Tuesday, September 27, 2005

The coming conflagration

Ukraine is far away, but it is a popular topic of this journal. If you've read Papabile, you've probably seen his post on Cardinal Husar's comments on a unified patriarchate in Ukraine. That state is at the forefront of not ecumenism but direct confrontation between the Greek Catholics, two independent Orthodox patriarchates and the Russian Orthodox Church as represented by the Metropolitan of Kiev.

Today we have a piece by Daniil Spassky, who is quite sympathetic to the Russian Orthodox position. He writes on the increasing government interference in religious matters and the growing intrusion of the Patriarchate of Constantinople.

Instead, the Fanar delegates have had intensive discussions on all this with the schismatics and state officials behind the back of Metropolitan Vladimir of Kiev. So much so that a bishop from Constantinople even attended a council of the so-called Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church among the participants in which were anathemized Filaret Denisenko and Yuschenko’s adviser A.Sagan.

With regard to Constantinople, it is all clear: it cherishes the desire to enter the territory of Ukraine, to consolidate its grip on it and then to increase its presence disregarding the interests of the Ukrainian Church and its faithful. The matter is more complicated with regard to the state’s attitude. The present Ukrainian president nearly vowed in Maidan to prevent the state from interfering in church affairs, but now we see civil servants actively participating in the development and implementation of Constantinople’s project. It means that they either violate the will of the president thus setting him up or have his approval. But hasn’t he broken his word then?

Read the complete article Constantinople and Ukraine: church representations as a new turn in the church crisis from Interfax.

Husar is not a patriarch, but they refer to him that way. Alexei II of Moscow is trying to save the bulk of his church's income and vocations. The other two Orthodox churches are just doing their thing (if I were them, I'd be doing some serious unificaiton talks). And the Patriarch of Constantinople's guys are showing up and stirring the pot for some as-yet-unknown reason.

I'll take a moment and simply note on an academic, not-very-serious note that relativism needs to be fought in Western Europe if for no other reason than it is just so boring compared to places like Ukraine.

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