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  • Putin Suffers Crimea Blowback with Orthodox Church schism

    10/14/2018 5:49:40 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 3 replies
    Financial Times ^ | Oct 14, 2018 | Max Seddon, Roman Olearchyk
    When Russian president Vladimir Putin celebrated the annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, he claimed the disputed peninsula was “spiritually” inseparable from Moscow. But Mr Putin’s military intervention is now threatening to undermine the “Russian world” beyond Moscow’s borders that he sought to protect. An arcane canonical dispute has become a geopolitical flashpoint after Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople, the Istanbul-based spiritual leader of Orthodox Christianity, said on Thursday that he intended to grant full recognition to a breakaway church in Ukraine that split from the Russian patriarchate in the early 1990s. The Russian church has warned it may...
  • PRAYERS ANSWERED: Ukrainian Christians Greet Official Church Split from Russia With Open Arms

    10/14/2018 9:01:59 AM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 1 replies
    RFE/RL ^ | Christopher Miller
    Patriarch Bartholomew I -- considered the leader of roughly 300 million Orthodox Christians, or "first among equals" of Eastern Orthodox clerics -- to "proceed to the granting of autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine" marked a clear step closer to another remarkable break from Moscow and its reach into Kyiv's affairs. After taking a moment to say a prayer, Natalia, a retired schoolteacher and parishioner of St. Volodymyr's, told RFE/RL that her previous prayer -- for her church to be legitimized by the Ecumenical Patriarchate and broken free from Russia -- had been answered. The push for independence, "was our...
  • Christianity Faces Biggest Split In a Millenium

    10/12/2018 12:07:23 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 14 replies
    The Week UK ^ | Oct 12, 2018
    Ukraine has secured approval from the global head of Orthodox Christianity to create its own Church independent of Russia’s patriarchate. Russian Patriarch Kirill said last month that his church would break ties with the Istanbul-based patriarchate. Such a separation would “catastrophically undermine the unity of global Orthodoxy..." The threat was echoed by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk. “We the Russian Church will not recognise this autocephaly, of course, and we will have no other choice but to sever ties with Constantinople." The question of whether the new Ukrainian Church will take over the Moscow Patriarchate’s property in the country is another...
  • Ukraine's Orthodox Church officially granted Independence from Russia

    10/11/2018 10:31:42 AM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 10 replies
    Financial Times ^ | 11 October 2018 | Roman Olearchyk, Henry Foy
    The head of global Orthodox Christianity has decided to grant Ukraine its own church independent of Russia’s patriarchate, in a politically charged move that defies sharp warnings from Moscow. The decision is a victory for Ukraine in a wider struggle against Russia that encompasses Moscow’s 2014 annexation of Crimea and its continued support for separatists fighting against Kiev in the east of the country. But it has been condemned by Russian officials, who have warned it threatens to trigger the biggest Christian schism in a millennium. While both Ukraine and Russia share the same orthodox Christian roots that date back...
  • Russia-Ukraine Tensions Set Up the Biggest Christian Schism Since 1054

    10/10/2018 5:48:29 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege
    New York Times ^ | Oct 7, 2018 | Neil MacFarquhar
    MOSCOW - Vyacheslav Gorshkov, who teaches the catechism at a Kiev cathedral, was among the majority of Orthodox Christians in Ukraine who had reconciled themselves to the fact that their church answers to the Russian Orthodox patriarch in Moscow. No longer. Mr. Gorshkov does not want to break with the faith, but does want to split with the Russian Orthodox Church, incensed by what he sees as the Kremlin using the church as an instrument of its old imperial control. He is among the majority of the faithful hoping that Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, the spiritual leader for the estimated...
  • Moscow vs. Constantinople: An Orthodox Fracture with Major Consequences

    10/10/2018 10:29:55 AM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 11 replies
    First Things ^ | Sep 2018 | George Weigel
    While Catholicism has been embroiled in a crisis of sexual abuse and episcopal malfeasance reaching to the highest levels of the Church, Eastern Orthodoxy may be on the verge of an epic crack-up with major ecumenical and geopolitical consequences. The Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople has indicated that it is considering a proposal to recognize the autocephaly, or independence from Moscow, of Ukrainian Orthodoxy. The Moscow Patriarchate has responded with fury. First, the Moscow Patriarchate is terrified. Moscow's claim to be the “third Rome” would be gravely imperiled. Russian Orthodoxy would shrink drastically by the loss of the large Orthodox population...
  • Broken Faith: Ukrainian Church Fights For Independence From Moscow

    10/08/2018 9:47:56 AM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege
    RFE/RL ^ | Oct 8, 2018 | Christopher Miller
    Kostyantynivka, an industrial city of roughly 80,000 in Ukraine's east, sits not only a little more than a rocket shot from the front lines of the simmering war between the Ukrainian Army and Russia-backed separatist forces. It is also one of many at the center of a politically charged spiritual conflict that is pitting Eastern Orthodox Christians against each other and setting the stage for a religious schism of historic proportions. The dispute at hand centers around granting the Ukrainian Orthodox Church autocephaly, or the right to be ecclesiastically independent. The designation would strike a serious blow to the heart...
  • Bulgarian Orthodox Church turns down Russia's call for debate on Ukraine

    10/07/2018 7:11:29 AM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 2 replies
    Hurriyet Daily News ^ | Oct 2018 | Reuters - Sofia
    The Bulgarian Orthodox Church on Oct. 5 turned down a call by the Russian Patriarch to hold talks to discuss a bid by the Ukrainian church to break away from Moscow’s orbit. The Ukrainian Orthodox Church under Patriarch Filaret is leading a drive to establish a national church independent of the Russian Orthodox Church in the face of strong opposition from Moscow. Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill wrote to all branches of the Orthodox world, calling for talks to discuss the situation around church life in Ukraine. The Bulgarian Church’s Holy Synod, its top executive body, however, said in a statement...
  • Hungary FM on CNN: We've Been a Christian Country for a Millennium and We Don’t Want to Change That

    10/04/2018 3:34:24 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 11 replies
    Hungary Today ^ | 2018.10.04.
    Christiane Amanpour, one of the most well-known faces of CNN, uploaded a 4-minute long video to her official Facebook page from her interview with Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade. She tries to find the answer to what exactly Prime Minister Viktor Orbán means when he says he’s trying to preserve a “Christian Hungary.” Amanpour pointed out that Hungary also “claims to have an immigration problem” and that Hungary doesn’t want these – as Prime Minister Orbán called them – “invaders” in the country; Szijjártó quickly corrected the term to “illegal migrants.” "We have been a Christian country...
  • Ukraine's Orthodox Church emerges from Russia's shadow

    10/01/2018 11:53:32 AM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 9 replies
    Financial Times ^ | Sep 29, 2018 | Roman Olearchyk, Max Seddon
    “Five years ago I’d probably never have thought about it,” said Anatoly Bilyk, 57, sipping coffee as he looked at the two churches in Kalynivka. “But after Russia attacked our country and stole territory from us; I think we need our own church now to finish building our nation.” The dispute over giving the Ukrainian Orthodox Church autocephaly, or the right to be a fully fledged church, has moved the conflict between Ukraine and Russia into the spiritual realm. Although both churches trace their history to the conversion of the medieval state of Rus in Kiev, Russia’s annexation of Crimea...
  • Secret Protestant Churches in Donetsk: Ukraine's Religious War

    09/30/2018 5:12:28 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 3 replies
    YouTube/Vice ^ | Simon Ostrovsky
    The war in eastern Ukraine hasn't just been about territory — religion has deepened the divide. In Donetsk, Protestants are being forced to conduct their services in apartments, persecuted by pro-Russia separatists who believe there’s only room for one religion in the region: Russian Orthodoxy. VICE News correspondent Simon Ostrovsky traveled to Donetsk to attend secret Protestant churches, and spoke with members of the Donetsk People’s Republic as well as the Orthodox Church to find out whether the DPR’s vision for the rebel-controlled region includes the coexistence of religious beliefs.
  • Heroism and Genius: How Catholic Priests Helped Build (And Can Help Rebuild) Western Civilization

    09/23/2018 4:19:58 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 28 replies
    Church Militant ^ | Feb 2018 | Rodney Pelletier, William Slattery
    HEROISM AND GENIUS is the dramatic flesh-and-blood account of the real men who built the West's civilization during the dark centuries after the collapse of the Roman Empire. It tells the inspiring story of how these towering giants of mankind, their minds imbued with the genius of Christianity, integrated the achievements of the Jewish people, Greeks, Romans, Arabs and Germanics, creating a new society that embodied the Catholic vision of God and man, time and eternity. Although it highlights the role of priests, there are countless interesting insights into the formidable laymen and women who also shaped the new social...
  • Steve Bannon drafting curriculum for right-wing Catholic institute in Italy

    09/23/2018 12:19:57 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 10 replies
    Reuters ^ | Sep 2018 | Mark Hosenbell
    Former Trump White House adviser Steve Bannon is helping to craft the curriculum for a leadership course at a right-wing Roman Catholic institute in Italy, stepping up his efforts to influence conservative thinking in the church. Benjamin Harnwell, director of the Dignitatis Humanae Institute based in a mountaintop monastery not far from Rome, told Reuters Bannon had been helping to build up the institute for about half of its eight-year life. Cardinal Raymond Burke, a leading Vatican conservative who is president of the Institute’s board of advisers, said Bannon would be playing a leading role there. Burke told Reuters he...
  • Greek-catholic Patriarch: Orthodox connivance with Stalin undermines our relations

    09/15/2018 9:34:47 AM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 3 replies
    Asia News ^ | 2015 | Nina Achmatova
    The non-admission of the Russian Orthodox Churches' complicity with the Soviet persecution of Greek-Catholics in Ukraine is undermining relations between the two Churches. The warning was voiced by the Archbishop of Kiev, Sviatoslav Shevchuk, head of the Greek-catholic Church. "The ability to apologize shows a lively Christian conscience, which is a precondition for the so-called healing of memories," said Archbishop Shevchuk in an interview with the Ukrainian newspaper Den (Day). "The Russian Orthodox Church was used by Stalin's regime for the compulsory settlement of our church - he added - the fact there has been no symbolic reconciliation between us...
  • Leading Russian scholar admits: Ukrainian Church has right to Independence

    09/11/2018 8:55:34 AM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 5 replies
    Unian ^ | 11 September 2018
    Russian religious expert Sergei Chapnin explains why the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has every reason to grant the status of autocephaly to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church In an op-ed published by Vedomosti, Chapnin noted that the issue of Ukrainian autocephaly dates back to the early 20th century, while those associated with the status of the Kyiv church goes back to the late 17th century. "But if the Patriarch of Constantinople preserves the continuity of his institutions for almost 1500 years, the Moscow Patriarchate, after the total destruction of all church institutions in 1917 and the re-emergence of some of them...
  • Orthodox Patriarch explains bid for Ukrainian autonomy from Moscow patriarchate

    09/09/2018 5:42:32 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 2 replies
    Catholic World News ^ | Sep 5, 2018
    At a gathering of Orthodox leaders last week, Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople insisted that he, as Ecumenical Patriarch, has the authority to approve a bid for autocephaly (self-governance) by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. Patriarch Bartholomew, in his address to an August 31 summit meeting of Orthodox prelates, said that the bid for Ukrainian autonomy was not a new development. On the contrary, he said, the Orthodox Church in Kiev—which was established before the Orthodox Church in Moscow—has frequently requested such a move: Already from the early 14th century, when the See of the Kievan Metropolis was moved—without the canonical permission...
  • Russian Orthodox Church vows breakup with Constantinople if Ukrainian Orthodox autonomy is granted

    09/09/2018 5:40:26 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 2 replies
    Unian ^ | Sep 2018
    The Russian Orthodox Church threatened to break off relations with Orthodox Christianity's leading body - the Patriarchate of Constantinople - if it endorses the new self-governing, or autocephalous, Ukrainian Church. In an interview in Moscow on Saturday, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, Chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate's Department for External Church Relations, said that the Russian Orthodox Church wil sever ties with Constantinople if a decision is made there to grant autocephaly to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Kyiv Patriarchate, according to TASS. "The Russian Orthodox Church will not accept this decision," the cleric said. As UNIAN reported earlier, the Ecumenical...
  • Moscow's "Interventions" in Ukrainian Church Affairs "Uncanonical" - Patriarch Bartholomew

    09/04/2018 6:28:39 PM PDT · by marshmallow · 5 replies
    Interfax ^ | 9/4/18
    Washington/Moscow, September 3, Interfax - Patriarch Bartholomew has insisted on the right by the Church of Constantinople to resolve the Ukrainian church problem without the Moscow Patriarchate. "Since Russia, as the one responsible for the current painful situation in Ukraine, is unable to solve the problem, the Ecumenical Patriarchate assumed the initiative of resolving the problem in accordance with the authority afforded to it by the Sacred Canons and the jurisdictional responsibility over the eparchy of Kiev, receiving a request to this end by the honorable Ukrainian Government, as well as recurring requests by 'Patriarch' Philaret of Kiev appealing for...
  • Ukraine could beat Putin in Church Battle

    09/03/2018 2:31:55 PM PDT · by CondoleezzaProtege · 1 replies
    Kyiv Post ^ | 3 September 2018 | Leonid Bershidsky
    Ukraine can’t reclaim territory annexed by Russia or held by its proxies – but it’s increasingly likely to deprive its larger neighbor of something arguably as valuable: Its power over Ukraine’s Orthodox Christian believers, and with it Moscow’s claim to a central role in eastern Christianity. Moscow Patriarch Kirill went to Istanbul late last month to meet with Bartholomew (of Constantinople). A bishop who was present said that while no final decision was made on Ukrainian autocephaly, the process has now gone too far to reverse it. Russian clerics have warned that granting independence to the Ukrainian church could cause...
  • Why Is Christianity Booming Outside Europe and North America?

    08/26/2018 8:08:01 PM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 21 replies
    Christian Post ^ | 08/26/2018 | John Stonestreet And Stan Guthrie
    Why is Christianity booming in the global South, but seemingly stagnant in the global North? A new fascinating book offers an answer. Dr. Glenn Sunshine is a long-time Fellow at the Colson Center, and he's that rare sort of historian who sees the sweep of intellectual and cultural history, and then brings it all together in a way that not only explains the past, but advances our understanding of the here and now. His new book, co-authored with Jerry Trousdale, is called "The Kingdom Unleashed: How Jesus' 1st-Century Values Are Transforming Thousands of Cultures and Awakening His Church." In the...