Sunday, 8 May 2016
This is on the territory of St Ivan Rilski Monastery in Bulgaria, one of the oldest operating monasteries in the Balkans (founded in the 10th century). St Ivan Rilski, the first Bulgarian monk founded it; it’s so old that it predates the Baptism of Russia in 988. It has been in continuous operation since its foundation, although the oldest extant buildings date from the 14th century. The monastery is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This is why so much convert vapouring on the internet is so shallow, vacuous, and without any merit whatsoever. They have none of the grounding and rootedness found in holy places such as Rila… you can see the vapid shallowness in Rod Dreher, Maximos Weimar, Josiah Trenham, Patrick Reardon, and those who ape them… you can see the barely hidden heterodoxy just popping out of all their pores. Keep the rootedness of real Holy Orthodoxy uppermost in your mind… the Church’s focus is NOT on homosexuality and abortion… the Church does NOT bless rightwing politics at all… the Church blesses the State and its mission in the world; it always has, it still does, and it always will (it does NOT bless the anti-state “libertarian” rants of American “conservatives”). The Church believes that the love of money is the root of the worst evils… “conservatism” blesses the love of money… sadly, many konvertsy line up behind “conservatism”, not the Church.
Bite the coin… there be counterfeits about… long beards and self-righteous moralising do NOT equal holiness… keep the image of the truly righteous and holy always in your soul… we live in parlous times.
8 May 2016. Our Great Russian Motherland: Petropavlovsk Fortress (Zayachy Island. Federal City of St Petersburg. Northwestern Federal DIstrict)
The Petropavlovsk Fortress (Петропа́вская кре́пость: Petropavlovskaya Krepost) is the original citadel of St Petersburg, founded by Tsar Pyotr I Alekseyevich Veliki on 16/27 May 1703, and built to the designs of Domenico Trezzini from 1706-40. In the early 20th century, the tsarist government still used it as a prison. During the February Revolution, on 27 February/12 March, rebel troops stormed it and freed the prisoners, replacing them with arrested tsarist officials. During the opening of the October Revolution, on 25 October/7 November, the cruiser Avrora fired on the island, but only registered two hits. Nevertheless, the fort quickly surrendered to the Bolsheviks. in 1924, it became part of the State Museum of St Petersburg History. Most graves of Russian rulers from Pyotr I Alekseyevich Veliki to Aleksandr III Aleksandrovich (except for Pyotr II Alekseyevich and Ivan VI Antonovich) are in the Petropavlovsk Cathedral, within the fortress battlements. In 1998, the bodies of the family and entourage of Tsar St Nikolai II Aleksandrovich were laid to rest in one of the cathedral’s chapels.
8 May 2016. Our Great Russian Motherland: Izmailovsky Kremlin (Izmailovo Raion. Eastern Administrative Okrug. Federal City of Moscow. Central Federal District)
This isn’t ancient at all; it’s actually a quite-recent (built in the 1990s) cultural and entertainment complex. It’s in a pseudo-Byzantine style, based loosely on what Russian palaces looked like in pre-Petrine times, but more inspired by Russian fairy tales. Many use the complex for civil weddings as it has a wedding palace, a restaurant, and bars. However, it’s also an amusement park/open-air museum for children on the theme of “Old Russia”. There’s a replica pre-Revolutionary rural wooden Russian church, but people don’t use it for weddings. To wrap it up, it has a large shopping area that sells the usual sort of tchotchkes. All in all, a fun place to take the family on a weekend or to have one’s wedding (even if one has a church wedding, like most of Europe, one has to have a civil ceremony, too, or the marriage isn’t legit in the eyes of the state).