Putin’s Dream of Godliness: Holy Russia


My big issue with Russian Orthodoxy is how unhealthily close the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) is with the Russian government. I really do not like the infusion of secular government with religion. Religion should never be used as a political tool for a secular government, or as a means to an end.

It’s wonderful Russia cast off the yoke of Communism, now we need to pray for Russia to come back into full communion with the Catholic Church.


It can’t “come back”-- there was no “Russian Orthodox Church” until about a century after the schism started, when the Kievian royal family fled to Muscovy, and purported to bring the see of Kiev with them.


I note that you say can be, but even so that’s surely too much of a generalisation. There are examples of Orthodox Churches that aren’t too tied to the state and also examples of non-Orthodox Churches that are.

Prime offenders, of course, would include Russia and Serbia. On the other hand, none of the Churches directly under the Ecumenical Patriarchate have any ties to their respective states, save the restrictions placed upon the Patriarchate itself by Turkey’s at any rate notionally secular government. Likewise the Churches in the Levant and north Africa. In Greece, Church and state are mutually committed to a process of separation and secularisation.

It would be hard to deny, on the other hand, that in Ireland the Catholic Church was too tied to the state. For more than thirty years Archbishop McQuaid was a ruler in all but name. Ultimately, this did the Church no favours, as recent history has shown, as decades of corruption and malfeasance were uncovered and as people came to resent the Church’s intrusion into spheres of life that were beyond its proper remit. One could also point to the close relationship between Church and state in Franco’s Spain and Salazar’s Portugal.

The UK is a very different example, but a good one nonetheless. Our head of state is also Supreme Governor of the established Church of England, and it is a legal requirement that only a member of that Church can succeed to the throne. 26 Anglican bishops sit in the upper house of legislature with the same right to speak and vote in Parliament as our elected MPs and the appointed and elected peers (the three most senior bishops are also members of the Privy Council). Neither house of Parliament can sit until prayers have been read by an Anglican cleric (a priest in the Commons, a bishop in the Lords). Diocesan bishops are appointed by the Queen on the advice of her prime minister and no bishop can be consecrated without the Queen’s mandate. The Queen also appoints many cathedral deans and even some cathedral canons. All clergy are required to swear an oath of allegiance to the monarch, and the monarch’s coat of arms is displayed in all churches. Furthermore, the Church of England’s General Synod is subordinate to Parliament, which must approve all synodal legislation, and the Church’s canon law is an actual part of the laws of England, enforceable in courts that are actual courts of law. That situation is perhaps more benign, but certainly more extreme, than those pertaining in any Orthodox country.

While Orthodox Churches certainly can develop a harmful relationship with the state, partly as a result of the national and autocephalous nature of many Orthodox Churches, it is, unfortunately, a problem that can also arise with Catholic and Protestant Churches as well.


No, Putin should reconcile with the wife that he divorced.


My father remembers Makarios, his view was that had the Cypriots been able to achieve enosis(union) with Greece post independence after the struggle between EOKA and the British had concluded Turkey’s invasion would have been far less likely to occur. He doesnt’ seem to have been the greatest as a politician from what I’ve read about him but it was a role he was rather thrust into and he was certainly held in high respect by his countrymen. My father can remember his death as well as due to the result of partition etc. quite a lot of colleagues he served with in the army ended up eventually doing peacekeeping duties in Cyprus.


You mean the people who have a weird habit of getting murdered when they’re critical of Putin? :thinking:


Crimea is not historically part of Ukraine you should note. The fighting in the other areas of Ukraine is more problematic and rooted, as so often, in population transfers and issues around that. Also, both sides there have their hands soaked in blood at this point and neither can claim to be a ‘good guy’.


Yes but doesn’t the Apostolic Canon prohibit bishops to hold official position in the Empire (that is to say the Roman Empire at that time) and this interprets as holding public offices today?
Canon 83 If a bishop, presbyter, or deacon, shall serve in the army, and wishes to retain both the Roman magistracy and the priestly office, let him be deposed; for the things of Cæsar belong to Cæsar, and those of God to God
The Apostolic Canon is very important in Eastern Orthodoxy and is as valid as any Church rule made today.


Makarios was in a singular position. Personally I would have supported his view of union with Greece and would have pushed for building up armed forces on Cyprus to a much higher level and making it plain that any incursions by Turkey would be resisted and any inch of Cypriot territory would only be given up after a lake of Turkish blood had been spilled to get it. I am not Christian at this point and couldn’t care less for apostolic canons. The practical reality for nations is that to be free they have to be able to demonstrate to others who wish to conquer or rule them that it will be too difficult to do so due to the cost of men and materials expended in the conquest.



In the West in the past there have been situations where the bishop of the capitol city was the regent when the new king was too young to take possession of the throne.


The body of Pope St. Clement I ended up on the shores of Crimea.


So, “historically” Crimea is part of Russia?
Yes, after the events of Euromaidan, the referendum was held during a Russian military takeover of Crimea.
The referendum was illegal.
The Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People had called for a boycott of the referendum.
The Mejlis Deputy Chairman, Akhtem Chiygoz, felt that the actual turnout could not have exceeded 30–40 percent, arguing that to be the normal turnout for votes in the region.
Yes, if you look at history, in 1783, Crimea indeed became a part of the Russian Empire as the result of the Russo-Turkish War (1768–1774)
and for a long time was a part of Russia but its not historically Russian land.
Those lands were colonised by the Greeks, the Persians, the Romans, the Byzantine Empire, the Crimean Goths, the Genoese and the Ottoman Empire, while at the same time its interior was occupied by a changing cast of invading steppe nomads and empires, such as the Cimmerians, Scythians, Sarmatians, Goths, Alans, Bulgars, Huns, Khazars, Kipchaks, Mongols and the Golden Horde. Crimea and adjacent territories were united in the Crimean Khanate during the 15th to 18th century.
The Russians illegally annexed the Crimea, and now do it themselves in Donetsk and Lugansk with their own hands and the hands of local militants.
Perhaps on the queue such cities as Kherson, and the cities of the Black Sea coast.



Several generations of Ukrainians were infringed upon their identity in the Crimea.
The KGB and the FSB did not allow Ukrainian culture to develop in the Crimea, and vigilantly followed its trends.
Crimeans were fooled by Nazis and Bandera .
In order to take away the territory, it was necessary to first zombie people with propaganda about the fascist radicals. ( I think that Kremlin sponsored and strengthened some of these radicals in western Ukraine)


By the way, it looks like already three monasteries on Athos entered into official relations with UOC, despite the omission of this news in the Russian press.
Little bit earlier, two monasteries - Xenophon and Vatoped - sent their representatives to the enthronement of Epiphaniy. Taking into account the official age of the UOC, it can be argued that the dynamics of building diplomatic and spiritual relations with the Orthodox world in general is quite positive.
The Kremlin mistakenly believes that Athos is on their side.


Over a longer historical period, this type of statement is also largely applicable to the UOC-MP.


The was no Bishop of Moscow until after Florence. The Metrpolitan of the the Kyivan church, in Moscow, accepted, with the EP, the promulgated reunion. The Czar opposed it, exiled the Metropolitan, seized the Metropoltan’s canonical territory under his political control and installed a Metropolitan of Moscow over this newly declared autocephalous church. (And over the years, the Russian church continued to built its canonical territory by conquest.) None of this was canonical, but it was a fait accompli, and, after the passage of time, recognized by other Orthodox churches. That is not an usual route to autocephaly in Orthodox history - a point worth remembering when thinking Ukraine.



That was supposed to have been MP in my post in the first place. :grr:

I’d even call it downright “usual” :slight_smile::stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Moscow finally got it’s autocephaly when the EP was stranded in Moscow without funds to return home . . .


But it is also true of the KP, albeit after passing through the hands of the MP.

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