Friday, August 1, 2014


We talk about Russia here a lot and for good reason. While we utterly reject the madness of their "Third Rome" claim, it is stupid to ignore that, while not de jure, they are the de facto leaders of Orthodoxy. That makes them important.

A couple of our main points re: Moscow can be summed up as follows:

1. The world should have been preparing itself for the return of Imperial Russia with the full backing and support of the most powerful ecclesial force in the East.

2. Ecumenism with pretty much every Christian sect in the world other than the Orthodox is worthless. Ergo, all such efforts should be directed to them and basically them only.

These topics are merged in a recent article in the Catholic Herald in very interesting fashion. First, you have the events in Ukraine birthing a new round of saber-rattling from Moscow with regards to the Eastern Catholics tied to Kiev. Never, never forget that "ecumenism" in the mind of the Russian church these days includes the idea that Stalin's attempts to annihilate Catholicism were legitimate.

Second, there is the concern that recent events in Catholicism, whether accurately reported or not, have signaled to Patriarch Kyril that Rome is looking to back off in the fight against the world's secularism. I'll add that the focus Pope Benedict had on the liturgy was probably the most positive ecumenical outreach we could have had with the Orthodox and even that is pushed to the back burner.

Overall, it's a grim picture. Read the whole thing.


Aged parent said...

Thank you for the interesting post. I would only only add that the only sabre-rattling being done vis-a-vis Ukraine is coming from the USA, not Russia.

Throwback said...

To clarify, the saber-rattling I was referencing was not of the geopolitical sort. I was limiting it to the ecclesial sphere. The linked article from the Herald has some less than flattering comments from Metropolitan Hilarion and rumors that Patriarch Kyrill might make something of a provocative visit to Kiev. I apologize for the confusion.