41 Testimonies: on Sergianism and the "ecclesial" status of the Soviet Church

"Thus, You [the Sergianists] are nothing other than a continuation of the so-called "Renovationist' (Living Church) movement, only in a more refined and very dangerous form..."

"The secret Catacomb Church of the wilderness has anathematized the 'Sergianists' and those with them."

(St. Maxim, Bishop of Serpukhov)


St. Dimitry, Archbishop of Gdov wrote concerning the Sergianists as "apostates from the Christian Faith". 

Concerning Metropolitan Sergius himself he wrote that he sinned "not only against the canonical order of the Church, but also dogmatically against her person (blaspheming the sanctity of the exploit of her confessors by casting doubt on the purity of their Christian convictions, as if they were mixed up with politics), against her conciliarity (by his and his Synod's act of coercion), against her apostolicity (by subjecting the unity—with Metropolitan Peter, who did not give Metropolitan Sergius authorization for his latest acts, beginning with the epistle (Declaration) of July 16|29, 1927)."


"We will not give the Church as a sacrifice over to the mercy of betrayers and foul politicians and agents of atheism and destruction. And by this protest we do not cut ourselves off from Her, but we cut away, and will never go away from the bosom of the true Orthodox Church, but those who are not with us and for us, but against us, we consider Her enemies, betrayers, and murderers. It is not we who go into schism by not submitting to Metropolitan Sergius, but rather you who are obedient to him go with him into the abyss of the Church's condemnation..."

"Metropolitan Sergius has shown himself to be such a schismatic..."

"The defenders of Sergius say that the canons allow one to separate oneself from a bishop only for heresy which has been condemned by a council. Against this one may reply that the deeds of Metropolitan Sergius may be sufficiently placed in this category as well, if one has in view such an open violation by him of the freedom and dignity of the Church, One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic.

    But beyond this, the canons themselves could not foresee many things. And can one dispute that it is even worse and more harmful than any heresy when one plunges a knife into the Church's very heart—Her freedom and dignity? Which is more harmful—a heretic or a murderer (of the Church)?"

(St. Joseph, Metropolitan of Peterograd)


"You know that without unity there is no salvation.  The organism of the Church is one: Christ is the Head of the Church; the mouth, eyes, hands, and feet are pastors and teachers, the organs of the Church; and the body of the Church is all who believe in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The whole body moves with one spirit and is animated by one heart.  A part of the body which is not nourished by the heart's blood falls away and perishes. Thus before our own eyes did the Renovationists fall away from the Church; they did not wish to be in communion with the primary person in the Church, the Most Holy Patriarch, and now they are gradually rotting away, like some useless hand or foot that has been cut off and thrown on the ground.

After the Renovationists of the 'Living Church' it was the "Autocephalists"—the followers of Archbishop Gregory of Ekaterinburg (Gregorians), who did not acknowledge the Locum Tenens Metropolitan Peter — who renounced the unity of the Church.  And now the unity of the Church has been broken by Metropolitan Sergius, the Substitute of Metropolitan Peter...

... he [Sergius] has made use of deceit, calling his Synod Orthodox and Patriarchal, while in reality its organization is a trampling down of the Church's canons... What the Renovationists and the Gregorians could not succeed in doing — what Metropolitan Sergius very cunningly did: bound the Church to the civil authority, expressing spiritual submission to it."

(St. Hierotheus, Bishop of Veliky Ustiug)


"Having mixed into one, in the great holy Mystery of the Eucharist, contrary to the word of God, "the faithful with the unbelievers" (2 Cor. 6:14-18), the Holy Church and her enemies fighting her to death, the Metropolitan by this blasphemy violates the prayerful meaning of the great Mystery and destroys its grace-filled meaning for the eternal salvation of the souls of Orthodox believers. Hence, worship becomes not just graceless, due to the gracelessness of the priest, but it becomes an abomination in the eyes of God, and therefore the one who does and participates in it is subject to deep condemnation.

Being in all his activity an anti-church heretic, as transforming the Holy Orthodox Church from the house of the grace-filled salvation of believers into a graceless, carnal organization deprived of the spirit of life, Metropolitan Sergius has at the same time, through his conscious renunciation of the truth and in his mindless betrayal of Christ, become an open apostate from God the Truth." 

"It is precisely in his declaration that Metropolitan Sergius as it were confessed, and in his deeds is carrying out a lawless merging of that which is God’s with that which is Caesar’s, or rather, that which is Christ’s with that which is Antichrist’s, which is a dogmatic sin against the Church and is defined as the sin of apostasy.”

(St. Victor, Bishop of Vyatka)


"I regard that Met. Sergius usurped authority, inflicted the schism, fell into heresy and deviated from the Confession of Orthodoxy...

Met. Sergius distorted the Church’s doctrine on Salvation by finding salvation purely in the visible organization of the Church, thereby rejecting the inner power of God’s Grace, by which the Church can exist in the wilderness.

Apostasy flows from the heretical teachings of Met. Sergius about salvation, and about the Church as an earthly institution, with which it is permissible to yield to any compromise, which distorts the very call of Christ to confess the Christian Faith, so He rebuked Peter, saying: 'Get behind me satan...'

In refusing Christ’s call to confess the Faith, Met. Sergius, blasphemed against the Church, and in Her person - against the Confessors, as well dissipating the Church and blaspheming against the Holy Spirit...

We, by the grace of God given to us from our Lord Jesus Christ, declare that Met. Sergius violated the purity of the Orthodox Faith: corrupted the dogma on salvation and of the Church, perpetrated the schism and pronounced blasphemy on Christ’s Church and Her Confessors. As for fragmenting the Church and blaspheming against the Holy Spirit, we declare that Met. Sergius is deprived of prayerful communion with us and all Orthodox Bishops of the Russian Church: we commit him to a Church trial with a prohibition to conduct Church Services. Bishops of like thought with Met. Sergius are accepted by us into prayerful and canonical communion, according to the rite used to reconcile 'Renovationists'..."

(St. Seraphim, Archbishop of Uglich)


"... to our great distress we have discovered in the latest actions of Metropolitan Sergius of Nizhegorod, who has returned to his duties as Substitute of the Patriarchal Locum Tenens, a rapid descent towards renovationism...

By his actions against the spirit of Orthodoxy, Metropolitan Sergius has torn himself away from unity with the Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church and has forfeited the right of presidency in the Russian Church."

(St. Alexy, Bishop of Voronezh)


"Metropolitan Sergius is a total slave, an obedient instrument in the hands of persons well-known to us, the representatives of separate Soviet institutions, and he has totally lost his moral-church authority, despite the word of the Apostle (II Tim. 2:15); because, behind every one even of his ecclesiastical orders, for us who are frightened and suspicious, there is to be seen an instigation from 'those who are without.'  Besides this, our church administrative apparatus is placed in an impermissible nearness to the police organs in the Soviet government, something there has never been in the history of the Church and which cannot be tolerated.  In a word, such a degradation and spitting upon the holy Church has never yet endured...

The church can be subjected to outward misfortunes, to persecutions and to difficult situations; but it cannot renounce its spiritual freedom and dignity.  On the contrary, in misfortunes it shines yet more within, and is constantly renewed. (II Cor. 4:16-17).  Such is the law of spiritual life, both of the individual Christian and of the whole Church of Christ; and for this reason we understand bonds and sorrows as the mercy of God, for the Lord crowns His faithful slaves for them (II Cor. 4:17).  

But the Church will never agree to the degradation of the Holy Church, to the trampling upon its inward freedom.  One cannot give over the freedom of the Church and its dignity to be trampled upon, "only that they may not be persecuted for the Cross of Christ (Gal. 6:12)," in the words of the Apostle.

The legalization which Metropolitan Sergius and his Synod are striving to conduct is totally unacceptable and impossible... it is a criminal act, for it sells the freedom of the Church's inward life and blasphemously degrades her sanctity and dignity."

(From the Epistle of Sts. Pachomius, Archbishop of Chernigov - pictured above - and Averky, Archbishop of Volhynia and Zhitomir - pictured to the left. At the time of this Epistle the Saints, who were brothers according to the flesh, discouraged any breaking of communion with Metropolitan Sergius. They later changed this stance and joined the Russian Orthodox Catacomb Church. After this occurred St. Pachomius recognized St. Cyril of Kazan as head of the Church.)


"I am breaking off canonical and prayerful communion with You [Sergius] ... as well as with everyone who is in canonical communion with You; and I no longer consider You the Substitute of the Locum Tenens of the Patriarchal Throne...

You are placing the Church in that same dependence on the government in which the first two 'Renovations' wished to place it, in defiance of the holy canons of the Church and the decrees of the civil authority itself.

Both the 'Living Church,' which seized the authority of the Patriarch, and 'Gregorianism,' which seized the authority of the Locum Tenens, and now You, who have abused the latter's trust - are all doing the same general anti-ecclesiastical, renovationist work; but You are the founder of the most dangerous of its forms, because while renouncing ecclesiastical freedom, at the same time You preserve the fiction of canonicity and Orthodoxy. This is worse than the violation of separate canons.

I am not creating a new schism, and I do not break the unity of the Church; I go away from and I lead my flock out of a subtle renovationist trap..."

(St. Valentin Sventitsky. For information concerning the fictional story of his "repentance"
please see: We are being lied to! Four Saints - Four falsified Lives (catacombhistory.blogspot.com))


St. Damascene, Bishop of Glukhov writes to a certain Sergianist priest-monk:

"I had pointed out the great sin of Sergianist lawlessness ... after all this, you can have no grounds of justification, and by remaining in communion with the Sergianists you become a participant in their lawlessness.

You have assumed a greater sin upon yourself, for you continue using your former authority to keep those, who doubting their Orthodoxy turn to you for advice, in the Sergian lawlessness.

In denying you my blessing, I summon you to God’s judgment..."


"... just as with everything akin to Renovationism, we cannot acknowledge the church administration which has been renovated by Metropolitan Sergius as our Orthodox administration coming by right of succession from His Holiness, Patriarch Tikhon...

But the Mysteries performed by Sergianists who are correctly ordained and not prohibited to serve as priests, are undoubtedly saving Mysteries for those who receive them with faith, in simplicity, without deliberations and doubts concerning their efficacy, and who do not even suspect anything incorrect in the Sergianist order of the Church.  

But at the same time they serve for judgment and condemnation for the very performers of them and for those who approach them well understanding the untruth that exists in Sergianism, and by their lack of opposition to it reveal a criminal indifference towards the mocking of the Church.  This is why it is essential for an Orthodox Bishop or priest to refrain from communioin with Sergianists in prayer.  The same thing is essential for laymen who have a conscious attitude to all the details of church life."

The above quote is from a 1934 Epistle of St. Cyril. He was to later "harden" in his position as he gained more accurate knowledge concerning the Sergian Apostasy. Thus in his last known Testament on Sergianism he wrote:

"With regard to your perplexities concerning Sergianism, I can say that the very same questions in almost the same form were addressed to me from Kazan ten years ago, and then I replied affirmatively to them, because I considered everything that Metropolitan Sergius had done as a mistake which he himself was conscious of and wished to correct. Moreover, among our ordinary flock there were many people who had not investigated what had happened, and it was impossible to demand from them a decisive and active condemnation of the events.

Since then much water has flowed under the bridge. The expectations that Metropolitan Sergius would correct himself have not been justified, but there has been enough time for the formerly ignorant members of the Church, enough incentive and enough opportunity to investigate what has happened; and very many have both investigated and understood that Metropolitan Sergius is departing from that Orthodox Church which the Holy Patriarch Tikhon entrusted to us to guard, and consequently there can be no part or lot with him for the Orthodox.

The recent events have finally made clear the renovationist nature of Sergianism. We cannot know whether those believers who remain in Sergianism will be saved, because the work of eternal Salvation is a work of the mercy and grace of God. But for those who see and feel the unrighteousness of Sergianism (those are your questions) it would be unforgivable craftiness to close one's eyes to this unrighteousness and seek there for the satisfaction of one's spiritual needs when one's conscience doubts in the possibility of receiving such satisfaction. Everything which is not of faith is sin."


Speaking of the Sergianists St. Barlaam, Bishop of Maikop states that they are "even ‘praying for’, them [the Bolsheviks] in their churches during the offering of the Bloodless Sacrifice at the Holy Liturgy. In this way has the union of the antichrist with the church of the evil-doers been sealed. The God-fighters have given Metropolitan Sergius a place in their state, for which Metropolitan Sergius has given the God-fighters a place in the holy of holies, implanting the abomination of desolation in the holy place...

The commemoration in church of the (God-fighting) authorities outrages the feelings of believers. The Bolsheviks know this well and want to outrage the holy things and their venerators, evidently forcing Metropolitan Sergius himself to do the same, that is, to outrage the holiness of our Divine services… All those who have refused to obey this order have been accused of counter-revolution. V. Soloviev talks in his ‘Three Conversations’ of an ecumenical cathedral in which the Antichrist offers all the hierarchs his protection and privileges, for which obedience to himself is demanded. Almost all the representatives of the clergy agree to receive these privileges and recognise him as their head. This is very similar to the position of the present-day renovationists, and the sergianists welcome and pray for the antichrist, for his benefits and promises..."


"Such is the opinion of the false head of the false patriarchal church Metropolitan Sergius. Who, after all this, can recognize him as their head? For whom will this false head remain as such, in spite of his betrayal of Christ? Imagine, readers - they recognize him, many recognize him!... They curse him, but recognize him as their 'canonical' head. As if it were better to sit in hell with such a canonical head than without any head at all... All of the followers of the lying Metropolitan Sergius are themselves filled to overflowing with lies and cunning and have fallen away from the truth of Christ - they have fallen away from the Church of Christ. The Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church is in some other place, but not with Metropolitan Sergius and not with his 'Synod'...

The Holy Church will recall the sins of Sergius and his co-strugglers with horror, placing his name next to the names of the ecumenical false-patriarchs - Nestorius, Dioscurus and the other terrible traitors against Orthodoxy. When the hierarch Athanasius of Alexandria was expelled from his see by an heretical emperor, then, of course, hierarchs were found who readily carried out all the unlawful commands of the tsar. These hierarchs were called by St. Athanasius, not episkopoi [bishops], but kataskopoi (i.e. the emperor’s spies) deprived of all the gifts of grace. Such are our contemporary kataskopoi; they are destroyers of the churches of God and of Church life in general. Such is Metropolitan Sergius."

"As for the renovationists and Metropolitan Sergius, they have completely bowed down to that beast of which the holy book of the Revelation of John the Theologian speaks... That is why every true son of the Church must flee from these betrayers of Christ without looking back..."

(St. Andrew, Archbishop of Ufa)


St. Agatha, the Catacomb Eldress who lived to 119 years old, revealed concerning the Soviet Church:

"This is not a true church. It has signed a contract to serve antichrist. Do not go to it. Do not receive any Mysteries from its servants. Do not participate in prayer with them. There will come a time when churches will be opened in Russia, and the true Orthodox faith will triumph. Then people will become baptized, as at one time they were baptized under St. Vladimir. When the churches are opened for the first time, do not go to them because these will not be true churches; but when they are opened the second time, then go — these will be the true churches."


"From now on don't go into the open (sergianist) churches. They are snares. There is no Orthodoxy there. Only the form without the content... There it is as the Lord said: 'Your house is left to you empty!' (Luke 13.35). The Lord has punished us for our sins. The Church of Christ is not there - only a sham appearance remains. The true pastors have been annihilated, imprisoned, exiled, put to flight. While the 'priests' that have remained are, as a rule, party members, atheists. And these priests are creating there what the Holy Gospel calls 'the abomination of desolation'. And we are told to 'flee into the mountains' from this 'desolation'. And this is the same as that which Revelation refers to as 'fleeing into the wilderness'..."

(St. Synesius, Bishop of Izhevsk)


"To put it bluntly, it is not the Russian Church that has drawn this epistle [the declaration of Metropolitan Sergius] from her own depths; it is rather that the epistle, having been torn away from the historical Church, has itself been laid as the cornerstone at the base of the new 'church of the evildoers'. It has constructed new logical steps of representation in its own image and likeness...

But the abomination of desolation extends even further, it has been set up on the holy place, it penetrates into the very holy of holies of the Christian sacraments...

And so the unity of the Church, which, in the words of Hieromartyr Ignatius the Godbearer, has its external expression in the bishop, and so for the Russian Church as a whole - in the Patriarch, has already been shaken - as a whole, by your union with a synod that has exceeded its rights to the point of equality with you, and in individual dioceses - by unlawful transfers of local bishops and their substitution by others. The holiness of the Church, which shines in martyrdom and confession, has been condemned by your epistle. Her catholicity has been desecrated. Her apostolicity, as her link with the Lord and as an embassy to the world (John 17.18), has been destroyed by the break in hierarchical succession (the removal of Metropolitan Peter) and the movement of the world itself into her."

(St. Theodore Andreyev)


Clergy who wished to enter into unity with St. Nicholas, Bishop of Vetluga were forced to sign the following: "I, the undersigned, having become convinced of Metropolitan Sergius' departure from the spirit of Orthodox Christianity, break all spiritual communion with him and enter into communion with the Church led by Metropolitans Peter and Joseph. I wish to be, with the flock entrusted to me, under the spiritual leadership of Bishop Nicholas."

"We are in the One, True, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, while Sergianism is a corpse, rotting, decaying, as if by the last grip it clings to its skeleton, to its external unity ... After all, this unity is, indeed, the only one, that remains for the Sergians to give themselves the appearance of a church body, and blind discipline and obedience are the only bond for him...

Sergianism, for many, escapes the accusation of heresy because they are looking for some heresy, but here is the very soul of all heresies: rejection from the true Church and alienation from the true faith in her mysterious nature, here is a sin against the mystical body of the Church, here it is replaced by a shadow and a bare scheme, the bone skeleton of discipline. Here is heresy as such, Heresy with a capital letter, for every heresy distorts the teaching of the Church, but here we have a distortion of the Church itself with all its teaching.

Metropolitan Sergius replaced not some separate dogma with a heretical lie: he replaced the Church... Sergianism itself is only one incarnate lie and spiritual emptiness and powerlessness. This is a Lie with a capital letter, this is Flattery in front of some, the deception of others, this is truly the 'church of the crafty.' This is not yet the Antichrist, but this is already his Anti-Church."

(St. M.A. Novoselov - who is known by some as Saint Mark, Bishop of Sergiev)


"I cannot acknowledge this order from Metropolitan Sergius as being lawful because he, as a apostate who has fallen away like a rotten member of Christ’s Church, cannot divest Orthodox Bishops of their Sees... Metropolitan Sergius is truly a apostate from Orthodoxy, a betrayer of Christ: a liquidator or destroyer of our Orthodox Church in Russia, because he is as one with the enemies of our Lord Jesus Christ. Do not have any church communion with him."

"Today many towns and villages have no Church and many that exist, are either Reform or Sergianist. Gather in small groups and pray at home. Sing the hymns of the Church, read the Word of God, bury the dead without Sergianist priests. Receive the mysteries only from proper confessing clergy - with God’s help such clergy will always be found. Now, as foretold in the Apocolypse, the Church has gone into the wilderness where we must serve in hiding and gather as possible for prayer."

"As soon as the Sergian Synod appeared, the now reposed, His Eminence Victor, standing guard over Orthodoxy, raised the cry: “Orthodox Christians, do not recognize Metropolitan Sergius and his Synod”. This Church administration is not canonical: it was imposed on the Holy Church by representatives of the proletarian dictatorship (OGPU)...

These are akin to an individual that has severed a person’s head, who begins to justify his action by stating that the head is whole: neither eyes, ears, nose nor hairs were damaged. No wonder the reposed Staretz Matthew gave a prophetic warning to the faithful of Yaransk, saying: “The first renovationism will be easily identified: there was the court case against the Patriarch, the New Calendar, a married Episcopate, twice-married priests. However, the second Church deviation will be very difficult to recognize and discern”

(St. Nektary, Archbishop of Yaransk)


"... the enemy [Satan], having destroyed the lawful and canonical hierarchy, plants his own false hierarchy to govern the Church, and creates a clergy which is only externally churchly, being wholly obedient to his evil designs. Operating in this way, the enemy fashions the most cunning forgery of the truth; he makes every effort to govern the Church himself and laughs fiendishly at those souls he deceives.

This method is a current favorite of the enemy. It is frightful to speak of all his schemes. Instead of the holy Orthodox Church, he has built his own, outwardly resembling the Church in every respect, even, as he says, 'improved'. Today the enemy is making a special concerted effort to rapidly establish his own in place of Christ's Church, utilizing for this purpose people who have become his obedient tools. The Renovationist schism was the first attempt by the demons to forge a substitute for Christ's Church in Russia. Thanks to the faith of the Russian people and its true pastors, this attempt was exposed. Then Satan began acting with still greater cunning. In the Gregorian and later in the Sergian apostasy from the Church, the enemy has made still more refined moves to subvert the Church, moves barely noticeable to those indifferent to the truth.

Not long ago one of our Orthodox bishop-ascetics said that in our day the enemy would make several attempts to ruin the Church through schisms. The first schism, said this bishop, everyone will perceive, but subsequent surrogates will be more difficult to recognize, and few will understand the truth. Then the enemy will try to seduce, if possible, even the elect (Mark 13:22).

(Vladyka Anthony Galynsky-Mikhailovsky)


In the Life of St. Varenka of Pilna we learn of a frightening revelation she received from the Lord:

"At times the Sergianist priest Fr. John from Nizhny Novgorod (who venerated her) came to see her;
she received him and when he offered to give her Communion she would say: "I have already corrected
myself" (that is, she had already received the Holy Gifts). Varenka spoke thusly because she refused to
receive Communion in the Soviet Church. When Fr. John died, she cried abundantly, as she knew his
posthumous fate. For once the Lord showed her all of the Renovationists and Metropolitan Sergius, who were in a dark place and their hands were tied."


S.A. Nilus wrote: "As long as there is a church of God that is not of 'the Church of the evildoers', go to it whenever you can; but if not, pray at home... They will say: 'But where will you receive communion? With whom?' I reply: 'The Lord will show you, or an Angel will give you communion, for in ‘the Church of the evildoers’ there is not and cannot be the Body and Blood of the Lord'. Here in Chernigov, out of all the churches only the church of the Trinity has remained faithful to Orthodoxy; but if it, too, will commemorate the [sergianist] Exarch Michael, and, consequently, will have communion in prayer with him, acting with the blessing of Sergius and his Synod, then we shall break communion with it."


In 1943 the Sergianist metropolitan of Yaroslavl offered 
St. Basil, Bishop of Kineshma a See. The Saint replied: "I don't recognize Sergius as Orthodox."


In the Life of Blessed Xenia of Rybinsk we read: When one of the sergianists said that Metropolitan Sergius had not sinned against any dogma of the faith, she replied:

“What are you saying that he’s not a heretic – he’s worse than a heretic! He has bowed down to the Antichrist. And if he does not repent, his lot will be in gehenna with the Satanists.”


"... the ill-fated Metropolitan Sergius became a servant of the perpetrators of the mystery of iniquity, an obedient tool of their objectives! And as a reward for this obedience the traitorous false shepherd received from the hands of the satanic host his hierarchical vestments and the staff of the ecclesiastical power, sprinkled by the mystery of iniquity.

Subsequently this false shepherd who renounced that which is sacred, and found the basis for his power only in the approval offered by the perpetrators of the mystery of iniquity, began his service not as the substitute of the locum tenens of the Most Holy Patriarchal Throne of All Russia, but as the custodian of the throne of Satan, and he began to speak in the language of blasphemously apostatic lies, full of delusions and deceit in the spirit of Antichrist! 

The Christian world has never heard such lies, for the lies and harm of all the heresies put together lag far behind the lies and harm inflicted upon the Church by the deed of this false shepherd. 

In the days when the whole world was terrified by the appearance of the pale horse and his rider, and by the terrible things they were perpetrating on the fourth part of the earth - because the horse and its rider were followed by death and hell - in those days the false Hierarch - wolf, stood in the holy place and raising his voice called on people to worship both the horse and the rider."

(Fr. Vladimir Krivolutsky of blessed memory)


"Decide for yourself what to call those church leaders who, out of one side of their mouth teach people to sing ‘Hosanna!’ to the Son of God, and out of the other side they teach people to praise the sons of perdition who blaspheme the power of the Cross. They teach people to sing ‘Hosanna!’ to those people who make it their main task not only to annihilate the Christian Faith, but also to obliterate man’s most natural instinct to glorify the Creator. Decide for yourself what we should call that place where, instead of teaching people true Christianity and salvation, people are taught one of the mysteries of iniquity – modernization, a well-known ploy to ‘satanize’ the ‘little flock’. They teach those who are not able, or with difficulty, to decipher the finer questions of Orthodox Christian piety and who blindly follow Church leaders with authority.

Concerning the modernized church or Sergianist 'Orthodoxy', I, a sinner, believe that, as regards such church activists, we must call them not only heretics and schismatics, but apostates from God. Metropolitan Sergius brings into the church service a heresy unheard of in the history of the Church, the heresy of modernized departure from God, - of which the natural consequence became confusion and division in the Church. Can one, after this, affirm that the declaration and activity of Metropolitan Sergius concerns only the external life of the Church, and does not touch in any way the essence of the Church's Orthodoxy? In no way can this be said. Metropolitan Sergius, by his self-wise and evil-worshipping declaration and the anti-Church work which followed it, has created a new modernized schism or Sergianist modernism, which while preserving for the 'little ones' a fiction of Orthodoxy and canonicity is even more criminal than the first two modernizations of 1922 and 1925.

And so Metropolitan Sergius has put under his feet not only the external, but the very inner essence of the Orthodoxy of the Church, since his 'hosanna' to Christ and Antichrist, which is now being performed in Christian churches, touches the very essence of Christian Faith and presents by itself clear apostasy, the falling away from the Faith, and the departure from God."

(St. Paul, Bishop of Starobela)


"There, in the Soviet church, you will perish, but here [in the Catacomb Church] you will be saved, because he who goes to the Soviet church from ignorance may perhaps receive grace, but he who knowingly receives communion will receive it to his condemnation. But not all those there will perish, and not all those here will be saved. At the judgement our works and our love will be examined."

(Fr. Michael Rozhdestvensky of blessed memory)


"How can Christ dwell in a Church that was created by friends of the devil? How can Christ infuse into bread and wine for Holy Communion to the faithful?"

(Fr. Nicetas Lekhan of blessed memory)


"Preserve the Church by going up to Soviet power? But what will that Church be? Christ’s?"

(Fr. Sergius Sukhorukov of blessed memory)


"Now everywhere two epistles are being published in the newspapers and are being read in many churches which until recently were Orthodox – epistles of two, alas, former beloved pupils of mine with whom I was once in agreement, Metropolitans Sergius and Eulogius, who have now fallen away from the saving unity of the Church and have bound themselves to the enemies of Christ and the Holy Church..."

"Unfortunately, some Orthodox laymen, even, alas, many priests (and hierarchs) have subjected themselves to this state of gracelessness, although still retaining the outward appearance of the church services and the apparent performance of the Mysteries..."

(Metropolitan Anthony Khrapovitsky)


"They say that the Patriarchate has not changed anything in dogmas, in the services, in the rites. No, we answer, - the Patriarchate has destroyed the essence of the Dogma of the Church of Christ, it has rejected her essential purpose - to serve for the renewal of the people, and replaced it with what is unnatural for the Church, serving the godless goals of Communism. This apostasy is worse than all previous Arianisms, Nestorianisms, Iconoclasms and others. This is not the personal sin of one or another hierarch, but rather the deep rooted sin of the Patriarchate, which is confirmed, proclaimed by them, bound by them before the whole world, what one might call dogmatized apostasy."

(Archbishop Vitaly Maximenko)


"Our unfortunate Motherland is Satan’s Throne. Help came to Communism from the so-called 'Soviet Church' – so named as distinct from the true Church..."

"As regards the Moscow Patriarchate and its hierarchs, then, so long as they continue in close, active and benevolent cooperation with the Soviet Government, which openly professes its complete godlessness and strives to implant atheism in the entire Russian nation, then the Church Abroad, maintaining Her purity, must not have any canonical, liturgical or even simply external communion with them whatsoever, leaving each one of them at the same time to the final judgment of the Council (Sobor) of the future free Russian Church."

(Metropolitan Anastassy Gribanovsky)


"They often say, 'Well, what's the situation? If this is a false church, then what is the fault of the people who do not understand this - that this is a false church? Are they to blame?' You've probably heard such speeches often. And I answer as follows: 'How are they not to blame? How is it not your fault?! Do they know what kind of power they have? - God-fighting! A power which goes against God! Is it possible to recognize such power? They recognize it and obey it. And for this, instead of the true Church, they received a false church.' We do not pronounce judgments on every human soul there who believes in God and who, so to speak, in its own way aspires to Him. It's God's work. Here the destinies belong to the Lord God alone. But I personally cannot admit that the grace of God is there, in this very Soviet false church."

(Metropolitan Philaret Voznesensky)


"It’s known that at the end of the 30’s, the Bolsheviks in some places of the USSR, re-established certain monasteries, and filled them with their cronies – even with the unbaptized, and taught them the general Christian and monastic life. Then during the war of 1941- 45, they released these young 'clergymen' throughout the whole nation: filling the churches with pseudo-clergy!"

"Christ’s Church is the Divine Institution on earth. Christ is the Head of the Church. She is holy, immaculate and grace-filled. In the USSR the Antichrists concocted a false Church, externally similar to the Church of Christ, but false!"

(Fr. Michael Polsky of blessed memory)


"...the Soviet Church attained it's present ascendancy and 'canonicity' in the USSR through the government's arrest and murder of the leading anti-sergianists."

"... the True-Orthodox Church of Russia, as far as we know, has made no official proclamation as to the Grace, or lack of it, of the Sacraments of the Moscow Patriarchate. Individual hierarchs of the Catacomb Church in the past have expressed different opinions on this subject, some actually allowing the reception of Holy Communion from a Sergianist priest when in danger of death, and others insisting on the new Baptism of those baptized by Sergianist clergy. This question could be decided only by a Council of Bishops. If the schism of the Moscow Patriarchate is only temporary, and if it will eventually be restored to communion with the True-Orthodox Church in a free Russia, then this question may never need to be officially decided at all. Individual cases of True-Orthodox Christians in Russia receiving or not receiving Holy Communion in Sergianist churches do not, of course, establish any general rule or decide the question."

"While considering the clergy and faithful of the Moscow Patriarchate as participants in apostasy and schism, True-Orthodox Christians [meaning those of the Catacomb Church] view them with sympathy and love, but also speak the truth about them and refuse to participate in their deeds or have communion in prayer and sacraments with them, leaving their judgment to the future free All-Russian Council, when and if God should grant that it might be convened... 

Even if the Catacomb Church did not exist at all, the Moscow Patriarchate would still be guilty of schism and apostasy, even as Roman Catholicism did not become Orthodox once the last Orthodox communities were finally wiped out in the West."

(Fr. Seraphim Rose of blessed memory)


The following is recounted concerning St. John Maximovitch: "He therefore visited Sampson and Xenia, to their delight, since they had been members of his flock when Vladyka was a bishop in China.  They rejoiced greatly, and considered it a great blessing and honor that Vladyka was in their midst.  Sampson opened the church for Vladyka to enter and venerate the icons, etc., but Vladyka John refused to enter the church.  Sampson and Xenia pleaded with him just to enter and exit.  They would have considered it a great blessing that their former bishop had entered and prayed there.  But Vladyka, to their sorrow, adamantly refused to enter the church, saying that it was in raskol (schism). Vladyka insisted that the few Russians of the Chinese immigration should start their own parish under the Russian Synod Abroad."

Fr. Seraphim Rose additionally reveals: "The same is true of Metropolitan Philaret and Archbishop John (Maximovitch) in China: it is formally correct that for several days in 1945, after receiving false information that Metropolitan Anastassy had died, the Synod was dissolved, the church situation in Russia changed completely as a result of the war, and the Patriarch was elected legally, they did commemorate Patriarch Alexy, but when the connection with Metropolitan Anastassy was soon reestablished and the truth became known, they both became such convinced enemies of Moscow, so at odds with Moscow that Moscow still today remembers Archbishop John as the head of the schism in China..."

The Declaration of the parishioners of St. John Maximovitch dated May, 9, 1963 reads in part: "Bishop John never obeyed the Patriarch of Moscow, he did not enter into any relations with the Moscow Patriarchate and never had any connection with it..." 


"These appeals go out: in the east - from the God fighting soviet power and from its obedient instrument, the Moscow Patriarchate, which has justly earned for itself the name of "Soviet church"... It must be understood that we ... cannot submit to the church authority which has been established by the God fighters and which appears as an obedient instrument of the realization of their hellish plans in the world... We dare not forget the anathema proclaimed by His Holiness Patriarch Tikhon ... against the God fighting Communist power ... has in no way been removed, and up to this moment weighs upon it and upon all those who recognize it as lawful and who in this or any other way cooperate with it or maintain communion with it."

"Can there be an organization in the Church that calls for 'loyalty' to the servants of Satan? This, of course, is no longer the Church, but the false church, or 'church of the deceitful', in the expression of the Word of God (Psalm 25:5), and to be in such a 'church' is not only not salvation, but, on the contrary, disastrous."

(Archbishop Averky Taushev of Jordanville)


"What is happening before our eyes is scary. So scary that a person naturally dismisses this nightmare, not giving faith to the most real evidence of reality, hiding behind all sorts of illusions, evading all sorts of speculation and evasion from its recognition. 

None of the usual church concepts defining various deviations from the Truth cover this phenomenon. Not only must this be said about the ancient concepts of 'illegal gathering', 'schism' and 'heresy', but even about the general concept of 'Apostasy', in its still-manifested stages. 'Church of the crafty' is, perhaps, the only concept that is capable of embracing the reality of the 'Soviet Church'. 

The Church - and at the same time not the Church: a 'anti-church', with the prefix 'anti' - (as in the word 'Antichrist') embracing two meanings - warfare against the True Church and the substitution of the True Church. In other words, we have before us a phenomenon that gives rise to the most accurate semblance of the True Church, which, by its purpose, has a struggle with the True Church. What could be worse?"

"Inasmuch as a person is reconciled with the Soviet Church, perceiving it as a true Church and being satisfied with the opportunity to have fellowship with Christ in her, then such a person lays upon himself the seal of Falsehood, which is embodied in it. After all, the evil essence of this church is not only the sin of recognizing the Satanic authority, as being allegedly established by God, not only the sin of shedding the blood of the New Martyrs, but also the terrible sin of replacing the Church. This is the sin of the antichrist. It is necessary to delve deeper into the understanding of the Soviet Church in order to fully comprehend Her godlessness. The Soviet Church is canonically unholy..."

(Archimandite Constantine Zaitsev of Jordanville)


"The Grace of the Holy Spirit can emerge everywhere. The children playing the holy Eucharist—and the Holy Spirit suddenly performed a holy sacrament. Laughing and mocking at the Christians, one heathen at the circus parodied the holy sacrament of baptism, and suddenly—the holy sacrament happened. The Lord can create a miracle also in the Soviet church—and perform there the holy Sacrament of the Eucharist. But just because of that, we cannot acknowledge either the children’s game, or the circus, or the Soviet church as being a constant establishment of grace. 

Knowing the essence of the Soviet government (the spirit of antichrist) and the essence of the Soviet church (collaboration with antichrist), we do not dare refuse to doubt the grace of that church. And can an Orthodox Christian approach the Holy Chalice with doubt? But why are we saying 'we doubt,' and not saying simply 'no'? Because in deference of the possibility of retaining grace also in the Soviet church for a time—there is one more consideration...

'The life of the Church is always a process... when the Church of Christ detached herself from the Church of the Old Testament, it was also a long drawn-out process, having many phases. Ananias and Caiaphas on one side, the Apostles and their closest followers on the other side; those were landmarks of two immediately recognizable opposite camps. But in the Sanhedrin were Joseph of Arimathaea, Nicodemus and Gamaliel, who later on became martyrs for Christ, and the Apostles themselves were together in the synagogue everyday (Acts 2:46), and this was a temple led by Ananias and Caiaphas, and already after Pentecost, that is, when the Apostles were already filled with the Holy Spirit.

The question being decided through these processes stands before each person... The thoughts expressed here are extremely serious. That the church fell away from God and turned into an 'assemblage of Satan' is a process, with this one cannot disagree. However, the Soviet church has entered the path, which is leading her to this 'assemblage' [of Satan] — in this there can be no doubt whatsoever...

And we, the Orthodox Russian people, not predetermining the final trial over the Soviet church, a trial, which by the 'ruling' of the Holy Spirit will be carried out in its time by the Russian Orthodox Synod, we must speak out clearly and determinedly: We refuse any kind of relation, whatever it may be, with the Soviet church, for we doubt that she has grace."

(Professor I.M. Andreyev of blessed memory)


"At first Metropolitan Sergius Stragorodsky did not sign the 'Declaration' and was put in prison, but he was let out very soon after. This seemed highly suspicious to all the faithful. It turned out that now he had signed the Declaration. In other words, he had betrayed the Church to the Bolshevik government. He thereby deprived it of its own internal freedom in spiritual and administrative matters. 

When Metropolitan Peter learned that Metropolitan Sergius had signed this Declaration - in other words, that he had changed the whole course of the life of the Church - he wrote him two letters from prison, copies of which have been preserved. In these letters he said, very politely, 'You, your eminence, had no right to change the course of the Church' i.e. to betray it to the Bolsheviks. He received no answer to these letters. And he was the real authority over Metropolitan Sergius. Clearly Sergius had concluded that by being arrested Metropolitan Peter had also been deposed from his position of authority in the Church, which is completely contrary to the Orthodox canons. Then Metropolitan Peter sent a letter by hand, thinking that it was the postal service that was at fault, and even then Metropolitan Sergius made no reply to his ecclesiastical superior, who was still his superior, even though confined to prison! For no Bolshevik government authority can deprive a single bishop or a single priest of his spiritual authority... Despite this, Sergius decided that he need no longer reckon with him as someone in a senior position. When Metropolitan Peter returned from his exile, the Bolsheviks realized that Metropolitan Peter was senior to Metropolitan Sergius in the Church, and then they immediately arrested him and shot him. 

None of the ruling bishops (and there were about ten of them) submitted to Metropolitan Sergius as the successor to the Patriarch. So they were all arrested, sent into exile, and ultimately killed. The Bolsheviks did everything possible to smooth the way for Metropolitan Sergius. Thus Metropolitan Sergius set out on a path drenched in the blood of the martyred bishops of Russia. On one occasion Lenin said, "If you need a Church, we will give you one, we will even give you a Patriarch, but it is WE who will give you your Patriarch. And it is WE who will give you your Church." Of course, Father, you do not know this, and so you have allowed yourself to write your composition. 

At the moment when Metropolitan Sergius ceased to recognize Metropolitan Peter of Krutitsa as his spiritual authority he deprived himself of the Apostolic Succession and became a usurper. Such was the path taken by Metropolitan Sergius, and after him by all the other patriarchs and metropolitans up to the present day, which is why we do not have any communion with the Moscow Patriarchate. It is a pseudo-patriarchate with a pseudo-patriarch at its head. This is the fundamental reason. So we do not point at it and say there, look what it's turned into, because the very heart of the matter is, that the Moscow Patriarchate has lost the Apostolic Succession, which is to say, that it has lost the Grace of Christ."

(Metropolitan Vitaly Ustinov)


"To those holding fast to the most-insane renovationist heresy of the sergianists: to those who
teach that the earthly establishment of the Church of God is maintained by rejecting the truths of
Christ; and to those who declare that the Church of Christ is saved by serving the theomachic authorities and carrying out their godless commands, even unto the trampling down of the sacred canons, the traditions of the Holy Fathers and the divine dogmas, and to the destruction of all Christianity; and to those who revere the antichrist and his servants, and his forerunners, and all his minions, as a legitimate authority and one established by God; and to all the leaders of that anti-christian heresy, those who revile the Confessors and New Martyrs (to Sergei of Nizhegorod, to Nikolai of Kiev and to Aleksy of Khutyn), and to those who would repeat their doctrines, and to the renovationists, and to other heretics, — anathema."

(The Catacomb Anathema of the late 1920's)