Friday, August 17, 2012

What has happened in Moscow today

Pussy Riot is sentenced, and the New York Times reports it thus.  Now, it is obvious that the Orthodox Church is not perfect, and I agree with Fr. Victor Potapov that the Church should expend its effort in making their sentences more lenient and more focused on their moral rehabilitation.  Fr. Victor suggests an appropriate and Christian response to this vile occurrence.  As I am sitting in my office, the Diane Rehm show international hour is covering this as a suppression of dissent in Russia, and part of a worrying trend there in the Putinization of Russia.

What baffles me is that people are surprised or shocked by this.  Russia's government has had an extensive history in meddling with the Orthodox Church, from before Peter the Great ruled.  Peter the Great single-handedly subsumed the Church to the state, creating the ruling synod of the church following the death of Patriarch Adrian in 1700.  Peter the Great's church reforms and their effects discussed in Wikipedia.  In many ways, the Russian Orthodox Church has never recovered from Peter the Great.

What is occurring in Russia is wholly foreign to the American experience.  I'm a first-generation America, whose parents each entered the US at the age of 7.  My entire experience of Orthodoxy has been in America (barring a few services in Scotland in 1996-7).  It's at times like these that I am convinced that the Russian Revolution is the best thing that ever happened to my family, because we ended up in America, where we are free to live a Christian life, uncoerced by the state to a false orthodoxy.

1 comment:

  1. The Western media is exhibiting its usual bias.