Ethnic & National Identities Define ‘Christianity’ in Ukraine & Russia

posted by Dr. Jael Ever @ 11:19 AM
May 21, 2014

Ukraine-church    As he attempts to re-shape Crimea and Ukraine in his image and likeness, Russian President Vladimir Putin also brings a split between those churches serving populations in Christian service and those serving Putin’s political will.

Voice of America (VOA) reporter, Michael Eckels, writes:  “The current conflict in Ukraine may be causing a schism between the Russian Orthodox Church and its Ukranian affiliate. The Russian Orthodox Church, which has close ties to the Russian government, would not comment for this report.”

Much of the contention started during this year’s Easter holidays.  While Ukrainian Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches called for a cease-fire from Good Friday to Easter Sunday, Russian Orthodox pastors were silent on the issue.

In ‘Ukrainian Crisis May Split Russian Orthodox Church,’ Sophia Kishkovsky quotes Andrei Zubov, a historian and expert in church-state relations:
“. . . if events spill into war, a split between the Moscow and Kiev churches is inevitable.  Putin has started an uncontrollable process.  Calls have been growing for an independent church that would unite all of Ukraine’s Orthodox churches.”

However, Jamie Dettmer, another VOA reporter, reveals that background on the potential church split goes back to the fall of the Soviet Union: “The politics of revolution and the conflict between Russia and Ukraine have widened a religious rupture that first emerged during the collapse of the Soviet Union, when Primate Filaret broke with the Russian Orthodox Church. He argued that an independent Ukraine deserved a national church truly independent of Moscow.”

Dettmer adds that while the Moscow Patriarchate has more parishes than the Kyiv Patriarchate in Ukraine, many Ukranian worshippers are switching loyalty to the Ukrainian church because their pastors were most supportive during Maidan protests which saw the ouster of former Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovych.

Cultural historian Vladyslava Osmak explains: “Because they greatly helped the participants of Maidan campaign, [for] those people who needed protection and shelter, priests of this church were always together with people on barricades praying and fighting with them.”slide_334675_3356249_free

The transparent problem is that the head of the Russian Orthodox Church is a fellow-colleague of Putin’s from his days in the murderous KGB secret service, which was well-known for persecuting Christian leaders in Russia.

In ‘Orthodox Church Unholy Alliance with Putin ,’Adrian Blomfield, reporting for telegraph.co.uk, insists that Alexei II, head patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church, is, like Putin, an ex-KGB agent:  “Although he has never confirmed it, the patriarch, like the president, is a former KGB agent codenamed Drozdov, according to Soviet archives opened to experts in the 1990s.”

Wikipedia agrees:  “Patriarch Alexy II was alleged to have been a KGB agent according to multiple sources,including Gleb Yakunin and Yevgenia Albats, who both were given access to the KGB archives.”

Indeed Bible Historical books stress God’s love as the binding force between Christians: “There is one body, and One Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism,  One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all (Ephesians 4: 3 – 6).”

But such unity is under the assumption that God’s love is exchanged among genuine Christians, not deceiving political appointees. Such is one mission of anti-Christ: to appear to be like Christ, while in fact, being exactly the opposite!

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