clergy, Don Theological Seminary, Gay lobby, homosexuality in the Russian Orthodox Church, KGB Church, Orthodox Moscow Theological Academy, Putin, ROC, Rostov Cathedral, Russian Orthodox Church, Russian Orthodox Gay Lobby
“Representatives of the gay lobby in the Russian Orthodox Church are not Sunday school teachers. These are people who have power and access to money. First of all – the hierarchs, as well as their assistants from the clergy. Here is the answer to the question about the “cover”: in the ROC they are concerned about their status in the face of secular society, so loud revelations are not to be expected. In this kingdom, everything is quiet and calm.”Archpriest Alexander Usatov, as quoted in “The gay lobby in the ROC has power and access to money: Interview with a priest who came out by Varuzhan Sargsyan 05.03.2021 https://web.archive.org/web/20210305134314/https://mbk-news.appspot.com/suzhet/gej-lobbi-v-rpcz/
These are two different clergy exposing the “Gay Lobby” in the Russian Orthodox Church. One article from 2014 and one from 2021.
Followup to the 2013-14 first case:
“On 29 December 2020 the Moscow Episcopal Court defrocked Kuraev, but to come into force this decision must be approved by the Patriarch. On 23 August 2022, the Nikulinsky Raion Court in Moscow fined Kuraev 30 thousand Russian rubles for “discreditation” of the Russian Armed Forces that he allegedly did in his LiveJournal post about the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrey_Kuraev
“Russian Orthodox Deacon Fears Defrocking After Outing Church’s ‘Gay Lobby’ January 09, 2014 17:05 GMT By Andrei Shary and Claire Bigg https://www.rferl.org/a/russia-orthodox-church-kurayev-gay-lobby/25225311.html
A prominent theologian who claims to have outed a powerful “gay lobby” within the Russian Orthodox Church says he now fears being defrocked over his allegations.
The allegations by Deacon Andrei Kurayev, a firebrand missionary who taught at the Orthodox Moscow Theological Academy, are potentially damaging and expose the church to charges of double standards.
Not only does the church consider homosexuality to be a grave sin, but it has also helped spearhead a Kremlin campaign targeting gays and lesbians — most notably a law banning the propagation of “non-traditional sexual relations.”
Kurayev is known for his radical but eloquent tirades that have often put him at odds with the Moscow’s Patriarchate’s official line.
He has made anti-Semitic remarks, spoken in support of recently pardoned former oil tycoon and Kremlin critic Mikhail Khodorkovsky, and protested the jailing of Pussy Riot members for their iconoclastic performance in Moscow’s largest Orthodox cathedral.
But according to him, it is his decision to battle what he describes as a “gay metastasis” within the Russian Orthodox Church that caused his downfall.
On December 31, Kurayev was dismissed from the academy, the church’s top educational institution, which explained it was no longer willing to tolerate his “shocking statements” and his “scandalous and provocative” activities in the media and the blogosphere.
Kurayev says he is bracing for more retaliation.
“Anything could happen,” he told RFE/RL. “I could even be defrocked.”
Kurayev is a protégé of previous Russian Orthodox Patriarch Alexi II, who died in December 2008. He rejects speculation that the current head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, wants to silence him.
Instead, he blames his sacking on the “gay lobby” that he so virulently denounces and that, he warns, is rapidly consolidating its influence within the church.
“It’s a very powerful group of people, some of whom hold important posts, including in the synod,” he says. “What’s really sad is that they influence the church’s personnel policies. They appoint each other to vacant posts, and there are currently many vacancies.”
Surprised By Backlash
His dismissal has only emboldened Kurayev, who now launches almost daily attacks against this alleged network of homosexual clerics.
He has been using his blog to cite testimonials from men who recount their sexual encounters with Orthodox priests and bishops.
Kurayev is a popular man. His LiveJournal blog is Russia’s 37th most read and he has many supporters among churchgoers and clergymen.
He admits having “no recipe” for battling homosexual influence but nonetheless believes that his efforts to clean up the Russian Orthodox Church are overwhelmingly backed by clerics.
“I receive numerous letters and calls of support, mostly from priests but also from bishops. I understand that what I say reflects the opinion of the moral majority.”
Kurayev says what prompted him to launch his campaign against gay clerics was the patriarchate’s recent decision to fire a teacher accused of molesting students at Tatarstan’s Kazan Seminary.
Despite the risk, he admits he never expected the campaign to seriously backlash against him:
“I made a mistake,” he says. “I assumed the fact that the patriarchate sent a commission to the Kazan seminary and that, based on the commission’s findings, the rector who molested the seminarians was dismissed meant the patriarchate had finally decided to pay attention to this problem and wished to tackle it.
But I seem to have overestimated the patriarchate’s readiness to follow this path.” Copyright (c)2023 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty https://www.rferl.org/a/russia-orthodox-church-kurayev-gay-lobby/25225311.html
Excerpts from: “The gay lobby in the ROC has power and access to money. Interview with a priest who came out” by Varuzhan Sargsyan 05.03.2021, 16:12
“Archpriest Alexander Usatov is 42 years old, he is the former head of the spiritual and educational center of the Rostov Cathedral, head of the Educational Center of the Don Theological Seminary, curator of the department of religious education and catechesis of the Rostov-on-Don diocese. In the spring of 2020, under pressure, he was forced to leave the service, but did not name the reasons for this act then. In July last year, he left Russia and received refugee status in the Netherlands.
– Representatives of the gay lobby in the Russian Orthodox Church are not Sunday school teachers. These are people who have power and access to money. First of all – the hierarchs, as well as their assistants from the clergy. Here is the answer to the question about the “cover”: in the ROC they are concerned about their status in the face of secular society, so loud revelations are not to be expected. In this kingdom, everything is quiet and calm.
Patriarch Kirill was able to shake and in many cases destroy people’s faith in the Church. Many young and venerable priests were imbued with cynicism and disappointment. He personally destroyed the unity of the Orthodox world by disrupting the holding of the Ecumenical Council in 2016 in Greece. But we could witness the holding of the Ecumenical Council for the first time since the 8th century, but at the last moment Kirill refused to participate in it. Communion with the Greek churches is interrupted. Does anyone remember this church tragedy?
At the same time, I am glad that for so long he has been showing us the real face of the Russian Orthodox Church: feudal manners, contempt for science, the desire to punish dissidents, turning the church into a franchise. Under the former patriarch, many were blissfully ignorant of the real state of affairs. In this sense, Patriarch Kirill is the best!
Have you been offered gay connections in exchange for a promotion ? How common is this in the ROC?
“Personally, this fate has passed me by. But close friends from among the clergy told about such proposals many times. In addition, even at the service in the altar, the priests become witnesses of “family squabbles” between the elders and the younger, as well as the accomplices present. In fact, no one hides this. Everyone will understand their own… - Don’t you think that the ROC has merged with the authorities in recent years?
– In fact, the ROC is the government department for the Orthodox faith. Not one of the 350 bishops dares to denounce the lawlessness taking place in the country. Sergei Romanov was quickly defrocked only when he opposed the president. And before that, for many years he openly spread anti-Semitism and other strange ideas.
Recently, church hierarchs have begun to openly support the initiatives of the government, even when no one, it would seem, asked for it. I also noticed that the ideas that appeared in the internal documents of the ROC gradually after 2000 became state laws. For example, in them the Church condemned propaganda of homosexuality, and in 2013 the State Duma adopted a similar law establishing responsibility for “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations among minors.” (…) https://web.archive.org/web/20210305134314/https://mbk-news.appspot.com/suzhet/gej-lobbi-v-rpcz/ According to the article, Tikhon Shevkunov is “known as the confessor of Vladimir Putin.”
Meanwhile, Pokémon Go blogger sent to jail:
Ruslan Sokolovsky playing Pokemon in Church
Russian Prosecutors Call for 3 1/2 year Prison Sentence for Playing Pokemon Go in Orthodox Church; Verdict May 11th
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