Bishop Gregory (hgr) wrote,
Bishop Gregory
hgr

о церковной мифологии

-- к мифологии РПЦЗ и церковной мифологии вообще.

в 1998 г. Вертоградъ выступил с очень резкой апологией св. митрополита Филарета. промыслительным образом, сам св. Филарет откликнулся тем, что через пару недель явились его нетленные мощи -- чего в момент выхода того номера Вертограда никто не предполагал. а резкость нашей апологии св. митр. Филарета заключалась в том, что он был сразу же противопоставлен одной из главных фигур "мифа об РПЦЗ" -- архиепископу Аверкию (+ 1976). Вертоградъ не хотел сказать, будто вл. Аверкий был "плохой"; никто не отрицал его очень многих ценных писаний и поступков, в том числе, и связанных с поддержкой о. Серафима Роуза. но возражения вызывал миф о его какой-то особой верности провославной догматике, поскольку на самом деле, ни он, ни воспевший его в некрологе о. Серафим Роуз, ни вообще вся "традиционная" РПЦЗ особой ревностью о догматах, увы, не отличались, и в тяжелой обстановке уже начавшегося процесса "сдачи" российских приходов (шел 1998 год) это надлежало помочь осознать всем.
ревнителями православной веры в РПЦЗ стали только митрополит Филарет и Бостонский монастырь, которые и "провели" на соборе 1983 г. анафему экуменизму -- вопреки всем прежним традициям РПЦЗ и большинству ее клира и епископата, многие из которых объяснили все это для себя как-то по-своему, так и не поняв, что же произошло на самом деле.
поэтому мы очень обрадовались возможности напечатать два письма митр. Филарета вл. Аверкию, где тот выговаривает ему за допущение в церкви Джорданвильского монастыря служения коптов-монофизитов. это сразу давало понять, что за антикатолической идеологией вл.Аверкия (которая к 1998 г. поддерживалась многими фактическими экуменистами в РПЦЗ, напр., ныне покойным еп. Митрофаном Зноско-Боровским) стоит вовсе не православная догматика, а банальный русский национализм, которому всегда была свойственна неприязнь к католикам.
наша публикация была воспринята с огромным интересом, но даже неожиданно болезненно. именно с тех пор на главном приходе тогдашней РПЦЗ (у о.Макринова в Гатчине) Вдъ был запрещен к продаже.
в последнее время "перевертыши" из РПЦЗ(Л) оспаривали подлинность этих писем, на что о.Николай из Бостона дал очень хорошую отповедь (с небольшим источниковедческим исследованием). я ее полностью привожу под катом, а здесь только одну интересную цитату:

Let me add here that, had "Vertograd-Inform" not published the letters,
we would not have done so ourselves. But since they were made public in
1998, we included them in the list of letters above.

это иллюстрация разного пастырского подхода к церковной мифологии. когда у нас спрашивали в другом аналогичном случае, не рубим ли мы сук, на котором сидим, мы отвечали, что сидим на совсем другом суку: чем меньше останется мифологии, тем лучше для всех. одним кажется, что в Церкви без мифологии вообще не останется, во что верить, а другим кажется, что останется, но большинство прихожан не сможет удовлетвориться такой диетой. но, мне кажется, что в Церкви лучше питаться аскетически, избегая тяжелой и жирной мифологии и винных паров.

Dear Fr. John [Shaw], and List Members,

I will be happy to discuss these points raised by Fr. John. (Besides,
carrying on a civil discourse is easier and more pleasant than hacking
into computers.)

However, it does seem to me that much of the noise which is constantly
being made over the "where, what, when, who and why" concerning the
letters of Metropolitan Philaret is done in order to deflect everyone's
attention from the solidly patristic *contents* of those very letters
and what Metropolitan Philaret has to say to us through them.


Metropolitan Philaret may not have been a good office worker or
administrator, but, then, I'll take a man of prayer who trusts in God
and to whom God listens, over the most efficient administrator in the
world, any day, and I think most pious Orthodox Christians feel the
same way. The rational flock may be sheep, but even sheep know a good
shepherd when they find one, and they appreciate him, and listen to
him, and follow him, because they do not want to be devoured by the
wolves.

The reason some people do everything possible to "talk away" these and
the other letters of Metropolitan Philaret is because it shatters the
image of him (which they have been very diligent to create) of a
passive pawn in the hands of others. These letters reveal a hierarch
who knew and loved the faith and was willing to speak out when
necessary. And the letters complement each other and his known sermons
and epistles. The same themes, ideas, and observations occur in all of
them some passages are almost identical.

Metropolitan Philaret was very well-read in the Fathers of the Church,
a great man of prayer, a hierarch who felt the grave responsibility of
his office, a Bishop who loved our Holy Faith and one who was not
afraid to stand up for it.

Re-read Metropolitan Philaret' letter to Abbess Magdalena, and then
read St. John Chrysostom's "Commentaries on the Epistle to the
Ephesians", Homily XI. While on the boat to Australia, and lacking any
books, Metropolitan Philaret was able to recall the text almost
exactly. That reveals a very great love of, and familiarity with, the
works of the holy fathers.

As we pointed out earlier, it is absurd to assert that Bishop Gregory
would have composed the letter to Fr. Victor Potapov in which
Metropolitan Philaret sharply criticizes the activities of Bishop
Gregory himself while the Metropolitan was gone to Australia. The
Metropolitan was discrete enough not to mention Bishop Gregory by name,
but everyone knew quite well which hierarch had led that procession to
the Soviet Consulate at the UN!

Here too, it is ridiculous to assert that the then Fr. George Grabbe
penned this letter out of malice towards Archbishop Averky, since in
the very letter itself Metropolitan Philaret writes:
"...I will candidly say that I consider this present case incomparably
more perilous than other
issues concerning which so much noise was made at the time: **about the
pretender [to the
throne],** the $138,000, the Serbian affair, and the others..."

When the editors of "Vertograd-Inform" asked Matushka Anastasia
Schatiloff to elucidate certain of Metropolitan Philaret's allusions in
this letter, she herself explained that the above passage referred to
the Golonevsky affair. Now, there is **no way in the world** that Fr.
George Grabbe would purposely bring that topic up again (one which had
caused him so much grief), and in an official letter from the
Metropolitan, at that! To even suggest such a thing is simply absurd.

--- "Fr. John R. Shaw" <vrevjrs@...> wrote:

> In response to a posting from Fr. Nicholas on the above:
>
> 1) It has never been explained how these two, ostensibly private,
> letters from Metropolitan
> Philaret to Archbishop Averky fell into the hands of HTM and
> "Vertograd".

Well, right there on page 2 of the printed Russian text whose link was
furnished in my posting:
http://www.homb.org/Archived_Docs_HTM/VertogradAverkyRuss.pdf
it says: "Both letters are being printed from xerox copies of the
type-written originals bearing Metropolitan Philaret's handwritten
signature."

And in my earlier posting (which Fr. John must have overlooked) to this
list in which I gave links to this and other letters of Metropolitan
Philaret:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/orthodox-tradition/message/94306
I explained that Matushka Anastasia Schatiloff supplied those copies to
us without our having known or asked for them.

Let me add here that, had "Vertograd-Inform" not published the letters,
we would not have done so ourselves. But since they were made public in
1998, we included them in the list of letters above.

>
> But it is interesting that Vl. Averky's replies are not included.

If someone *does* have them, please come forward with them. Certainly
they would be instructive and edifying to read.

> Why not?
>
> If the letters had been from lawfully published files of Metropolitan
> Philaret's
> correspondence,

Perhaps we can put this whole issue of "lawfully published",
"purloined" letters to rest. Metropolitan Philaret has reposed, as have
Bishop Gregory and Matushka Anastasia. (And we here at HTM were not a
party to all this, other than as the recipients of unsolicited copies.)
If someone has qualms about how copies of these letters were made, and
whether or not there is any culpability involved here, let's leave that
in God's hands, before Whom they will have to answer for any
impropriety in the matter.

Rather, why not see in it the providence of God that the letters have
survived unto our instruction and edification? If someone were to find
an ancient manuscript that revealed that St. Basil the Great's
cell-attendant actually copied his First Canonical Epistle
surreptitiously, would any of us at this late date begin to castigate
him in our minds for it? Wouldn't we exclaim: "Glory be to God, and
thanks to him that we have the Saint's epistle!"?

Some object to these letters, saying that these texts are being used by
certain parties "with an agenda", etc. Perhaps..., but the opposite
seems to be even more true: some do not want to admit the authenticity
of these letters or accept what they say because of the implications
for all of us: we would have to hearken to what the Metropolitan tells
us and act upon it.


>there might have been carbon copies of the originals
> (this was ca. 1970),
> and the original letters themselves that Vl. Averky sent in return.
>
> In fact, the second letter from Metropolitan Philaret

So, we are agreed that the letter is genuine, yes?

>does refer to a
> response from Vl.
> Averky.
>
> If these were letters received at Jordanville, then they could only
> have been stolen from the
> files by someone, and then provided to HTM.

We have already explained elsewhere how these letter unexpectedly came
into our possession. There was no foul play on our part.

>
> However, the obvious explanation for this lack of replies from Vl.
> Averky (aside from
> "editorial decisions"), is that


****>these letters were (like many others) "ghost-written" by Fr.
> George Grabbe,**** who kept copies of them in his own files.

We have demonstrated sufficiently why such an explanation is utterly
absurd.
Fr. George (call him wise; call him crafty; depends on ones point of
view) was not that stupid as to shoot himself in the foot so obviously.


> Those copies were then "leaked" by his daughter Anastasia Georgievna.
>
> Vl. Averky's replies were "of no interest": he and Fr. George had not
> been on friendly
> terms.
>
> 2) And yet, despite "all this", the same circles do not hesitate to
> invoke Vl. Averky as an
> authority against the Moscow Patriarchate.

Excuse me, but no one is infallible. Or, as Metropolitan Ephraim is
wont to tell visiting Roman Catholics:
"EVERY Orthodox Christian bishop is infallible... until he makes a
mistake!

One can cite an Orthodox hierarch's pronouncements on a given topic
when they are solid and patristic, and not be obliged thereby to agree
with everything he ever said or did.
We did try to present this issue here with some discretion.


>
> And they also ascribe words (some of them considered unprintable in
> Russian, words Vl.
> Averky would never have used!) to Vl. Averky, without any evidence.

Once again, that was not us.

>
> 3) As for the circumstances surrounding these letters to Vl. Averky,
> it has recently been
> revealed that two seminarians were the source of all the rumors and
> "concern".

Not so, Metropolitan Philaret said he was hearing about it from a
senior ROCA hierarch and many other sources, but had **not yet heard
from the Greeks**.

> The seminarians (as one of them described, not long ago) complained
> to Archbishop
> Anthony of San Francisco, and probably also to Fr. George.

Later some seminarians did come to Holy Transfiguration Monastery and
they were very disturbed about this happening and upset at Vladyka
Averky. An eyewitness, one of the fathers here, recalls that Fr.
Panteleimon told the seminarians: "Don't judge the man by one incident;
consider his whole life. We all know the man: he is an Orthodox
hierarch. He just made a mistake this one time. Calm down."

>
> Metropolitan Philaret (unlike Metropolitan Laurus) was very difficult
> to contact directly.

And yet, note that in the letter Metropolitan Philaret states that, for
some inexplicable reason, Bishop Laurus refused to carry out the
mission assigned to him by the Metropolitan and to find out what was
going on.

>
>I can testify to that myself, based on experience.
>

Here we go again...

>
> 4) Fr. Nicholas made the comment that "Metropolitan Philaret was also
> told that you bowed
> down".
>
> I only looked quickly over all the stuff posted by Fr. Nicholas, but
> I did not find a reference
> to that in the letters

Fr. John, are you and I reading the same letter?
The English traslation was furnished:
http://www.homb.org/Archived_Docs_HTM/M.PhilaretAverkyEng.pdf

wherein we read the Metropolitan saying:

"According to the categorical testimony of eyewitnesses, our
seminarians bowed down
(albeit, not to the ground) at the 'elevation' of the Copts. But then,
it cannot be denied
that such bowing is an expression of religious reverence, that is, a
certain participation in
what has been performed: namely, in the supplications of heretics."

>
>and the verbose commentary.
>

Well, the commentary was by the editors of "Vertograd-Inform"; I was
just the poor translator, so please don't shoot the messenger.


> However, I wonder whom he meant by "you"?
>
> Me, personally? Or was this a "you-plural", referring to unspecified
> people that attended
> the Coptic Liturgy?

Well, yes: "you" in the plural, because you [singular ] had said that
you had attended.

Perhaps simply "seminarians" would have been better. Sorry for the
confusion. It's a shame modern English doesn't still use the
"thou/you" distinction!


>
> I don't remember anything about "bowing down", although this was over
> 35 years ago.
>
> But I suppose it's also typical of Orthodoxy, that we have people who
> watch what others do
> in church, and criticize them.
>
> 5) In the end, it must have taken Fr. Nicholas hours to produce so
> much verbiage,

Well, thank you for your concern for me, but since I translated it in
1998, all I had to do now was cut and paste. Computers are marvelous
aids at times!


>but I
> don't see what it achieves.

So skip "Vertograd-Inform"'s editorializing and concentrate on the
actual texts of Metropolitan Philaret's letters. There is much there to
instruct and edify.

Fr. Nicholas
HTM
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