St. John the Baptist Parish, A Parish of the Russian Orthodox Church, Canberra, Australia

His Way

Metropolitan Philaret

Generally speaking imagine to yourself that three men are travelling along a road, the correct road. They go along and one makes a wrong step and goes off into a swamp; two of the men proceed correctly. Then a second man veers off to the right and begins to proceed incorrectly . Now the third man proceeds alone. Voices ring out,"Why are you seperated? You must reconcile." How shall this be done? The one who remained on the correct path on which all the three had at first been travelling, ought he to turn off somewhere or not? Who should turn back? The ones who went astray, correct? So it is here. You yourselves know that our Church Abroad never split herself off from anyone, and has never swerved. She travels the same road as when she was founded by His Beatitude Metropoltan Anthony. Those who have deviated- let them return. Bishop Nektary always says very insistently: " I don't recognize the subject of three jurisdictions. There is only one jurisdiction-- the Church Abroad" The Church in Russia, whatever she may be there-- the Moscow Soviet hierarchy and the Catacomb Church-- that is another matter. At the present time we have no direct ties with them-- but here there is the one Russian Church Abroad and groups that have split off from her. The must think of returning, rather than our Church thinking of going over to them, and having swerved off the correct path, also allow ourselves to be pulled into the swamp. If people now argue so much about the subject of jurisdictions, it is, again, only for the reason that Truth is not dear enough to them. For the sake of some kind of external peace and reconciliation such persons are prepared to accuse us of not wanting to be reconciled, of harboring bad feelings toward those in error. People do not want to learn the Truth because they are essentialy indifferent to it. They want only external peace, like the peace about the communists shout so much; about peace for the whole world, in order to cast together in one heap principles which are totally irreconcilable and which cannot be reconciled. It is like trying to lump hot coals together with firewood. Will the lie quietly together? It is clear that a fire will flare up. So it is here. This artificial, external peace will never be achieved. The Lord spoke about the very thing through the Prophet: There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked Is. 57: 21 - and there will NOT be any!

Taken from Orthodox Life page 47-48 No 6 1999

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