The last lover of the Empress – Іван Корсак

New empress Catherine freed the nobility from compulsory state service, but at the same time she forgot to free peasants who served them. She decided to subordinate completely the Orthodox Church to the public interests. Nobody resisted, but St. Arceniy. Probably, he never betrayed that he believed in. The case took a political turn and the saint metropolitan of Rostov was defrocked and sent into exile to Arkhangelsk region. It was in 1763, and then his independence of mind and behavior moved the empress to do more severely with him. He was hopelessly imprisoned in the fortress tower in Tallinn and died from hunger when they stopped his feeding. Martyr Arceniy was never afraid of work and hardship, he was at the height of the throne of metropolitan of Rostov, he could find force and desire to repeat feat of the ancient hermits and holy fools. He was sunk into political obscurity in Russian Empire, and he was posthumously restored to the rank of metropolitan of Rostov at the Local Council of the Russian Church in 1917-18, and at the same Council in 2000 he was sainted. So we see that besides heavenly glory, St. Arceniy left a significant mark in history and culture of the ancient and sacred Rostov.

Chapel dedicated to St. Arceniy is situated in Monastery of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Great Rostov. This day marks 235 years since the righteous death of a father confessor St. Arceniy Matsievich, metropolitan of Rostov.”

***

Metropolitan Hilarion (Ogienko):

State Moscow power, basically the highest authority, beginning from Peter I, began to persecute cruelly the Orthodox Faith and Church, both Russian and Ukrainian, to persecute openly and consciously. State power was seized by Germans-Protestants who did their best to suppress Orthodoxy.

Orthodox Church was falling and nobody could protect it… St. Dimitriy Tuptalo, metropolitan of Rostov died in 1709, so, who would protect further?

But there was a defender who shouted in a loud voice for all of Ukraine and for all of Russia, and stood up for the Orthodox Church.

It was metropolitan of Rostov Arceniy Matsievich, who came from Volyn, one of successors of St. Dimitriy Tuptalo on Department of Rostov.

The Church seemed to be falling and nobody could protect it. But it just seemed. Because God’s Church is immortal and hell forces can’t win It.

“While the Spirit of Grace is with the Church (and It will be with true Church until the end of the world), whatever the Zeitgeist is, zealots of the Spirit of Christ will always be in the Church!” – archbishop of Chernigov Philaret Gumilevsky wrote.

Metropolitan Arceniy Matsievich was such zealot of the Spirit of Christ.

Higher secular Russian power had been oppressing Orthodox Church sarcastically in XVIII, strongly humiliating It. Basically it was a German-Protestant power which ridiculed the Orthodox faith, despised its rites. During this period Russian power was destroying the freedom of Christ in the Church gradually, step by step, it consistently subordinated the Church to a secular power, bcause its head had been Russian czar since the time of Peter I. And Orthodox Church in Russia became the department of professions in Home Office.

Faith itself among the Russian intelligentsia was destroyed in the bud, and Russian intelligentsia became become if not an atheist, then quite indifferent to the Church. Moreover, a deep disrespect to clergy originated in Russia, ridicule as a class. Ridicule of Priest began in literature, it had never stopped in Russia.

During the reign of Catherine II, German-Protestant, even an atheist, the clergy was struck a blow financially, it was subordinated to mercy of parishioners. They took away the Church possessions, and Clergy became mendicant. Catherine II deliberately stroke a killing blow at the credibility of the Clergy and made it beggar.

Sources of Russian Communism are laid down in church politics of czars and czarinas of XVII century – they prepared fertile soil in Russia for the perception of communism.

And metropolitan-Ukrainian Arceniy Matsievich appeared as a great spiritual knight, confessor martyr in Orthodox Church of that time. He began a courageous struggle against the church communism propagated by the ruling elite in Russia. Metropolitan Arceniy Matsievich devoted his entire life to move lofty Ideals of Ukrainian Orthodox Church to Moscow Church. He wasn’t able to do this, because dark forces in Russia proved to be stronger …

And Metropolitan disappeared on his glorious way, being immured alive in prison. Czarina Catherine destroyed the Metropolitan and Confessor – and she was shouting with laughter. Her laugh is heard today in the laugh of Communists…

Reader will learn about it from my book.

Work of Ukrainian Hierarchs of the Russian Church is a great and hard work, it is not developed in Ukrainian literature. But we have to know it, and I want to show it in detail on the example of Metropolitan Arceniy.

GLOSSARY

Ataman (Kosh Otaman) – was a commander title of the Ukrainian People’s Army, Cossack, and Haidamak leaders, who were in essence the Cossacks. At the end of the sixteenth century, the commanders of the Zaporizhian Cossacks were called Koshovyi Otaman or Hetmans.

Cossack – a member of a national group of South Russia, famous as horsemen and cavalrymen. The descendants of Russian and Ukrainian serfs, the Cossacks settled on the steppes (16th c.), establishing the Ukraine as a separate state. The word Cossack means a free and independent man. Cossacks were first mentioned in writing in 1492. In the sixteenth century the Cossacks united in a single military organization. The first fortifications were built on Mala Khortytsia Island, in the lower reachers of the Dnieper, behind the rapids, where the rocky river bed made navigation hard and risky. Hence, the name “Zaporizhya” (“Beyond-the-Rapids”).

Hetman was the title of the second-highest military commander (after the monarch) in 15th- to 18th-century Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, which together, from 1569 to 1795, comprised the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, or Rzeczpospolita.

“Hetman” was also the highest military office, and head of state, in Ukraine’s Cossack Hetmanate. The title was used by Ukraine’s Cossacks from the 16th century, and by the Czechs (hejtman) in Bohemia from the Hussite Wars (15th century) on. Hejtman is today the term for the elected governor of a Czech region (kraj).

In 1572, the hetman was a commander of the Registered Cossack Army of the Rzecz Pospolita too. From 1648, the start of Bohdan Khmelnytsky’s uprising, a hetman was the head of the whole Ukrainian State – Hetmanshchyna. Although they were elected, Ukrainian Hetmans had very broad powers and acted as heads of the Cossack state, their supreme military commanders, and top legislators (by issuing administrative decrees).

After the split of Ukraine along the Dnieper River by the 1667 Polish-Russian Treaty of Andrusovo, Ukrainian Cossacks (and Cossack Hetmans) became known as Left-bank Cossacks (of the Cossack Hetmanate) and Right-bank Cossacks.

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