Tuesday, March 14, 2017

RUSSIA : Political and religious lacrimations in Putin's Russia

The phenomenon of lacrimating statues of saints and images is well known in the history of the Church, both in the East and in the West, and has created many important devotions, building sanctuaries, causing conversions and popular manifestations of faith . 

In Russia this phenomenon has always had most remarkable proportions more so than the rest of the Christian world, both Catholic and Orthodox, attributing a special importance to phenomenon of crying images and of the miraculous liquid oozing from the bones of the saints (the famous "Manna of St. Nicola "which is collected from the remains of the saint of Bari and much sought after by the Russians as an object of devotion).
In the new post-atheist Russia, this miraculous phenomenon has been considered one of the main signs of divine benevolence for the "religious revival" of Russia: the tears of ancient icons are evidence of divine consolation for decades of persecution, and of new icons painted for rebuilt churches, or new constructions, are worth even more as a sign of enthusiasm for the faith that is reborn. 

It happens so often that the faithful, who stop to pray before the icons according to the Orthodox custom, notice the signs and traces of this "liquid" event and of material divine grace, and their new churches and new parishes consider confirmation of divine tears almost indispensable for their inauguration.
This supernatural approval now seems to extend not only to devotion and religious practice itself, but even to the "holy affairs" of Russian politics in recent years, undertaken to defend their national pride in the name of the faith and mission of the Russia in a world that is increasingly abandoned to moral degradation, social and economic. 

This mission reached its peak in the recent "re-conquest" of the Crimea, the Russian people’s holy land and its millennial Christianity, where Prince Vladimir the Great accepted the Christian faith and then gifted it to his people, baptizing it in the waters of Dnepr river. 

Again in the Crimea, in a chapel of Simferopol dedicated to the imperial family members murdered by the Bolsheviks in 1918, the divine blessing has materialized in the tears of the bust of the holy Emperor Nicholas II, canonized in great synod of 2000 after the end of communism.
The news on March 6 has as an eyewitness, a well-known character in the news in recent years, the former prosecutor of the Crimea and now deputy of the State Duma Natalja Poklonskaja. 

The woman magistrate, thirty very beautiful, was a symbol of the annexation of the Crimea to Russia, in the context of the conflict with Ukraine which is still under way: she resigned from office in February 2014 a, in opposition the "Ukrainian fascists" who had imposed a state of war, and the following May, after the annexation, was appointed by Putin the Attorney general of the new Russian Crimea. 

In these two years she has been further noted for having arrested and outlawed Tatar Russian opposition representatives in the region administration, only to resign in 2016 following election to the State Duma, as a deputy of the party of Putin " United Russia ".  
As s deputy, the Poklonskaja again came to public attention in October 2016 with a parliamentary appeal and later, to the Prosecutor against the film "Matilda", which tells of the alleged liaison between the young Nikolai Romanov, the future Tsar, with the ballerina Matilda Kshesinskaja. 

The parliamentarian defended the complaints of the ultra-nationalist movement called "Tsarskij Krest" ( "Imperial Cross"), which accused the director Alexei Uchitel of representing "a distortion of historical events, an anti-Russian provocation and anti-religious in 'sphere of culture. "

When the deputy and former prosecutor thus witnessed the tsar’s tears in Simferopol, it was seen as a confirmation of the importance of defending the faith and the homeland against internal and external enemies, not only with the censorship of unpatriotic films, but with even more radical control measures of the entire population, as many have hoped and which are also being put into practice, given the intensification of searches and seizures in recent days, also in private apartments.
The affair took on contours of national interest, and the same Orthodox Church dealt directly with the matter. A panel of five priests of the Diocese of Simferopol and Crimea examined the bust of Nicholas II in Simferopol, and came to the conclusion that at present the monument is not shedding tears. 

"At the time of the visit to the chapel of the Imperial martyrs, the commission found no traces of lacrimation of the bronze bust of the Tsar-Martyr Nicholas II and icons of the chapel," said the 7 March statement from the diocese. Along with this, the committee recommended a priest continue observing the chapel, and "in the case of appearance of traces of tearing, to immediately notify the ordinary bishop and the Committee". 

The bust of Nicholas II was examined by the Archmandrite Kallinik (Chernyshev), by proto priest Nikolaj Dotsenko and priests Bogdan Severin, Shimon and Ioann Ioann Pristanskij.
The fact of the tearing of the statue had been communicated by Poklonskaja on television, on the patriotic channel "Tsargrad" ( "Imperial City"). It referred also to the staff of the General Prosecutor of Crimea who presided until recently. 

The words of the deputy were confirmed by the spiritual father of the chapel: in his own words, not only the bust of the Tsar wept, but also many adjacent icons. The head of the Synodal Commission for the canonizations of saints of the Moscow Patriarchate, Bishop Pankratij, proposed to carry out an investigation. "We do not want to criticize the young deputy, still inexperienced in politics, and we should not give importance to the ungodly braggarts who comment on the network: the coffin straightens the hunchback," noted the bishop using a well-known Russian proverb, and continued referring negatively even to the "well-educated intellectuals and Orthodox theologians, to whom the very idea of ​​tearing causes sarcastic giggles".
The bishop recalled that history remembers many cases of lacrimations, often accompanied by healings, claiming he was himself a witness to the tearing of an icon of Nicholas II, that had been brought to the monastery of Valaam, of which he was the superior. The icon tears were overflowed outside the board that covered it, and poured on the ground, according to the account of Bishop Pankratij: "When we carried the icon into the church, we placed it on the appropriate pulpit in front of the ancient icon of the Savior, next to the right column. At that moment the crowd that filled the church began to exclaim with wonder and fidget: right before their eyes, from the right hand raised in blessing on the ancient image of Christ began to flow a sweet fragrance liquid, and some of its trickles fell onto the ground. a similar phenomenon was repeated in the hermitage of Smolenskij monastery, historically linked to the Romanov imperial family, because until 1940 the Empress Aleksandra’s "jewels were kept in hiding in the same chapel, concludes the testimony of the bishop.

On the wings of the miraculous event in Simferopol, came an even more remarkable statement: in a northern city of Russia Lenin himself would have wept. 

The mayor of Svetogorsk, in the Vyborg region on the border with Finland,  Sergei Davydov, announced March 7 that the statue of Vladimir Ilich Lenin, which stands on the Red Square of the town wept. 

"I went this morning to the square, and I saw a barely noticeable change on the face of our old guide. I approached and I realized that a tear ran from Ilich’s face. I was certain it was not rain drops. Then I realized that even the monument of Lenin wept "said the head of the city administration. In the words of Davydov, in Russia "real miracles are happening. I do not know if the prodigies exceed the boundaries, but if I were the Finns I would be worried. I do not care if someone thinks that Lenin did not cry, and teases the Poklonskaja ". 

The mayor of Svetogorsk is known for his extravagant claims; recently he argued that there is not a single homosexual in his city.

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