carried out in accordance with the instructions of the Bolsheviks (Za Khrista Postradavshie (Suffered for Christ), Moscow: St. Tikhon’s Theological Institute, 1997, p. 220).

[65] Radzinsky,  however,  claims that by the end of 1930 “80 per cent of village churches were closed”  (Stalin,  New York:  Doubleday,  1996, p. 249).

[66] Zhurnal Moskovskoj Patriarkhii (Journal of the Moscow Patriarchate), 1933, 1, p. 3.

[67] V.V. Antonov, "Lozh' i Pravda" (Lies and Truth), Russkij Pastyr' (Russian Pastor), II, 1994, pp. 79-80.

[68] Gubonin, op. cit., pp. 681-682, 691-692. Protopresbyter Michael Polsky (Novie Mucheniki Rossijskie (The New Martyrs of Russia), op. cit., p. 133) reported that Metropolitan Peter had written to Sergius: “If you yourself do not have the strength to protect the Church, you should step down and hand over your office to a stronger person.”

[69] Andreyev, “Vospominania o Katakombnoj Tserkvi v SSSR” (Reminiscences of the Catacomb Church in the USSR), in Archimandrite Panteleimon, Luch Sveta v Zaschitu Pravoslavnoj Very, v oblichenie ateizma i v oproverzhenie doktrin neveria (A Ray of Light in Defence of the Orthodox Faith, to the Rebuking of Atheism and the Rebuttal of the Doctrines of Unbelief), Jordanville, 1970, part 2, p. 123.

[70] Uchenie o Tserkvi Sviatykh Novomuchenikov i Ispovednikov Rossijskikh (The Teaching on the Church of the Holy New Martyrs and Confessors of Russia), attachment to Russkoe Pravoslavie (Russian Orthodoxy), № 3 (7), 1997, p. 7; Regelson, op. cit., p. 590.

[71] “Ekkleziologia sv. Kirilla (Smirnova), mitropolita Kazanskogo" (The Ecclesiology of St. Cyril (Smirnov), Metropolitan of Kazan), Vestnik Germanskoj Eparkhii Russkoj Pravoslavnoj Tserkvi za Granitsei (Herald of the German Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad), 1, 1991, pp. 12-14 ®.

[72] V.V. Antonov, "Vazhnoe Pis'mo Mitropolita Kirilla" (An Important Letter of Metropolitan Cyril), Russkij Pastyr' (Russian Pastor), II, 1994, p. 76 ®. Arsenius appears to have changed his position before his death in 1936.

[73] Andreyev, op. cit., pp. 102-103.

[74] “Novie dannia k zhizneopisaniu sviashchennomuchenika Fyodora, arkhiepiskopa Volokolamskogo, osnovannia na protokolakh doprosov 1937 g.” (New Data towards a Biography of Hieromartyr Theodore, Archbishop of Volokolamsk, Based on the Protocols of Interrogations in 1937), Pravoslavnaia Zhizn’ (Orthodox Life), 48, # 8 (584), August, 1998, pp. 4-5.

[75] Letter of Metropolitan Cyril to Hieromonk Leonid, February 23 / March 8, 1937, Pravoslavnaia Rus’ (Orthodox Russia), 16, August 15/28, 1997, p. 7. Italics mine (V.M.).

[76] E.L., Episkopy-Ispovedniki (Bishop-Confessors), San Francisco, 1971 p. 92.

[77] Cited by Gustavson, op. cit., p. 102.

[78] S. Verin, "Svidetel'stvo russkikh katakomb" (A Witness of the Russian Catacombs), Pravoslavnaia Rus' (Orthodox Russia), № 14 (1563), July 1/14, 1996, pp. 11-12.

[79] Schema-Monk Epiphanius (Chernov), personal communication; B. Zakharov, Russkaia Mysl’ (Russian Thought), September 7, 1949; "Vazhnoe postanovlenie katakombnoj tserkvi" (An Important Decree of the Catacomb Church), Pravoslavnaia Rus' (Orthodox Russia), № 18, 1949. According to one version, there is a fifth canon: “To all those who support the renovationist and sergianist heresy – Anathema”. See Bishop Ambrose (von Sievers), “Katakombnaia Tserkov’: Ust’-Kutskij Sobor 1937g.” (The Catacomb Church: the Ust-Kut Council of 1937), Russkoe Pravoslavie (Russian Orthodoxy), № 4 (8), 1997, pp. 20-24.

[80] Novoselov, quoted in Osipov, op. cit., p. 3.

[81] Andreyev, Russia's Catacomb Saints, pp. 541-42.

[82] Bishop Ambrose (von Sievers), “Katakombnaia Tserkov’: Kochuiushchij Sobor”, op. cit., pp. 7-8.

[83] A document of the Commission attached to the President of the Russian Federation on the Rehabilitation of the Victims of Political Repressions, January 5, 1996; Service Orthodoxe de Presse (Orthodox Press Service), № 204, January, 1996, p. 15 (F). According to another source, from October, 1917 to June, 1941 inclusive, 134,000 clergy were killed, of whom the majority (80,000) were killed between 1928 and 1940 (Cyril Mikhailovich Alexandrov, in V. Lyulechnik, “Tserkov’ i KGB” (The Church and the KGB), in http://elmager.livejournal.com/217784.html). According to a third source (Kharbinskoye Vremia, February, 1937, № 28), in the nineteen years of Soviet terror to that date there were killed: 128 bishops; 26.777 clergy; 7.500 professors; about 9.000 doctors; 94.800 оfficers; 1.000.000 soldiers; 200.000 policemen; 45.000 teachers; 2.200.000 workers and peasants. Besides that, 16 million Russians died from hunger and three million died in forced labour in the camps. (Protopriest John Stukach, “Vysokomerie kak prepona k uiedineniu” (Haughtiness as an obstacle to union), http://catacomb.org.ua/modules.php?name=Pages&go=page&pid=1357.

[84] “’Nasha Strana’ – konechno zhe ne Vasha” (Our Country – of course not yours), http://catacomb.org.ua/modules.php?name=Pages&go=print_page&pid=771, p. 3.

[85] Nathanael Davis, A Long Walk to Church: A Contemporary History of Russian Orthodoxy, Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 2003, p. 13.

[86] Werth, op. cit., pp. 172, 173.

[87] Polsky, op. cit., vol. II, p. 32.

[88] Andreyev, Russia's Catacomb Saints, op. cit., pp. 422-23.

[89] E.L., op. cit., pp. 65-66.

[90] W. Alexeyev, "The Russian Orthodox Church 1927-1945: Repression and Revival",  Religion  in  Communist  Lands,  vol. 7, 1, Spring, 1979, p. 30.

[91] St. John Maximovich, The Russian Orthodox Church Abroad. A Short History, Jordanville, NY: Holy Trinity Monastery, 1997, pp. 28-29. Even a recent biography of Sergius by an MP author accepts this fact: “If Metropolitan Sergius, in agreeing in his name to publish the Declaration of 1927 composed by the authorities, hoping to buy some relief for the Church and the clergy, then his hopes not only were not fulfilled, but the persecutions after 1927 became still fiercer, reaching truly hurricane-force in 1937-38.” (Sergius Fomin, Strazh Doma Gospodnia (Guardian of the House of the Lord), Moscow, 2003, p. 262)

[92] E.S. Polishchuk, "Patriarkh Sergei i ego deklaratsia: kapitulatsia ili kompromiss?" (Patriarch Sergius and his Declaration: Capitulation or Compromise?), Vestnik Russkogo Khristianskogo Dvizhenia (Herald of the Russian Christian Movement), № 161, 1991-I, pp. 233-250. 

[93] See Alla D. "Svidetel'stvo" (Witness), in Nadezhda (Hope), vol. 16, Basel-Moscow, 1993, 228-230.

[94] I.M. Andreyev, Is the Grace of God Present in the Soviet Church?, op. cit., p. 30.

[95] N.V. Urusova, Materinskij Plach Sviatoj Rusi (The Maternal Lament of Holy Rus’), Moscow: "Russkij Palomnik", 2006, pp. 285-287.

 
 
						  * * * 

“THERE IS NONE THAT WATCHETH OUT FOR MY SOUL”

Dr. Vladimir Moss

     The heart of the Orthodox Christian is gripped with great sorrow – and not a little anger – when he looks at the truly catastrophic state of the Orthodox Church today. Many, very many are the lost sheep looking around in desperation for a priest or bishop who will provide the minimum of pastoral care. Few, very few are the priests and bishops who provide even that minimum. If we narrow the meaning of “the Orthodox Church” to exclude the clearly heretical churches of World Orthodoxy, and restrict it those “True Orthodox” Churches that are not in communion with World Orthodoxy, then the spectacle is hardly more encouraging: scandals abound, heresies and schisms multiply, the love of many has grown cold. It appears that now “Thou hast cast us off and put us to shame, and wilt not go forth, O God, with our hosts. Thou hast made us to turn back before our enemies, and they that hate us took spoils for themselves. Thou hast given us up as sheep to be eaten, and among the nations hast Thou scattered us” (Psalm 43.10-12).

     The worst thing of all is that so few seem to care; a kind of torpor has overcome us, a faintheartedness in the face of the catastrophe that threatens us all with – why should we be afraid to say it? – the eternal torments of hell…

     There are two standard solutions offered to this problem in relation to True Orthodoxy: we shall call the one the clerical solution, and the other the lay solution.

     The clerical solution is that the jurisdiction that they rule is, if not perfect, at any rate the most canonical to be found, and that the solution for the clergy of other jurisdictions is to repent before them, or at any rate seek union with them. The more rigorist clergy insist that their own jurisdiction is the only True Church, at any rate on the territory of the given Local Church, so that “repent”, rather than “seek union”, is the operative word. The less rigorist do not insist on this (at least openly), but still insist that their jurisdiction and its ecclesiology must be the core around which “the gathering of the fragments” must take place… The lay solution (which is also put forward by some clergy) arises out of frustration at the manifest failure of the proposed clerical solutions so far. It declares that the clergy of different jurisdictions must simply humble themselves, forget – or, at any rate, ignore – their differences, come together in a conference without preconditions and there attempt to combine into a single jurisdiction. The assumption behind this solution is that the great majority, if not all, of the True Orthodox jurisdictions have essentially the same faith and together already constitute the One True Church, even if that inner, mystical unity is not yet manifest in administrative unity.[1]

     I believe that both solutions to the problem are vain for essentially the same reason: they underestimate the obstacles to unity that exist both within and between each jurisdiction. The essential problem with the clerical solution is that, even if we believe that there is one jurisdiction in each given territory that is more canonical than the others, and therefore the natural core around which the other jurisdictions on that territory must unite, - and my personal belief is that there is such a jurisdiction in both Greece and Russia - there still exist major problems that give members of other jurisdictions just reason to pause before joining it. Therefore the first priority must be to remove these internal problems first, before attempting to make disciples and converts of the other, less canonical jurisdictions. Otherwise, we are simply preparing the ground for further schisms in the future, leading to a still deeper, and still more dangerous degree of disillusionment… The essential problem with the lay solution is analogous: although some of the differences that divide the jurisdictions are clearly the result of personal pride or stubbornness on the part of individual hierarchs, and therefore should be remediable with a little more flexibility and humility on all sides, this is clearly not always the case. In some cases, the differences go deeper, and a simple-minded call to “forgive and forget” is inadequate. In fact, we have to admit that some of the breaks in communion are justified, even necessary from a canonical point of view – and if we do not attempt to keep the holy canons, we are lost before we even begin.

     Let us now look briefly at some of these more intractable problems – but without naming names (even if the names will be known to many), because the purpose of this article is not to lambast individual hierarchs or jurisdictions, but to draw general conclusions applicable to all:-

a.      In one jurisdiction, the chief-hierarch, though dogmatically Orthodox and with undoubted apostolic succession, is a homosexual who has only escaped a just prison sentence by the skin of his teeth. Moreover, he has succeeded in expelling dissidents by methods that no Orthodox Christian can recognize as just or canonical. The other hierarchs of his jurisdiction lack the strength to bring him to canonical trial, either because they have known, but done nothing about, his crimes for a long time, and are therefore partly guilty themselves, or because they know that they would be unjustly deprived of their sees if they attempted, however belatedly, to bring him to book. In this situation, it is hardly surprising or reprehensible that the leaders of other jurisdictions hesitate to seek union with him. The Augean stables need to be cleansed before other, fresh horses can be introduced into them

b.      In other jurisdictions, schisms have taken place on the grounds of the sympathies of the chief hierarch with anti-semitism, or Stalinism. Such sympathies are undoubtedly reprehensible, and it is difficult to criticize those who wish to distance themselves from them.

c.       In another jurisdiction that is Orthodox from a dogmatic point of view and with undoubted apostolic succession, a senior hierarch with extreme nationalist views has been allowed for many years to control the “foreign policy” of the jurisdiction together with one of its major foreign dioceses. This has had catastrophic consequences both for the missionary work of the Church and for its relations with other Local Churches. The other hierarchs again seem incapable of acting in accordance with the canons in order to relieve this hierarch of the duties that he has manifestly failed to fulfil. And again, it is not surprising or reprehensible that other hierarchs and jurisdictions, for whom missionary work is not an “optional extra”, and who believe that the Catholicity of the Church should be proclaimed in deed as well as word, hesitate to seek union with this jurisdiction as long as it is dominated by this extremist hierarch.

d.     Another jurisdiction, while impeccable in its rejection of ecumenism and sergianism, and very active in missionary work, has become a conduit for the heretical soteriology of the ecumenist John Romanides that threatens to undermine the central dogma of Christianity.

e.      Another group of jurisdictions has still not made up its mind to declare World Orthodoxy outside the True Church, although the heresy of ecumenism is now almost a century old. If this were simply a tendency towards liberalism, a humble fear of making categorical statements of condemnation, or a desire not to make the conversion of people from World Orthodoxy more difficult than it need be, this would be a less serious matter – such liberals have been found within the Church in every epoch of her history. But when this liberal tendency is taken as a justification for schism from other, less liberal jurisdictions who believe – rightly – that World Orthodoxy is graceless; when this liberal tendency is given a quasi-dogmatic basis in a new, elitist teaching on the nature of the Church (as consisting of three layers: “healthy” Orthodox, “sick” Orthodox and “sick” heretics, none of which are in communion with each other); and when it is denied that any True Orthodox Church has the canonical right to anathematize heretics, then the matter becomes more serious and cannot be swept under the carpet.

     These are only some of the more intractable problems that divide the True Orthodox. It would be naïve to think that they can be solved simply by all the jurisdictions getting round a table. Where bilateral talks have failed (we have more than one example in 2009 alone), multilateral talks are bound to fail. Moreover, multilateral talks aiming at not less than the complete “melting down” and “reforging” of True Orthodoxy are irresponsible nonsense. For they imply the need for revolution rather than evolution in inter-jurisdictional relations that is reminiscent more of renovationism than of True Orthodoxy.[2]

     What is needed is unilateral talks – that is, talks within each jurisdiction rather than between them – to root out the serious problems we have pointed to. Not only would this be the fulfilment of the Lord’s command to remove the beam from one’s own eye before attempting to remove the mote from one’s neighbour’s: it would make each jurisdiction more attractive to the others and thereby create a real desire for unity rather than the present fear of disunity

*

     Speaking about a “clerical” and a “lay” solution raises the question of the relationship between, and relative responsibility of, the clergy and the laity.

     St. Cosmas of Aitolia said that in the last times the clergy and the laity would distrust each other; and it must be admitted that this prophecy has been fulfilled in our time. The clergy, especially those that advocate the rigorist version of the clerical solution, tend to blame the clergy of other jurisdictions for the present catastrophe. Sometimes, however, echoing the Pharisees of Christ’s time, they also blame the laity, declaring that “the people that knoweth not the law is cursed” (John 7.49); they are “unstable”, “jurisdiction-hoppers”, who should simply listen to their priests and obey.

     But attacks by the clergy on the laity are rare – and with reason. For it is generally understood that simply to get a general, objective idea of the rapidly changing jurisdictional situation – who’s who, and who stands for what, and who has been condemned for what by whom – is a major intellectual task requiring personal contacts and theological and linguistic skills for which few of the laity are well equipped. And if they ask the clergy, they will get very different pictures from different clergy – and even from the same clergyman at different times if he, too, has been a “jurisdiction-hopper”.

     So even if it remains true that a people usually gets the leaders it deserves (for “as with the people, so with the priest” (Hosea 4.9)), the primary responsibility must remain with the priesthood. It could not be otherwise in a hierarchical religion such as Orthodoxy in which no priest can be removed, or new one installed, except at the hands of priests. So if the responsibility borne by the priesthood is not just an empty phrase, and if the priests are truly the leaders of the people, who have it within their power, with God’s help, to initiate change and turn the situation around in a way that is not given to the people, it is necessary to exhort and rebuke the priests first of all. Thus the Prophet Hosea says: “It is you, priest, that I denounce. Day and night you stumble along, the prophet stumbling with you, and you are the ruin of your people. My people perish for want of knowledge. As you have rejected knowledge, so do I reject you from the priesthood; you have forgotten the teaching of your God” (Hosea 4.4-6). Again, the Prophet Malachi declares: “Now, priests, this is a warning for you. If you do not listen, if you do not find it in your heart to glorify My name, says the Lord of Hosts, I will send the curse on you and curse your very blessing. Indeed, I have already cursed it, since there is not a single one of you who takes this to heart…” (Malachi 2.1-2).

     The role of the laity need not be as passive as it is often made out to be. The “royal priesthood of the laity” is not a myth, and should not be mocked – as one True Orthodox priest has recently mocked it in public. The 1848 Encyclical of the Eastern Patriarchs specifically emphasized that the truth of the Church is supported and maintained by the whole body of the Church. If the laity cannot remove bad priests or install new ones, they at any right have the right – nay rather, the duty – to lobby for change. In the epoch of the Ecumenical Councils, it was the lay monks who were at the forefront of the struggle for the defence of Orthodoxy against heresy. In the 1920s in Greece and Romania the movement in defence of the Old Calendar was essentially a lay movement with only a handful of priests and no bishops. And St. Joseph of Petrograd foresaw the possibility of a time when only a few laity would remain faithful to Christ: “Do not forget that for a minute: 'The Son of God when He cometh shall He find faith on the earth?' (Luke 18.8). And perhaps the last 'rebels' against the betrayers of the Church and the accomplices of her ruin will be not only bishops and not archpriests, but the simplest mortals, just as at the Cross of Christ His last gasp of suffering was heard by a few simple souls who were close to Him.”

     But even when all exhortations have failed, and the best efforts of the laity to get their priests to act in defence of Orthodoxy have failed, it is essential not to relapse into torpor, into a kind of despondency that deadens the heart and paralyzes the will. One of the most subtle temptations of our time is the idea that we should concern ourselves only with our own problems, and not worry about the problems of others, but “leave all that to God (or the priests)”. And yet a certain measured indignation at the horror of the present situation must be considered an entirely appropriate response, and a lack of indignation - a sign of spiritual insensitivity. It is is not a sign of pride, still less of sinful rebellion against lawful authority, but of that most cardinal of virtues – love for our neighbours as ourselves. After all, did not the Apostle Paul say: “Who is offended, and I burn not?” (II Corinthians 11.29)?

     For a people that has not lost the capacity to feel sorrow and indignation at the absence of a clear witness to Orthodoxy in the world, and at the loss of so many sheep wandering around without a shepherd, for whom the words of David are so appropriate: “I looked upon my right hand [i.e. towards the Orthodox], and beheld, and there was none that did know me. Flight hath failed me, and there is none that watcheth out for my soul” (Psalm 141.60) – for such a people there is still hope of redemption. For only such a people have a living faith in the Lord’s promise: “The gates of hell shall not prevail against the Church” (Matthew 16.18). Only such a people can be the Church.

     We do not know from where redemption will come. It may come from a hierarch, so far unknown or little known to the world, who rises above the general level of mediocrity and finally succeeds in “gathering the fragments”, or from an Orthodox tsar who, as the first layman of the Church and “bishop of those outside the Church”, forces the hierarchs to remove the scandals in their midst. This only do we know for certain: that “it is time for the Lord to act; for they have dispersed Thy law” (Psalm 118.126), that “it is better to trust in the Lord than to trust in man” (Psalm 117.7), and that when earthly hierarchs fail above them stands “the Vladyka above all Vladykas, “the Shepherd and Bishop of our souls” (I Peter 2.25), the Head and Bridegroom of the Church for Whom all things are possible, the Lord Jesus Christ…

              United Kingdom

            December 15/28, 2009.

*

[1] For the distinction between the Church as an inner, mystical organism and the Church as an external organization, see Hieromartyrs Bishop Mark (Novoselov), Letters to Friends.

[2] See, for example, the remarks of Bishop Dionysius of Novgorod in ”Vlast’ ili sluzhenie?” (http://www.portal-credo.ru/site/?act=fresh&id=1090), supported by “Bishop” Gregory of Petrograd and Gdov (http://hgr.livejournal.com/1690366.html) (in Russian).

 

* * * 

ABOUT  “ROCOR UNITED”

Seraphim  Larin

                IT’S BETTER TO LIGHT ONE CANDLE THAN TO SIT IN THE DARKNESS

It’s truly sad to realize that there are people in this world that can neither live with the truth, nor refrain from destroying it in pursuit of earthly gains. The KGB operatives – and lets face it, that’s what they truly are – that have set up an internet shop under the soccer club sounding name – ROCOR UNITED – once again have reared their grotesque head through a pathetic expose` titled “The Anti-ROCOR schism in Australia – Part 1”.

Having learnt nothing from my sound critique of their maiden publication – but that is the usual KGB response to undisputable facts – they have now decided to continue their “modus operandi” by releasing an article that is full of half-truths, mistakes, innuendoes, distortions and outright lies.

Before continuing, please note that all emphases have been made by the writer.

Revealing a display of dilettante capabilities, the writer refers to Fr.John’s surname as “Stukach” – a rude and careless mistake – because the CORRECT spelling is “STUKACZ”. But then again, KGB lackeys were never prone to enunciate the truth or be correct in their declarations.

However, there is more, which must have entailed hours of laborious rummaging through rubbish bins to summarise the following spine-chilling revelation: “Our Sydney correspondent has learned that recently the Stukachevites (sic), through their relations with the protestants and generous donations from former parish committee members of St.Peter and Paul, have purchased an old Methodist church…” Once again, apart from the fact that a well-trained monkey could have gleaned this information from public records, their ignorance and careless approach is seen in the expression of the word “Protestants” with a SMALL p, and referring to Saints Peter and Paul with a singular St. They obviously disregarded my former advice when I suggested that they attend a night school for English students, as their current crop of mistakes and distortions are quite pathetic and infantile. At the same time, the statement that it’s a Methodist church is incorrect, as it belonged to the Presbyterian Church!!

Notwithstanding this, let us now attend to the intended meaning of the article that is heavy on expressions, but very short on truth.

Let us begin with the opening paragraph: “Following the REUNION of the Russian Orthodox Church (ROCOR) and the Moscow Patriarchate (MP)…” the writer shows a pathetic and crude illiteracy in endeavoring to present a rosy picture of MP’s legitimacy through its past unity with ROCOR!

Pray tell, when was ROCOR and MP as one in the past???, because that is what the author is declaring. According to Chamber’s dictionary, “reunion” means: “ a union after separation”. Consequently, can this “intelligent” scribe present some facts that would show that ROCOR and MP were one?

What a clumsy and inept attempt to distort and mislead, as well as to treat its readers as illiterate ignoramuses! And if once was not enough, the article repeats this totally misleading insult in: “..positively welcomed the REUNION of the 2 parts of the Local Russian Church”. To compound this further, it treats us to a third serving of the lie: “..the first discussions of REUNION began in 2000…”!!!

As facts have it, MP came into being in 1927 through “met”.Sergius agreement with the satanic soviet regime, to be the head of their instrumentality – the Moscow Patriarchate. Whereas ROCOR, was formed years earlier! Consequently, to suggest that ROCOR and the MP were one Church is not only a crude nonsense, but an outright lie!

Throwing caution to the wind, the writer then reveals his extraordinary, even somewhat jaw-dropping prescience by declaring: “Stukach (sic), who long had a reputation as an anti-establishment man, already had plans to rebel against the rightful church (sic – small c) going back to when the first discussions of REUNION began in 2000”. These are strong words, but where are the FACTS?? While discussions with the MP did commence illegally by archbp.Mark of Berlin in 2000, the ROCOR Synod had no intention – at that stage – to UNITE (note – not “REUNITE”). In fact their Epistle, as published in “Pravoslavnaya Rus”, stated that they regarded the MP as being a “SOVIET CREATION” that was formed to serve their anti-Christian interests!! And this declaration carried the “capable” “met”Hilarion’s signature!! Can the author point out how this “soviet creation” became the TRUE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH? What canonical procedure has it experienced to make it CANONICALLY LEGAL??? It’s akin to saying that one can turn a “sow’s ear into a silk purse”!!! Of course Fr.John was against UNIFICATION in the year 2000… but then again so was the WHOLE ROCOR SYNOD !!! The writer then turns his literary bile against Fr.John’s receipt of a mitre from “met”Hilarion, by insinuating that he shouldn’t have accepted it, because “he already had every intention of leaving ROCOR”. If that’s the case, then why did “met”Hilarion award him the mitre in the first place? This doesn’t sound like an act of an “able” hierarch - one who hands out honours to priests that are on the eve of creating a “schism”!! Perhaps it was a misguided act of inducement to stay with the ROCOR Judases?

The article’s “Aided and abetted by priests Konstantinoff and Tsukanov, Stukach(sic) engaged in campaign of deceit and panic-mongering among the less informed members of his Strathfield parish that the MP for example, would ‘seize all our property’ and ‘send KGB agents into our midst’..”, certainly hits the nail on the head. The writer is obviously desperate to mollify the masses by making light of the true situation that now exists in ROCOR (MP). If any responsible reader takes the time to analyze the unification agreement, he or she will realize that apart from baptisms, marriages and funerals, the ROCOR clergy have NO RIGHTS whatsoever -UNLESS SANCTIONED (blessed) BY THE MP. One doesn’t have to take my word for it – just EXAMINE THE WORDING, and apply common sense to what has been decided. “pat”Kirill Goondaev has ABSOLUTE CONTROL, because the agreement states that without his confirmation, all practical rights of ROCOR are extinguished. In effect, this means that yes – the statement “seize all our property” is a legal reality, while “send KGB agents into our midst” has been established through key replacements of clergy throughout the structure of the ROCOR – including the Seminary at Jordanville. Meanwhile, the ROCOR clergy that followed the MP have been morally disabled and otherwise rendered inoperative, except for their obsessional dishonesty in justifying their act of betrayal.

The brazen lie by the author in stating that the Russian True Orthodox Church and Her current head, Archbishop Tikhon, are uncanonical, borders on lunacy, because ROCOR Herself stated recently that RTOC is canonical!!

She should be, considering that She is the TRUE continuance of the pre-revolution Russian Orthodox Church – even though She was in the catacombs during the satanic communist rule and lost Her administrative structure. Whereas the author’s MP remains a Stalinist creation, with all its past close associations with satanic activities of Her masters, hailing, praising and praying for their continuing successes in persecuting the Catacomb Church.

While empty phrases like “self-styled” “Bishop” Tikhon of RTOC only reflects the absence of truth in the writer, facts show that Archbishop Tikhon – apart from his acknowledged canonical lineage, is a cleric of imposing confidence and convincing authenticity in both areas of truth and authority, while his measured and definitive responses to the MP’s puerile attacks, reflect a keen mind and impressive scholarship – which is more than can be said of his detractors and their CEO – “pat” Kirill Goondaev.

The statements made by the author of this publication, is a classic example of a pseudo-analytical mind based on distortions and a KGB agenda. The purpose of the article is to further twist, misrepresent and generally confuse the reader. Examine the declarations – WHERE ARE THE FACTS AND WHERE ARE THE RESPONSES TO THE TRUE CONDEMNATIONS OF GOONDAEV AND HIS OPERATIVES?? There are none because truth has very little currency in the KGB’s operations!

Also, while on the subject of canonicity, it’s curious that the writer doesn’t touch upon “pat”Kirill’s elevation to the patriarchal throne. While casting fabricated aspersions from a lofty moral ground at Archbishop Tikhon’s canonical status, he conveniently ignores the PATENTLY UNCANONICAL election that brought his boss - Kirill Goondaev - to his state of “holiness”. As reported on all the internet sites, participants in this election  - in TOTAL VIOLATION of Church Statutes - included many businessmen and oligarchs, who cast their votes for their fellow tobacco, vodka and oil entrepreneur. This obviously relegates Rocor United’s bold statement of being “an independent stream of news and commentary” to the comic sections of responsible publications.

Dear reader, please don’t accept what I write but inquire, examine and analyse. Anyone who accepts blindly what I say is as “judicious” as those MP followers that are all about memories, myths and self-delusions, and are motivated more by misspent fervour and physical opulence than by facts. They have lost their power of lucid response to valid indictments of their concessions to the vulgar spirits of the age – personified by the MP.

The author likens Fr.John to David Koresh – a comparison beyond rational thought – brought about, no doubt, by an irrational mind that should be reclining on a psychiatrist’s couch, explaining to his qualified listener why he used to pull wings off flies in his boyhood days. Even a seasoned and restrained MP individual would be unable to see the connection between the two. However, a desperate mind resorts to desperate measures.

The whole tone of the article reeks of unfounded innuendoes against the truth and the promotion of the MP, which in reality is a religiously grotesque organization that has been made attractive through pomp and ceremony, and the balm of time. It’s an ongoing attempt to remove the reality of its gory embryonic beginning and slavish services to the past and present godless regime – the blasphemous services that will remain damned in perpetuity.

I sincerely hope that all my comments and evaluations be subject to scrutiny and assessment – it’s an approach of an evaluative and responsible mind. Don’t take my words at face value but investigate, just as you equally shouldn’t accept the writings by this MP adherent but question the veracity of the “revelations”.

One has to ask as to why so much time and effort has been directed through violent physical persecutions within the RF boundaries against  a “misguided minority”, and concentrated printed persecutions against still smaller “misguided minorities” abroad, if they are insignificant and are of no consequence? Surely, numerically they are not worth counting, when compared to the MP adherents. Yet “pat”Kirill, with the aid of Putin’s dreaded dehumanized OMONs (security militia made up of KGB “heavies”), continues to apply illegal force within the RF against any Orthodox Church that doesn’t recognize his authority, thereby revealing his true nature and spiritual barbarism.

Here in Australia, he has opened this new “Rocor United” internet site, boasting as “the best ENGLISH LANGUAGE source” of information. However, their activities have proven them to be a prime source of misinformation, distortions, inaccuracies and outright lies – revealing that their master’s undisputed and despotic authority counts for more than truth and justice.

While well trained in the art of feigned innocence and subterfuge, the practiced common and recognizable symptom of the MP adherent is an outraged solemnity, as though as yet unspoken blasphemies were trembling on unholy lips of those that refused to join “pat”Kirill Goondaev’s religious corporation. It even somehow manages to come through in print, just as it does in this current “informative” release.

But the real worry comes in the last sentence of: “Stay tuned for more news on the Stukachevites (sic) and the inside (?) story of RTOC’s Australian chapter”.

Having read the above article’s “news”, all I can say is: “ Give us a break!.. MUST WE?”.

Let us all remember what St.Gregory the Theologian said:  “NOT EVERY ECCLESIASTICAL UNION IS PLEASING TO GOD AND AN HONOURABLE WAR IS PREFERABLE TO A SHAMEFUL PEACE”

            Australia

* * *

РОССИЙСКАЯ ДУХОВНАЯ МИССИЯ В ПЕКИНЕ (КИТАЙ).

 М. К. (Осень 1938 г.)

    Пекин – сказочный китайский город. Священный город великого азиатского народа, живущего своей особенной, многотысячелетней культурой, которую он стойко оберегает от натиска европейско-американской цивилизации.

            Пекин – большая деревня на европейский взгляд – и в то же время несомненная столица великого азиатского народа.

            Пекин – по-китайски Бэй-цзин – в переводе на русский язык «Северная столица». Столицей он стал при императоре монгольской династии Хубилай-хане в конце XIII века. Население в нем полтора миллиона. Он состоит из Китайского города, «Вай-чен», Маньчжурского города – «Нэй-чен», занимающего северную часть всего Пекина, и Императорского города – «Хуан-чен», находящегося внутри Маньчжурского. Центральная часть Императорского города – «Цзы-цзин-чен» – запретный город: в нем императорские дворцы. И каждая из этих частей Пекина обнесена своей особой стеной.

            Из вагона экспресса выходим на благоустроенную крытую платформу, проходим недавно отстроенным пассажирским вокзалом к выходу. На просторной площади масса автомобилей и рикш. Мы уже давно в Китае и не стесняемся, как в первые дни, пользоваться услугами бегущих в рикшах китайцев.

            Прямо против вокзала, посреди площади, многоэтажная характерного китайского стиля башня – Цзян-лщу (стрелковая башня), а вправо от нее – трехэтажная башня над воротами – Цянь-мынь. Этими воротами, через тоннели в стене, огораживающей весь город, мы из Китайской части въезжаем в Маньчжурскую часть Пекина. Стена высотой с 4-х этажный дом, шириной на верху – как улица: если устроить с обеих сторон тротуары, то по середине свободно проедут в ту и другую сторону автомобили. Еще не так давно по стене можно было обойти кругом всего Маньчжурского города, пройдя для этого около 24 верст. Теперь некоторые участки стены недоступны для публики. На стене трава, кусты, деревья. Против Американского посольства – железные башни беспроволочного телеграфа.

            Проехав Цян-мынские ворота, выезжаем на небольшую площадь, на ней разбит сквер с цветником, а за ним, через улицу – красивые, художественной работы, китайские тройные ворота: средние – пошире, боковые – поуже Чжун-Хуа-мынь.

            От этих ворот идет широкая, вымощенная каменными плитами, дорога Юньлу (императорский путь), отделенная от города с обоих сторон красными стенами. Теперь эта дорога засажена деревьями и кустами. Прежде она служила для торжественных шествий иностранных послов при представлениях их китайским Императорам. Послы подъезжали к этим воротам и здесь должны были оставлять свои экипажи. По другую сторону ворот послов и их свиту ожидали паланкины и носильщики, присланные от императорского дворца. В паланкинах, с соблюдением торжественного церемониала, их несли этой дорогой на протяжении полуверсты к шести мраморным мостам через канал, окружающий Императорский запретный город, где находятся здания императорских дворцов.

            Запретный город обнесен еще более высокой красной стеной с высокими красивыми воротами – Тянь-Ань-Мынь (ворота небесного спокойствия) и башней над ними. У мраморных мостов послы должны были выйти из паланкинов и через ворота вступать в запретный город уже пешком.

            Мы едем на рикшах вдоль стены паланкинной дороги на север, до канала с мраморными мостами, и сворачиваем на восток, по улице Чан-Ань-цзэ (улица вечного спокойствия) вдоль посольского квартала. Посольский квартал экстерриториален, недоступен для китайских властей. В 1900 году китайские националисты – «боксеры» – возмутились постоянными унизительными уступками своего Правительства западным державам, убили германского посланника Кеттлера, разрушили Российскую Духовную Миссию, избили свыше 200 православных китайцев и осадили район города, где проживали иностранные послы. Подоспевшие русско-японские войска штурмовали Пекин и освободили осажденных послов. Во избежание повторения таких инцидентов Китай был принужден выделить этот район в исключительное пользование дипломатических представителей, которые сделали из своих районов некоторое подобие крепостей со своими гарнизонами.

            Против Итальянского посольства поперек улицы Чан-Ань-Цзэ деревянные, художественной работы, ворота – Тиен-ань-мынь (ворота небесного покоя).

            Проехав посольский квартал, сворачиваем на Хадамынскую улицу. Здесь, у поворота Дун-Дань-пай-лоу, еще недавно возвышались на каменных столбах мраморные ворота, построенные Китаем по требованию Германии на том месте, где во время боксерского восстания был убит ее посланник. Теперь эти ворота перенесены в городской сад.

            Направо видны Хадамынские ворота в Южной стене города. По Хадамынской улице, недалеко от ворот, видна грандиозная процессия, растянувшаяся на целую версту, с массой китайских знамен и плакатов, группой буддийского духовенства, китайскими музыкантами и заунывной китайской музыкой под барабанный бой и звон медных тарелок. Масса носильщиков несут громадный деревянный гроб под красным балдахином. За ним, одетые во все белое, идут и едут в одноконных каретах родственники погребаемого. Белый цвет – траурный.

            Вся процессия чрезвычайно красочна. И среди нее – взвод генералов в европейской форме: шаровары с красными лампасами, на плечах эполеты, через плечо – ленты, на головах – треуголки с плюмажем. Это – оркестр «европейской» музыки. Когда китайская музыка замолкает – начинает играть этот оркестр. Играют европейские марши – но,  какая ужасная какофония. И не знаешь, что это: наивное приобщение к европейской цивилизации, или – злая сатира на европейцев.

            Не является ли это своего рода ответом на не так давно встречавшиеся еще вывески у входов в сады и скверы европейских концессий с надписями: китайцам и собакам вход воспрещается. К чести русских надо сказать, что таких вывесок, теперь уже вообще немыслимых, на русском языке никогда не было.

            Широкая улица Хадамын тянется от южных (Хадамынских) ворот Маньчжурского города, до северной стены города – на протяжении 6 или 7 верст. Прекрасная асфальтовая мостовая, трамвай, электрическое освещение, на каждом шагу громко – кричащие радио – слишком много радио – необыкновенно широкие тротуары перед китайскими магазинами и лавочками, складами и мастерскими.

            Здесь, на тротуарах, как в самых захолустных китайских городах, мастеровые китайцы работают: жестяники - чайники и ведра, плотники – массивные китайские гроба, столяры – скамейки, табуретки, окна, двери, бондари – сколачивают кадки, шайки, бочки. Стук, звон, крик. Здесь же фруктовщики красиво разложили свои фрукты, старьевщики на разосланной циновке расставили свои сомнительной древности вазы, чашки, амулеты, бутылочки и другие китайские редкости, а рядом, на открытом воздухе, парикмахер – стрижет и бреет, предсказатель – гадает, писец – пишет прошения или письма, и здесь же готовится китайская еда и за легкими столиками, а то и прямо, присев на корточки, прохожие китайцы и рабочие обедают и закусывают.

            На перекрестке скучились автомобили, рикши, пешеходы – но ни крика, ни брани, ни суеты. Через минуту или две все приходит в порядок, все движется куда надо. И вдруг неожиданно из боковой улицы появляется караван верблюдов. Верблюды важно вступают рядом с обгоняющим их трамваем, нисколько не пугаясь его – и никого это не удивляет, все привыкли к таким контрастам.

            На середине Хатамынской улицы, на пересечении с улицей Лун-фу-сы-цзэ, 4 красивых китайских ворот на красных столбах – Дун-сы-пай-лщу. Ворота бережно поддерживаются и подновляются. По преданию они воздвигнуты в честь восьми вдов, которые, оставшись молодыми после смерти мужей, верные их памяти, не захотели вторично выйти замуж.

            Не доезжая версты до северной городской стены, поворачиваем по широкой улице Дун-Чжи-мынь-да-цзэ на восток. Проехав так с версту, сворачиваем в узкий переулок опять на север и едем лабиринтом переулков - «хутунов». Здесь уже такая старина и такая простота, как 1000 лет тому назад. Здесь народ живет так, как живут в китайских деревнях. Кончается трудовой день, движение по лабиринту хутунов прекращается и начинается служба ночных сторожей. У каждого свой район, который он, с примитивной колотушкой, или с парой бамбуковых досчечек, выстукивая часы, обходит несколько раз в течении ночи и выкрикивает около 9 часов вечера – «кончился трудовой день, добрые люди ложатся спать, тушите свет», в 12 часов – «спите спокойно - сторож не спит», между 3 и 4 часами утра он кричит: «уж светает, скоро встанет солнце, не проспите восход солнца».

            Местами переулки так тесны, что рикшам очень трудно разъехаться. С большой осторожностью объезжаем играющих на дороге маленьких детей и, никогда не прогоняя их с дороги, выезжаем на простор и видим высокую русскую многоярусную колокольню с православным крестом.

               Это – БЕЙ-ГУАНЬ. Это – Российская Духовная Миссия в Китае, центр Китайской Православной Церкви, гнездо Албазинцев.

АЛБАЗИНЦЫ.

               В половине XVII века, при Царе Алексее Михайловиче, известный в летописях Сибири «промышленный» человек Ерофей Хабаров, с разрешения Якутского Воеводы, снарядил на свой счет экспедицию для завоевания Даурской земли. С отрядом из 70 человек, он двинулся из Якутска к Амуру и здесь провел 3½ года в непрестанных походах и боях, причем построил несколько укреплений – «острогов». В числе таких укреплений им был основан и Албазинский острог.

                Местные туземцы жаловались на пришельцев маньчжурским властям. В Китае в это время царствовала Маньчжурская династия Цин. Чтобы избежать столкновения с русскими, маньчжурские власти переселили дауров на берега реки Нонни, притока Сунгари. Тогда русские предприняли походы в Манчжурию, но здесь встретили отпор. Маньчжуры стали стягивать к Амуру свои войска и в 1668 году,  отряд Степанова на реке Сунгари,  потерпел поражение, а в следующем году китайцы взяли Албазин и разрушили его. Через 6 лет отряд Никифора Черниговского восстановил Албазин и обложил даурцев данью – пушниной. В Албазине была построена церковь Воскресения Христова, а недалеко от него – Монастырь.

            С возрождением Албазина усилился приток русских людей в Даурскую землю. Стали заводиться русские селения и пашни, появились крестьянские слободы: Покровская, Игнашина, Монастырщина, Озерная и другие.

            С заменой Черниговского другим атаманом,  положение русских на Амуре ухудшилось. Казаки стали обижать не только даурцев и китайцев, но и русских крестьян. Пекинское Правительство стало готовиться к борьбе с русскими.

             1684 году в Албазин пришла грамота китайского Богдыхана, в которой говорилось:

«Вы пришли на мою землю, моих ясачных людей изгоняете, у промышленных людей отнимаете соболей и запасы. Приняли Гантимура с товарищами. И много лет на моем рубеже делаете худо. Я, Богдыхан, послал на вас большое войско, но убить и погубить вас жалею. Бросьте делать худое, идите назад… отдайте Гантимура и уходите сами, и мы будем жить в любви и согласии. Но если вы добра не понимаете и станете жить на моей земле, то ни небом, ни землей вы не управитесь. Убить вас жалею, а если идти вам далеко, то приходите ко мне,  и я вас пожалую».

            Упомянутый в этой Грамоте Гантимур – тунгусский князь, перешедший в это время со всеми людьми в подданство России, родоначальник князей Гантимуровых.

            Албазин в это время был уже воеводским городом, им правил воевода Толбузин, который стал энергично готовиться к войне с китайцами. На грамоту Богдыхана решено было не отвечать, Албазина не отдавать, а пока пороху будет – с тем порохом «готовы умереть за Великих Государей – а острог они не покинут».

            Китайский полководец Лан-тан с 10.000 войском и большим количеством пук осадил Албазин. Его пехота была вооружена саблями, луками и в небольшом количестве ружьями. В первые же дни русские потеряли более 100 человек из гарнизона в 450 человек. Казаки отчаянно защищались, пока были боевые припасы, но они скоро истощились. Тогда жители Албазина, не видя для себя другого выхода, упросили воеводу Толбузина начать переговоры с китайцами,  и 26 Июня 1685 года Албазин был сдан китайцам. Воевода Толбузин с казаками вышел из Албазина и направился в Нерчинск. Часть жителей Албазина, по предложению Китайского Императора, согласилась поступить на службу к нему. Албазин был разрушен.

            Около 300 защитников Албазина, со своим священником – О. Максимом Леонтьевым – прибыли в Пекин и здесь были встречены с почетом и зачислены в личную охрану Императора.

            В том же году Нерчинский воевода предпринял опять завоевание Амура: Толбузин вернулся, отстроил заново Албазин и стал опять занимать даурскую землю. Китайцы опять осадили его. Более двух лет длилась эта осада. Толбузин был убит. Гарнизон голодал, но не сдавался. Судьба Албазина была, наконец, решена Нерчинским договором 1689 года: он был разорен до основания, к Китаю отошло все русское Приамурье.

            Прибывшие в Пекин с О. Максимом защитники Албазина не оказались здесь одинокими – здесь были уже русские, взятые китайцами в плен при столкновениях с русскими отрядами в Манчжурии.

            Албазинцы были записаны в военное сословие, в знаменные маньчжурские войска, причислены к желтому с каймой маньчжурскому знамени и составили особую «русскую» роту. Наравне с другими войсками они получали казенные квартиры, деньги на обзаведение, наделы пахотной земли, денежные пайки и содержание рисом. Районом их поселения был определен северо-восточный угол Маньчжурского города, где в использовании была предоставлена монгольская кумирня. Кумирню эту они переделали в часовню и здесь стали отправлять православное богослужение.

            Уходя из Албазина, О. Максим взял с собой из Албазинской церкви древнюю икону Святителя Николая, известную под названием «Можайская».

            После смерти О. Максима в 1711 году Святитель Иоанн, Митрополит Тобольский, послал в Китай своего друга – Архимандрита Иллариона Лежайского. Китайское Правительство разрешило ему и его небольшой свите въехать в Пекин и продолжать служение О. Максима.

            Это было фактическим признанием существования Российской Духовной Миссии в Китае. Архимандрит Илларион привез Китайскому Императору письмо от Императора Петра, а в 1728 году Кяхтинским трактатом между Россией и Китаем Духовная Миссия была признана уже официально. С этого времени и до 1864 года, когда впервые в Китай был назначен Российский посланник, Духовная Миссия исполняла не только религиозные, но и дипломатические функции.

            Архимандрит Илларион указом Китайского Императора был признан мандарином 5 степени, а состоявшие при нем священник и диакон – мандаринами 7 степени. Китайский Император ежемесячно справлялся о его здоровии и о нуждах Духовной Миссии.

            После его смерти Начальником Духовной Миссии был назначен епископ Иннокентий, но вследствие происков инославных Миссий он не был допущен в Китай и получил назначение на епископскую кафедру в Иркутск. За свою подвижническую жизнь и чудеса, исходившие от его нетленных святых мощей, он причислен к лику Святых русской Православной Церкви.

            Со времени Кяхтинского договора, когда определилась не только духовная, но и дипломатическая деятельность Духовной Миссии, в состав ее, кроме духовенства, назначались и светские помощники для дипломатических сношений. В то же время Миссия вела и научную работу по изучению Китая.

            При Начальнике Миссии О. Амвросии (Юматове) Миссия неоднократно оказывала защиту гонимых в то время китайским Правительством иностранным Миссиям. По сохранившемуся преданию, памятник на могиле О. Амвросия воздвигнут благодарными ему иезуитами, которых он не раз укрывал у себя.

            С 1864 года, с назначением в Пекин дипломатического представителя России, за Духовной Миссией осталось только духовное окормление православных русских и китайцев, а также научная деятельность.

РАИОН ДУХОВНОЙ МИССИИ.

            Район Духовной Миссии обнесен прочной кирпичной стеной. За стеной видна церковь – крест на голубой луковке. Это – Успенский Собор Духовной Миссии.

            На рикшах въезжаем в узкий проезд к северным воротам Центрального района Миссии. Железные ворота с большим крестом на верху. Сбоку за воротами, маленькая сторожка для привратника. За сторожкой, справа, в белой кирпичной стене широкий проход на вымощенный кирпичом двор, засаженный деревьями. По сторонам двора две хороших, светлых китайских фанзы. Это – школы: левая – для русских детей, правая – для китайских. На ней вывеска – «русско-китайская школа». Русско-китайская потому, что всех китайских детей здесь обучают русскому языку.

            Обе школы заново отремонтированы. Много света через широкие китайские окна. В русской вижу заведующего школой – А.С. Остроумова, бывшего офицера. Учительница – жена полковника – Цимбалова. В школе 20 детей, в том числе трое ее детей.

            Маленькие одиночные парты, классные доски, картины, карты и таблицы на стенах. Школа, по-видимому, хорошо оборудована, но не хватает учебников – общее горе русской эмиграции. Предполагается включить в программу преподавания языки китайский, японский и английский. При русской школе – Детский Сад, который также находится в ведении г-жи Цимбаловой.

            За фанзой русско-китайской школы – небольшой гимнастический городок: качели, кольца, трапеция. Приятно видеть веселую, разбегающуюся по домам после уроков русскую детвору. Большинство школьников живет в домах Духовной Миссии.

            Китайцы и в школе своеобразны. Китайской школой заведует Протоиерей О. Михаил Мин. Учитель – молодой китаец. Школьников до 30 человек. Уроки закончены, дети выходят на двор, выстраиваются и по общей команде делают учителю низкий поклон: благодарят за науку. Китайская церемония – но как она уместна и как хорошо свидетельствует о своеобразной, но великой китайской культуре.

            За школьным двором – такой же двор поменьше. Вход в него через вычурную, китайского стиля, калитку. На дворе большие деревья. Вообще видна любовь к насаждениям. Слева калитки фанза – переплетная мастерская, и при ней помещение для китайца-переплетчика. И мастерская, и жилище переплетчика очень чисты и светлы. На другом краю двора – две фанзы, заселенные китайцами – рабочими типографии Миссии, которая помещается дальше, за этим двором. Между переплетной и типографией площадка для игр, но она видимо не в почете: спорт здесь не в ходу. Может быть, для детей ее приведут в порядок.

            Типографией занят большой кирпичный корпус под железной крышей. Внутри много типографских машин – наследие существовавшего лет 15 тому назад Товарищества «Восточное Просвещение». Еще до образования этого Товарищества покойный Митрополит Иннокентий решил реорганизовать типографию Миссии. В ней был поставлен паровой двигатель, расширено помещение, устроено электрическое освещение и поставлены новые машины.  В типографии было напечатано 20.000 экземпляров Евангелия и 13 учебников по 10 тысяч экземпляров каждого. Всего было выпущено больше 150.000 книг.

            В Августе 1920 года, после крушения белого фронта адмирала Колчака, в Пекин хлынула масса русских беженцев. Чтобы дать потерявшим Родину, потерпевшим крушение в житейском море, русским людям заработок, чтобы дать им средства существования, Митрополит Иннокентий отдал им в долгосрочное пользование большую часть имущества Духовной Миссии. Эмигранты организовали два паевых товарищества: «Восточное Просвещение» и «Восточное Хозяйство». Товарищества эти успеха не имели. Духовная Миссия для ликвидации их неудачных предприятий уплатила единовременно 30.000 долларов. С тех пор типографские машины, рассчитанные на большое издательство, и залежи напечатанных тогда книг остаются воспоминанием благого намерения Начальника Миссии помочь несчастным изгнанникам и неудачных коммерческих опытов неискушенных в таких делах эмигрантов. Часть книг постепенно реализуется Миссией, но значительная часть остается нереализованной.

            Горький опыт научил Миссию очень осторожно относиться, к новым попыткам улучшить эксплуатацию ее достояния, так как рисковать повторением таких потерь она не может. Да и надобности особенной в таком риске, слава Богу, нет, как не было и тогда, когда Высокопреосвященнейший Иннокентий хотел только помочь русским эмигрантам.

        Теперь типографией ведает албазинец – протоиерей Успенского Собора О. Василий Дэ. Работают в типографии китайцы, преимущественно Албазинцы. Многие из них в то же время состоят певчими Архиерейского хора. В типографии печатается официоз Российской Духовной Миссии – «Китайский Благовестник», существующий уже больше 35 лет, со времени назначения Начальником Миссии Владыки Иннокентия. Типография исполняет и частные заказы, но в ограниченном количестве. Она не дает всего того, что может дать, но удовлетворяет самым существенным требованиям от нее Духовной Миссии и, кроме того, дает средства существования работающим в ней православным китайцам.

            За типографией засаженная деревьями площадь отделяет Успенский Собор от типографии. Успенский Собор по наружному виду такое же, как и типография и как корпус мужского монастыря, здание, с тем только отличием, что стены его выше и на крыше высится голубая церковная глава, в виде русской луковки, увенчанная православным крестом.

            Здание Собора – временное. Создатель Собора – Митрополит Иннокентий – предполагал воздвигнуть величественный Собор в южном участке района Миссии, который он обнес прочной кирпичной стеной. Постоянный Собор должен был олицетворять собой величие России и Русской Православной Церкви. Но – пути Господни неисповедимы: Россия в унижении, Русская Православная Церковь в гонении. Однако близится конец испытаниям: русский народ в гонении показал такую силу духа, явил такое множество мучеников за Веру, что близко обновление Церкви Православной, прообразом которого является обновление во многих местах России и Зарубежья Святых Икон и куполов Церквей. Когда возродится Святая Русь – тогда будет сооружен и величественный Собор Российской Духовной Миссии, которого не дано было соорудить первому епископу Китайской Православной Церкви.

            Временный Собор обсажен живой изгородью из можжевельника. И главный, и боковой входы в Собор – с южной стороны, со стороны мужского монастыря. Внутри стены Собора сплошь расписаны изображениями из Священной Истории. В особых киотах большие иконы Священномучеников Целителя Пантелеимона и Дмитрия Солунского. За этими киотами – правый и левый клиросы. На правом, у солеи, древняя святыня Собора – большая икона Св. Николая Чудотворца, изображенного с мечем в руке. Это та икона, которую 250 лет тому назад принесли с собой Албазинцы, когда после долгой осады и геройской защиты Албазинского острога, приглашенные Китайским Императором на службу, они прибыли в Пекин, были встречены с почетом, зачислены в охранный отряд Императора и поселены в районе теперешнего Бей-гуаня.

            Широкий амвон, большие прекрасной работы образа иконостаса, широкие Царские Врата, обширный Алтарь, церковная живопись на стенах, прекрасный запрестольный образ Спасителя – все производит впечатление широты размаха и напоминает храмоздателя – первого епископа Китайского, почившего Митрополита Иннокентия, великого учителя и столпа Православной Церкви. И невольно вспоминаешь его величественную фигуру, его непоколебимость в делах Церкви, его идеально-простое, строгое исполнение чина Церковной службы.

(Продолжение следует)

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В  ЗАЩИТУ БЕЛОГО ДЕЛА

Еп. Новгородский Дионисий

            Наша статья «Белая идея и красная стихия»  вызвала ряд возражений читателей. Нам указали, что Белое Движение было немонархическим, или даже прямо республиканским, не церковным, узко сословным, оторванным от народа, что белые правительства и тылы были переполнены февралистами и масонами и прочими лицами левых убеждений, что все Движение сильно зависело от иностранных держав. А потому общий вывод наших критиков таков, что Белое Движение изначально было предопределено к поражению, как дело заведомо безнадежное, не имеющее ни народной поддержки, ни помощи Божией.

            Попробуем разобраться с этими возражениями по порядку.

            1. Состав Белого Движения.

            Чтобы далее не путаться с оценками, нужно сразу более четко определиться, кого можно считать белым в строгом смысле слова, а кого нельзя. Лишь после этого можно будет сказать, по адресу ли направляется критика. Для этого полезно взглянуть на противоположную, красную сторону. Мы увидим, что большевики с самого начала очень четко различали своих от «попутчиков». Последних никогда не путали с первыми, никогда им ни доверяли, хотя и заигрывали с ними в нужное время. Использовав «попутчиков» на каком-то этапе в своих целях, большевики потом без всякой благодарности и пощады ликвидировали их своими или чужими руками. «Попутчиками» большевиков, начиная с октябрьского переворота 1917 г. и до конца Гражданской войны были и разные левые партии (анархисты, эсеры, максималисты и т.п.), и всевозможные националисты (от прибалтийских до кавказских), и разные социальные слои и группы (от крестьян до бывших офицеров и чиновников – «старых спецов», взятых на службу коммунистическому режиму). В сумме все это составляло красную коалицию под железной большевицкой властью, хотя, конечно, настоящих старых большевиков, «швейцарского образца», в ней было немного.

            Если мы с этой точки зрения посмотрим на антибольшевицкую коалицию, то увидим, что по-настоящему белые составляли в ней меньшинство. Белые – это те, кто принципиально и последовательно, от начала до конца боролись с ком. режимом, отвергая всякие компромиссы и предпочитая смерть сдаче в плен. Невозможно считать белыми ни тех, кто в ходе самой гражданской войны перешли на сторону красных и служили в их войсках, ни тех, кто отсиживались в тылах, обделывали свои личные дела и были первыми среди беженцев за границу. Ни перебежчики, ни шкурники, ни тыловые хищники, ни политиканы и интриганы белыми считаться не могут. Это были лишь «попутчики», как и у большевиков, с той только существенной разницей, что большевики до самого конца выжимали все соки из своих «попутчиков» и потом столь же безжалостно расправлялись с ними. «Попутчики» же Белого Движения примазались к нему, когда оно достигло определенных успехов, попытались воспользоваться им в своих целях, а затем предали и бросили его, как только обозначились первые неудачи. Этих «белых попутчиков» наказали потом не белые, а те же самые красные, расправившиеся с ними, как и со своими «попутчиками».

            Между тем, именно попутчикам Белого Движения с их деятельностью, партийной принадлежностью и, главное, нравственным обликом, направлено большинство претензий со стороны критиков Белого Дела. Не отрицая справедливости всей этой критики в частностях, скажем только, что даже если эти попутчики порой и занимали высокие посты в Белом тылу, в собственном смысле слова белыми они не были. Не они начинали белую борьбу в полном одиночестве, не они оканчивали ее, когда были исчерпаны все возможности к ее продолжению. Поэтому, строго говоря, нельзя считать белыми Кубанское или Донское правительство, вредившее главкому Юга России ген. Деникину и своей деятельностью подготовившее Новороссийскую катастрофу. Как считать белым премьера Сибирского правительства Пепеляева, если он предал на расправу адм. Колчака? То же самое можно сказать про деятелей Северо-Западного правительства, навязанных ген. Юденичу англичанами, или про премьера Северного правительства Чайковского, который приехал на все готовое из Англии и уехал обратно, как только обозначились неуспехи. Многие политические аферисты и дельцы, хотя бы они занимали и высокие должности, ничем своим не пожертвовали для Белого дела, но напротив, искали своей личной выгоды. Таковых можно считать лишь случайными союзниками белых, которые в целом принесли более вреда, нежели пользы.

            Невозможно причислить к белым и большинство представителей крупной российской буржуазии. Ген. Деникин отмечает, что от крупных предпринимателей Юга России он не получил никакой бескорыстной материальной помощи, даже минимальной, а только деловые предложения. Адм. Колчак подобное же положение в Сибири с горечью подытожил так: «у меня есть Пожарские, но нет Мининых». Интересно выражение старообрядца-миллионера Рябушинского, действовавшего в тылах армии Деникина. Этот активный деятель Февраля говорил так: «мы тоже большевики, только те – красные большевики, а мы белые большевики». Но поскольку белых большевиков в природе все-таки быть не может, то эта фраза значит, что крупные предприниматели («мы») были только попутчиками белых, но никак не белыми.

            Если же теперь получается, что ни большинство членов белых правительств и администрации, ни большинство «общественности», шумевшей в тылу от имени белых, ни большинство промышленников белыми не были, то кто же тогда ими были? Только генералы и офицеры, юнкера и кадеты? Конечно, в первую очередь они, как первые, взявшие оружие и пошедшие в неравный бой с большевизмом. Но не только они.

            Белое Движение было всесословным, народным, хотя, к сожалению, не стало всенародным. В нем, кроме представителей интеллигенции, участвовали и многие выходцы из простого русского народа.

            Солдаты Кавказского фронта, составившие Самурский полк, или шахтеры Донбасса, мобилизованные в Дроздовскую дивизию, о которых упоминает ген. Туркулл, сражавшиеся честно и до конца, были, конечно, белыми. Крестьяне Харьковской губернии, призванные в Белозерский полк, о которых упоминает ген. Штейфон, также доблестно выполнявшие свой долг, были белыми. Казаки бригады ген. Гусельщикова, наиболее доблестной в Донском войске, которых ставит в пример прочим ген. Краснов, были настоящими белыми. Такими же были казаки  Кубани, всенародное восстание которых описывает ген. Шкуро, и оренбургские казаки атамана Дутова. Псковские рыбаки, составившие доблестный Толабский полк Северо-Западной армии ген. Юденича, поморы Северного края из армии ген. Миллера, особенно прославившиеся крестьяне Шенкурской волости, рабочие Ижевского и Воткинского заводов, бывшие в числе лучших в армии ген. Колчака, - все это были представители самого что ни на есть трудового народа, а не какой-то сельской полуобразованщины или босяков. Причем, в отличие от многих белых интеллигентов, отошедших от веры и церкви, это были вполне церковные православные люди.

            И вся беда в том, что таких-то в общей массе русского народа оказалось незначительное меньшинство…

2.  Партийная принадлежность.

        Что касается партийной принадлежности подлинных участников Белого Движения, то о ней можно говорить лишь условно, ни в коем случае не навешивая партийных ярлыков. Существовавшие в России до революции партии сформировались по отношению к существующему царскому строю: одни партии этот строй поддерживали, другие стремились реконструировать, третьи прямо его расшатывали и подрывали, кто легальными методами, а кто и нелегальными. Именно относительно царского престола строилась и стратегия, и тактика, и кадровая политика всех партий. После падения монархии и установления большевицкой диктатуры все прежние партийные программы утратили свой смысл. Коренным образом должно было измениться все политическое мышление. Теперь в центр встало отношение к большевицкому режиму: или признание его и служение ему, или борьба с ним до конца. Прежние партии при этом потерпели раскол и распались по причине того, что их члены, каждый лично и отдельно, решили для себя этот вопрос по-разному. На множестве отдельных биографических примеров того времени мы видим, как одни пошли на службу большевикам, несмотря на свои недавние правые взгляды, которые они постарались поскорее забыть, а другие наоборот, пошли бороться с большевиками, оставив свои недавние левые заблуждения. Поэтому правильнее говорить о бывших кадетах в правительстве Юга России, чем о кадетском правительстве. Тем более, что такие его деятели, как например, проф. Соколов, бывший кадет, был привлечен к работе ген. Деникиным в качестве профессора государственного права С-Петербургского университета, т.е. как профессионал, а не как партийный деятель.

        Сам ген. Деникин именовал своих гражданских помощников «национально-демократическими элементами», в отличие от интернациональных и сепаратистских. Такое распределение политических ориентаций лучше соответствовало периоду Гражданской войны. Подобным же образом, по деловым качествам, а не по партийной принадлежности, подбирал себе помощников ген. Краснов и другие белые вожди.

            Белое движение упрекают в том, что оно было демократическим. Действительно, по составу, по инициативе, идущей снизу, а не сверху, Белое Движение было народным, а потому его скорее можно назвать демократическим, нежели бюрократическим или аристократическим. Представителей прежней высшей бюрократии или титулованной знати в нем было очень мало. В распадающейся на части стране, лишенной своей государственной власти и всех средств государственного управления, Белое Движение не могло быть иным, как начатым энтузиастами на местах, пытающимися привлечь народное сочувствие и поддержку. Оно и было на первом этапе движением добровольческим. И позднее, когда белые освободили целые области, они, не имея своего государственного аппарата, пытались опереться на местное самоуправление, восстанавливали выборные, т.е. демократические учреждения. Не вина, а беда их в том, что наполнившие эти учреждения «попутчики», лица, большей частью недостойные, превратили все эти круги, рады и думы в места для обустройства личных дел или, еще хуже, в трибуны обличения самого Белого Движения. Не будучи движением ни партийным, ни сословным, белые опирались на тот народ, на тех людей, которые были налицо, ожидая от них поддержки и предоставляя им в этом довольно широкую инициативу. Удельный вес участника Белого Движения определялся его вкладом в общее дело. Если бы большинство прежних правых деятелей вместо брюзжания по салонам приложили свои силы и знания к организации гражданской администрации и белого тыла, они имели бы большее право голоса и в других вопросах. Если бы большинство крестьянства, вместо содействия всяким повстанческим «зеленым» бандам, более активно участвовало в Белой Армии, в местном самоуправлении и хозяйственной жизни, то оно могло бы более активно влиять на политику белых правительств и в других отношениях.

3. Движение за национальную государственность.

            К сожалению, многовековая опека государства, царской администрации, отучила многих русских людей от свободной и сознательной государственно-строительной деятельности. Русский человек отбывал государственную повинность, не сочувствуя ей, а то и тяготясь ею, часто смотря на государственный долг лишь как на препятствие к обустройству личной жизни. По мере того, как государство с конца XIX века давало русским людям все большую свободу: личную, хозяйственную и общественную, большинство русских людей использовали эту свободу в оппозиционных и даже разрушительных целях. В политической жизни наибольшей популярностью пользовалось то, что отрицало русскую монархию, империю, русское государство и его историю вообще. В этом отрицании сходились и умеренные либералы-западники, и полуобразованные нигилисты-анархисты.

        В общественной жизни предреволюционной России самым модным явлением был протест против существующего строя от сравнительно безобидного фрондерства, типа бойкота лекций в университетах, до зловещего терроризма. Известно, что все эти акции организовывались международными революционными центрами и финансировались международными банкирами. Но страшно то, что эти мероприятия, направленные против русского государства, вызывали сочувствие и одобрение у множества русских людей, не считавших этого государства своим.

        В революцию 1917 г. эта анархическая стихия разлилась во всей своей силе. Государство развалилось за несколько месяцев. По выражению В. Розанова, «Русь наша слиняла буквально в два дня – и не осталось ничего». И позднее, по наблюдению ген. Деникина, соблазн анархии, безвластия, беззакония, полной безнаказности за любые преступления оказался для большинства людей сильнее, чем голос совести и призывы о спасении Родины.

        Поэтому справедливо сетование Деникина и других участников Белой борьбы на отсутствие патриотизма в большинстве простого русского народа. Официальный, казенный патриотизм, насаждаемый сверху, окончательно рухнул в феврале (а у многих и задолго до этого), а своего личного, выношенного осознанного патриотизма у людей не оказалось. Поэтому одни подались к анархистам и бандитам, к сепаратистам всех мастей, другие поверили, что будущее за государственниками нового типа – большевиками, и пошли к ним.

        Белое же Движение было прежде всего борьбой за национальную русскую государственность, как таковую, за национальную независимость страны, ее суверенитет и территориальную целостность. В этом качестве оно вело борьбу против интернациональных преступников (по-современному – международных террористов), захвативших власть путем вооруженного переворота. Белое Движение противостояло и различным национал-сепаратистам – украинским, прибалтийским, кавказским.

        Когда критики из православного лагеря упрекают Белое Движение в том, что цель его была слишком узкой, мелкой и «недуховной», то они забывают об огромной важности государственной власти по воздействию на все сферы жизни людей, в том числе на духовную. Недаром Ленин считал, что главный вопрос революции – это вопрос о власти. И большевики наглядно показали, что они могут сделать с русским народом и церковью, имея в своих руках государственную власть.

        Сам русский народ (как, видимо, и другие) сформировался в рамках своего государства, в процессе строительства его, в многовековых войнах по защите его от иноверных и иноземных захватчиков. Русское государство всегда, в том числе и в имперский период, служило, по выражению архим. Константина (Зайцева) футляром, который хранил Святую Русь, т.е. Церковь, христианский уклад и быт, нравственность и культуру, самую душу народа. После слома государственного футляра враги Христовы получили возможность беспрепятственно уничтожить и растлить все его содержимое.

4. Движение за правовое государство.

            Белые правительства прежде всего пытались восстановить на освобожденной ими территории нормальную человеческую жизнь, законность и правопорядок, права личности, свободу общественной, церковной и хозяйственной жизни, уничтоженные прежде большевицким режимом. Конечно, при этом накладывались ограничения, диктуемые военным временем. В реальности осуществить удавалось не все из-за противодействия одних людей, стремившихся извлекать личные выгоды из революционного хаоса и саботажа других, не желавших идти на трудную жертвенную работу. Но принципиально все белые правительства: и адм. Колчака, и генералов Деникина, Миллера, Юденича, Врангеля, Дитерихса, стояли на уважении к закону и правосудию, на признании прав и собственности лиц и обществ. Все белые правительства пытались, хотя и с разным успехом, пресекать насилия, грабежи, самосуд и всякое беззаконие. Этим они принципиально отличались от большевиков, у которых произвол и беззаконие были возведены в систему, и которые не выполняли даже своих собственных законов, начиная со своей конституции.

            В этом отношении у русских людей ярко проявился кризис правосознания, о котором подробно писал проф. Ильин. Здоровое правосознание человека выражается внешне в уважении к закону, к чужому труду, собственности и правам, в точном понимании своих прав и обязанностей. Здоровое правосознание зависит не от юридического образования, а от нравственности и религиозности человека. Искренне верующий и живущий по заповедям Божиим непременно имеет и здоровое правосознание, и из таких людей строится нормальное человеческое общество. И наоборот, человека, не имеющего здорового правосознания, не уважающего чужих прав, чужого труда и собственности, не желающего никому подчиняться, невозможно считать верующим. И вот, оказалось, что большинство простонародья больше сочувствует большевицкому беззаконию, кратко выраженному в лозунге «грабь награбленное», чем попыткам белых правительств навести порядок, толкуемый как «возврат к старому режиму». Этот страх «старого режима» привел большинство народа к оппозиции Белому делу и загнал под чудовищное ярмо нового режима – коммунистического.

            Итак, Белое Движение боролось за:

1) Русскую государственность против разрушителей России – большевиков и сепаратистов;

2) национальную русскую культуру, русские традиции и быт, против интернациональных разрушителей;

3) законность и порядок, против произвола и беззакония;

4) свободу веры и церкви, против агрессивного богоборчества;

5) права личности, семьи, общества, за нормальную человеческую жизнь, против непризнающих социальных устоев и традиций политических преступников, захвативших власть в России.

            При этом Белое Движение было не классовым, не сословным и не партийным, а все-таки народным, хотя и не стало всенародным. Это Движение имело все необходимые предпосылки, чтобы стать началом воссоздания русской национальной государственности и общественной жизни. Более широкое участие народных сил могло бы исправить по ходу работы все ошибки и преодолеть «болезни роста». К сожалению, этого не произошло. Во всяком случае, очевидно, что те, кто оказались против белых, сделали свой выбор не по каким-то добрым побуждениям, а или из страха красных репрессий, или в поисках выгоды, или же по своей одержимости бредовыми, сатанинскими идеями коммунизма, отнявшими у них всякую способность отличать добро от зла.

5. Отношения белых с иностранными державами.

            Белые правительства упрекают за их тесную связь с державами Антанты, за политическую и финансовую зависимость от этих держав. Но зависимость эта была обусловлена критическими обстоятельствами времени. Белые силы, разбросанные по окраинам России, не имели ни материальных, ни людских ресурсов, в основном сконцентрированных в центре страны и доставшихся большевикам. Они не имели достаточного времени на организацию своих армий, на налаживание гражданского управления своих областей. Пользуясь этой слабостью русских белых сил, в их дела вмешались иностранцы. Но повторим: будь большей народная поддержка Белого дела, меньшей была бы зависимость от иностранной помощи.

            Связь с державами Антанты, как с военно-политическими союзниками была установлена не белыми, а еще царским правительством, причем до Великой войны и прошла испытание на прочность в ходе этой войны. Хотя страны Антанты неоднократно подводили Россию, других союзников у нее не было. Рвать налаженные связи без веских причин не представлялось разумным. Союз ген. Краснова с Германией летом 1918 г. был вынужденным и чисто временным. После окончательного поражения Германии осенью 1918 г. он утратил всякий смысл.

            Белые правительства последовательно держались лозунга: за единую, великую и неделимую Россию. Адм. Колчак и ген. Деникин подчеркивали, что они не могут обещать иностранцам за их помощь ни единой пяди русской земли. Даже в условиях военных поражений под давлением стран Антанты они не шли на признание украинских, закавказских и прибалтийских сепаратистов, всемерно отстаивая суверенитет и территориальную целостность России. Когда в декабре 1918 г. французское правительство предложило свою помощь ген. Краснову на унизительных кабальных условиях, он отверг ее, найдя в этом полную поддержку и ген. Деникина, несмотря на разногласия с последним в других вопросах. Подобным же образом держался и ген. Врангель, который в самых тесных обстоятельствах, и в Крыму, и после эвакуации в Галлиполи всегда старался «высоко держать русское знамя и не давать русского имени в обиду», к чему призывал и всех своих соратников.

            Между тем, большевики и в этом отношении поступали прямо противоположным образом: ради сохранения своей власти и ради признания и поддержки со стороны Запада раздали сепаратистам многие области бывшей империи и предоставили концессии внутри страны после Гражданской войны.

            И все же для наглядности сопоставим помощь стран Антанты Белому Движению с помощью тех же держав Советскому Союзу в годы второй мировой войны, когда многомиллиардная помощь союзников помогла выстоять коммунистическому режиму, несмотря на страшные военные поражения и огромные материальные и людские потери. Западные страны были по-настоящему заинтересованы в поражении нацистского блока и сохранении для этой цели сталинского режима. И для достижения такой своей цели они не поскупились.

            Затем в период «холодной войны» и многочисленных локальных конфликтов американской помощи было вполне достаточно, чтобы обеспечить существование двух Корей, двух Китаев, двух Вьетнамов на протяжении нескольких десятилетий. Антикоммунистические режимы в южных частях этих стран и на Тайване находились на полном иждивении США и по праву считались марионеточными. Аналогично и коммунистические режимы в других половинах, существовали на советском бюджете и были также марионеточными в отношении к СССР.

            Если с учетом этого опыта вернуться к помощи стран Антанты Белому Движению, то увидим, что эта помощь была крайне незначительной, никак не соответствующей ни потребностям белых, ни возможностям самих западных держав. Например, белые армии постоянно испытывали хронический недостаток в боеприпасах, в тяжелом вооружении, которое большей частью с боем приходилось добывать у неприятеля. Ген. Врангель упоминает лишь о трех десятках изношенных танков и таком же количестве аэропланов, бывших в его армии летом 1920 г. (закупленные им в Болгарии аэропланы англичане уничтожили «по недоразумению»). За присланные боеприпасы приходилось расплачиваться хлебом и углем, которых и самим едва хватало. Если бы страны Антанты по-настоящему были заинтересованы в победе белых сил (или хотя бы в балансе двух Россий, белой и красной, как в Корее), они могли бы оказать реальную техническую и материальную помощь и политическую поддержку всем антибольшевицким силам в России. Они этого не сделали, и более того, косвенно содействовали поражению белых русских сил и их последующему распылению в эмиграции.

            Отсюда очевидно, что масонские правительства Антанты старались держать белые силы под контролем под видом союзных отношений, но реально были заинтересованы в победе большевиков. Зная белых вождей, они понимали, что если такие люди победят или хотя бы удержат власть над некоторой частью России, организуют там национальное правительство и национальную армию, то возникнет центр притяжения для всех честных национально мыслящих русских людей, центр национального возрождения страны, и людоедский красный режим когда-нибудь падет. А это никак не входило в их планы по уничтожению сильной самостоятельной России.

            Потому совершенно несостоятельны домыслы о том, что если бы победили белые, то они превратили бы Россию в масонскую республику и втянули бы ее в «новый мировой порядок». По масонским планам Россия должна была пройти через красную мясорубку и массовый геноцид населения, для чего и была предана большевикам. Именно они посредством террора, голода, репрессий и войн истребили значительную часть русского народа, сформировав из его останков народ советский, утративший духовное преемство и исторические корни, а также во многом – просто волю к жизни и самосохранению. Выполнив эту задачу, коммунистический режим на наших глазах легко и плавно «перестроился» в либерально-западный и действительно превратил Россию в колонию нового мирового порядка. Именно ком. режим воспитал советскую номенклатуру и советскую образованщину вместо истребленного прежнего ведущего национального слоя. При всем недостоинстве многих представителей русской аристократии и служилой бюрократии и интеллигенции в этих слоях нашлись все-таки люди, способные к жертвенному подвигу и борьбе за Белое дело. В рядах советской номенклатуры, общественности и армии подобных людей уже вовсе не нашлось. Критикам Белого дела стоит задать вопрос: если бы теперь вместо советских генералов типа Грачева, Руцкого или Лебедя, прославившихся хищениями, интригами, предательствами или демагогией, но ни к чему большему неспособных, во главе армии были бы люди типа Колчака, Деникина, Корнилова и Врангеля – неужели Россия была бы в таком плачевном положении? Если бы Русскую Церковь вместо патриарха Алексия с его «митрополитбюро» и прочей советско-церковной номенклатурой, известной лишь широкой жизнью и скандальной аморальностью, возглавляли бы патриарх Тихон, митр. Антоний, митр. Кирилл (Смирнов) и другие иерархи-исповедники,- неужели бы Русская Церковь находилась бы в таком духовном разложении, как теперь?

            Подобные сопоставления можно провести и в других областях. Мировая закулиса потому и не дала возможности победить Белому Движению, что очень хорошо поняла людей белого духа, поняла, что их не купишь и не запугаешь. Люди Белого дела, пройдя испытания гражданской войны очистились от всего наносного, от предрассудков либерального образования, от иллюзий относительно Запада и их больше не обманешь. Эти люди действительно станут возрождать Россию, и с их духовным потенциалом будут способны увлечь многих. Поэтому если они станут ведущим слоем и получат власть в стране, то смогут действительно возродить независимую национальную Россию. А потому, - как поняли тайные хозяева мира,- позволить победить этим людям ни в коем случае нельзя. Власть в России можно предоставить лишь людям зависимым, нравственно гнилым, продажным и безвольным – что мы и видим на примере сегодняшнего дня.

            Глядя на тогдашнюю трагедию России из эпохи ее нынешней агонии мы можем оценить катастрофичность последствий поражения Белого дела. То была последняя реальная попытка, имевшая определенные шансы на успех, остановить уничтожение  России и русского народа. И только враг России или сумасшедший может злорадствовать по поводу поражения белых.

6. Непредрешенчество и монархизм.

            Белое Движение упрекают в том, что оно было не монархическим, а республиканским. Здесь опять обвинители допускают передержку. Гражданская война в России была не между монархистами и республиканцами, (как, например, в Англии в XVII в.) а между национально-государственными русскими силами и интернациональными, антирусскими богоборческими силами. Официальной позицией белых было “непредрешенчество” в отношении будущего государственного устройства страны. Ни одно из белых правительств (в том числе и Сибирское правительство адм. Колчака, признанного верховным правителем России) справедливо не считало себя окончательной законной верховной властью, но только областным временным правительством до окончания смуты. Не посягая на полномочия высшей всероссийской власти, белые правительства потому и старались не обещать иностранным державам ничего из российских территорий, не уступать российских национальных интересов. Выбор государственного устройства и установление законного российского правительства мыслились многими белыми деятелями после созыва Всероссийского Учредительного собрания. Но, например, адм. Колчак был против созыва такого собрания по образцу 1917 г. из политиканов разных левых партий. Большинство военных вместе с ним отдавали предпочтение идее национальной военной диктатуры на переходный период. Как показал опыт Испании и латиноамериканских стран, в ХХ веке это было единственно разумным решением.

            Белые вожди вынуждены были считаться с настроениями населения тех областей, на которые они опирались. Анархическая стихия, захлестнувшая страну после Февраля, глубоко отравила народ. Монархические симпатии, если у кого и остались, были едва заметны у отдельных лиц и совершенно не видны в общественной жизни. Большинство депутатов Донского Круга и Кубанской Рады были откровенно левыми – а ведь они избирались народным голосованием по станицам. Эти депутаты (по свидетельству Деникина) постоянно пугали казаков “монархизмом” Добровольческой армии, и эта демагогия имела успех. Столь же далеким от монархизма было настроение и в Сибири. Заметим, что левые настроения были особенно сильны в народной образованщине, сельской полуинтеллигенции – писарях, землемерах, фельдшерах, учителях, вышедших из простого народа, гораздо более в этой среде, чем в настоящей городской интеллигенции, имевшей хорошее образование, умеющей думать и способной хотя бы учиться на своих ошибках, осознать причины катастрофы 1917 г.

            Больше симпатии к монархии было заметно у крестьян и мещан центральных областей России, но симпатии эти выражались в делах, в реальном сопротивлении большевикам, гораздо слабее, чем на окраинах.

            Ген. Дитерихс, возглавлявший комиссию по расследованию убийства царской семьи, широко распространял материалы об этом страшном злодеянии, пытаясь открыть глаза народу на сущность большевизма. Но большого сочувствия к убиенному Государю и его семье эти сведения в народе так и не вызвали. Достаточно сравнить, какой была реакция на убийство имп. Александра II.

            Таким образом, сочувствие к монархии в период гражданской войны в народе было довольно слабым, и самое главное, редко выражалось в активной борьбе с большевиками, оставаясь для многих на уровне благочестивых светлых воспоминаний. С таким раскладом сил и мнений приходилось считаться белым вождям.

            Личные симпатии многих из них (например, ген. Корнилова, Деникина, Маркова), действительно, склонялись к республиканству, точнее к диктатуре. Но эти свои симпатии они никому не навязывали, и республиканские взгляды не вошли в программные документы белых правительств. Белому Движению эти генералы были известны, как патриоты России и честные солдаты, но не как политики. До революции они отдали безупречной службе Царю и Отечеству по 25-30 лет своей жизни, прошли две тяжелых войны. Неудачи, потери и поражения в этих войнах, в том числе бывшие по вине главного командования, поколебали в этих фронтовиках веру в способность царского правительства довести войну до победы – и это отразилось на их политических воззрениях. Не стоит забывать и то, что около двадцати членов Дома Романовых, к февралю 1917 г. имевших генеральские звания и академическое военное образование, не поддержали Государя и отказались от борьбы за монархию. Никто из них не участвовал и в Белом Движении. Этот факт стоит вспомнить современным критикам белой борьбы, твердящим о присяге на верность Династии 1613 г.

            У многих монархистов того времени симпатии к монархии соединялись с так называемой «германской ориентацией» – необходимостью, по их мнению, иметь союз с Германией. Насколько это было осуществимо практически, после четырехлетней войны с Германией, поддержавшей большевиков (хотя бы пресловутым пломбированным вагоном) и заключившей с ними Брестский мир – это вопрос. Но очевидно, что «германская ориентация», как и любая другая, не является необходимой принадлежностью монархизма. Между тем, подобные случайные атрибуты, сомнительные и спорные политические лозунги, присоединяемые к монархизму, отталкивали от него весьма многих.

        Еще до 1917 г. монархическое движение в России утратило всенародный внесословный характер и превратилось в одно из политических направлений, к тому же раздробленное на несколько партий со своими лидерами. Постепенно оно усваивало и многие методы некрасивой партийной борьбы и партийной пропаганды, теряло качественное духовно-нравственное отличие от других партий, теряло доверие как со стороны Монарха, так и со стороны церковных иерархов и церковного народа. В таком виде монархическое направление перестало быть какой-либо значимой силой и потому не смогло оказать никакого сопротивления Февралю ни в Гос. Думе, ни на питерских улицах. Не смогли монархисты в течение целого года организовать и похищения Государя из заключения, хотя возможности для этого были. Поэтому в целом репутация монархистов была не на высоте.

        Политический монархизм никак не проявил себя в общественной жизни в белых областях России. Ряд монархических дореволюционных деятелей, причем далеко не лучших (типа В. Шульгина и В. Пуришкевича), пытались шуметь и «играть роль» в белом тылу. Другие лучшие (прот. Иоанн Восторгов, д-р Н. Дубровин и др.) были расстреляны большевиками. Ряд военных деятелей монархической ориентации своей оппозицией, вплоть до прямого неподчинения главному командованию, нанесли Белому делу серьезный ущерб. Например, Бермонт-Авалов в решающий момент наступления войск ген. Юденича на Петроград самовольно снял свой отряд с фронта и затеял под Ригой бои с латышами и англичанами. Ничего худшего для Северо-Западной армии нельзя было и придумать. Семиреченский атаман Аненнков отказался подчиняться адм. Колчаку, как «немонархисту» и не прислал своих войск на фронт во время решающих боев за Омск в ноябре 1919 г. Ген. Врангель вспоминает, как летом 1920 г. флотские офицеры-монархисты составили заговор с целью переворота, собираясь арестовать его со штабом и провозгласить царем вел. Князя Николая Николаевича. При расследовании оказалось, что во главе заговора стоял провокатор еврей-чекист.

        Широко известно и другое громкое дело, совершенное монархистом, поручиком Хайрюзиным, служившим в контрразведке, - подлое убийство в спину начальника штаба Добровольческой армии ген. Романовского. Убийство это нанесло непоправимый моральный ущерб Белому делу, наложило пятно на честь русского офицерства и скомпрометировало его перед союзниками. Это убийство, как отмечал Р. Гуль, было в чем-то символичным. Жертва – герой обороны Порт-Артура и Великой войны, участник корниловского выступления, первопоходник, деливший с Деникиным все труды и напасти войны, но при этом – не монархист. Убийца же не участвовал ни в одном походе, просидел в тылу, и в посольстве в Константинополе, но зато оказался монархистом и знатоком литературы по масонству, вычислил ген. Романовского, как масона, и убил его. Нечего и говорить, что такая безобразная карикатура на монархизм никак не могла вызвать у кого-либо монархических симпатий.

        Ген. Врангель вспоминает, как летом 1918 г. киевские монархисты убеждали его и других офицеров не вступать в Добровольческую армию Деникина, поскольку тот не монархист. И получалось, что пока «немонархисты» корниловцы и марковцы сражались и гибли во 2-м Кубанском походе, монархисты сидели в киевских кофейнях и занимались лишь говорильней; пока «республиканцы» каппелевцы и воткинцы бились и умирали в Сибирском ледяном походе, иные монархисты в Чите и в Харбине умно критиковали их политические взгляды.

        Можно вспомнить и ряд монархических изданий, обвинявших белых вождей в связи с жидо-масонами. На самом деле, пытаясь быть «правее правого», подобные лица подрывали Белое Движение, хотя бы во имя монархизма, и реальную помощь оказывали только большевикам, сами того не понимая. Как отмечал И. Ильин в статье «Демагогия и провокация», безответственная болтовня, политиканство и интриганство создавали самую благоприятную обстановку для внедрения провокаторов. Не случайно и анти-врангелевский «монархический» заговор возглавил еврей-чекист, и уже потом в эмиграции «монархическую» партию младоросов возглавил советский агент Казем-Бек.

        С горечью отметим, что эта «болезнь Хайрюзина» отнюдь не прошла и среди современных монархистов, часть из которых осталась весьма склонной к политическому и духовному сектантству, с его болезненно-узким и воспаленным мышлением.

        К счастью, такие «монархисты», а точнее просто шкурники, в те времена не составляли большинства среди людей с монархическими симпатиями. Настоящие монархисты, такие как генералы Кутепов и Дроздовский или «царский гусляр» С. Бехтеев сражались против большевиков в той же Добровольческой армии, хорошо понимая, кто есть настоящий враг России, к чему обязывает воинский долг и что уместно, а что неуместно в военное время.

7. Духовно-нравственное понимание Белого дела.

        Таким образом, Белое Движение ответило на вопрос: что является главным в человеке: его идеологическая позиция и партийная принадлежность, или его нравственный поступок и волевой выбор в сторону попираемой правды. Об этом впоследствии подробно писал И. Ильин. Но философское осмысление Белого дела даже у него пришло после. Еще позже пришло религиозное и историософское осмысление проблем революции у идеологов Русской Зарубежной Церкви. А первым было все-таки волевое решение, нравственное самоопределение по отношению к победившему в России злу, самоотверженное вступление на путь борьбы с этим злом у всех людей белого духа.

        Правильное осмысление русской трагедии, именно православное церковное понимание этой проблемы, не могло прийти к тем людям, которые уклонились от противостояния злу (физического или духовного), попытались отсидеться и занять позицию стороннего наблюдателя. Такие «хороняки» (по выражению И. Ильина) пытались объяснить революцию «по-сменовеховски», или «по-евразийски», или даже «по-черносотенски», но, залезая в дебри исторических аналогий, и напуская философский туман, они оказались лишь слепыми вождями слепых, потому что игнорировали важнейший вопрос о нравственной позиции человека по отношению к богоборческому злу.

        Белое дело поняли лишь те, кто сами по духу были белыми. Причем сначала приняли сердечным сочувствием и волевым решением, а затем уже осмыслили умом. Не приняли его те, кто по духу были не белые. И тоже сначала они не откликнулись сердцем, не отозвались волей, а потом уже подобрали умственные оправдания этому своему решению. И.Ильин в одном из писем такому «кабинетному монархисту», ткавшему паутину из разных возражений монархического характера против Белого дела, так и писал: «Вы не понимаете нас, потому что Вы по духу не белый; белый мыслит, и чувствует, и поступает по-другому».

        Белое Движение критикуют за малую церковность или даже нецерковность его участников. Это отчасти верно, и это, конечно, плохо. Но революционное искушение касалось не вопросов церковности, а еще менее – соблюдения обрядов. Главный вопрос революции, произведший разделение во всех слоях русского народа и в самой Церкви, был вопрос об отношении к беззаконной богоборческой власти. Фактически, как подчеркивал И. Ильин, это был вопрос: с Богом ты или против Бога? Этот вопрос разделил русских людей на два лагеря. И среди самих служителей церкви нашлись те, кто стали доказывать, что зло – это добро и «благословлять раскаты революции тихостью Святаго Духа». А среди нецерковных людей иные стали на сторону добра против зла.

        Искушение русской революции стало генеральной репетицией последнего антихристова времени, когда все человечество будет испытуемо по отношению к личности антихриста и к власти его, а не по каким-либо мировоззренческим, политическим, идеологическим или духовным вопросам. Весь род людской будет поделен на принявших власть и печать зверя и на непринявших ее. Принятие печати зверя лишит смысла хранение православных догматов и соблюдение церковных обрядов. Нечто подобное происходило и в годы Гражданской войны. Не все красные были активными богоборцами; кое-кто из красных «попутчиков» совмещал служение большевикам с какими-то христианскими верованиями и какими-то церковными обрядами. Например, не так давно были опубликованы некоторые письма красного командарма Филиппа Миронова к жене, в которых он пишет, что молится о ней Богу и ангелу-хранителю. Известно, что Миронов разрешал в местах расквартирования своих войск пасхальные богослужения и крестные ходы, запрещенные местными совдепами. Такие симпатии к религии непритворно совмещались у него с членством в компартии и военным служением богоборческому режиму. А последнее и было решающим.

        Итак, в применении к той исторической ситуации, понятия «церковность – нецерковность» не определяют главных смысловых полюсов. Какая-то иная духовная реальность оказывалась более важной.

        Неправильно говорить и о безусловном предопределении Белого Движения к поражению, о его заведомой обреченности. Перед русскими людьми был поставлен серьезный выбор между реальными силами: или подчиниться богоборческому злу, или помочь тем, кто уже вступил с ним в борьбу. Одни – в основном служители алтаря Господня – избрали путь духовного противостояния злу и словесного обличения его и приняли венец мученический, не приняв служения новому строю. Их мы почитаем, как Новомучеников и прибегаем к их молитвам. Другие - в основном носители меча, воины – избрали путь сопротивления злу силой и в большинстве своем положили живот свой на поле брани за Отечество и за други своя. Их память мы чтим, как национальных героев и молимся об упокоении их душ. Эти два пути и были православным решением поставленного вопроса. Причем они не исключали, а дополняли друг друга. Известно, что иные из участников Белой борьбы приняли потом монашество или священство, посвятили себя на служение Церкви.

        К сожалению, большинство народа избрало не эти два пути, а путь наименьшего сопротивления, уклонения от борьбы, «хоронячества», или даже сотрудничества со злом. Всех таких большевики постарались поставить себе на службу самыми жестокими методами. Не пожелавшие служить в Белой Армии оказались на службе в армии Красной, хотя бы они того и не хотели. И это в конечном счете решило исход борьбы. Ген. Деникин летом 1919 г. имел против себя троекратно превосходящие силы, ген. Врангель год спустя – пятикратный перевес неприятеля. Тридцати тысячам бойцов армии Врангеля противостояло около 150 тысяч красных. Одновременно в белом тылу находилось до 150 тысяч раненных, больных и инвалидов гражданской и мировой войны. Белых задавили массой, а массу составляют люди равнодушные и безразличные. Конечно, не им и не их идейным наследникам судить белых за допущенные ими ошибки.

        Здесь мы не касаемся этих ошибок. Подробный разбор их был сделан самими участниками Белой борьбы, а их историософский анализ дан идеологами Зарубежной Церкви. Важно то, что эти люди или сами участвовали в Белой борьбе или сочувствовали и помогали ей, сами будучи белыми по духу. Поэтому, даже жестко критикуя Белое движение за его ошибки, они никогда не ставили под сомнение саму Белую борьбу, не считали ее заведомо обреченной, а тем более, не считали ее противной воле Божией.

        В наше время историческое Белое дело отошло в прошлое и споры о частностях и исторических подробностях стали достоянием узкого круга специалистов. Важным для православного мировоозрения остается отношение к Белой идее, которая поднимала своих бойцов в неравный бой с торжествующим злом, обрекала их на жертвенный подвиг на страдание при жизни, на бесславие и забвение по смерти, - это идея «сопротивления злу силой». В наши дни противостояние злу требуется прежде всего духовно-нравственное. Христианину, русскому человеку нельзя принимать навязываемый стиль жизни и образ поведения, нельзя «сливаться с местностью» и вписываться в «демократические стандарты» мирового порядка, нужно сохранять свой собственный русский православный уклад. Пока нет значительного слоя таких духовно сопротивляющихся людей, о другого рода силе, кроме духовной, речь не идет. Но и это «сопротивление силой» требует постоянных усилий над собой, известного рода аскезы и самоотверженности в противостоянии нравственному растлению и всепроникающей буржуазной пошлости.

        И вот здесь мы видим, что отношение к Белой идее носит какой-то определяющий, знаковый характер, оказывается напрямую связанным с духовным состоянием человека и его нравственными ориентирами. Просто усвоить правильные взгляды, еще легче запомнить правильные слова, а в остальном плыть по течению окружающей жизни. Лица, склонные к резонерству и демагогии, не привыкшие жертвовать своим удобством, легко из красных становятся «черными», из национал-большевиков – «черносотенцами», а то и совмещают «православный сталинизм» и монархизм. Такие, конечно, не понимают и не принимают Белой идеи, а способны лишь поносить ее и злорадствовать по поводу ее неуспеха. Патриотическое движение в современной России, раскрашенное в красные и черные тона, определенно зашло в тупик, в идейный кризис и нравственный упадок, тщетно прикрываемый организационными мероприятиями и отдельными экстремистскими выходками. Нашему времени определенно не хватает белых вождей и воинов, вообще людей белого духа. Потому не свысока должны мы смотреть на жизненный путь подлинных патриотов России, а почитать их и учиться у них, если желаем сделать что-то полезное для своей страны и народа.

           Р.Ф.

                                                                                               * * *

                                СЕРДЦЕ  РВЕТСЯ  ЗА  РОССИЮ.

                                                                                        С.С. Аникин

                                                                                Сердце рвется за Россию,
                                                                                    как тоску по ней осилю?
                                                                                    кто ответит мне за что же
                                                                                    суждено ей так страдать?
                                                                                    Только здесь, вдали от дома,
                                                                                    где давно мне все знакомо,
                                                                                    я сыновнее "спасибо"
                                                                                    могу в песне передать.
                                                                                    Ты Россия - мать родная,
                                                                                    величавая такая,
                                                                                    весть благую о сторонке,
                                                                                    где родился, слышу я.
                                                                                    Говорится в ней о доме,
                                                                                    говорится в ней о горе,
                                                                                    говорится в ней о счастье,
                                                                                    чем живет родна земля.
                                                                                    Строят храмы, ходят в церкви,
                                                                                    обучаются молиться,
                                                                                    есть надежда, что когда-то,
                                                                                    оживет родной народ,
                                                                                    а пока что, словно с горя,
                                                                                    пьет проклятый без оглядки
                                                                                    Этот пьяница противный
                                                                                    он и есть - родной народ.
                                                                                    Что случилося с Россией
                                                                                    Где в ней святость?
                                                                                    где в ней сила?
                                                                                    снова я хочу увидеть
                                                                                    светлый лиу родной земли.
                                                                                    Только что Христос родился,
                                                                                    Он родился для России,
                                                                                    вместе с ним родилась вера
                                                                                    и надежда для страны
                                                                                    Будет моя Русь богата
                                                                                    Будет моя Русь святая
                                                                                    будет мой народ чудесный
                                                                                    радоваться во Христе
                                                                                    Для нее живу я в мире
                                                                                    для нее слагаю песни
                                                                                    для России свои силы
                                                                                    вкладываю в сыновей.
                                                                                    Жив Господь! - В Нем наша сила!
                                                                                    смерть ничто, душа бессмертна,
                                                                                    только рядом, только вместе
                                                                                    Мать-Россию мы спасем
                                                                                    Русь Святая – в наших мыслях,
                                                                                    Русь-Святая - в наших душах
                                                                                    Мы делами и молитвой
                                                                                    Русь Святую возведем
                                                                                    Сердце рвется за Россию.
                                                                                    как тоску по ней осилю?
                                                                                    Только вместе помолившись
                                                                                    мы Святую Русь спасем

                                                                                            Р.Ф.  

                                                               * * *

ВОТКИНСКОЕ НАРОДНОЕ ВОССТАНИЕ

 С. Простнев. 

(Продолжение см. No. 137, 139)

Кроме схем и плана формирования артиллерийской части были разработаны инструкции.

 Инструкция для командного состава артиллерии Народной армии

а) Инспектор артиллерии подчиняется командующему Народной армией или уполномоченному им заместителю командующего.

б) Инспектор артиллерии руководит артиллерийской обороной, распоряжаясь оперативной частью.

                                   Помощник Инспектора артиллерии

а) Помощник Инспектора артиллерии является Начальником штаба Инспектора Артиллерии и командиром дивизиона.

б) Помогает Инспектору артиллерии в общем, руководстве обороной.

в) Замещает Инспектора артиллерии во время отсутствия его.

г) Перемещает батареи в зависимости от боевой обстановки с ведома или по уполномочию Инспектора артиллерии.

д) Определяет для батарей комплект снарядов.

е) Заведует сменой и пополнением:

             1. личного состава

             2. конского состава

             3. материальной частью

ж) В случае отсутствия Инспектора артиллерии обязан постоянно оставаться при штабе, заменяя Инспектора артиллерии.

з) Предоставлять Инспектору артиллерии приказы по артиллерии.

                                     3. Командир парка.

Заведывает хозяйственной частью артиллерии, а именно:

а) набирает конский состав

б) требует от заведывающего снабжением:

1. Снаряжения

2. Вооружения

3. Обмундирования

4. Все виды довольствия для состава батарей.

в) Заведует приемом и отправкой всего упомянутого по батареям.

д) Ведет учет по имуществу парка при помощи своей канцелярии

г) По требованиям командиров батарей пополняет снаряды на батареи не свыше комплекта.

                                       4. Командир батареи

а) Командует батареей.

б) Заведует набором и обучением личного состава.

в) Требует от парка для своей батареи:

            1. Продовольствие

2. Фураж

3. Снаряжение  и в общем заботится о полном обеспечении батареи всем необходимым.

                                     5. Командир взвода.

Командир взвода является сменным командиром батареи и исполняет его обязанности во время его смены.

Командир батареи и взвода доносят командиру дивизиона:

в каждом случае открытие огня разного рода наблюдения за противникомдоставляет сведения о расходе снарядов.

Примечание: сведения доставляются секретно в закрытых пакетах.

                                     6. Начальник технической части.

Заведывает: снаряжением ремонтом, сборкой и изготовлением запасных частей орудийсовместно с консультантом по технической части рассматривает разного рода усовершенствоания и разрешает их изготовление на заводе.

В распоряжение Начальника технической части находится механическая мастерская оружейного завода и все мастерские заводов с согласия директора распорядитея. Еженедельно или пораспоряжению Инспектора артиллерии делает доклады.

                                               7. Начальник связи

а) Находится в непосредственном распоряжении Инспектора артиллерии или его заместителя

б) заведывает командой разведчиков

в) заведывает командой наблюдателей и телефонистов, подготовляя личный состав их и обеспечивая связь артиллерии с пехотой

                                            8. Начальник учебной команды

(один из командиров батарей)

Заведывает:

а) обучением команд стрельбе из орудий и карабинов

б) сменой команд

в) заботится об удовлетворении личного состава команд довольствием

1. Обязанности дежурного по штабу артиллерии определены в прилагаемой при сем инструкции за № 1.

Обязанности дежурного по связи артиллерии со штабом армии:

Получает от начальника штаба армии все сведения касающиеся артиллерии и необходимые для ориентировки Инспектора артиллерии в боевой обстановке.

Немедленно сообщать эти сведения письменно (в секретных пакетах или лично Инспектору артиллерии)

Вести оперативный журнал боевых действий, предоставляя его командиру дивизиона (помощнику Инспектора артиллерии).

Заведывает командой постоянных наблюдателей дежурных на наблюдательном пункте.

Заведывает командой чертежников, топографов, исполняющим все необходимые схемы.  

                                                            Инструкция

                                             дежурному штаба артиллерии

На обязанности дежурного адъютанта штаба артиллерии лежит:

следить за тем, чтобы взводы, отправляющиеся на позицию, были одновременно собраны в парке, снабжены всем необходимым и доставлены на вокзал к назначенному времени.

Для этого дежурный должен иметь свой личный бланк и отмечать в нем как время выхода взвода из парка, так и приход на вокзал, а особенно отправка смен должны быть выяснены и доложены начальнику штаба.

Дежурный обязан знать, где в каждый определенный момент времени находится инспектор артиллерии, Начальник штаба и Командир дивизиона, для возможного экстренного вызова каждого из этих лиц в штаб артиллерии.

Примечание: Начальник штаба должен озаботится установкой телефонной или личной связи между Штабом артиллерии и его высшим командным составом.

Дежурный должен записывать все указания, сделанные ему лично Инспектором артиллерии и докладывать о них Начальнику штаба, дабы последний был всегда в курсе, что происходит в  штабе артиллерии в его отсутствие.

Два раза в день к 7 часам утра и к 7 часам вечера дежурный должен делать выборку из всех телефонограмм, полученных в штабе за истекшие 12 часов. В ней должны заключаться, прежде всего, все донесения, поступившие с позиций батарей с точным указанием времени их получения. Такая сводка за день дежурства должна записываться на отдельном листе за подписью дежурного с указанием дня дежурства и поступать к Начальнику штаба как материал для составления порученного ему журнала военных действий. Все сведения, касающиеся формирования дивизиона как-то сведения о вновь зарегистрированных артиллерийских поступивших лошадей, снаряженных снарядах и т.п. Также должны быть собраны и записаны на отдельном листе для доставки, составляющему журнал формирования дивизиона. Дежурный отвечает за то, чтобы связь с батареями была непрерывна.

Дежурный должен через определенные промежутки времени, в зависимости от наличия у него работы проверять телефонную связь со стоящими на позициях батареями и о всех неправильностях в ней, сейчас же докладывать Начальнику штаба для соответствующих распоряжений.

В 7 часов вечера дежурный должен получить сведения (в запечатанном конверте с надписью «секретно») от местного парка о количестве израсходованных снарядов и занести эти сведения в особый журнал, по которому можно было бы видеть, как расходуются и пополняются снаряды в местных и головных парках.

Дежурный штаба должен озаботиться о том, чтобы все находящиеся в штабе артиллерии люди и лошади были своевременно всеми видами причитающегося им довольствия.

Дежурные должны сменяться в 7 часов утра, но имеют право с 7 часов вечера оставлять за себя заместителя, не раньше, чем указанные в пункте 4 сведения будут закончены или подписаны.

30-го сентября 1918г. Инспектор артиллерии Воткинской Народной армии Коробов донес Инспектору артиллерии Ижевской Народной армии списки личного состава четырех взводов сформированной первой батареи и послужные списки восьми человек офицерского состава. 

Каждый взвод состоял из тридцати человек: командир взвода, взводный ст. фейерверкер, орудийная прислуга (8 человек), разведчики (4 человек), телефонисты (4 человека), ездовые, артиллерийский техник, орудийный мастер, фуражир, каптенармус, наблюдатели, вестовой.

Вооружение: карабинов - 30, шашек - 11, тесаков (бебутов) - 19.Лошадей: орудийных - 8, верховых - 6, обозных - 3, запасных - 1. Имущество: биноклей простых - ?, призматических - 1, телефонных аппаратов - 2, кабели - 2,5 версты, фургонов для снарядов - 1, телефонных двуколок - 1, снарядов - 130, седел - 12.

9-го октября, приказом Начальника Штаба № 47, создается Воткинский артиллерийский дивизион. Инспектором артиллерии был назначен старший адъютант Штаба, сын известного воткинского врача, подпоручик Владимир Алексеевич Курбановский. Его заменил унтер-офицер А.Н. Колдыбаев, позже произведенный в прапорщики. Командирами батарей: 1-й легкой – подпоручик Семенов (впоследствии Н.С. Дыбовский), 2-й легкой – подпоручик Трапицын и 3-й конно-горной – подпоручик Родыгин.

7-го октября из отрядов, действующих на левом берегу Камы был создан 3-й Сайгатский имени Чехо-Словаков пехотный полк. Командиром его был назначен поручик Иван Елисеевич Балобанов.

4-й Воткинский имени Союзных Держав пехотный полк был создан 19-го октября, командиром которого стал поручик Андрей Лаврентьевич Болонкин. 10-го октября командир 2-го полка капитан Русанов был заменен подпоручиком Решетниковым, который 30-го октября сдал полк поручику Исакову. Капитан Русанов был назначен начальником Сосновского боевого участка (фронта).

Приказ инспектора пехоты Воткинской Народной армии № 36 от 21-го октября содержит почти полный список четырех воткинских полков до командиров рот включительно.

1-й Воткинский Заводской 17-го августа пехотный полк.

Командир полка – подпоручик Г.И. Мудрынин.

Командиры батальонов:

1-го батальона – подпрапорщик Ощепков;

2-го батальона – поручик Дробинин;

3-го батальона – прапорщик Улитин;

- командиры рот:

1-й роты – прапорщик Лебедев;

2-й роты – подпоручик Шляпин;

3-й роты – штабс-капитан Осокин;

4-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Калинин;

5-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Хомутов;

6-й роты – поручик Хомутов;

7-й роты – прапорщик Ананин;

8-й роты – прапорщик Шитов;

9-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Доронин;

10-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Пикулев;

11-й роты – фельдфебель Дегтяников

12-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Туляков

2-й Воткинский имени Учредительного Собрания пехотный полк.

Командир полка – подпоручик Решетников;

- командиры батальонов:

1-го батальона – подпрапорщик Марамзин;

2-го батальона – подпоручик Исааков;

3-го батальона – штабс-капитан Кошкарев;

- командиры рот:

1-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Пирожков;

2-й роты – поручик Ветошкин;

3-й роты – …(22 октября назначен прапорщик Дулесов);

4-й роты – …(23 октября назначен прапорщик Копылов);

5-й роты – прапорщик Ефимов;

6-й роты – прапорщик Вахрушев;

7-й роты – подпоручик Косачев;

8-й роты – фельдфебель Феклистов;

9-й роты – прапорщик Белышев;

10-й роты – штабс-капитан Исааков;

11-й роты – прапорщик Кожевников;

12-й роты – прапорщик Богатырев;

3-й Сайгатский имени Чехо-Словаков пехотный полк.

Командир полка – поручик Балобанов.

- командиры батальонов:

1-го батальона – подпоручик Жуланов;

2-го батальона – прапорщик Хлебников;

3-го батальона – прапорщик Хлебников;

- командиры рот:

1-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Тарутин;

2-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Нигулев;

3-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Кобелев;

4-й роты – фельдфебель Санников;

5-й роты – прапорщик Борнашев;

6-й роты – младший унтер-офицер Бегунов;

7-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Лимонов;

8-й роты – фельдфебель Юрков;

9-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Чебкасов;

10-й роты – старший унтер-офицер Стариков;

11-й роты – младший унтер-офицер Беляев;

12-й роты – подпрапорщик Стариков;

4-й Воткинский имени Союзных Держав пехотный полк.

Командир полка – поручик Болонкин;

- командиры батальонов:

1-го батальона – поручик Калашников;

2-го батальона -…..

3-го батальона – подпоручик Замятин;

командиры рот:

1-й роты – подпоручик Фертиков;

2-й роты – прапорщик Ждамиров;

3-й роты – подпрапорщик Корляков;

4-й роты – подпрапорщик Пустовалов;

5-й роты – поручик Бускин;

6-й роты – прапорщик Пьянков;

7-й роты – …

8-й роты – прапорщик Лаптев;

9-й роты – прапорщик Иванов;

10-й роты – прапорщик Журавлев;

11-й роты – юнкер Чирков;

12-й роты – …

21-го октября приказом командующего Воткинской Народной армии капитаном Журавлевым за № 16 все полки были сведены в две бригады.

В 1-ю пехотную бригаду вошли 1-й и 2-й Воткинские полки. Командир бригады стал подполковник Н.П. Альбокринов, адъютант бригады – штабс-капитан В.С. Александровский; 2-ю бригаду составили 3-й Сайгатский и 4-й Воткинский полки, командиром бригады стал подполковник В.Н. Пирогов (незадолго снятый с поста Начальника штаба Ижевской Народной армии), адъютантом – штабс-капитан А.Н. Быков.

Была окончательно сформирована военно-телеграфная рота прапорщика М.И. Лебедева. Отделом контрразведки армии командовал мичман Жемчужный. Речной флотилией последовательно командовали: с 29-го августа прапорщик по Адмиралтейству Н.Ф. Анфиногенов, с 18-го сентября – Г.Ф. Лисин. Начальник технической части флотилии был капитан 2-го ранга В.И. Вологдин, назначенный 22-го сентября комендантом города.

Понятно, что в небольшой статье невозможно дать исчерпывающую картину легендарной борьбы, где ничтожная кучка героев, с каждым днем уменьшаясь в числе, противостояла огромной армии Троцкого. Делая невозможное, преодолевая невероятные трудности и совершая подвиг за подвигом, повстанцы не представляли какие еще испытания преподнесет им судьба. Так, 14-го октября в д.Зипуново современного Пермского края почти полностью была уничтожена 10-я (бывшая 34-я) рота 1-го полка.

Зипуново считалась крайним населенным пунктом на востоке границ, определенных Прикамским Комитетом Учредительного собрания. Печатный орган 1-го Сибирского корпуса – газета «Сибирские стрелки» 13-го марта 1919г., опубликовала статью К. Дробинина «Бой на Покрова Пресвятые Богородицы», в которой автор поведал читателям трагическую судьбу Петропавловской роты. Посланная защитить деревню от произвола, но попавшая в засаду, рота была уничтожена сильной группировкой частей РККА. Полковник Ефимов вспоминал в эмиграции со слов воткинцев: «Бой в Зипуново отличался большим упорством, хотя и не был продолжительным. Воткинцы нанесли большие потери блюхеровцам, но и сами сильно пострадали - одних убитых было восемьдесят три».

Известно, что гонимые белоказаками с Южного Урала, сводные отряды Блюхера в количестве 6650 человек, в середине сентября 1918г. вошли в расположение частей 3-й армии в районе Кунгура. Рейд по вражеским тылам этой армии был с точки зрения военного искусства, безусловно, универсальной оперативно-тактической операцией. Хотя армией ее можно назвать условно. «Двое-трое – в защитном. Кто-то в серой подтертой пиджачной паре. Ситцевые рубахи у двоих. У одного медно-красная грудь вырывалась из синей матроски. Картузы штатские, защитные фуражки. Шляпа. Матросская бескозырка с ленточками флота Балтики. Шашка, за поясом – гранаты.

У двоих винтовки за плечами. У одного дробовик и охотничий нож из обломка штыка…»
20-го сентября Командующий 3-й армией Берзин отдал приказ с назначением тов. Блюхера начальником 4-й дивизии и подчинением ему вышедших из сорокадневного рейда частей. В одном из пунктов приказа говорилось: «Архангельский отряд под командованием Дамберга отправлен на усиление 5-й Уральской дивизии – Осинское направление».

Очевидец тех дней писал: «Архангельская группа вышла в район Федорковского завода на отдых после боев и потерь. Из нашего отряда и добровольцев сформировали две роты, вошедшие в состав Архангельского полка, который вместе с Уфимским кавалерийским полком составил бригаду под командованием Ивана Туманова. На совещании было решено на базе бригады Деткина и Архангельской группы сформировать 5-ю Уральскую дивизию под командованием командира Архангельского полка тов. Дамберга. В начале октября Архангельский полк передислоцировался в Епалчихинскую волость и вел бои в современном Еловском районе. Севернее ж/д Сарапул – Екатеринбург и по линии Альняш – Елово действовали отряды Башкатова, а от Елово и севернее – отряды Аплока. Эти отряды были локализованы и действовали самостоятельно».

В середине октября, обозленный военными неудачами и отсутствием продуктов, по Аптугаевской дороге через мост реки Пизь в Зипуново зашел отряд – 50 шашек и до 200 штыков на подводах. Вырезав расположенную в деревне заставу, отряд начал реквизицию продуктов, фуража и скота.

13-го октября Петропавловская рота, входящая в состав 3-го батальона 1-го Воткинского полка, переправившись через Каму, остановилась после перехода на ночлег в с.Фоки. «Сам командующий нашу роту провожал, – вспоминал солдат Черепанов. – Патронов у нас мало, зря не стреляйте, штыком больше работайте. С музыкой нас проводил по всему Воткинскому заводу». Утром, 14-го октября, при подходе к Зипуново, стрелки роты встретили местных жителей, рассказавших им, что красные недавно ушли из деревни. Не высылая разведки, петропавловцы смело зашли на ее главную улицу. «На улице ни души. Рота растянулась по всей улице змейкой. Из головной части охотники бегом прорываются в волость, надеясь захватить Совдеп или комиссаров. В эту минуту тревожно и подозрительно забрякала крыша, и сразу из чердачного окна заторкал пулемет… видящий прицел по всей цепи солдат… Звуки знакомые, но режущие душу. Мало кому удалось спастись», – сообщал автор.

Местному жителю Проскурякову так запомнился этот бой: «Красноармейцы, выпрыгивая из окон и выбегая из домов, тут же открывали прицельный огонь по отступающим. В перестрелке погиб комиссар отряда, но смерть его стоила очень дорого. Пьяных озверевших белогвардейцев беспощадно косил пулемет, устлав всю улицу и площадь трупами».

Вероятно, командир роты не потрудился собрать подробные сведения о противнике. Дальняя разведка не была проведена, а ближняя представляла просто охрану главных сил, которые зашли строем на главную улицу. В начале боя стрелки повернули назад, не обеспечив защиту флангов. Развернувшийся авангард смешался с залегшими цепями задних линий. Красные, воспользовавшись этим, продолжили фланговый огонь. Иными словами, поток передней цепи повстанцев смешался с их основными силами, обращаясь в бегство.
Враг, перейдя в наступление, неистовал, докалывая несчастных штыками, тем самым, увеличивая их панику. Стоящий на чердаке пулемет, боясь «задеть» своих, прекратил работу. Выжившие в кровавой мясорубке стрелки смогли сообщить о трагедии действующему в этом районе батальону под началом подпоручика Болонкина.

Ночью разведка батальона сожгла мост через реку Пизь, оставив у него пулеметную засаду, а утром, развернувшись в цепи, его роты начали наступление с трех сторон, в т.ч. и через открытое поле со стороны д.Некрасово. Определив силы белых и огрызаясь огнем, красноармейцы медленно начали отход.

Сковав силы противника полукольцом и сминая оставленную заставу, воткинцы загнали противника в узкое дефиле лесной дороги. Через три версты красная конная разведка вышла к реке и, попав под огонь, повернула обратно. Но было поздно. Отходящий арьергард нажимал на свои основные отступающие части поспешнее, чем этого требовала обстановка. Сгрудившись у реки перед сожженным мостом, они были встречены гранатами и губительным огнем пулеметной команды.

«Красные кружились по берегу, с отчаянием бросаясь в воду, выплывали на противоположный крутой и гористый берег и падали от пуль, направленных из караулки, стоящей у сожженного моста. Били на выбор. Их осталось под конец боя всего пять человек. И эти метались как мыши в мышеловке. Солнце тихо садилось за Пизь и багровым заревом освещало трупы и красных и белых», – заканчивал статью автор.

Известно, что оставшимся в живых красноармейцам брод через реку показали трое крестьян из д.Чегонда – Шадрин, Чулков, Лагунов. Все трое были расстреляны воткинцами «за помощь врагу».

Издевательства блюхеровцев над ранеными в деревне превзошли примеры даже из средневековой истории: «Вспоротые животы, с намотанными на голову внутренностями, выколотые глаза, отрубленные пальцы», - сообщал автор. Новый назначенный комендант Алексей Килин заставил выкопать тело захороненного комиссара и сжечь его.
Тем самым, показав образец военной операции, белые лишили измотанную в обороне Бирскую бригаду тов. Деткина крупного резерва. Отвагу и героизм людей командиру батальона удалось соединить с планомерным и четким управлением атакующих подразделений.
Сброшенные в реку трупы красноармейцев не остались в памяти благодарных потомков. Хотя на металлическом памятнике около школы, ниже слов: «Никто не забыт – ничто не забыто» и шести фамилий захороненных, выбито: «Неизвестный партизан Архангельского красного партизанского отряда».

Также особый интерес формирования ударных частей в войсках Народной армии представляет «Воткинская образцовая рота» под началом штабс-капитана Горчаковского – как бы личная гвардия будущего (с 21-го октября) Главнокомандующего армиями Прикамского края капитана Юрьева.

                                                                    Приказ № 57

от 18. 10. 1918г. по строевой части.  

При штабе армии сформировать отряд, действующий на основании строгого соблюдения правил и уставов: Дисциплинарного, Строевого, Гарнизонного и Внутренней службы.

а). Отряду присвоить название «Воткинская образцовая рота».

б). В отряд зачисляются исключительно добровольцы не моложе 18 лет.

в). Начальствующие лица пользуются властью Дисциплинарного Начальника.

г). Условия для вступления в отряд:

Строгая дисциплина, начиная от рядового бойца до командира роты.

За время службы, ни каких дружеских или приятельских отношений.

Все служащие солдаты, офицеры и все командные лица связаны братской... обязаны оказывать уставную честь начальству, дабы своим видом показывать, что он старается и готов защитить свою страдающую Родину.

Вступивший на службу может помещаться отдельно или близко к казарме.

д). Служебные занятия производятся ежедневно с 6 часов до 11 и с обеда до 6 часов вечера, исключая праздники, на точном соблюдении правил Устава Строевой службы.

е). Внутренняя жизнь отряда протекает согласно Устава Внутренней службы.

ж). За неисполнение приказ