Религиозная организация
Русская Древлеправославная Церковь

THE BRIEF HISTORY OF THE RUSSIAN ANCIENT ORTHODOX CHURCH. P 3.

In early March 1947 these two disobedient priests urged the last renovationist archbishop, Metropolitan of Krutitsy, Filaret (Yatsenko) to join the Ancient Orthodox Church.

On March 17th, 1947, in Moscow priest Arkhangelskiy in the presence of Sudakov52 performed ointment over Metropolitan Filaret upon which they tried to register him in the Council for Religious Cult Issues as an Ancient Orthodox bishop. However, religious adventurer Filaret Yatsenko was very well known by the authorities and he was not registered as an Ancient Orthodox metropolitan, thus, the idea of Arkhangelskiy and Sudakov to establish a different religious centre in the Church turned out to be a failure. After that Sudakov with his supporters agreed to an amicable discussion of all disagreements and for this purpose Archbishop Ioannes came to Moscow in summer of 1947 on the eve of the Holy Trinity festivity.

On the Holy Trinity festivity, on June 2nd, 1947, in the Nikolo-Rogozhskiy church after the festivity service a church council of Moscow Ancient Orthodox community was held which was attended, apart from the council members, by the following persons: Archbishop Ioannes, priest Ioannes Sudakov, three other priests, laymen, and Metropolitan Filaret.

There were two issues on the agenda:

1.   Concerning canonicity of ordination of Archbishop Ioannes;

2.   Concerning correctness of acceptance of "Metropolitan” Filaret from the nikonian-renovationist church.

Bishop Ioannes presented to the attendees documents confirming correctness of his ordination; having studied these documents even rebellious priest Ioannes Sudakov humbly bowed his head to the Archbishop and fully acknowledged his powers of a primate.

Further, the attendees proceeded to consider the issue on Metropolitan Filaret. All the documents he presented: autobiography, certificate of baptism, certificate of ordination and other certificates, and they turned out be quite many, were only copies, without any signatures or seals confirming their authenticity, except for the fact they were printed on official letterheads of a primate of the renovationist church Alexander Vvedenskiy who was dead by that time.

The discussion of the issue of acceptance of Metropolitan Filaret took quite a long time and turned to be a very heated debate. Priest Sudakov was an ardent defender of Metropolitan Filaret, he made all possible efforts to prove authenticity of bishop ordination of Yatsenko and sincerity of his points of view concerning salvific nature of the Ancient Orthodox faith. By reference to Filaret’s dubious documents Sudakov tried to obtain full and comprehensive acknowledgement of his bishop powers and correctness of his acceptance and insisted that he should be allowed without any delay to perform bishop services in the Church as a metropolitan. During this debate Sudakov behaved in a quite irritating manner, resorted to personal insults of those participants of the council who disagreed with him. Naturally, he could not be successful because of such behaviour and it did not add up credibility to his plan concerning Metropolitan Filaret53.

In the end the council took a unanimous decision about this issue: "It is ruled to consider the documents presented by the metropolitan during his acceptance as insufficient and unfounded (there is no ordination certificate, there is no information about the time of ordination of Metropolitan Pimen who ordained Metropolitan Filaret, before division of the All-Russian Church into the old church and the renovationist church and other divisions or after this division, there is no certificate on triple immersion baptism, etc.); and for these reasons Metropolitan Filaret is not allowed to perform divine services and to perform any other services until the time when documents he mentioned are presented and considered by the next All-Union Council of our Christians”54.

But Metropolitan Filaret did not live up to the council resolution, "great swindler, old crook, and expropriator” as he was called by his contemporaries, died in 1949 ….

But even before Metropolitan Filaret died his abettors, priests Ioannes Sudakov and Theodorus Arkhangelskiy, left the Ancient Orthodox Church. After the abovementioned decision they fully subordinated themselves to Archbishop Ioannes, accepted new assignments to parishes and for some time they served there without any admonition. It seemed that this issue finally ended in peace, unfortunately, conspirators returned to their evil deeds as the Holy Scriptures say: "Whoever hates disguises himself with his lips and harbours deceit in his heart” (Proverbs 26:24).

In 1948 Sudakov and Arkhangelskiy entered into negotiations with new ritual church Metropolitan Krutitskiy and Kolomenskiy, Nicholas (Yarushevich) which ended in their acceptance into the Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate in December of the same year under the rules established by old ritual communities which admitted hierarchic jurisdiction of the Moscow Patriarchate. They enticed away with them one more priest, archpriest of a church in the village of Klimovo of Bryansk Region, Father Symeon Nefedov.

They were accepted by the third rite, via "repentance”. Their acceptance was performed by Bishop Mozhaiskiy, Macarius (Dayev), Curate of the Moscow Patriarchate55.

But God is great in His mysterious Providence for he even changes the worst into the best! The fact is that priest Theodorus Arkhangelskiy was ordained by the new ritual church and just returned where he had been before, we need to note that priests Sudakov and Nefedov were ordained as priests by Archbishop Nicholas (Pozdnev), so, the new ritual church by its very actions acknowledged lawfulness of ordinations performed by Archbishop Nicholas (Pozdnev). Thus, it became ever more evident that the slanderous campaign waged against Archbishop Nicholas in 1920s was absolutely dishonest.

In 1955, Archbishop Ioannes resigned having become quite weak because of laborious archbishop’s ministry, accusations of various slanderers and malevolent people, maltreatment by the Soviet authorities, and because of his health’s condition. And on August 27th, 1956, the Archbishop peacefully deceased on the eve of the Day of the Assumption.

Archbishop Ioannes was replaced at the position of the Primate by Archbishop Epiphanius (Abramov). During the ministry of Archbishop Epiphanius the primate’s archdiocese under the pressure of the godless had to be moved to the city of Kuibyshev (Samara). Later, in 1963, during the ministry of Archbishop Jeremiah (Matviyevich), the primate’s archdiocese was moved to the city of Novozybkov of Bryansk Region.

Since late 1950s the USSR against started an atheist campaign, naturally, it was different from the campaign of 1920-30s by its nature when the authorities tried to root out the religion by physical destruction of the faithful people. Unscrupulously devious propaganda took the place of physical executions. By its efficiency in the fight with the religion the so called "scientific atheism” was even more dangerous for people who were religiously illiterate and not quite solid in their faith than physical violence. During those years many people lost their faith and departed from the Church. Some were dazzled by material wealth and a significant position in the Soviet society whish was beyond reach of a faithful person in the USSR. Some were caught in the net of anti-religious propaganda. Instigated by the devil the Soviet authorities acted in a devious and purposeful way. They resorted to various administrative and even tax tricks to put pressure on the Church. The so-called commissioners on religious issues fulfilling the ideological order tried in any possible way to keep the young and middle-aged people away from the faith. By destruction of the pious way of life and traditions of people communists managed to do with the people what the centuries of persecutions failed to, namely: infect several generations of Russian people with deception of atheistic false doctrines.

Churches which had been opened during the times when the regime somewhat eased up the pressure on the faithful people were closed under artificial pretexts. Some of them were destroyed while others were blasphemously converted into clubs, garages, warehouses. For example, the cathedral church in the city of Kuibyshev was razed to the ground, and, as a replacement, Christians were allocated an underground room which was absolutely unsuitable for use. In Buryatia, in the village of Novy Zagan, an Ancient Orthodox church, the only one at that time in Siberia, was seized away and reconstructed into a fitness club. The same picture could be seen all over the country. But Christians did not give up. On the contrary, to the maximum extent allowed by the situation they tried to organise their religious life getting together for a common prayer in private houses and even in the open air just as it was during the time Apostles: "we departed and went on our journey, and they all, with wives and children, accompanied us until we were outside the city. And kneeling down on the beach, we prayed” (Acts 21, 5).

The Ancient Orthodox Church, as best it could, tried to withstand this attack of the godless. The number of officially registered parishes was about twenty in those years. But in no way this figure reflected the actual number of Ancient Orthodox Christians, an enormous amount of communities existed under cover avoiding official registration and trying to conceal their activities in all possible ways. The majority of clergymen were ordained as priests without notification and consent of commissioners on religious issues (the Soviet legislation envisaged this procedure as an obligatory one) which periodically caused conflicts with the authorities. Relatively active parish life in 1960-80s was possible only in some regions of the Soviet Union: in Bryansk Region, in Povolzhie regions, and in Georgia. During almost all years of the Soviet power relations with our coreligionists in Romania and Bulgaria were severed. Ancient Orthodox Christians living in these countries for several decades had to perform religious services without priests, but, despite such ordeals, they stayed loyal sons of their Church.

During practically all after-war years the internal life of the Ancient Orthodox Church was concealed from the godless Soviet authorities. In their turn, bodies of the Soviet control treated the Ancient Orthodox Church with great suspicion and dislike. Describing Ancient Orthodox Christians in their atheistic published guidelines Soviet ideologists wrote: "the difference between priest-free believers and Belaya Krynitsa believers is that pries-free believers are more fanatical. Despite their few numbers there are more fanatical and radical people among them”. And from another "Atheist Reference Book”: "The church management(the Ancient Orthodox Church) still abides by the tactics of fighting all new and progressive things”.

After Archbishop Jeremiah (Matviyevich) who departed to God on June 17th, 1969, Archbishop Pavel (Mashinin) became the Primate of the Church. In July 1977 Archbishop Pavel retired due to the state of his health. He deceased on September 26th, 1980.

Bishop of Kursk, Barsanuphius (Ovsyannikov), ruled the Ancient Orthodox Church as Locum Tenens until September 1979. In 1983 Archbishop Barsanuphius accepted tonsure to great schema monk and took the name of Babylas.

Archbishop Gennady (Antonov) stood at the helm of the church management on September 23rd, 1979. During his rule the Ancient Orthodox Church stepped on the path of active missionary activities openly declaring spiritual values of the Ancient Orthodox faith to the outside world. In 1982 the Church’s publishing department resumed its operations. Thanks to a church journal-calendar published annually and other spiritual, educational, and liturgical books relations between Christians all over the country severed during the years of persecutions were restored, many people from other confessions started to join the Ancient Orthodox faith. Archbishop Gennady studiously cared about ordination of new priests, restoration of historical parishes and establishment of new ones. The Supreme Ancient Orthodox Religious School was opened upon his blessing in the city of Novozybkov in 1990 to solve these issues. Liturgical relations with Ancient Orthodox Christians of Romania which had been severed for over 70 years at the fault of the godless were also restored at that time. Despite his quite advanced age Archbishop Gennady constantly visited church communities all over Russia and abroad: performed Divine Liturgies, communicated with the faithful, helped parishes to solve issues of religious and parochial life.

Unfortunately, the years of bishop service of Archbishop Gennady were not absolutely trouble-free for the Church. In 1988 disagreements occurred between Archbishop Gennady and Bishop of Perm, Leontius (Krechetov), and Bishop of Moscow, Flavian (Vdovin), concerning some issue of the church life. These disagreements resulted in severance of relations between hierarchs. Nevertheless, Bishop Flavian soon restored relations with the Archbishopric, and in 1993 Bishop Leontius together with clergymen who had supported him also applied to the Consecrated Council with a request to restore communication.

But this division did not disappear entirely after their return. During the conflict with Archbishop Gennady Bishop Leontius for his supporters in Georgia ordained two bishops: Bishop of Poti, Filaret (Goncharov), and Bishop of Tbilisi, Ioannes (Chakhava). In their turn they also ordained several bishops and priests for the Georgian Ancient Orthodox Church which was restored in this way.

But even in this seemingly sorrowful event remarkable Providence of God about the Church, Russian and Georgian Christians, would be identified! We shall speak about it at length below.

By late 80s of the XX century the religious oppression against the faithful in the USSR eased up a little bit at first to be changed later into a favourable attitude to the religion by the mercy of God.

The hierarchy of the Ancient Orthodox Church headed by Archbishop Gennady did not waste the time of freedom, all efforts were made to restore the church life all over the country. Literally in a few years in Siberia, Povolzhie, and the central regions of the country dozens of formerly under cover Ancient Orthodox communities were registered, and several absolutely new communities were also established. Churches which were returned to Christians started to be restored, new churches were built, young and active clergymen were ordained to these reviving parishes. Our Romanian brothers were not forgotten. For the first time in many years priests were ordained for Ancient Orthodox Christians in Romania, a newly established archdiocese of Tulcea and entire Romania was headed by Bishop Eumenius (Tit) who was chosen to be ordained from local Christians.

This new time of freedom in the country’s life brought about some radical changes in perceptions of "the Soviet person”. God turned to dust all false atheistic and neo-pagan doctrines of the atheistic authorities concerning the world order and many of Russian people returned to the religion in search of spiritual consolation. According to God’s providence this spiritual search brought many people to the Ancient Orthodox Church from other confessions. The Church blessed by God obtained many new children in this was.

On February 2nd, 1996, being 93 years of age and after 17 years of the primate’s service, Bishop Gennady deceased. Bishop of Moscow, Aristarchus (Kalinin) was elected by the Council as the Primate of the Church. Bishop Aristarchus (archpriest Athanasius before ordination as monk) brought his entire life to the altar of God. His only care was the wellbeing of the Ancient Orthodox Church. The only property that was left by Bishop Aristarchus was an excellent and quite versatile library of various books concerning religion. Since 1940s of the XX century he actively participated in the Church life, he served the Church for a half a century as a priest. Until now many hundreds of spiritual children remember their kind pastor with respect and gratitude. He was open and accessible to all and any time, in the apostolic manner he was amiable and in the father-like manner caring with all people. The Bishop had a sharp mind and a gift of eloquence, his memory was remarkable, he could easily quote whole passages from patristic books, and when his eyesight became poor due to his old age he performed liturgical services by heart amazing everybody present with his immaculate knowledge of liturgical texts. The Bishop was also engaged in teaching, he taught such sophisticated subjects as church canons, church law in the Supreme Religious School. Without regard to his very advanced age Bishop Aristarchus every day until his death held extensive correspondence with very many people who applied to him with their problems, needs, and sorrows. Like a true pastor of the Church of Christ he found the words of consolation for everybody, he readily shared a part of his time and a part of his soul with any person.

Having served for 4 years as the Archbishop Aristarchus peacefully died on May 4th, 2000, on the Bright Thursday being 94 years of age.

On May 9th, 2000, the primate’s rod passed over to Bishop of Moscow, Alexander (Kalinin). A relatively young and energetic Archbishop with even greater success carried on the case of his predecessors. During several years of his primacy he increased ever more the number of Ancient Orthodox communities and priests. He skilfully overcame internal problems and disorders which had occurred in the Church during the last year of the life of Archbishop Aristarchus.

The primacy of Bishop Alexander was marked by several events which were quite decisive for the Ancient Orthodox Church.

The Holy Council which was held on 16-19 August 2000 ruled to return the office of the primate of the Ancient Orthodox Church to Moscow. Since that time the Primate’s title was the Ancient Orthodox Archbishop of Moscow and entire Russia.

The Council which was held in the city of Novozybkov from 28 February to 3 March 2002 restored the rank of the Patriarch in the Ancient Orthodox Church which had been lost by it through fall away from patristic godliness by Patriarch Nikon and his advocates and followers. The Council elected Archbishop Alexander the Ancient Orthodox Church Patriarch of Moscow and entire Russia for the first time during the last three and a half centuries.

Studious works of Bishop Alexander as a peacemaker brought glorious and affluent fruit: after over 20 years of division and four years of a dialogue, with God’s help, Russian and Georgian Christians finally reached agreement.

On 9-10 May 2009, in the Georgian city of Poti, final negotiations between the Primates of the Russian Ancient Orthodox Church and the Georgian Orthodox Church were held, Ancient Orthodox Patriarch of Moscow and entire Russia Alexander and Bishop of Tbilisi Pavel (Khorava). Other bishops, clergymen, and laymen of both Churches also participated in the negotiations. All acute problems which had been the source of worries of Ancient Orthodox Christians and disagreements caused by such problems being the reason of ill-fated division were discussed and solved during this meeting.

On May 16th, 2009, a joint document was signed which cancelled all previous disagreements, proclaimed peace and unification of Russian and Georgian Ancient Orthodox Christians as well as autocephaly of the Georgian Ancient Orthodox Church. This document, the Certificate of Church Unification, was signed by Primates of the Churches and their bishops on behalf of the Russian Ancient Orthodox Church and the Georgian Ancient Orthodox Church.

On May 17th, 2009, on the Sunday of the Samaritan Women, His Holiness Alexander Patriarch of Moscow and entire Russia together with Eminent Bishops after the Divine Liturgy performed the rite of reconciliation. After signing of "Christ is Risen” and reading of beginning prayers and penitential troparions "Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy upon us” His Holiness read two prayers: "Make Peace after Enmity” and "For Love”. They were followed by signing of hymns "The Grace of the Holy Spirit Brought Us Together Today”, "Strengthen Those Who Have Hope for You” and "By Establishing Me on the Rock of Faith”. The same rite was performed by Eminent Bishops of the Georgian Ancient Orthodox Church.

In this way Lord the Peacemaker once again showed His love for and attention about the Ancient Orthodox Church having reconciled the quarrelling people and by doing so humbled the cause of any disagreements, the devil. Thus, spiritual brothers once again gained each other. And thus the Russian Local Church gained its spiritual sister, the Georgian Local Church.

Besides, this event is also quite instructive for the outside people. It is very symbolic that the church unity was achieved at the time when the relations between Russia and Georgia at the level of states leave much to be desired. Political games seed discord between people while Christ brings peace and unity! Thank God for all these achievements.

Finishing off this brief story on the history of the Ancient Orthodox Church with the current events we cannot but raise our spirit and thank God for those to whom we are obliged for these current beneficial completions. Let us never forget our fathers who invariably kept the traditions of the Church of Christ during the times of the most horrible ordeals, who during various misfortunes planted and watered the vineyard of the Church which now brings such kind and affluent fruit!

The Ancient Orthodox Church, being a single and indivisible entity with the Ancient Church, unites in itself all Christians who acknowledge it as the True Church of Christ without any division by national, social or territorial criteria.

Based upon apostolic and patristic heritage, treating godly spiritual and liturgical experience of all ancient Orthodox Local Churches with respect, the Russian Ancient Orthodox Church invariably and carefully tries to keep the Liturgical Rite and godliness of Holy Russia. Glory to Our Lord, both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen!

 

 

"De sacro altaris misterio”, II. 45 // Uspenskiy B. A. The Cross and the Circle: From the History of the Christian Symbolism. Moscow: Languages of the Slavic Cultures, 2006, p. 26.

Acts of Ecumenical Councils. Volume 7. Kazan, 1909, p. 295.

Fedotov G. P. Collected Works in 12 Volumes. Volume 3:St. Philipp, Metropolitan of Moscow // Appendix: The Life and the Acts of Philipp, Metropolitan of Moscow and entire Russia. Moscow: Martis, 2000, p. 213.

The full text of 12 articles was published.

The Department of Manuscripts of the Russian State Library. F. 246. K. 208. Unified storage 1. L. 110-111 ob.

Reverend Theodore the Studite. Epistles. Book 1. - Moscow, 2003. pp. 180-185.

Epistle to the Unknown // Borozdin A. K. Archpriest Avvacum: Sketches from the History of the Intellectual Life of the Russian Society in the XVII Century. Appendix. Saint Petersburg: A. S. Suvorin, 1900, p. 14-15.

Answers of Deacon Alexander (at the Kerzhenets) to Bishop of Nizhny Novgorod Pitirim in 1719 // Free appendix to "Staroobryadets” Journal. Moscow, 1906, p. 207.

Ibid. p. 276

10 Pomor Answers. Reprinted edition. Moscow: Publishing House of P.P. Ryabushinskiy. 1911, pp. 4-5.

11 Luthardt Christophe Ernst. The Apology of Christianity. Translated from the German language by A.P. Lopukhin. Saint Petersburg, 1892, p. 671.

12 The Acts of the Iryum Council of 1723, the 3rd discussion // Memorials of Literature and Written Languages of Peasants beyond the Urals, volume I, issue 2, pp. 86-88.

13 Canon 12 of Saint Peter of Alexandria // Book of Canons. Sergiyev Posad, 1992, p. 285.

14 Speech of Catherine the Great at the joint conference of the Senate and the Synod on September 15th, 1763 // Karlovich V.M. Historical Studies to Justify the Old Ritualists. Volume III. Chernovtsy, 1886.

15 Report of Metropolitan Platon to the Synod concerning the Request of Moscow New Ritualists // Lysogorskiy N.V. Metropolitan of Moscow Platon as Anti-Schism Advocate. Rostov-on-Don, 1905, p. 537.

16 Zvezdinskiy M.I. The Opinion of Filaret, Metropolitan of Moscow, Concerning Coreligionists and His Attitude to Them. Moscow, 1900, p. 9.

17 Ibid. p. 3.

18 Malinovtsev F.A. Two Trips to the East of Chapel Priest-Free Christian Malinovtsev F.A. Moscow, 1910, p. 3.

19 Ibid.

20 History of Pries-Free Christians, part II. // Complete Set of Works by P.I. Melnikov (Andrey Pechorskiy). Volume 14. Saint Petersburg, 1898, p. 24.

Subbotin N.I. The History of Belaya Krynitsa Hierarchy. Volume 1. Moscow, 1874, p. 71.

22 Ibid. p. 57.

23 History of Pries-Free Christians, part II. // Complete Set of Works by P.I. Melnikov (Andrey Pechorskiy). Volume 14. Saint Petersburg, 1898, p. 27.

24 Ibid, p. 91.

25 Ibid, p. 27.

26 From the Testimony of Gerontius on June 22nd, 1847 // Subbotin N.I. The History of Belaya Krynitsa Hierarchy. Appendix. Volume 1. Moscow 1874, p. 80.

27 Subbotin N.I. The History of Belaya Krynitsa Hierarchy. Volume 1. Moscow, 1874, p. 71.

28 Ibid, p. 87.

29 Ibid, p.  88.

30 Saint Diadochos of Photiki. Self-Sacrificing Epistle // Philokalia. The 2nd edition. Volume 3. - Moscow, 1900, p. 27.

31 Saint Abba Isaiah. Miterikon. Moscow, 1891, p. 216.

32 The Guide to Spiritual Life in Answers to Questions of Disciples by Saint Barsanuphius the Great and Saint John. Answer 415. Saint Petersburg, 1905, p. 279-280.

33 Saint John Climacus. The Ladder. Epistle 3:28. The 6th edition. Moscow, 1901, p. 19.

34 Subbotin N.I. The History of Belaya Krynitsa Hierarchy. Volume 1. Moscow, 1874. p. 106.

35 Subbotin N.I. The History of Belaya Krynitsa Hierarchy. Volume 1. Moscow, 1874. p. 292.

36 Pavlov A. Nomocan for the Great Service Book. Moscow, 1897, p. 349

37 Bishop Shvetsov Arsenius. The Life and Acts of Antonius, Old Ritualist Archbishop of Moscow and Vladimir. Moscow, 2003.

38 Documents about Old Ritualists of Our Time. Report by I.G. Moscow, 1869, p. 11.

39 Ibid. P. 6.1

40 Ibid. P. 36.

41 The authoritative canonical book by Sebastos Constantinus Harmenopulus says about dilution of the consecration oil: "If there is not enough myrrh to perform holy baptism or to consecration of a church, or for other needs, it is allowed to mix the remaining myrrh with anointing oil (oil) to make it enough to perform the necessary sacraments” (Answers of John, Bishop of Cyprus, to Konstantin Kavasila, Archbishop of Durrese // Sebastos Harmenopulus. Book V. Balakhna. 1908. L. 193 ob.

42 Sedov A.V., PhD. Political Favours of N.A. Bugrov // Birzha, 2001. No. 23.

43 Brotherhood. Moscow, 1917. No. 1, p. 3.

44 Now it is called the city of Frolovo of Volgograd Region.

45 Brotherhood. Moscow, 1917. No. 1, p. 3.

46 One may read in greater detail about acceptance of Archbishop Nicholas in a book "In Search of Truth” published by the Publishing Department of the Russian Ancient Orthodox Church.

47 Collection. Pochayevskaya Publishing House, 1782. L. 120 ob.

48 Saint Augustine of Hippo. The City of God. Book 18. Chapter XXIX. Minsk: Harvest, Moscow: AST, 2000, pp. 941-943.

49 From the letter of priest Feodor Bykadorov to Gerontius (Lakomkin), Bishop of Belaya Krynitsa hierarchy. March 1947.

50 From the letter of Archbishop Meletiy of March 20th, 1929. No. 2672 // Our Contemporary. 2007. No. 1, p. 227.

51 The Russian Ancient Orthodox Church consecrated Bishop Stephan as Holy Martyr (commemorated on 2 September) and Pansophius (commemorated on 21 December).

52 Priest Sudakov having obeyed Archbishop Ioannes’ decree on banning did not participate in the rite of acceptance, he was only present there, this fact is stated in a letter (June 1947) to priest Feodor Bykadorov written by reader Climent Ivanovich Dontsov.

53 A letter by reader C.I. Dontsov to priest Feodor Bykadorov, June 1947.

54 Epistle to Church by Archbishop Ioannes on June 5th, 1947.

55 Journal of the Moscow Patriarchate No. 6 (June), Moscow: the Publishing Department of the Moscow Patriarchate, 1950, p. 40.

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