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The Slavic Nations' Search for God. Moscow - Third Rome

benjohn146

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Good day to all.

I've just watch this documentary about the Russian Orthodox Church: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-KF5mBaJec

Anyone did seen it too? I have the impression that this movie has been made to promote Russian Protestantism. When i read "The Orthodox Church" by Bishop Ware it didnt seem as "hardcore" as depicted in the movie (or maybe its the way that Bishop Ware worded it that left me with this impression). Neither he wrote about the Josephite and the Judaizer.

I've notice too that it has been produced by Ugol Ministries, i tried to find more about them but all their material is in russian. Someone know them?
 

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Bishop Kallistos writes for a general audience and doesn't include every last detail. That said, he does mention the controversy between the Non-Possessers (led by St. Nil Sorsky) and the Josephites; part of this controversy had to do with the persecution by the state of heretics (St. Nil was against it, St. Joseph was for it).
 

benjohn146

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You are right and i am wrong, i re-read that part of his book after I've wrote my post and it does speak about it. My apologies.

But as for the "Orthodox Inquisition" that was depicted in the movie, was there persecution on the Non-Possessors as well or they are the Judaizer mentioned in the movie?

The movie left me with an aftertaste of schism inside the Russian Church, it has even been mentioned that the Monks who went out of their monasteries to preach were the first Russian Evangelical. They ended up being martyred. Are these the Non-Possessors as well or it is something else like, again, the so-called Judaizer?
 

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The Non-Possessors suffered state persecution but were not treated as heretics like the Judaizers. I wouldn't say the Non-Possessor/Josephite conflict constituted a schism (both remained within the same church, men from both movements are canonized saints) but there is certainly a tension between them which remains relevant to this day.

Evangelical protestants have little in common with Saint Nil Sorsky and the non-possessors.
 

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benjohn146 said:
Anyone did seen it too? I have the impression that this movie has been made to promote Russian Protestantism. When i read "The Orthodox Church" by Bishop Ware it didnt seem as "hardcore" as depicted in the movie (or maybe its the way that Bishop Ware worded it that left me with this impression). Neither he wrote about the Josephite and the Judaizer.

I've notice too that it has been produced by Ugol Ministries, i tried to find more about them but all their material is in russian. Someone know them?
Its website clearly says there are some kind of Eangelical mission.

benjohn146 said:
But as for the "Orthodox Inquisition" that was depicted in the movie, was there persecution on the Non-Possessors as well or they are the Judaizer mentioned in the movie?
Dunno about that, but there certainly were persecutions of Old Believers and Greek Catholics.

benjohn146 said:
The movie left me with an aftertaste of schism inside the Russian Church, it has even been mentioned that the Monks who went out of their monasteries to preach were the first Russian Evangelical. They ended up being martyred. Are these the Non-Possessors as well or it is something else like, again, the so-called Judaizer?
I think he could mean (without watching it tbh) Old Believers who (at least partly) adopted some teachings that are alien to Orthodoxy and close to Protestantism. Trying to match a genealogical connection between them and modern Western Protestants would be a stretch.
 

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The Old Believers are pretty firmly in the Josephite mold.
 

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Just watched this one as well.
Seemed biased against the Russian Church and orthodoxy for that matter.
 

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Has anyone drawn comparisons between the Josephite/Non-Possessor controversy and events in the West? I could imagine the Non-Possessors being compared to Franciscans, for instance (though the parallels are not entirely exact).
 

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benjohn146 said:
I've just watch this documentary about the Russian Orthodox Church: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-KF5mBaJec

Anyone did seen it too? I have the impression that this movie has been made to promote Russian Protestantism.
I think it's just helpful if you want to understand Evangelicals' viewpoints on Russian Orthodoxy.

It says in the movie description that it is an "Evangelical" movie. Its goal is to look for Evangelical strains in Christianity in Russia's past.

"Evangelicals" are a movement of Calvinist Protestantism that started in the 16th century with John Calvin. The big problem for this movie's thesis of an Evangelical strain in Orthodoxy is that Christians did not accept Calvinism in the period leading up to the beginning of Calvinism. So you can't find a real Evangelical strain in Christianity before 1500.

John Calvin tried to solve this problem by picking quotes out of the Church fathers and claiming that the Church fathers like St Augustine intentionally taught his own views like Predestination and the communion bread being only a symbol of Jesus' body in its composition.
 

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Minnesotan said:
Has anyone drawn comparisons between the Josephite/Non-Possessor controversy and events in the West? I could imagine the Non-Possessors being compared to Franciscans, for instance (though the parallels are not entirely exact).
Saint Maximus the Greek lived in Florence a while, joined the Dominican order, and was a big admirer of Savonarola. I imagine he definitely saw parallels to the Non-Possessors once he was in Russia.
 

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An article on Saint Maximus the Greek which covers a bit of his experience in Italy: http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2013/01/maximus-greeks-impact-on-russia.html

I found the last paragraph powerful:

Other scholars have pointed out that there is something symbolic in Maxim’s Russian destiny. The rejection of a man who, in his spiritual life and in the depth of his scholarship, typified what was best in the culture of post-Byzantine Greece, marked in a real sense Russia’s turning away from her ancient heritage of Byzantium(55). It is true that, at the very time he was in Muscovy, the Russian churchmen were developing their egregious theory of Moscow the Third Rome, which ascribed to their capital city the role of focus of universal power and centre of the true Orthodox faith. But Maxim was too much of a Byzantine at heart to be taken in by this meretricious substitute of the Byzantine oecumenical idea, propounded in Russia by his sworn adversaries, the «Josephian» monks. He could not fail to observe how, in sixteenth-century Russia, through the narrowing of spiritual horizons and in the wake of the Realpolitik of its rulers, the Christian universalism of Byzantium was being transformed and distorted within the narrower framework of Muscovite nationalism. Perhaps this is why Maxim’s vision of the Christian commonwealth is, in the last resort, pessimistic. In a passage of pointed allegory he tells us that, toiling one day down a hard and wearisome road, he encountered a woman dressed in black, sitting by the roadside and weaping disconsolately. Around her were wild animals, lions and bears, wolves and foxes. «The road», she said to Maxim, «is desolate and prefigures this last and accursed age». Her name, she told him, was Vasileia.
 

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Isn't it a little far-fetched that the strigolniki were considered "protestants"?
Furthermore, how big was the persecution against them and the judaizers?
 

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For all the talk about third Rome I've yet to encounter anyone who would promote it. Are there really anyone who would actually believe in it?
 

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Alpo said:
For all the talk about third Rome I've yet to encounter anyone who would promote it. Are there really anyone who would actually believe in it?
Duginists?
 

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The Third Rome theory is assumed for the Old Believers, particularly those with a more apocalyptic attitude. It is also implicit in the title "Tsar" for the Muscovite emperors, and I'm sure many contemporary Tsarists subscribe to the Third Rome theory. 
 

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Alpo said:
For all the talk about third Rome I've yet to encounter anyone who would promote it. Are there really anyone who would actually believe in it?
I don't really believe in the Third Rome idea as doctrine.  But I could understand how, immediately after the fall of Constantinople, some Russians might have believed in it as a private opinion.  I think if I had been Russian and had been living in Moscow at the time, I could have been tempted to believe in it.

However, I don't think it has any real claim today.  I think of it as a Russian version of American "Manifest Destiny."
 

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Some evangelicals with the objective of bypass the problem of eclesiology invented this theory of a secret church that existed in whole world and was the true church that was persecuted by the official romanized church, so, some proponents of that theory look for every case of christian sects that depart from hierarchy or from official doctrines.
 
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