Настоятель

A WORD OF WELCOME

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Автор: Archpriest Stefan Weerts

Dear brother /sister in Christ ,

You decided to visit the website of our Parish. Be welcome and let me explain you a few things. Our parish was founded around 1926-1927 by Russian fugitives and immigrants, exiled from their homeland, that choose to stay with the Council of the Russian Orthodox Bishops outside of Russia and not to submit to metropolitan Sergius (Stragorodsky) of Nizhny Novgorod that, just released from soviet-imprisonment, issued on the 29th of June 1927 his regrettable “Declaration” of absolute loyalty of the Russian Orthodox Church to Soviet Russia and to it's governments interests.

Since the interests of the Soviet Government where already then known to be clearly the annihilation of the Church and the uprooting of any believe in God, the founders of our parish choose not to follow bishops and clerics, neither to socialize with people that declared loyalty to these interests. Many notable and respected bishops in Soviet prisons, as in exile likewise, broke communion with metropolitan Sergius due to his compromising stand, defended later on by the motivation to “save” the Church. Later events, that leaded in the end to his position as Patriarch of Moscow, were considered by many (in- and outside of the then Soviet-union) as an anti-canonical usurpation, supported and facilitated by Stalin (1).

The founders of our parish were simple believers, together with impoverished members of the aristocracy and intelligentsia of imperial Russia, firmly rooted in their orthodox beliefs.  The priests and rectors of those days were well-educated known personalities occupying important positions in the Church before the civil-war and the following soviet revolution.  Together they founded our parish firmly on the foundation of the orthodox faith that we confess until now.  The founders of our parish as well as the Council of the Russian Orthodox Bishops outside Russia realized, already in those early days, that the partition of the Russian Orthodox Church in a free “Church outside Russia” on one hand and a “Soviet-enslaved” Church in the Soviet Union on the other, could not last forever. They mentioned the conditions for the limitation of this administrative separation in the Constitution of the Russian Orthodox Church outside Russia (2).

In 2000 AD, the Council of the Moscow patriarchate, re-founded on the 8th of September 1943 by metropolitan Sergius, recognized the sanctity of the imperial family and all other believers that were crowned by martyrdom, through the hand of those commanded by the Soviet government to whom metropolitan Sergius, his hierarchy and his clergy had declared loyalty.

By 2007 AD Russia had already for quite some time recovered it's name again and the Social Concept of the Moscow Patriarchate (published in 2000 AD) gave reason to believe that dissociation was expressed from the compromising servitude of the Church towards State-ideology incorporated so strongly by metropolitan Sergius (Stragorodsky) and his successors that it even was named after him;”Sergianism”.  In June 2005 a declaration was signed between representatives of the Moscow Patriarchate and of the Russian Orthodox Church outside Russia condemning the so-called branch theory of the ecumenicist philosophy(3). Trough the possibilities of more intense and free contacts a general awareness was developing indicating that there exists in fact no difference in faith between our Church outside Russia and the truly orthodox monks and believers of the Russian land.

A majority of the Council of the Russian Orthodox Bishops outside Russia decided that the time had come for a mutual recognition of both parts of the Russian Orthodox Church and that the necessary general conditions for such a unity in communion were established from 2000 AD on.   On the 17th of Mai 2007 AD this communion was solemnly established in Moscow, and our parish followed it's bishop in this communion, celebrating a joint moleben or “Te Deum” in our parish-church on the 10th of June 2007.

On this Site you will find, next to general information concerning our parish, also several articles of general interest that not necessary always, express the exact opinion of our parish. The aim of every parish and priest is to bring believers closer to God, and by this closer to each other, like tracing the rays of the sun towards the light.  Next to “churching” the believers by encouraging them to pray to read and to learn, they have to be warned, in the Apostolic Tradition of the Church, against teachings and philosophies leading them into error and damaging their souls.  Our parish has a tradition of free speech, something to get still used to for some churchmen in Russia. Many articles on our Website, although expressing first of all the opinion of their authors, were esteemed useful, informative or even necessary, without any necessity to comply totally with our views.  Some articles are not at all in favour of recent developments in our united Russian Orthodox Church and critical of persons incorporating these developments.  Reasons and argumentation are given in such cases.

In order to maintain organizational and administrative unity in the Church, the unity of Faith is a condition and an exigency.  Those that undertake efforts to condition the believers to philosophies, conceptions and views that are strange to the One Apostolic Church, not according to her Tradition and in contradiction with her nature, and for this reason also with the tradition given to us by the founders of our parish, bear a great responsibility for any endangerment to  the Church’s organizational and administrative unity.   Unity is of primary importance to the Church, that’s the main reason why our parish followed it's bishop toward establishing communion within the Church.

Unity looses it's reason to exist if religion looses it's faith.


Due to it's conciliar and apostolic structure, the Orthodox Church has no Pope, and no hierarchy that could claim any infallibility.  History reminds us next to saintly hierarchs acting by the grace of the Holy Spirit, such as  patriarch Tichon and many  hieromartyrs of comparative recent times, also of  bishops being deprived of this grace.  The icons and frescoes depicting the ladder of saint John Climacos show us a number of clerics and bishops falling down from this ladder together with other sinners.   The only infallible Authority in our Church is our common faith, Holy Scripture, the seven Ecumenical Councils and the saints expressing themselves in the same spirit as these Councils.   Authority in the Church is due to obedience to the Lord, His Gospel and the Councils inspired by His Holy Spirit and the Saints of the Church.  The sole reason for authority in the Church is to serve the salvation of souls, not the joy of mastering lives and convictions, or the desire to exercise power over others.  Everybody in the Church is due to obey to those allowed by the Lord into positions in His Church and indeed to each-other, because of Christ, not because of a title, not because of power, not because of being a person of authority in itself.  That is why, according to the Gospel, the Lord and his Apostles spoke with authority amongst the people in opposition to the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law eager to impose their authority. In the experience of the Church authority and obedience end were heresies and errors start, were the Salt looses it’s taste, Light it’s radiance and were indeed Religion looses it’s faith.

The Symbol and Guarantor of our orthodox unity is not a man, be it patriarch or bishop, but our common faith and our submission, for Christ's sake, to those that uphold the orthodox faith in obedience to the Church.  Keeping and guarding this faith strengthens our unity, subjecting it to adaptations and reformations “in the spirit of the time” will cause the falling away from this unity.  For this reason reformers will find themselves in the end in the company of Arius, Nestorius and many others who tried to “reform” and “adapt” the Church to the opportunistic ways of the world.  The words of the holy confessor, patriarch Tichon, cited on our main page, remember us of our duty and responsibility and indirectly of our need to pray, learn, read and to engage ourselves in the life of the Church. The Church of Christ is not the exclusive realm of “specialized clerics”, but our common means towards salvation.  That is why the Life of the Church has to become our life, why our life has to become part of Church-life, and why our involvement  can't be mainly consumptive restricting ourselves to attending services, reserving “moleben” and “panichida”, burning candles, consuming prosfora's and holy water.  We hope to encourage you toward praying, toward gathering information, toward studying, reading and toward a growing involvement in matters concerning your soul’s salvation.

Archpriest Stefan Weerts

Rector of the Russian Orthodox Parish of the Resurrection

Diocese of Geneva and Western-Europe

42 Rue des Drapiers

B-1050 Brussels

EU Belgium

Phone/ Fax +3225142339

e-mail : Этот e-mail адрес защищен от спам-ботов, для его просмотра у Вас должен быть включен Javascript




(1)   The Canonical and legal position of the Moscow Patriarchate (Russian Ecclesiastical Mission in

Jerusalem (Jerusalem 1971 54p.) Archpriest Gregori GRABBE

(2)      The Russian Orthodox Church Abroad is an indissoluble part of the Russian Orthodox Church, and for the time until the extermination in Russia of the atheist government, is self-governing on conciliar principles in accordance with the resolution of the Patriarch, the Most Holy Synod, and the Highest Church Council [Sobor] of the Russian Church dated 7/20 November, 1920, No. 362.(REGULATIONS  of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (Confirmed by the Council of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia on 26 September/9 October; 27 September/10 October; 28 September/11 November; 29 September/12 October; and 2/15 October 1956; and by a decision of the Council dated 5/18 June, 1964.) THE TEMPORARY (PROVISIONAL) STATUTES OF THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH OUTSIDE OF RUSSIA (Confirmed by the General Council of Bishops 9/22 &  11/24, September 1936.) http://russianorthodoxchurch.ws/synod/engdocuments/enov_polozhenie1936.html , or in print.

 (3)        The Joint Work of the Commissions  of the Moscow Patriarchate and the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of   Russia On the Attitude of the Orthodox Church towards the Heterodox and towards Inter-Confessional Organizations. Documents published and obtainable on the official Website of ROCOR. http://russianorthodoxchurch.ws/synod/engdocuments/enmat_aboutwork.html or in print.

 

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