Larisa Bravitskaya, actress, scriptwriter
These considerations prompted me to a poll that accidentally came across in social networks:
“With what feelings and thoughts will you cross the threshold of the temple after quarantine has been lifted?”
I must say that the answers under this survey made me think a lot.
The overwhelming majority replied that nothing bad had happened, that we were sitting at home, like Mary of Egypt, watching online services, everything was convenient, understandable, and they added that it would be nice to leave the Liturgy online in the future.
Someone replied that the church no longer foot, disappointed in the priests.
Still others will run away with joy, but this pause was useful for them to comprehend how they did not appreciate what they had so easily.
But everyone agreed that they were doing the right thing, that they had to sit at home and take care of the priests.
And most importantly, commentators conclude that those priests are right who urge us not to go to church and claim that it was God who expelled us from there for our sins.
But there were two or three dissenters among the respondents who argued that it was impossible to close churches, that the main thing in the church was the Sacrament of the Eucharist, which could not be received on-line. It was on this bunch of "dense obscurantists, egoists, patients with Orthodoxy of the brain" that all the anger of "sitting at home" fell.
Well, let's reason. Still, the head was given to us not only to have it and to wear hairstyles on it, but also to think and analyze.
Moreover, according to Abba Isaac, "God imputes virtue with prudence".
And all those sitting at home sincerely believe that they are doing a good deed, humble themselves and endure in the name of the health of those around them.
So, let's start with Mary of Egypt. It is impossible to imagine a more blasphemous comparison with this unique, one-of-a-kind Saint, who spent alone in the desert under the scorching sun in strict fasting and penitent prayers for 47 years.
It’s even disgusting to argue about cynicism comparing people sitting on TVs and computers with Mary of Egypt.
Moreover, our “Egyptian Marys” do not sit home without haste, but regularly roam to shops, pharmacies, and travel by public transport.
Therefore, the question of "staying at home" refers exclusively and only to visiting temples and caring specifically for priests, these soldiers, called up to serve for the salvation of human souls. Priests every day as in war. Strange care for the warriors of Christ and a complete lack of care, for example, for doctors who are constantly being consulted for help, or for the same sellers or couriers.
Now much is becoming clear, understandable, obvious. Lies, untruths, artificial hysteria and the participation of many famous characters in this amazing scam called coronavirus are revealed.
The most painful thing for me is the fact that some priests are involved in this process.
Why did Bishop Pitirim (Tvorogov) need to escalate the situation and deliberately tell a lie, namely, that the infections in the Lavra came from parishioners who, like demons, were eager for service on Good Friday, while cursing and cursing?
And further, that the governor of the Lavra, Bishop Paramon, was forced to let these rabid, infectious monks and novices go.
I contacted Lavra. There was nothing of the kind. On Passion Sedmitsa from 5.00 to 9.00 no one was allowed into the Lavra. As a result, 5-6 people gathered at the gate, stood silently, without any abuse. At 9 am, the commandant gave the command to open the gate. Before Easter, the Lavra was open. After Easter closed. And people silently parted after the Easter service. There were no demands and worries.
The situation with the infection of Bishop Pitirim himself is very strange. He reported that he was seriously ill and was in intensive care, he was healed in three days, cut his beard and went to visit the infected priests.
Knowing our media, the fact that the healed priest is visiting the infectious brothers would not have been left unattended. Perhaps the bishop was counting on such a PR, but even the eager for any hype media did not believe in it.
But still at Strastnaya, the same Bishop Pitirim in an interview with Tsargrad said (I quote): “Easter service is unthinkable without believers, you have to go to churches! Let us stand on the street, but Easter should not be on TV. Can the Victor of death, Christ, not be able to defeat the microscopic mad molecule on the day of his glorious Resurrection? Easter should be a triumph over fear, not a cowardly flight".
However, it was a cowardly escape. And after all, what is interesting, there were absolutely no obvious reasons to close the temples! None!
All the monasteries and churches had bought all the disinfection means required by the sanitary doctor, disposable dishes, etc. Spent, by the way, a lot of church funds. And all so that in the night, on the eve of Passion, to receive a circular on the closure of churches.
Today, churches are in a financial hole. There is nothing to pay salaries to priests, employees, choir, taxes, utilities. The diocesan tax from the churches, as far as I know, has not been lifted either.
Another priest, apparently also wanting to become famous, is Father George Maximov. But how differently relates to his conviction, neither more nor less than Nikita Mikhalkov? Before this episode, I personally did not know about this priest. Now I know. And with sadness, I must admit that in pursuit of cheap PR on behalf of a famous filmmaker, denying and questioning everything that he said in his own author's program “Besogon. Who has the state in his pocket? ”, Father George himself did not notice how he came out in support of a monstrous project called“ Smart City - 2030 ”, published on the official website of the Moscow Government.
In this project, in black and white, for example, it is written about the use of nanotechnology in medicine, the creation of artificial intelligence, the gradual transformation of humans into bio-robots, etc.
As Ambrose Optinsky used to say, "when we make the porridge, then we will see what we are doing."
And porridge began to brew earlier, after the 1000th anniversary of the Baptism of Russia, when the people poured into the Church.
One priest told me that at that time he baptized 200 people a day. The state began to return to the Russian Orthodox Church temples and monasteries. A large flow of people wishing to study at seminaries and Theological Academies began. Among the sincerely believing youths, there were also random ones, for example, those who mowed down from the Army, hiding from the Bodies, in short, they were different. They took everyone. Ordained too.
According to my observations, it was among the priests, the call of the 90s and later, and exclamations were heard for the closure of churches. Unlike the conservative Fathers who persecuted 70-80s.
It was from the lips of the priests of the "perestroika period", including Father George Maximov and Bishop Pitirim (Tvorogov), that all of us laymen were sentenced. It turns out that we laypeople are to blame for the fact that God closed the temples. We have sinned so much lately that the Lord no longer wants to see us.
You can, of course, obey these priests, be horrified and readily sit down at home at the computers, having preliminarily lit a candle on the windowsill - a symbol of Easter 2020, proposed in exchange for real worship.
And you can think, take the Gospel in your hands and read “Everything that the Father gives Me will come to Me; and he that cometh unto me I will not cast out” (Gospel of John 6:37)
With infections in monasteries and temples - a separate story, requiring reflection, coverage and a thorough investigation. But one indisputable fact is already evident:
infections were exclusively in those monasteries and churches where conservative priests opposed closed doors at Easter. It was they, these priests, faithful to their pastoral ministry, who took the brunt of the infections.
What, God also punished them for not wanting to close the churches? Because we cared about us, our spiritual children, wishing, on this most important holiday for the whole Orthodox world, on the Resurrection of Christ, not to deprive us of the possibility of repentance and joy from the communion of the Holy Gifts?
Easter online, Easter without parishioners quarreled all of us and split the community. And this, too, should be familiar to the sensible.
Where there is a quarrel, there is no God. Because God's Providence is aimed at preserving and developing the world, He turns everything for good, aimed at the salvation of all mankind and each person individually. And here we cannot do without a personal presence in the church, repentance, and the Sacrament.
On the Ascension Day, the State Duma promises to open churches. But not everyone will return to church. Someone liked to pray at home, conveniently, and the Patriarch himself blessed.
Someone will continue to be afraid of infections, because even before Easter, the media had already escalated that the whole infection was concentrated in the temples.
And someone, previously fascinated only by the external beauty of worship, was disappointed in the Church due to the pandemic.
The faithful will come, suddenly finding themselves on opposite sides of the barricades.
One of us, “sitters,” furious exposers of those who thought differently and, horror, despite the ban, secretly visited churches; while others, their overwhelming minority, justified themselves, trying to defend themselves.
We will come and meet.
And we will be reconciled. We are simply obliged to reconcile with each other, and on the Ascension Day to offer our repentance for cowardice, thoughtless humility without prudence and mortification of faith.
“Come unto me all who are weary and burdened, and I will reassure you”.
The opinions of the authors of "Novye Izvestia" may not coincide with the position of the publisher and are published in the manner of public discussion. Obviously, closed churches against the backdrop of working construction markets, industrial enterprises and government offices raise questions among believers. However, there are no clear answers to them yet.