This post first appeared on Truth to Power
The author is a well-known academic historian of Russia and Ukraine, which he approaches from a Christian (Russian Orthodox) and nationalist perspective, arguing that nationalism and Christian Orthodoxy are inseparable. He also writes widely on current affairs. Rare for contemporary Western historians of Russia, he sources original materials in Russian, pulling back the veil on much misunderstanding, ranging from modern history back to Russia’s very beginnings in the Middle Ages.
His latest book, Ukrainian Nationalism (2019), (Amazon), is the definitive treatment of this topic and is essential reading to understand the current political turmoil in Ukraine. It argues that Ukrainian nationalism is real and legitimate, but needn't be Anti-Russian, and that Russia and Ukraine are in fact natural allies. Here is his article on Russia Insider explaining some of the ideas in the book. There is no other scholar writing today about Russia and the Ukraine with this extraordinary command of historical detail and meaning. Johnson is a national treasure, and his works are highly recommended. For a fascinating audio podcast discussion of the book by Johnson and Andrew Carrington Hitchcock, see here.
If you are so inclined, please rate the book on Amazon, as this increases sales greatly. It is a great way to support the author and help spread the ideas in the book. If Amazon blocks you from leaving a review, please let us know in the comments section below, and/or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
National values are the honor and glory of every people and therefore find a place in God's Eternal Kingdom. We never forget the words of Scripture that the kings of the earth bring in God's heavenly city, the glory and the honor and glory of their Nations (Rev. 21,24,26). Thus, the establishment of this Church is to strengthen our faith in your historic mission.
You built a house of the Lord of Heaven. Yes, He will send His blessing on your project of nation-building, the creation of your popular, national Empire.
May God strengthen You and the German people in the struggle with hostile forces, wishing death to our people. Yes, He will give You, Your country, Your Government and the host of health, prosperity, and good in everything to ensure many years
(The Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (ROCOR), Metropolitan Anastassy (Gribanovsky).
Nationalism is the quintessential Christian social form. It has to be both social and economic in its communitarian structure. It is denied today by almost all Orthodox churches, though few have anyone intellectually or morally capable of even defining the term.
It is very rare that those attacking nationalism bother to define it at all. Usually, the alienated American, attempting this sort of argument for the first time, simply invents a definition that encapsulates everything they are supposed to hate. They then use this definition to attack those historically called “nationalists.” Given that Olympian level of intellectual disputation, the term should be defined in a useful way here. This writer defined it in a 2003 article from the Occidental Quarterly:
Ethnonationalism centers around cultural self-determination taking its normative force in the cultural forms which nurture the people under its care, making them truly individuals.
Without culture and its institutionalization, individuals become mere embodied egos demanding satisfaction of their impulses; civilization becomes impossible and eventually unravels.
Nationalism, then, takes the communal culture of a people. . . as normative in the sense that it not only offers a coherent and civilized moral code (one necessary for properly social behavior within the community), but also contains the imperative of an institutionalized tradition. . .1
This definition is the one used by nationalist movements worldwide. There is no distinction between the ethnic group and the cultural community. Self-determination is the main moral focus, but it exists for the proper development of tradition. Tradition is a manifestation of natural law, or the functional aspects of human community.
All national communities without exception contain specific functions that must function together for anything to get done. Examples include agriculture, aesthetics, legal, education, manufacturing and other similar enterprises that must not only function according to internal standards recognizes by all practitioners, but must be coherently arranged by the political art. The ethno-nation is the essence of this arrangement in that it is ultimately linguistic.
It is common for wishful thinkers to argue that the quote from Metropolitan Anastassy above communicated only a desire to defeat Stalin rather than the victory of Germany, though this is a bizarre and incoherent argument. Hitler lost the war, and Stalin's judges at Nuremberg had a great incentive to cover over their crimes by exaggerating their recently defeated German nation. The above is an official statement of the Synod Abroad and was the clear voice of all enslaved Slavic nations.
It is often remarked that Metropolitan Sergius' famed Declaration to the Soviet Union is a prime example of the decay of the Russian church and its state of fear under the Bolsheviks. Few however, are willing to recognize that the whole synod of the church recognized the Masonic Provisional government. While Sergius might be excused due to fear for his and others' lives, there is no excuse for the March 1917 statement of the whole Russian synod:
[The royal state] is ended by the will of God. Russia has embarked on a new state of life. . . put your trust in the Provisional Government; collectively and individually make an effort: works and deeds, prayer and obedience to facilitate its great work of bringing Russia to new beginnings of life and to bring the general public mind of Russia to the path of true freedom, happiness and glory. The Holy Synod earnestly pray Almighty God, bless He works and initiatives of the Russian Provisional Government. . .2
Why is this Declaration never mentioned? It is largely because the rot in the Russian church existed long before Sergius. Few faced a slow death in prison like Sergius did. Few were forced to sign a document as a means to save hundreds of priests who were slated to be killed if you refused. Those daring to condemn Sergius ignore the far less excusable absurdity of the Synod of 1917.
The boot-licking, pseudo-intellectual absurdity of the above quote is dripping with mystification and misdirection. “Russia” has taken this step, as if there was a mass referendum that brought the Masonic state to power. The synod members were aware that the “press” of the day supported the system and heaped the most ignorant slander on royalists and nationalists. No “civic discussion” had ever taken place in Russia under this predominantly Jewish media establishment that had brought millions to believe Rasputin was having sex with the Empress.
The above statement is far worse than Sergius.' the above is an utter capitulation of the church's mission to the state. Why is this not condemned? It clearly states that the state, a Masonic one, will bring Russia to true freedom. Russian nationalists need to take off their blinders and stop worrying what will be said of them. The author does not for a moment believe that the Masonic state will bring Russia to glory, only that the bishops get to keep the tiny piece of the pie the Petrine state had left for them.
The misunderstood and often abused notion of the “symphonic polity” must be derived from the clear awareness of the sinfulness of human nature. This damaged nature needs correction both in its inner thought and will as well as its outer manifestation in policy. God, the church, the family, and all other manifestations of natural law are, taken together, the logos of the Orthodox state. Yet here, it is the Masonic press and its modern government that will bring Russia to freedom. Self-interest is what brought the Jews to such irresponsible power in Russia even under the monarchy while it blinded the population to its perfidy.
Thus, the Orthodox monarchy is the only state structure that brings the human will beyond earthly tasks and self-interest. It alone sees man as part of the logos, the natural order and its law, since it is based on the extended family. The state can only be judged by the criterion of logos: the presence of God holding all the material forces of the cosmos together into an organic order. For man, the most obvious manifestation is in the family. The overly dramatic display of fake intellectualism manifest in the quotation above is a deep and obnoxious sign of the decay of the Orthodox consciousness in the post-Petrine era.
The Petrine state was fully manifested in the Bolsheviks. What Peter tried to do in fits and starts the Bolshevik Jews did systematically. While the USSR might be seen as a punishment for Russia, it was also a means of purification. The rise of Hitler was the first possibility of liberation in Russian life in a generation. As the Masonic democracies the church had dedicated itself to were on the verge of total collapse, Hitler rebuilt Germany without the “assistance” of the global banking cartel and turned its sights on Stalin's westernized empire.
In February 1938, the Synod Abroad Seraphim (Lyade) was appointed Metropolitan of Berlin and Germany with the title “the Fuhrer of all the Orthodox in the Third Reich and all Territories under its Control.” Bishop Seraphim was born Carl Georg Albert Lyade in Leipzig, Germany to a Protestant family in 1883. His family moved to Russia where Carl converted to Orthodoxy and married a Russian Orthodox woman.
Metropolitan Anastassy called Hitler the “leader of the global struggle for peace and justice.” Further, that Hitler “believes the Russian people, groaning under the yoke of slavery and waiting of their liberator, constantly waits for God to send a deliverer.” Having taken a demoralized, starving and humiliated Germany in 1929 and by 1935, created a first class war machine and prosperous population is a feat unparalleled in history. The Synod Abroad had every good reason to think the way they did. It was only the appointment of the SS under Erich Koch as Reichkommisar of Ukraine and the imposition of puerile racial theories against the Slavs that Hitler alienated the Ukrainians and thus, lost the war.3
In March 1936 the German Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church received the status of a “public law corporation” (which had already been grated to Catholics and Protestants). It is around this diocese that the entire Russian church organization in the Reich was centered. The Church Abroad itself did not seek this, but it was the preferred method of state organization for religious bodies in a world crisis.
The Synod Abroad had officially condemned the absurdities of liberal democracy. On 15/28 August 1932 Anthony Khrapovitsky described it as a form of Freemasonry. It is:
“an organization to contend with God and Christianity, the Church, with the national public, especially with the Christian state. In this international organization the first place of power belongs to the Jews, inherent to theomachy and the death of God in the west.”
In moral chaos, power can only be taken by force. This same chaos also rewards groups that are both the most devious and importantly, the most cohesive.
According to KGB archives opened only under Yeltsin, the Stalinist Jews murdered over 106,000 priests from 1937 to 1938 alone. The church had been reduced to nothing, with four frightened bishops and a few parishes opened only for showing foreign visitors. This is what Sergius called the “revival” of the Russian church.4 Stalin's persecution of the church was a vicious as his predecessors as well as his successors.5
The National Socialist party in Berlin considered the Synod Abroad the true church of Russia, at least from a political standpoint. The Germans were convinced that the Evlogian parishes, that is, the synod of the Russian Church in Western Europe, were under pressure from the west to adopt anti-German policies.6 Since this group was under the Masonic Ecumenical Patriarchate in Turkey, there is good reason to believe this is the case. Given this, all pre-revolutionary Russian church property in Germany was granted to the new Diocese.
Berlin sought a church that was anti-communist and nationalist as opposed to the leftist chaos of the French synod and the Anglophile liberalism of the Masonic Phanar. During the Five Year Plan ending in 1937, the church came under its harshest persecution under Stalin. Hitler used this persecution to mobilize the Russians and Orthodox around him. Stalin's clumsy attempt to recreate a “Potemkin village” church in 1944 fooled only the intellectuals. The irony of Stalin's attempt to pose as the defender of “Christian civilization” was equaled only by the west's immediate acceptance of it. That propaganda continues to have adherents in the west today. In most of Europe, denying it often ends in a prison term.7
In 1939, the Synod of the ROCOR issued its Epistle to the Faithful Suffering in the Homeland. It reads in part:
Romanticism, idealism and materialism is mixed with a faith in scientific rationality, utopian revolutionary ideology and an adaptation to the existing conditions of political and social life, with a view to the gradual improvement in the usual evolutionary way, [will lead to] peace and goodwill among men and [the end of] class anger and hatred. . .
This is Marxism. It took a lot of time for these contradictions to be revealed clearly, and now its worldview is undoubtedly going through a deep crisis. From among staunch and influential Socialists [we hear] voices condemning it as a totalitarian world view that is based on a purely materialistic basis and breathes the spirit of malice and destruction. . .
The Bolsheviks themselves, taught by his bitter experience, realize that the pathos of destruction is not the pathos of creation. Professing allegiance to the precepts of Marx in theory, they constantly deviate from it in practice, forced to make concessions to the laws of nature, the demands of life and eternal demands of the human spirit.8
This author has made the claim again and again that Soviet Marxism has nothing to do with labor, ethics, production or philosophy. It was merely a means to transfer the wealth of labor to the overwhelmingly Jewish members of the Communist Party.9 Since the party planned all economic production from Moscow, it implies that the party therefore owned all productive capital. What resulted was the most exploitative economic system ever devised, and it was largely accomplished with investment capital from the west.
After the invasion of Poland, Orthodox church property that had been seized from the Ukrainian jurisdiction of Metropolitan Dionysus was restored. The Polish state, long hostile to the Autocephalous Ukrainian Church there, nationalized much of its property. The National Socialist state also financed in part the Academic Theological Institute in Berlin, which was to replace the liberal “Evlogian” Institute in Paris, financed by the YMCA. The YMCA, as well as the World Council of Churches, was financed through the Rockefeller family. The Polish Orthodox seminaries were reopened and Archbishop Seraphim (Lyade), Bishop Basil (Pavlovsky), philosopher NS Arsenyev, professor Doroshenko and prof. Archimandrite Gregor (Peradze) all came from the German Orthodox institutions. A veritable Orthodox Renaissance was occurring in and around the Third Reich.10 Today, that cannot be spoken of in the west.
Hitler approved the construction of a large Orthodox cathedral in Berlin specifically as a tribute to the Russian struggle for survival. It became the rallying point of the entire Orthodox world against Moscow and the tiny church that Stalin had created. The error of Himmler's Lebensraum and the materialist atheism under which it was theorized destroyed this alliance. Germany gained nothing from this nonsense ideology.
Upset by all this, and afraid of losing control of all his parishes in Germany, Metropolitan Evlogius wrote to the German government in 1937:
The German government considers it inappropriate to keep the two jurisdictions of the Russian Orthodox Church in Germany, because, as experience shows cases in the Lutheran Church, one of the warring factions Church always speaks against the government. I strongly disagree with this idea. Neither I personally nor my priesthood, as well as members of the parishes entrusted to me, ever incurred the suspicion of disloyalty to the government of the Reich.
On the contrary, our clergy always display a full reverence and devotion to the government of the country that has welcomed our Russian refugees; in the spirit of respect and devotion to our clergy and their congregations brings, I along with all my clergy, seek to guard our Christian flock from all the false teachings of freemasonry, theosophy, communism and all other doctrines contrary to the teachings of the Church. . .
As far as our parishes, located in Germany, then in all our churches prayers are offered to the government of this country and of the German people. In 1936, the diocesan assembly of clergy and lay people from 14 countries had expressed gratitude to the Government of the German Reich for the favorable attitude to our parishes and their protection.
Finally, if the government of the German Reich wishes to use the Russian Orthodox Church as a weapon to cooperate in the fight against the atheism and Soviet Communism, as well as all other movements working against the church, the Reich Government will have our full agreement and backing.11
This quote has rarely found its way into the English language. It proves that Hitler's counter-revolution was of immense popularity, so much so that this metropolitan was forced to provide lip-service to it. At a minimum, Hitler was the only force capable of defeating or seriously weakening the Stalinist behemoth. At most, National Socialism, stripped of its German imperial pretensions, was the closest thing to the Old Testament prophets modern man can devise.
Had Hitler understood the potential of this alliance and the widespread view of his work as the liberation from Marxism and western liberalism, the world would look quite different today as the Soviet Union would have ceased to exist. The British government, in fomenting a coup in Yugoslavia in 1941, forced Hitler's invasion of the country. The nationalist government under the monarchy had grown prosperous since it had attached itself to the German economy rather than the bankrupt west.
In creating this coup, the English deliberately placed Belgrade in German crosshairs, since it was fully understood that Hitler would be forced to pacify the area before launching Barbarossa. The resulting delay meant that Hitler had fewer warm weeks to trounce Stalin's forces, which played a great role in his eventual defeat. Hitler's early victories in the USSR were so overwhelming and so rapid – entire armies being surrounded – that it can only be attributed to the widespread refusal of Russians to die for Stalin. However, Hitler's need to control Yugoslavia is an important cause in Hitler's defeat as it delayed the invasion.
Lyade stated in his famed message to Germany after Operation Barbarossa began in 1941:
The punishing sword of divine justice fell on the Soviet regime, on her minions and adherents.
The leader of the German people called his victorious army towards a new struggle, to the struggle which we have long coveted: the consecrated war against the godless torturers and rapists, who have entrenched themselves in Moscow Kremlin and to truly began a new crusade for the salvation of European people from the forces of Antichrist. . . .
Therefore, as the first hierarch of the Orthodox Church in Germany, I appeal to you. Be active in this new crusade, for it is your fight.12
There would be no USSR without the west. It is very possible that no one in the US State Department knew what a “Bolshevik” was. Very few Americans knew much about Russian history, and such programs in Russian history, literature or language existed at only a few Ivy League universities. All the US knew was that Russia was strong, stable and secular. Profits could be easily made, and hence, the USSR only became an enemy when she acted as if she would cut the US out of any trade deals.13
Archbishop Seraphim cared little for jurisdictional boundaries. He made every effort to work out an acceptable compromise between the German authorities and the “Evlogian” group. In November of 1939 Seraphim and Sergius of Prague (Evlogius' vicar) signed a document that guaranteed the “autonomy” of the Paris group. For him, this was little more than a formal distinction that affected the faith not at all. He even permitted their communion with Sergius of Moscow if they wished.
By 1942, Seraphim oversaw over 100 parishes of substantial size, though records are incomplete. However, Hitler's bureaucracy ended its pro-Russian views after the invasion began in the Summer of 1941. The head of the Church Abroad, Metropolitan Anastassy, was banned from Berlin for reasons that remain mysterious. The police had issued instructions prohibiting the emigre clergy – those who had fled the USSR – to help rebuild conquered Slavic territories and stopped all Slavic political organization within the Reich. This was a bizarre and abrupt shift in policy that only served Stalin.14
Writer Paul Anderson, writing for the journal Living Church in 1942, said, after many conversations, that Seraphim was “no Nazi in the political sense.” He also points out that it was the ROCOR that granted him the position of Metropolitan of the Reich, something Hitler only approved. Even more, he marvels at the sheer size of his jurisdiction, largely inflated due to priests and faithful fleeing from Stalin, especially from Ukraine.
Even the Uniats, normally pro-German, supported the German invasion. The famed Metropolitan Andrei Sheptytsky wrote to Hitler on September 23, 1941:
As the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, I bring your Excellency my heartfelt congratulations on mastering the capital of Ukraine – the golden-domed city on the Dnieper, Kiev. . . I will pray to God to bless the victory that will guarantee lasting peace for your Excellency, the German Army and the German nation.15
The anti-Slavic policy of the SS was rejected as harmful to the war effort by most of the German general staff including W. von Brauchitsch, von Bock, Wagner, Gersdorff, Gehlen, Canaris, Lindeman, Count von Shenkendorf, von Küchler, von Tresckow, von Rennes, von Freytag-Loringhoven, K. Graf von Stauffenberg and many others. Unfortunately, many of these talented aristocratic Germans were relieved of duty and Hitler's defeat was ensured.16
Alfred Rosenberg also rejected any alliance with Russians, including with Vlasov and kindred groups. However, in the German army, on the initiative of field commanders, a small group of Russian volunteers was permitted, though this soon grew to over a million men under the “Russian Liberation Army” banner. Their impressive numbers were of no interest to Rosenberg, Koch or Himmler, so they remained unused and were gradually alienated to the point where the historian might ask who these men were really working for. Hitler was the author of his own defeat by listening to these racial theorists of dubious value.17
Lyade ordered that the churches were to pray for “the help of God for the liberation of the country from the Bolshevik-Communist yoke” rather than for “Hitler's victory” more specifically. Even as late as 1944, Lyade states that the bureaucracy saw Christianity as a “foreign religion” of no use to the Reich. The church was largely encouraged in the newly liberated territories of the former USSR, but in 1944, this was a memory. This year too showed Hitler's defeat inevitable.18
The roots of this might be found in Martin Bormann's recorded conversations with Hitler. Placed into an edited volume called “Hitler's Table Talk,” his views of the Slavs are clear. Hitler said:
In the eyes of the Russian, the principal support of civilization is vodka. His ideal consists in never doing anything but the indispensable. Our conception of work (work, and then more of it!) is one that he submits to as if it were a real curse.
It is doubtful whether anything at all can be done in Russia without the help of the Orthodox priest. It's the priest who has been able to reconcile the Russian to the fatal necessity of work by promising him more happiness in another world. The Russian will never make up his mind to work except under compulsion from outside, for he is incapable of organizing himself. And if, despite everything, he is apt to have organization thrust upon him, that is thanks to the drop of Aryan blood in his veins.
It's only because of this drop that the Russian people has created something and possesses an organized State.19
Ironically, this view of Slavs remains common in the west today. This sort of puerile, stupid stereotyping was certainly found in the German approach to their Slavic soldiers and policemen. Blonde and blue-eyed Slavs abounded, but this made little impact on the government. A view like this was certainly essential to Rosenberg, and can be found in each and every policy decision concerning Slavic soldiers in the losing war against Stalin. The error was discovered only too late.
Inexplicably rejected by Hitler, the ROA and other groups eventually appealed to the west. Vlasov and PN Krasnov, the famed Hetman, speaking of the horrors of Stalinism, sought to at least find a home in the west once Germany was defeated. Their naivete is understandable but inexcusable. The response was predictable: a stony, hostile silence and a return of all Soviet prisoners to Stalin – and certain death. Metropolitan Anastassy protested to General Eisenhower, which led to the brief suspension of Keelhaul. K. Hoffman writes,
Found all immigrants in the Church, fervently praying to God, that He might save them from deportation, [but] they were forcibly expelled from the church.
Women and children were dragged by the hair and beaten. The priests did their best to protect the flock, but to no avail. One of them, an old and respected priest, was dragged by the beard. The other priest had blood oozing from his mouth after one of the American soldiers, trying to pull a cross out of his hands, struck him in the face.
The soldiers chased people straight to the altar. The iconostasis, which separates the altar from the temple, was broken in two places, and the bishops' throne was wrecked, a few icons have been thrown to the ground. Several people were injured, two were trying to poison themselves.
One woman trying to save her child, threw it out the window, but the man who picked up the child on the street below received a bullet in his stomach for a reward.20
The British camps engaged in an all-out assault on the Russian Orthodox. In the Peggets Camp near Lienz, on May 28 1945, British units stormed the Russian section during the “Our Father” of the liturgy. Several were killed. It was soon to be revealed that these “British” were actually speaking Polish with a heavy Yiddish accent and were “from Palestine.” All told, the campaign to deliver Stalin fresh victims led to 150 deaths in the British camp.
The west, for all its “human rights” twaddle, was silent. It was so bad that Metropolitan Anastassy performed special suicide funerals. He wrote that “Their actions are closer to the actions of the holy Saint Pelagia, throwing herself from a high tower to avoid desecration, rather than to accept the crime of Judas.”
These facts have been scrubbed from the west's history books. Little self-righteous posturing about this genocide can be found among university administrators and clergymen.
Regardless of the dishonest, duplicitous, and anti-intellectual denials from the modern church, the position of the Russian and Ukrainian churches just 70 years ago are unmistakable. Stalin had brought the USSR to the point of a prison camp while the west was drowning in economic failure. Hitler alone was successful. The Archimandrite John (Shakhovskoy), serving under Metropolitan Seraphim in Berlin, wrote a brief essay on the USSR as the Germans invaded Stalin's empire. It will be presented at length and it is entitled “The Hour is Near” –
Blood and dirt came in, only leaving blood and dirt behind. The misanthropic doctrine of Marx started this world war. Death is the war cry of Bolshevism. Today or tomorrow will see the free proclamation of the church. Orthodox Russia is being liberated. Before his death in Moscow, the Elder Aristoclius of Athos said “The salvation of Russia will come when the Germans take up arms. . . . It will be necessary to the Russian people go through many more humiliations, but in the end it will become the lamp of faith for the whole world.”
Blood, which began to spill on the Russian fields on June 22, 1941, will lead to the blood pumping through the veins of thousands of Russians who will soon be released from all prisons, torture chambers and concentration camps of Soviet Russia. This alone fills my heart with joy. The best Russian people will soon be given to Russia. The best pastors are given to the Church, the best scientists of the Russian science, the best writers – the people, fathers their children and children to parents, wives to return from the far North and how many friends will soon re-connect. . . . It is impossible to imagine the Russian people from the new civil war, urging foreign power to fulfill his destiny.
The bloody operation to overthrow the Third International is entrusted to the skillful, scientific and precise German surgeon. Those under the surgeon's knife are sick, not shameful. Every nation has its own qualities and gifts. The operation began, the inevitable suffering it caused international hand created and connected to all the places the Russian people.
It was impossible any longer to expect that this task will take those so-called “Christian” governments in the recent Spanish war were both materially and ideologically on the side of the defenders of the Christian faith and culture.
Enslaved in the camps, factories and collective farms, the Russian people were powerless against the rise of international atheistic forces entrenched in the Kremlin. It took the trained and precise hand of the German army. She is now tasked to bring down the red star atop the Kremlin walls.
This army, which took its victories across Europe and are stronger than before, will win not only by its arms and principles, but also by the obedience of a higher call, a Providence it imposed over and above any political and economic ideology. Above all human acts rests the sword of the Lord. . . Summer has come. Russian Pascha is close …21
The writer here accurately shows how the west decidedly leaned to Marxism over nationalism. This author's work has shown this exhaustively. The former they can understand and work with, the latter was out of the question. This was the general mood of the Russian and Ukrainian Orthodox churches both in the liberated areas and in the diaspora. In 1942, the Belorussian church wrote to Hitler:
The first ever All-Belorussian Orthodox Church sobor in Minsk on behalf of the Orthodox Belorussians sends you, Mr. Chancellor, heartfelt gratitude for the liberation of Belarus from Moscow-Bolshevik godless yoke, for the opportunity to freely organize our religious life in the form of the Holy Belorussian Autocephalous Orthodox Church and wishes to express full win your invincible weapon.
Archbishop Filofei (Narco)
Bishop Athanasius (Martos)
Bishop Stefan (Sevbo)22
Hitler was a godsend for Ukraine at first. A grand total of 5400 churches were reopened under German control. In addition 36 monasteries were reestablished. In the Vinnitsa region 822 churches were opened under the Germans, 822 in Odessa, 500 in Dnepropetrovsk, 442 in Rivne and 410 in Chernigov. There were 359 on Poltava, 346 in Zhytomyr, 222 in Donetsk, 155 in Kharkov and 420 in the general Nikolaev region.23
In November 1942, a clerical Congress in Novgorod and Pskov was called, the first in decades. The resulting document said that
Only the German army, freeing the Russian people, has given us the opportunity to be completely free to build our spiritual and parish life.
Only the German liberators from the very first days of the war gave the Russian people the freedom as well as the financial assistance in restoring plundered and ruined temples of God. . .
The clergy and Orthodox people nourish a deep gratitude to the German people and its army as it has liberated us from enslavement.24
They had good reason to feel this way. The Regime of Sergius called on the “Holy Russian nation” to take up arms against the “godless invaders.” It is rare a public figure is this out of touch with reality. Furthermore, it needs to be said that Hitler personally was never anti-Christian. The left has promoted this nonsense so as to make being anti-Hitler acceptable to the Right. The truth is quite different, as always. Hitler was not only against any anti-Christian movement, he was actively involved in promoting its various groups within Germany.25
That same year, Anastassy, Metropolitan of the ROCOR, wrote,
The day came, they expected (the Russian people), and it is now truly as if resurrected from the dead, where the courageous German sword had cut his shackles. . . and ancient Kiev and suffering Smolensk, Pskov and light triumph both its disposal if from the very lowest hell. Freed of the Russian people everywhere already sang, “Christ is Risen!”
Today, the modernist Orthodox, even now in the great Metropolitan's own jurisdiction, pretend this did not happen. They pretend that they sought only the defeat of Stalin. This is not the case. Anastassy and many others show that it was National Socialism in general that they saw as the (political) salvation of a dying Europe. To drive this point home, two years later, the same Metropolitan Anastassy wrote:
And you, dear brothers and compatriots, you are leaders and inspirers of the Russian national movement, and you are here, showing that the historical connection of the great cause of the liberation of Russia from the deeds of our fathers and grandfathers.
We belong to different generations. Not all of us think in the same way, we do not all feel the same way. But we must not think now about what divides us but what unites us. And now all of us connects one feeling – the Bolshevik deadly evil, and our burning desire to eradicate it in the Russian Land.
For we know that as long as it reigns there – there can be no reasonable human life, no spiritual progress; until this evil that threatens both our homeland and throughout Europe will be destroyed.
And since you, dear brothers and sisters, seek to destroy this terrible evil because you are fighting for the triumph of light against darkness, of truth against lies, liberty against violence, Christianity and culture against the abuse and destruction of human beings, you are creating a truly patriotic, even more so, international struggle, and the Church therefore can not fail to bless your great and holy endeavor.
This movement is truly worthy of the name of Liberation, since it seeks not only to liberate humanity from this terrible yoke, but also the human soul from the fierce oppression [of Marxism]. Never was human dignity so deeply humiliated and desecrated as mercilessly as it is today under the Bolshevik government.
The Russian Church never could, and now cannot remain indifferent to the suffering of its people. She gave the world thousands and thousands of martyrs who died in exile and Red prisons: pastors and Orthodox hierarchs, innocent blood which does not cease to cry out to heaven. She prays to the Lord to grant you a few days of testing. We do not know the Lord's timing. However, there are signs of the times in which we can say with confidence that the appointed hour approaches and we already stand before the doors.
Dear instigators and leaders of the Russian Liberation Movement! You, the heroes of the spirit, full of strength; you are destined to accomplish the great cause of national liberation, since you are dedicated to honor, truth and selfless heroism. In times of grave strife, the inner core of the people reach a creative, hardworking vein and then the general national enthusiasm rises to unprecedented heights of achievement.
This holy fire ignites human powers and the human will is driven to perform great deeds. Leaders then arise who would embody the thought and will of the entire people. . . Dear brothers and sisters, unite all around our National Liberation Movement; each should strive together in its path and contribute to the overall great cause of the liberation of our homeland, until the fall of the terrible evil of Bolshevism is complete.
We will rise from the bed of our exhausted Russia and will see the dawn of a new blessed life, full of freedom, reason and joy for the glory of our homeland and all its peoples! Amen.26
This was cited at length due to the fact it is being actively hushed up by the modern Russian Orthodox Church Abroad, a shell of its former self.
Today, that Liberation Movement is vilified as “collaborators” and “Nazis.” Western neo-Orthodox and academic liberals demand that these men sacrifice themselves to Stalin for the sake of defeating Hitler's Antisemitism, the greatest possible sin. The above letter has been wiped from Orthodox history books the world over.
Russians outside Russia saw the invasion of the USSR as a Godly movement, deeply imbued with the Holy Spirit. It was not merely the destruction of Stalin, but the victory of Hitler that these writers sought. These citations have been reprinted at length to show just how important Hitler and his followers in Russia were to the ROCOR. Anastassy and the ROCOR did not just want to use Hitler, but saw him as a religious figure, an avenging angel.
The last Orthodox Archbishop of Finland before the Red takeover was metropolitan Seraphim Lukyanov, forced into exile in 1923. Strangely, it was the Ecumenical Patriarch that forced him out, since he would not accept the newly forming ecumenical agenda being forced on the Finnish church. He wrote in 1941, “Blessed be the hour and the day when the great war against the glorious Third International is won. God bless the great leader of the German people who has raised his sword against the enemies of God.”27 While it is true he eventually made his peace with the Soviet regime, he remained committed to setting the record straight on Hitler's role against world Marxism.
A year has passed since a raised sword of Truth has been raised against the worst enemy of all mankind: the Communist International. And now a large part of European Russia is already free of this accursed enemy and has been purified from this infection.
And where the church bells have been silent and where to praise the Most High was a crime, there is now the sound of the bells, openly and fearlessly, that have only intensified the feelings that are carried to the throne of the King of the Universe. This prayer is a sigh from the Russian people to be released from Hell.
And there are no words, there is no sense in which it would be possible to give a well-deserved thanks to the liberators and their leader Adolf Hitler, to restore freedom of religion. But the truth will win.
And for good reason Providence has elected the Leader of the Great German nation as His instrument of destruction of the universal enemy. The German people know it, and this is a guarantee that he is in an alliance with other nations to bring, with God's help, the fight to the final victory. And we believe that this will be so.28
It was easy for Stalin to destroy his agricultural base while being fed by the west. There was not a year in Soviet history where the west did not furnish all that Moscow needed for its survival. Every single major American industrial concern was invested heavily in the USSR from its inception to the 1970s and beyond. Without skilled labor in these areas after the Civil War, its sudden transformation into a major industrial power a decade later is curious. Leave it to the American historians in universities to refuse, to the point of violence, to ask how this could be.
Hitler was commemorated liturgically at the great litany:
“O for the Christ-loving people of the civil authorities of the German government and his army, we pray to the Lord.” At the augmented litany: “again we pray for the Christ loving civil authorities of the German people, and grant them victory, power, health, and, with the power of the Lord our God, grant them to subdue under their feet every enemy and adversary.”
The Catacomb Church used this at the litany:
“For the Christ-loving leader of the German people, the government and his army, we pray to the Lord.”
And also approved was the formula,
“And we pray for Adolf Hitler, Fuhrer of the German state and for the noble German army that liberated us from the yoke of the ungodly, let us pray to the lord.”29
This was the norm, not the exception. Hitler and National Socialism in general became the de facto official ideology of the 20th century Catacomb church.
The Ukrainian church was no different. Not to be outdone, this is The Appeal of Bishop Polycarp, Archbishop of Lutsk and Kovel, Administrator of the Autocephalous Orthodox Church in the liberated Ukrainian lands:
Nearly a year has passed since the glorious German army under the command of the Great Fuehrer crossed the eastern border and began the fight against the terrible enemy of mankind and European-Christian culture – the Muscovite-Jewish communism. During this time, the invincible German army in his crusading expedition to the east has seen huge success.
He has freed almost all Ukraine from the cruel oppressor of our Ukrainian people. But the titanic struggle between two worlds still continues. In this struggle we all must not stand aside. Rescued from communist slavery, we should make every effort to help to ensure the defeat of the enemy.
As the heroic German Army destroys the enemy at the front, we must, together with the German people, keep our work at the rear. This requires the labor of thousands of workers both in agriculture and in the factories. Our sacred duty and the Ukrainian people all require increased work.
Therefore, obey the call of the German authorities before leaving to work in Germany, the Ukrainian people must be a part of this, considering it a sacred duty and honor for a worker to give his all to this heavy labor. For this I call my flock, and all honest clergy. I also ask the Germans to take good care of their Ukrainian allies. The Ukrainian peasantry and working class, be conscious of what his intense work, at home and in Germany, means. These great historical times will contribute to a better nation.30
It might be noted that it begins with the same working as the epistle from Metropolitan Seraphim of Finland cited above. The fact is that rare was the pro-Soviet opinion in the church outside of Russia. Exiles were personally aware of what the USSR was, but even more aware of how they would get no help from the west once Hitler was defeated. On the other hand, Hitler made it impossible for the USSR to invade Central Europe. Unfortunately, postwar diplomacy permitted what force of arms failed to produce. While the British empire hypocritically sought war over Poland, they had no difficulty granting it to Stalin at war's end. The west, eternally supportive of the USSR, granted Stalin much of Eastern and even Central Europe.
Seraphim Lyade died on September 14, 1950 in a hospital from injuries inflicted upon him by two unknown persons under mysterious circumstances. His support for Hitler was echoed by the entire Orthodox church except that false sect under Stalin. His support, like for any politician, was highly conditional on strict principles of justice, which no one adhered to during the carnage of World War II.
Hitler was seen as a liberator of all mankind from leftism and was seen as a harbinger of social justice as the demented looting of Russia was defeated. Hitler was no saint and was no religious figure. However, he was seen as divinely appointed to destroy the evil of Stalin. There was no knowledge of a “Holocaust” of Jews or anyone else. There was certainly no ethically excessive entity such as THE Holocaust that implicitly is worse or more significant than all others. Such a mindless mass murder Hitler did not have the men or money to carry out. The official Holocaust mythology demands we believe that Hitler deliberately lost the war for the sake of killing a few more Jewish prisoners. Hitler was not diverting fuel his tanks desperately needed to the death camps.
Seraphim died in full union with the Russian Orthodox church. Today's false “ROCOR” pretends this never happened. The cosmopolitan frauds pretending to be the successors of the ancient Russian church might take a moment to read the words of the 1943 synod of the Vienna branch of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad. Attacking Patriarch Sergius, they write:
Sergius' concessions pandered to the religious feelings of the Russian people as well as the Soviets and sought to achieve several goals. They sought to reconcile the people's conscience and to turn their away from their persecution. They sought to show their “tolerance” in the face of the Allies, Britain and the USA. Finally, to consolidate their power over the church at the cost of its seeming benefits. In this latter we see as part of the third temptation of the Savior, where Satan promised to give Him all the kingdoms of the world if he would kneel and worship him.31
Today's Christian is the victim of an intense campaign of World War II mythology that borders on the pathologically obsessive.
One of the more curious aspects of this is that Stalin's crimes, while occasionally acknowledged, are considered “obviously” more humane than Hitler's. This can only mean that since the latter was focused on Jewry, the crime was inherently worse than for mere gentiles. Such a bias did not exist at the time. Today, dozens of nationalists are sent to prison for the “crime” of saying what these men said during the war. World War II, in the eyes of the present System, is the most important event of world history since it forced the division of the world into two branches of the left: the liberal and the Communist. This is the reason why it cannot be questioned.
Metropolitan Seraphim was proven right after all. Stalin was no “Orthodox fuhrer.” They were right to see Hitler as an avenging angel against the USSR and an avenger against the crimes against the church, the most significant institution in Russian history.
Metropolitan Seraphim was, for this reason, one of the most significant bishops of the 20th century that, surprisingly, no one knows anything about.
Johnson, Matthew Raphael (2003) Universalism, Moral Theory and Ethnoanarchism: A Challenge to Contemporary Nationalism. Occidental Quarterly 3(2): 39-46
2Tsypin VA (1994)The History of the Russian Orthodox Church, 1917 - 1990: A Textbook for Orthodox Seminaries. Chronicle Publishing
3Voloshin, Yuri (1997) The Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the Occupied Territories, 1941-1944. Poltava
4The All-Diaspora Synods of 1921 and 1938 and the Political Elements in Church Affairs. This is an essay from the Russian-language work: The Dialogue between the ROCA and the MP: Any Unity Can Only be in the Truth (Russian Idea Publishers, 2004), written by MV Nazarov
5See my (2015) Self-Indulgent Historical Mythology: The Fantasy of Stalin's “Antisemitic Russian Nationalism” The Russian Orthodox Medievalist http://www.rusjournal.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Myths_Stalin.pdf; also my Soviet Ideology, Western Delusion and The Russian Orthodox Church in the USSR http://www.rusjournal.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/ROC-Soviet.pdf
6Metropolitan Evlogius was St. Tikhon's appointee for Western Europe. He was considered more liberal than the royalist Synod in Exile. Having offered a prayer service for the victims of Soviet repression, the Moscow-based Metropolitan Sergius, who had pledged his loyalty to the Soviets, removed him. He then went under the Patriarch of Constantinople.
7In almost all of Europe, denying the “Holocaust” or even offending Jews (and only Jews) is punishable by prison terms of up to 5 years.
8From the message of the Second All-Diaspora Council of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia “To the Russian People in Our Suffering Homeland.” 1938: http://www.synod.com/Poslania/russkomunarodu.2vsezar.1938.htm
9See my The Allied Intervention in the Russian Civil War: The Myth of Western Anti-Communism. The Russian Orthodox Medievalist http://www.rusjournal.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Red_White.pdf. As for the Jewish membership in almost all leading roles in the USSR, see Hoffman, Michael (2006) Judaic Communists: The Documentary Record. Revisionism Online. Numerous other sources will list the names of all high-ranking Communists. Few are Russian ones.
10Anderson, Paul (1942) The Eastern Orthodox Church Today: In the Reich and Occupied Territory. Living Church 105, 22-24
11 This is from Metropolitan Eulogy and dated 4 October 1936. It was transmitted through the German ambassador to Paris, and addressed to The Reichsminister for Church Affairs in Berlin.
12Quoted from Krasnov, Paul (2013) “They Were Approaching Victory.” The Russia Project http://www.rusproject.org/node/1187
13See my Russian History and the Myth of the Cold War: Western Capitalism as the “Builder of the Workers Paradise” The Russian Orthodox Medievalist http://www.rusjournal.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/USSR_Cold.pdf
14Maltsev, Vladislav. (September 2009) The Moment of Truth. Independent
15Tsypin VA (1994)The History of the Russian Orthodox Church, 1917 - 1990: A Textbook for Orthodox Seminaries. Chronicle Publishing
16Nikitin, AK (1998) The Nazi Regime and the Russian Orthodox Community in Germany, 1933-1945. Moscow
17Grabbe, G. (1970) Hitler and the ROCOR. Collected Works, Volume 2, Montreal, 161-172.
18Maltsev, Vladislav. (September 2009) The Moment of Truth. Independent
19quoted from Bormann, Martin (2000) Hitler's Table Talk. Enigma Books, 3-5
20Quoted from Konyaev, N (2017) The Anatomy of Betrayal: The Fate and History of Andrei Vlasov. Litres Books
21The New Word. 27, June 29 1941, Berlin. The original can be found in: Decrees of Archbishop John Shakhovsky. Materials for the biography of Archbishop John Shakhovsky. Ed: AK Nikitin. Church-Historical Journal, Moscow 1, 1998
22Newsland Magazine (2009) They Prayed for Hitler. https://newsland.com/user/4296720062/content/oni-molilis-za-gitlera/4032695. This is a compilation of all the quotes used here from the Orthodox Church in favor of Hitler. It is from an unfriendly point of view, but it is still useful.
23Voloshin, Yuri (1997) The Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the Occupied Territories, 1941-1944. Poltava
24Polchaninov R. (2001) The Mission of the Orthodox Church in Pskov, 1941-1944. Orthodox Life 1, 20-30
25Walker, James, ed (2014) Hitler and Christianity: A Compilation. Smoloko http://smoloko.com/?p=12985. Also see the surprisingly honest Steigmann-Gall, Richard (2003) The Holy Reich: Nazi conception of Christianity, 1919-1945. Cambridge University Press
26From a letter of November 19, 1944, also cf Mіnenko T (2000) Orthodox Church in Ukraine, 1935-1945. Three Volumes, Lv'iv
27Lukyanov, Metropolitan Seraphim (1941) Epistle. Church Life, 1
28Makharoblidze, E (1942) Anniversary of the Crusade. Ecclesiastical Review, 22 June, 4-6
29Koch, Hans (July 1943) The Paris Herald 60
30Polycarp, Archbishop of Lutsk and Kovel, 1942, May 16; State Archives of Volyn region F. R-69, O.1, Spr 310, ar 3
31October 12 1943. A Message from The Russian People to the Vienna Sobor of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad. The message was signed by Metropolitan Anastassy, Metropolitan Seraphim (Lukyanov), Metropolitan Seraphim (Lyade), Archbishop Benedict (Bobkovsky), Bishop Basil (Pavlovsky), Bishop Philip (von Gardner) and Bishop Gregory (Boriskevich).