Ignoring the glory of crucifixion

Within the last generation the Church of Russia has brought forth thousands of martyrs and confessors who will bear comparison with those of the first centuries. In every place where the faith has been put to the test there have been abundant outpourings of grace, the most astonishing miracles — icons renewing themselves beneath the eyes of the astonished spectators; the cupolas of churches shining with a light not of this world. And — greatest miracle of all — the Church has been enabled to triumph over all difficulties, and to emerge renewed and strengthened from her fiery trial. Nevertheless, all this was scarcely noticed. The glorious aspect of what had taken place in Russia remained almost without interest for the generality of mankind. There were protests at the persecution; there were regrets that the Russian Church did not act like a temporal or a political power; excuses were put forward on behalf of this ‘human frailty’. The crucified and buried Christ will always be judged in similar fashion by those who are blind to the light of His resurrection. We must, in the words of St. Paul, receive, ‘not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is of God; that we may know the things that are freely given to us of God,’ that we may be enabled to recognize victory beneath the outward appearance of failure, to discern the power of God fulfilling itself in weakness, the true Church within the historic reality. (Vladimir Lossky, The Mystical Theology of the Eastern Church, pp. 245-6)

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One comment

  1. Hi David.
    I'm currently reading this:

    http://www.amazon.com/Gulag-Archipelago-1918-1956-Experiment-Investigation/dp/0813332893/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1312063972&sr=8-1

    One interesting quote:

    Women which had been caught spreading “religious propaganda”, praying loud or spreading anti soviet books (bible) had been given maximum punishment (25 years), while prostitutes got only 3 years. And because of their skill, they were able to earn great money during their jail time.

    Also, there's book called Father Arseny, Saint in Gulag. Not yet translated into English.
    Fr Arseny was monk from Optina monastery, he was jailed during Trotsky, I think. That book contains more than 50 stories from people who were in Gulag, manily Orthodox.

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