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Source: Peter Anderson, Seattle USA On December 29, 2023, Patriarch Kirill issued the following decree relating to Archimandrite Cyril Hovorun:  “Hereby, on the basis of the decision of the diocesan church court of the Moscow diocese dated October 31, 2023, you are deposed from the priesthood in connection with violation of the 25th rule of the Holy Apostles.”  http://moseparh.ru/ukaz-u-02216-ot-29-dekabrya-2023.html (first posted on Jan. 17, 2024)  On October 31, 2023, the Moscow diocesan court had ruled:  “Recognize that, on the basis of the 25th Rule of the Holy Apostles, Archimandrite Kirill (Govorun) is subject to canonical reprimand in the form of demotion from the priesthood.”  http://moseparh.ru/reshenie-eparxialnogo-cerkovnogo-suda-moskovskoj-gorodskoj-eparxii-po-delu-zapreshhennogo-klirika-arximandrita-kirilla-govoruna.html  …

Source: Peter Anderson, Seattle USA  On January 12, the Russian news agency Novosti reported that Archpriest Alexey Uminsky failed to appear for the second time before a Moscow diocesan court (Link).  Novosti interviewed Archpriest Vladislav Tsypin, deputy chairman of the diocesan court.  Tsypin stated:  Yesterday we waited for him [Uminsky] for 4-5 hours.  He is being summoned to court due to failure to comply with the instructions of the hierarchy, the Patriarch, to read a prayer for Holy Rus.’  This quotation is the most authoritative information to date that the current proceedings against Uminsky are based on his failure to recite this prayer.  The…

Source: Public Orthodoxy Very Rev. Dr. Andrei Kordochkin Priest at St. Mary Magdalene Russian Orthodox Church (Madrid, Spain) Editor’s Note: The Orthodox Church in Russia is divided, but this division is not canonical nor administrative. Moreover, it is not always visible from the outside. While the official Church has become an integral part of Putin’s political regime, on a deeper level, there is resistance on behalf of small Orthodox communities and individuals who deny accepting the proclamation of violence and the justification of war. These “propaganda sermons” are constantly pronounced from the ambos of the churches nationwide, causing abruption and…

Source: Peter Anderson, Seattle USA Among the Local Orthodox Churches, it is common for one Local Orthodox Church to have a representation church (more properly called a podvorie or metochion) at the seat of another Local Orthodox Church.  This is true of the Moscow Patriarchate and the Bulgarian Patriarchate.  The Bulgarian Patriarchate has a representation church in Moscow.  Conversely, the Moscow Patriarchate has a representation church in Sofia.  The church in Sofia is the Church of St. Nicholas the Miracle-Worker, located in central Sofia.  It is also known as the “Russian Church.” (link) Many come to pray here because the church is the location of…

Source: Public Orthodoxy Hieromonk Athanasius (Bukin) On February 7th, 2023, still a priest of the Russian Orthodox Church, I boarded a plane and left the Holy Land, where I was serving as a member of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission in Jerusalem (REM). Only after landing in Antalya (Turkey) did I publish a post on social media in which I announced my departure from the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) and my intention not to return to Russia. This was preceded by months of heavy reflection and, I will not hide, moral uncertainty. I became a practicing Orthodox Christian in 2008, when…

Source: The National Herald SOUTHAMPTON, NY – In an interview featured on 27east.com, Protopresbyter of the Ecumenical Patriarchate Father Alexander Karloutsos spoke about the war in Ukraine. Tom Gogola’s article begins by noting that, “the war in Ukraine may be thousands of miles away, but it hits close to home for Father Alex Karloutsos of the Dormition of the Virgin Mary Greek Orthodox Church of the Hamptons in Shinnecock Hills.” Gogola writes that, “Karloutsos is joining his church colleagues in decrying the punishment, he says, of hundreds of Russian-based clergymen in the Russian Orthodox Church who have opposed the war…

Source: Orthodox Public Affairs Committee The Orthodox Public Affairs Committee (OPAC) decries the punishment of clergymen of the Russian Orthodox Church under Patriarch Kirill for opposing the war against Ukraine. Although there are tens of thousands of Russian Clergy, around three hundred have actively opposed the war and its support by Kirill. They have defied the Russian Church leader by substituting the word “peace” for “victory” in Putin-centric prayers mandated by the Russian Church Hierarchy. Some, like Father Ioann Koval have been defrocked and sought refuge under the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. Not only does Kirill and his cronies continue to compromise the integrity of the…

Source: CathNews Ukraine has moved its official Christmas holiday to December 25, breaking with the Russian Orthodox Church, which celebrates it on January 7 in line with the Julian calendar. Source: SBS News. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy submitted a bill pushing for the change in June, with the aim of moving away from “the Russian heritage of imposing Christmas celebrations” in January. Ukraine’s Parliament voted in favour of changing the date of the Orthodox Christmas holiday earlier this month, with Mr Zelenskyy signing the bill on Friday. The bill highlights the deepening rift between churches in Kyiv and Moscow since Russia’s invasion…

Source: Peter Anderson, Seattle USA Metropolitan Hilarion of Budapest has given a long interview to RIA Novosti, the Russian state news agency.  https://ria.ru/20230725/mitropolit_ilarion-1886120415.html   To the best of my knowledge, this is the first significant interview that Metropolitan Hilarion has given since his transfer to Budapest in June 2022.  Most of the interview relates to Constantinople and the document presented by Metropolitan Hilarion at the recent Bishops’ Conference (https://mospat.ru/ru/news/90540/ ).  However, the Metropolitan also addressed the discussion at the Conference concerning  the “current armed confrontation between Russia and Ukraine.”  Thus, the Metropolitan stated: I would like to quote the words of His Holiness the Patriarch…

Source: Peter Anderson, Seattle USA On December 29, 2022, the Holy Synod of the Moscow Patriarchate decided in Journal Entry 121 to set a “bishops’ conference” for July 19, 2023.   https://mospat.ru/ru/news/89905/  It is important to note that this is not the “bishops’ council” that been repeatedly postponed because “the international situation continues to hinder the arrival in Moscow of many members of the Bishops’ Council.”  A Bishops’ Council is a decision-making body while a Bishops’ Conference is not.  Rather this Bishops’ Conference is to be “a fraternal discussion of current issues of church life” with an agenda to be prepared by…

Source: Public Orthodoxy Tiffany Butler Ph.D. Candidate, University of Edinburgh In an interview reported by The Russian Orthodox Church Department for External Church Relations, Rossiya TV asked Patriarch Kirill about his visit to Latin America in February 2016. At the time, Kirill commented about his impression of South America and his hopes for that country. As a comparative lesson, he reflected on the experience of the Soviet Union under a single monopoly in pursuit of one goal of development. He suggested that Latin America is at a similar crossroads between secular and religious influences. In 2016, Kirill responded, Russia seeks…

Source: AEON …But in September 1943, as Stalin imagined a role for a victorious Soviet Union in a postwar world, he began to reconsider his government’s position with regards to the Russian Orthodox Church, and eventually to the entire question of the role of religion in an atheist empire. At this meeting, Stalin presented these men with a bold proposal: the same Soviet state that had destroyed their Church was now going to devote its resources to bringing it back… Read the entire article here

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