Kyivan Metropolitanate – UAOC http://uaoc.net/ Sat, 06 Aug 2022 02:10:14 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://uaoc.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/icon-1-150x150.png Kyivan Metropolitanate – UAOC http://uaoc.net/ 32 32 Russia accuses Azerbaijan of breaking Karabakh ceasefire https://uaoc.net/russia-accuses-azerbaijan-of-breaking-karabakh-ceasefire/ Wed, 03 Aug 2022 17:57:10 +0000 https://uaoc.net/russia-accuses-azerbaijan-of-breaking-karabakh-ceasefire/ Russia on Wednesday accused Azerbaijan of breaking a ceasefire over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region after three soldiers died in clashes with what Baku called “illegal Armenian armed groups”. Six weeks of fighting in the region in the fall of 2020 left more than 6,500 dead and ended with a Russian-brokered ceasefire agreement. The Russian Defense […]]]>

Russia on Wednesday accused Azerbaijan of breaking a ceasefire over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region after three soldiers died in clashes with what Baku called “illegal Armenian armed groups”.

Six weeks of fighting in the region in the fall of 2020 left more than 6,500 dead and ended with a Russian-brokered ceasefire agreement.

The Russian Defense Ministry issued a statement saying that the Azerbaijani armed forces had violated the ceasefire and were “taking steps to stabilize the situation” with Armenian and Azerbaijani representatives.

Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry earlier said Karabakh troops killed one of its soldiers in an attack in Lachin district, blaming Armenia for the “bloody incident”.

The Azerbaijani army later said that it seized several strategic heights in the region in a retaliatory operation against “terrorist actions of illegal Armenian armed groups in the territory of Azerbaijan”.

The small breakaway state’s army has accused Azerbaijan of violating the ceasefire, killing two soldiers and injuring 14 others.

Armenia and Azerbaijan, sworn enemies, fought two wars – in 2020 and in the 1990s – in the Azerbaijani region of Nagorno-Karabakh, populated by Armenians.

Armenia ceded swaths of territory it had controlled for decades and Russia deployed some 2,000 peacekeepers to oversee the fragile truce, but tensions persist despite a ceasefire agreement.

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Explanation: what was the Treaty of Pereyaslav of 1654? https://uaoc.net/explanation-what-was-the-treaty-of-pereyaslav-of-1654/ Wed, 03 Aug 2022 14:44:00 +0000 https://uaoc.net/explanation-what-was-the-treaty-of-pereyaslav-of-1654/ After Ukraine’s vote for independence in 1991, Gennady Burbulis, then Deputy Prime Minister and close adviser to Boris Yeltsin, remarked that it was “inconceivable, for our brains, for our minds, that [Ukraine’s independence] would be an irrevocable fact. But Russia’s government at the time resisted calls from senior military officials and politicians like former Moscow […]]]>

After Ukraine’s vote for independence in 1991, Gennady Burbulis, then Deputy Prime Minister and close adviser to Boris Yeltsin, remarked that it was “inconceivable, for our brains, for our minds, that [Ukraine’s independence] would be an irrevocable fact. But Russia’s government at the time resisted calls from senior military officials and politicians like former Moscow mayor Yuri Luzhkov to “reclaim” Crimea or “reimagine” Ukrainian territory.

It’s not just the military and politicians who have struggled to accept Ukraine as a sovereign nation. Dissident writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn called the “talk of a separate Ukrainian people existing since the 9th century” a “newly invented lie”. He condemned the “cruel” partition of Ukraine and Russia and proposed the creation of a “Russian Union” comprising Russia (minus the Caucasus), Ukraine, Belarus and northern Kazakhstan.

This failure to accept Ukrainian independence stems, in part, from a 368-year-old treaty that few historians had paid much attention to over the years: the 1654 Treaty of Pereyaslav.

What was the geopolitical situation at the time?

The Mongol invasions of the early 13th century divided Kyivan Rus’ and forced the local princes to accept their new lords and pay homage to them. To the north, small principalities near Moscow began to regroup and eventually stopped paying tribute. In 1552, Ivan the Terrible won victory over the Kazan Khanate, but the strength of tsarism waned after he killed his son in a fit of anger and the end of the old dynasty. After the Time of Troubles, when Poland claimed victory over Moscow, a new Tsar, Mikhail, was crowned and started the Romanov dynasty. By the mid-17th century, Russia was a consolidated state that was expanding and battling with neighboring empires, principalities, and kingdoms.

Kyiv was destroyed by the Mongol invasion in 1240, but a strong leader, Daniel of Galicia, gathered lands which included Halych, Galicia, Volodymyr-Volynskyi and Kyiv. In 1253 he was crowned first king of the new kingdom of Ruthenia. As in Muscovy, Daniel fought other kingdoms, duchies and empires to claim these lands, while Poland and the Crimean Khanate colonized territories. In 1579, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth incorporated most of the Ruthenian lands, codified into the Union of Lublin. But the Ruthenian Cossacks and peasants, both Orthodox Christians, banded together and finally, in 1648, rose up against the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, reclaimed Kyiv and founded the Cossack Hetmanate.

What was the treaty about?

The Pereyaslav Treaty provided military protection for the Cossack Hetmanate in exchange for an oath of allegiance to the Tsar of the Cossacks, church members, and inhabitants of the Hetmanate. It was a political union that bound much of eastern Ukraine and Kyiv to Russia, but it remained part of Poland until it officially ceded Kyiv in the Russo- Polish. The Cossacks were allowed to retain their state autonomy, and the Metropolitan of Kyiv would report to Constantinople rather than Moscow. As a political union, the Sich (military and political center) could not pursue its own foreign policy because Russia was acting in its name; Ukraine was independent, but not fully.

Why did the Cossack leaders sign it?

It is a subject of great debate. The Ukrainian press said it was imposed on Bohdan Khmelnitsky, head of the Sich, under adverse circumstances. Historian Serhiy Plohy wrote that Khmelnitsky saw it as a temporary solution. Anyway, the Ottoman Empire had promised to support the Cossacks in the battles against the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, but proved to be an unreliable ally. Since Khmelnitsky clearly felt that he could no longer count on the support of the Ottomans, Orthodox Moscow was therefore the most natural ally at the time.

What are Vladimir Putin and the Russian press saying about the treaty today?

In his 2021 essay on Ukraine, the Russian leader cited the letter written by Bohdan Khmelnytsky to Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich in 1654, in which he “thanked” him “for taking” the entire Zaporizhzhian army and everyone Russian Orthodox under the strong and high hand of the Tsar.’ This means that in their appeals to the King of Poland and the Tsar of Russia, the Cossacks referred to and defined themselves as Russian Orthodox.

How is this part of current historical myth-making in Russia?

In contemporary Russian histories, the early Romanovs are often portrayed as heroes who brought Russia back from the brink, reasserted state power, and re-liberated Russian lands. It is in this context that the Pereyaslav Treaty plays on the idea of ​​a Ukraine and a Russia “legitimately reunited” or of return.

School textbooks, religious leaders, television documentaries and even telegraphic messages from Russian officials all use similar language to promote the idea that Ukrainians and Russians have always been one people, historically and spiritually part of one nation.

For many, the so-called “military operation” is a course of correction in history, not a horrific invasion at enormous cost.

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Priesthood, politics and propaganda: the life of a clergyman in war-torn Ukraine https://uaoc.net/priesthood-politics-and-propaganda-the-life-of-a-clergyman-in-war-torn-ukraine/ Wed, 03 Aug 2022 14:15:41 +0000 https://uaoc.net/priesthood-politics-and-propaganda-the-life-of-a-clergyman-in-war-torn-ukraine/ Reverend Sergiy Berezhnoy in the center of Irpin, just outside Kyiv, in April 2022. Photo courtesy of Kyiv Saints Cathedral (RNS) — “Father, is it a sin to kill the enemy?” This is the question the Reverend Sergiy Berezhnoy, an Orthodox priest and chaplain to the Ukrainian army of the 42nd battalion in Kyiv, hears […]]]>

Reverend Sergiy Berezhnoy in the center of Irpin, just outside Kyiv, in April 2022. Photo courtesy of Kyiv Saints Cathedral

(RNS) — “Father, is it a sin to kill the enemy?” This is the question the Reverend Sergiy Berezhnoy, an Orthodox priest and chaplain to the Ukrainian army of the 42nd battalion in Kyiv, hears most often from soldiers heading to the front lines of the war with Russia.

The 38-year-old cleric – who, although he spends his days packing humanitarian aid for hard-hit areas and presiding over frequent funerals in cemeteries and crematoriums, exudes genuine pastoral warmth – said that he answered that question amid the bustle of military buildings and the candlelit calm of the church.

Soldiers often come to the parish of Berezhnoy, located just off a busy road in a semi-industrial district north of the city center, to confess and take communion before going into battle.

The church, named for the saints of Kyiv, stands between a gas station and the shores of Lake Jordan. While the small wooden structure looks more like a heated house than a large cathedral, Berezhnoy enthusiastically points out that the parish is on an auspicious site.

According to Berezhnoy, local historians consider the nearby lake to be the remnant of the historic Pochaina River, where the historic baptism of the Kyivan Rus took place, an event that was commemorated in both Ukraine and Russia last Thursday (28 July).

The Baptism of Kyivan Rus commemorates the medieval mass baptism in Kyiv in 988, commissioned by Grand Prince Volodymyr. While Christianity existed in parts of the medieval Slavic kingdoms before this time, large-scale baptism in Kyiv is remembered as the Christianization of the region, with Christianity officially becoming the state religion for the first time.

Contrary to how Russian President Vladimir Putin has long characterized the event for saying Ukraine should be part of Russia, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has announced Ukrainian Statehood Day, which will be celebrated alongside to the story of historical baptism.

From these shores of the national myth, soldiers visiting Berezhnoy head to the most affected areas of the country, such as the Donbass region in the east. Or the southern city of Kherson, where the Ukrainian army has launched an ambitious attempt to retake the city from Russian control.

So what is the chaplain’s response to these men and women who have chosen to defend a country besieged since February?

“My answer for them is you’re not going to kill an enemy,” Berezhnoy told Religion News Service on Zoom from Kyiv earlier this month, his black clergy shirt and white collar sticking out from under his military jacket. camo. “You will protect our children, our wives, our sisters, our brothers, our fathers, our mothers – all Ukrainians.”

The question of Ukrainian identity, and what is needed to protect it, is not isolated from life on the front lines.

For many Ukrainian Orthodox Christians, and the clergy in particular, the question of religious identity in relation to the Russian Orthodox Church has become increasingly inescapable.

The choice comes down to which church you want to join: the 3-year-old Independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, or the older Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which has historical ties to Moscow.

Long before becoming a priest, Berezhnoy helped as an altar boy on Sundays in an Orthodox parish in his hometown in eastern Ukraine. “I saw how the Russian Orthodox Church and the Russian Federation were playing on the religious feeling of our people in Donbass,” Berezhnoy said, recalling pamphlets frequently distributed to worshipers in the early 2000s, calling on worshipers to vote for Viktor Yanukovych, the pro-Russian politician who became president of Ukraine before being ousted in the 2014 Dignity Revolution.

The creation of three separate post-Soviet states – Ukraine, Russia and Belarus – has been compared by Orthodox Church leaders to an attempt to split the Holy Trinity.

“Absolutely, the church was used by Russia for propaganda purposes,” said the Reverend Cyril Hovorun, a Ukrainian priest and professor of ecclesiology, international relations and ecumenism at the Stockholm School of Theology.

In a recent interview with RNS, Hovorun noted that this type of political propaganda was not unique to Orthodox churches closer to the Russian border, but could be found throughout the country – including at major Orthodox holy sites, such than the Pochayiv Lavra, just a few. hours drive from the Polish border.

“There has always been a fusion of national and religious identity in predominantly Orthodox countries,” said Catherine Wanner, a cultural anthropologist at the Penn State School of International Affairs, whose research focuses on the politics of religion in Ukraine.

But she added that Ukraine “is a really interesting example where you see a real deepening of religiosity (since the fall of the Soviet Union)”, at the same time as politically there has been “ongoing secularization and sustainable – secularism as a political principle.”

Despite stories from Donbass, some Orthodox followers in the post-Soviet era did not see their Ukrainian national identity at odds with their Orthodox faith. One such person was the highest official of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Kyiv, Metropolitan Volodymyr, who ordained Berezhnoy to the priesthood in 2012.

During Volodymyr’s tenure, Berezhnoy assisted Hovorun, who at the time was the head of the Church External Relations Department for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, with a project to reconcile the Ukrainian Orthodox Church with two small groups of Orthodox churches – each of which has also claimed to be the country’s national church while rejecting ties to Moscow.

It was a very good time for the church,” Berezhnoy said. “The father (Cyril) has prepared a very big project – the project of how to unite all the jurisdictions.”

But the idea of ​​dialogue, not to mention the possibility of a unified Ukrainian church with a strong national identity, was a threat to Moscow.

Hovorun’s long-planned dialogues began in the summer of 2009. By September of that year, Russian church leaders removed him from his position in Ukraine and reassigned him to an office in the church in Russia.

“I considered it a clear move (from Moscow) to stop the dialogue,” Hovorun said of the change.

Berezhnoy was also removed from his position at the Kyiv Theological Academy, run by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the famous Kyiv Perchersk Lavra, shortly after signing a petition supporting a peaceful dialogue between pro-European Maidan protesters. and state military groups in 2014.

He was reassigned to a pro-Russian parish in Kyiv, where the chief priest expected him to sign another sort of petition – this time to protest the establishment of a new Ukrainian church bearing almost the same noun: the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (as opposed to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church) aimed to exist outside the authority of the Church leadership in Moscow.

“When I saw how the Moscow Patriarchate in Ukraine was fighting with our civilization and our society, with their brothers and sisters in Christ, I understood that this was not the right way,” Berezhnoy said. “You have only two choices,” he added, “keep silent or help support this Russian ideology.”

So he left. In 2019, Berezhnoy joined the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, which had obtained Tomos – self-government – ​​from Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew in Istanbul earlier this year, going against Moscow’s refusal to recognize the new church.

“I’m so proud of this decision,” Berezhnoy said.

But what might appear to be convoluted church politics came at a high personal cost for Berezhnoy, whose wife was the daughter of a prominent priest with ties to the Moscow Patriarchate.

When his in-laws learned that Berezhnoy had joined the independent or autocephalous church, they severed ties with him. Then his wife too. He occasionally sees his teenage son who he says understands his decisions well. “You know, this Russian world and this Russian propaganda,” Berezhnoy said, his usual pep waning slightly, “also targeted the hearts of my loved ones.”

Three years later, and under the continuing pressures of war, the young independent Orthodox Church of Ukraine continues to play a leading role as a partner of the Ukrainian government in opposition to Russia, both politically and religiously.

“We honor the choice of our ancestors – the choice of the true Orthodox faith, which joined us to European civilization in the 10th century,” read the official Twitter account of Metropolitan Epiphanius of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine on Thursday, the party day. of the Baptism of Kyivan Rus.

“There are tendencies, indeed, in this (independent) church to act in a way that is not very different from Moscow in terms of alignment with the state and the nation-building process,” Hovorun said. “But unlike the Moscow Patriarchate, the Autocephalous Church is more democratic and much more open-minded.”

“I see our world as one big mosaic,” Berezhnoy told soldiers waiting to leave Kyiv. “Every nation is like a piece of glass. And without any (one) of the pieces of glass, our picture is not whole.

“God cares about every nation. And when we have more nations, when we have different people with their points of view, this mosaic becomes more wonderful.

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Ukrainian church calls for Kirill’s removal for ‘heretical’ defense of Russian invasion https://uaoc.net/ukrainian-church-calls-for-kirills-removal-for-heretical-defense-of-russian-invasion/ Mon, 01 Aug 2022 07:00:00 +0000 https://uaoc.net/ukrainian-church-calls-for-kirills-removal-for-heretical-defense-of-russian-invasion/ (RNS) – Metropolitan Epiphanius, head of the Independent Orthodox Church of Ukraine, has sent a letter to Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, “first among equals” among Orthodox Christian leaders, asking Bartholomew to call Patriarch Cyril, head of the Russian Orthodox Church, a professor of heresy for his theological support of the Ukrainian war and depriving Kirill of […]]]>

(RNS) – Metropolitan Epiphanius, head of the Independent Orthodox Church of Ukraine, has sent a letter to Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, “first among equals” among Orthodox Christian leaders, asking Bartholomew to call Patriarch Cyril, head of the Russian Orthodox Church, a professor of heresy for his theological support of the Ukrainian war and depriving Kirill of his right to lead the Russian church.

The letter was approved at a meeting of the synod of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine on Wednesday, July 27, on the eve of the feast of the baptism of the Kyivan Rus. The holiday, which commemorates the baptism of medieval Kyiv, has also been designated as Ukrainian State Day by the Ukrainian government.

“Every child murdered, every woman raped, every residential building and temple destroyed is not only a war crime, but also an act of renunciation of Christ,” the letter reads. “The moral responsibility for the crimes committed rests not only with the direct perpetrators, but also with their ideological inspirers – the Patriarch of Moscow Kirill and like-minded hierarchs who for decades have propagated the ethno-phyletic and racist doctrine of ” Russian world “and are now blessing the attack on Ukraine.

The “Russian World” teaching imagines a transnational Russian civilization with a political center in Moscow, a spiritual center in Kyiv, a common language and religion (Russian and Russian Orthodox), and traditionalist social values ​​in opposition to the West” globalized” and “liberalized”.

Tensions have been rising for years between the Moscow church and the Ecumenical Patriarch, who resides in today’s Istanbul. Kirill broke communion with the Ecumenical Patriarch in October 2018, ahead of Bartholomew’s decision to recognize the Ukrainian Orthodox Church as an independent canonical church in early 2019.

Since then, Moscow has encroached on the territory historically overseen by the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Alexandria, Theodore II, by setting up a parallel network of churches on the African continent, which is under the authority of the Greek church. The first African churches in Moscow appeared after Theodore joined Bartholomew in recognizing the Independent Orthodox Church of Ukraine.

According to the July 27 letter, Kirill aims to “drastically increase the presence of the Russian Orthodox Church outside of Russia…and thereby impose the hegemony and dictates of the Patriarch of Moscow over the Orthodox world.”


RELATED: Russia’s invasion of Ukraine threatens cultural heritage common to both countries, including Saint Sophia’s Cathedral


The letter quoted the Declaration on Russian World Education, published in March, which calls “Russian World” education heretical and “further rejects all forms of government that deify the state (theocracy) and absorb the state. Church, depriving the Church of her freedom to stand up prophetically against any injustice.

The statement, which is not affiliated with any official institution of the Orthodox Church, has since been signed by nearly 1,500 Orthodox theologians around the world (including many clergy).

Wednesday’s letter also referred to an open address to the heads of the Orthodox Churches, delivered by members of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which, unlike the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, had ties to the Moscow Patriarchate. This statement also condemns Kirill’s support for the teaching of the “Russian world” and questions his right to hold the position of patriarch.

The Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which long predates the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, still refuses to recognize the independent Church, although an unofficial meeting between the clergy of the two groups, facilitated by the Ukrainian government, has had take place at the beginning of the month.

While the letter from the Orthodox Church of Ukraine is addressed to the Ecumenical Patriarch, the letter expresses the concerns of the entire global Orthodox Christian community. “It is important to understand that the ideology of the modern ROC (Russian Orthodox Church) contains a threat not only to Ukraine,” the letter states, “but also to the entire Orthodox world.”

“Russia is a country which for centuries linked its identity to Orthodoxy,” the letter also says, but which has since “been insidiously replaced by a civil religion apparently based on the Orthodox tradition, but alien to the spirit of the Gospel and to the content of the Orthodox Faith of the Holy Fathers.

According to official Twitter account of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the Ecumenical Patriarch spoke with Zelenskyy on July 28, expressing his continued support for Ukraine in light of Russia’s aggression. No official statement regarding the letter from the Orthodox Church of Ukraine has yet been made by the Ecumenical Patriarch.

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The story of a Russian princess who became European Empress https://uaoc.net/the-story-of-a-russian-princess-who-became-european-empress/ Thu, 28 Jul 2022 19:25:16 +0000 https://uaoc.net/the-story-of-a-russian-princess-who-became-european-empress/ By Christian Raffensperger In the summer of 1089, the German chronicler Ekkehard reports that “the emperor celebrated his marriage in Cologne, taking as wife the widow of the margrave Udo [Henry III] the daughter of the King of the Russians. The ceremony was led by the Archbishop of Magdeburg, who married German Emperor Henry IV […]]]>

By Christian Raffensperger

In the summer of 1089, the German chronicler Ekkehard reports that “the emperor celebrated his marriage in Cologne, taking as wife the widow of the margrave Udo [Henry III] the daughter of the King of the Russians. The ceremony was led by the Archbishop of Magdeburg, who married German Emperor Henry IV with Princess Evpraksia, daughter of Russian King Vsevolod Iziaslavich. After the wedding, Evpraksia was crowned Empress of the German Empire, which was also celebrated in a later degree of Henry IV, under the name of Adelheid. Although many Russian women married royalty from across Europe in the 11th century, Evpraksia was the first to become empress. Its history is fascinating and illuminates not only Russia and the German Empire, but also relations across Europe.

Evpraksia’s marriage to Emperor Henry IV was not her first. Her first husband was also named Henry – Henry III of Stade, who was margrave of the Saxon Nordmark. The couple were around the same age when they married, in their mid-teens, which was normal for elite marriages at this time in European history. The rationale for the marriage of a Russian princess and a German margrave runs through the politics of medieval Europe as a whole, as well as the ever-fraught question of church-state relations.

Emperor Henry IV ran into opposition from Pope Gregory VII in what has since been called the Investiture Controversy. The crux of the matter was whether or not the emperor, or any secular ruler, had the ability to make priests, bishops, or archbishops, or whether that was the sole competence of the church, especially of the papacy. For centuries, rulers had done just that, granting benefices to faithful individuals, appointing them archbishops, and building churches and cathedrals. Pope Gregory VII led a reform movement, eventually bearing his name of Gregorian reform. He decided that the creation of clergymen, of churchmen, was only possible for the papacy and individuals appointed by the papacy. While citing ecclesiastical precedents such as the laying on of hands, it also served to centralize ecclesiastical power in the hands of the pope; a significant factor when the church controlled more than a third of the total territory of Europe.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rvY5MERtDAY

As part of his dispute with Pope Gregory VII, Henry IV raised his own pope, Clement III. Clement III has been given the title “anti-pope” by modern historians, indicating his status as a loser in the battle for the papacy. At the time, however, the situation was not so clear and it seemed very possible that Clement III would be recognized by most of Europe as pope, and in fact he sat in Rome for a time.

To add credibility to his candidate’s campaign for the papacy, Henry IV strove to increase relations with neighboring powers, in this case also the Rus. The idea being that if the largely independent but titular Russian Church under the control of Constantinople could be brought into Clement III’s orbit, it would be a major blow to him. So, Henry IV contacted King Vsevolod to arrange a marital bond to seal their relationship with each other. King Vsevolod had his own worries, mainly the Polish connections of his main rivals in Rus, the Iziaslavichi family, and Henry IV (often an enemy of the Poles anyway) most likely agreed to help Vsevolod in case of trouble. Since Henry IV was already married, and much older, the marriage was arranged with a young margrave, Henry III.

The arrival of Evpraksia to marry Henry III occurred in the early 1080s and was recorded in a chronicle as having arrived “in this country with great pomp, with camels laden with precious clothes and stones, and also with innumerable riches”. The quote itself is an allusion to the arrival of the Queen of Sheba in Jerusalem from the Bible, the sentiment was clearly intended to apply to Evpraksia. A foreign princess from afar, who arrived with great wealth and a train of animals and servants; in fact his baggage train may also have included camels as they were found in the steppe south of Rus. This image also reinforces the idea that the princesses did not travel alone – although she is the only one mentioned by name, it would clearly take a large number of people to operate such a baggage train, and would therefore eventually include a small pocket of Rus regardless of the country where they ended up residing.

Henry III, perhaps unfortunately for Evpraksia, died shortly after their marriage, and Evpraksia was left a teenage widow, childless. She was driven out of Henry III’s territory when her brother became margrave, and she took up residence in a convent whose abbess was the sister of Emperor Henry IV. It was only about a year later that Henry IV’s own wife, Bertha, died (of natural causes) and the two arranged to be married, making Evpraksia Empress of the Empire. German.

Henry IV – Wikimedia Commons

Evpraksia’s second marriage was much longer, but no happier than the first. Clement III’s message to the Russian Church arrived at the office of Greek Metropolitan Ioann II who resided in Kyiv. Unlike the Russian elite who were happy to marry people from all over Europe, regardless of their Christian faith, Ioann II was part of the Greek ecclesiastical hierarchy who participated in disagreements between the Constantinopolitan and Latin Churches. Thus, there was no hope of having an agreement between him and Clement III. There also appears to have been a greater realignment of policy with regard to the Normans in the Italian peninsula, the new Pope Urban II and the Byzantine Emperor, and Evpraksia became the agent of some of these changes .

After only a few years of marriage, Evpraksia left her husband and passed over to the side of the papacy, now ruled by one of Gregory VII’s successors, Pope Urban II. On behalf of Pope Urban II, Evpraksia spoke at gatherings of bishops across Europe, recounting her story of a young marriage to Henry IV and Henry’s atrocious and abominable behavior that classifies him as a ” Nicoletian”; a reference to a group from the Book of Revelation known for sexual deviance. The presence of a young woman, probably in her twenties, talking about sex and sexual relations to a group of bishops was effective and more bishops left Henry IV’s side and came to support Urban II. The highlight of his campaign was a speaking role at the papal synod of Pope Urban II at Piacenza, which marked a high point in his conflict with Henry IV (and perhaps not coincidentally was the start of what was to come). become the crusades).

Having effectively won for her side, against that of her husband, Evpraksia left Rome and returned to Rus, via Hungary where she had relatives. In Rus, we find her in the annals in 1106 when she took monastic vows and became a nun. The year is particularly interesting because it is also the year of the death of Henri IV. Given the idea that a nun was a bride of Christ, it seems that Evpraksia did not remarry or engage in ecclesiastical life until her husband’s death. Also, we provide information about communication between the German Empire and Rus.

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The last entry in Evpraksia’s history comes in 1109 when she died. The Russian Chronicle, still short of information about the women, provides a relatively comprehensive entry noting that “Evpraksia, the daughter of Vsevolod, died on July 10 and was laid in the monastery in the crypt near the southern portal. A chapel was built over it in which his body lies. The Kyivan Cave Monastery, or Crypt Monastery, was the holy monastery of all Rus, and his burial there, with its own chapel, is a mark of the esteem in which she was held by the monks and by the elites of Rus who helped decide such matters. For us modern people, it is also a good reminder that although Evpraksia married two Germans, y understood as Empress of the German Empire, and worked with the papacy, she was not reviled or exiled from Rus, but honored and supported.

The idea of ​​a schism between Churches is an idea that has been re-read in the past, but which is obviously not topical at this time of the 11th and 12th centuries. Evpraksia and her life are proof of that.

Christian Raffensperger holds the Kenneth E. Wray Professor of Humanities at the University of Wittenberg and is currently an Archie K. Davis Fellow at the National Humanities Center. His work presents Rus not as a principality or a set of principalities but as one of the kingdoms of medieval Europe. Click here to see his university’s webpage.

Click here to learn more about Christian Raffensperger

Further reading:

Simon Franklin and Jonathan Shepard, The emergence of Rus, 750-1200 (New York: Longman, 1996).

Christian Raffensperger,Missing Russian Women: The Case of Evpraksia Vsevolodovna.” In Putting the Fragments Together: Writing the Lives of Medieval Women. Ed. Amy Livingstone and Charlotte Newman Goldy (New York: Palgrave, 2012), 69–84.

Christian Raffensperger, “Evpraksia Vsevolodovna between East and West.” Russian history / Russian history 30:1–2 (2003), 23–34.

Christian Raffensperger,Evpraksia Vsevolodovna” to Russian genealogy

Talia Zajac, “The Socio-Political Roles of the Princess in Kyivan Rus”, ca. 945-1240″, in A Companion to the World Queen, ed. Elena Woodacre (Leeds: ARC Humanities Press/Amsterdam University Press): 125–146.

Top image: Image of a saint in the Church of Saint Sophia in Kyiv, dating from the 11th century – Wikimedia Commons

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KYIVAN RUS BAPTISM DAY – July 28, 2023 https://uaoc.net/kyivan-rus-baptism-day-july-28-2023/ Fri, 01 Jul 2022 13:31:01 +0000 https://uaoc.net/kyivan-rus-baptism-day-july-28-2023/ History of the day of the baptism of Kyivan Rus This celebration originally refers to the Christianization of Kievan Rus, fixed conventionally in the year 988 AD, the date on which Vladimir the Great was baptized in Chersonesus and proceeded to baptize his family and people in Kyiv . Since the exact date of the […]]]>

History of the day of the baptism of Kyivan Rus

This celebration originally refers to the Christianization of Kievan Rus, fixed conventionally in the year 988 AD, the date on which Vladimir the Great was baptized in Chersonesus and proceeded to baptize his family and people in Kyiv . Since the exact date of the first official mass Christianization is unknown and Christianization took place in several stages over the decades, the Church decided to institute this holiday on St. Vladimir’s Day, whose acts have made Christianity a fundamental part of Russian identity.

According to a compilation of writings which are the main source for the history of the Eastern Slavs until the beginning of the 20th century, also known as the Russian Primary Chronicle, Kyiv was Christian from the middle of the 10th century, although the princes in power continued according to pagan customs.

The compilation of writings describes the actions in the mid-10th century of the reigning prince of Kyiv, Princess Olga of Kyiv, who visited Constantinople with a priest Gregory. Although it is not known when and where she was baptized, she became an Orthodox Christian and attempted to convert Svyatoslav, her son. However, until his death in 972 AD, he remained a pagan. When Yaropolk I, his first son and successor, died in 980 AD, his second son Vladimir became the ruling prince.

Vladimir unsuccessfully attempted to lead a pagan reaction to Christianization efforts before realizing he had to embrace the new religion. The first name Basile was his baptismal name. After that, he called on the people of Kyiv to receive baptism in the Dnieper. First, Vladimir’s 12 sons and many boyars were baptized. Then all Kyiv residents were called to the river the next day, where Orthodox priests completed the sacrament of baptism. The ceremony was observed throughout the Vladimir Kingdom in the following days, including the Grand Prince of Kyiv and Novgorod. These events went down in history as the iconic Baptism of Rus, by which Vladimir signaled the acceptance of Orthodox Christianity as the state religion.

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The Russian Orthodox Church sends its second most powerful figure on a low-ranking foreign assignment https://uaoc.net/the-russian-orthodox-church-sends-its-second-most-powerful-figure-on-a-low-ranking-foreign-assignment/ Wed, 08 Jun 2022 12:18:00 +0000 https://uaoc.net/the-russian-orthodox-church-sends-its-second-most-powerful-figure-on-a-low-ranking-foreign-assignment/ Metropolitan Hilarion, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s foreign relations department and a permanent member of the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church, speaks during a news conference in Minsk, Belarus October 15, 2018. REUTERS /Vasily Fedosenko/File Photo Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com Register Second-in-Command directed Church External Relations The synod decrees […]]]>

Metropolitan Hilarion, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s foreign relations department and a permanent member of the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church, speaks during a news conference in Minsk, Belarus October 15, 2018. REUTERS /Vasily Fedosenko/File Photo

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  • Second-in-Command directed Church External Relations
  • The synod decrees that he should instead be sent to Budapest
  • Conflict in Ukraine deepened split within Slavic Orthodoxy

LONDON, June 8 (Reuters) – The Russian Orthodox Church has ousted its second most powerful bishop from his role as head of foreign relations and sent him to Budapest, an abrupt move indicating discord at the top of the Moscow Patriarchate in about the war in Ukraine.

The Holy Synod, which met Tuesday at the 13th-century white-walled Danilovsky Monastery in Moscow, decreed the removal of Metropolitan Hilarion as chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s department for external relations with the Church.

The synod had discussed the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, which is challenged as the leader of Slavic Orthodoxy by the rival autocephalous Ukrainian Orthodox Church under the Metropolitan of Kyiv.

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More than 700 words into the minutes of the meeting, the Synod decreed that Hilarion would be relieved of his duties as head of external relations, permanent member of the Synod, and rector of the Saints Cyril and Saints Graduate Institute. Method.

“It is decreed that Bishop Hilarion, Metropolitan of Volokolamsk, will be the Administrator of the Diocese of Budapest-Hungary, Metropolitan of Budapest and Hungary,” the minutes read.

The Church did not respond to a Reuters request for an explanation of the abrupt departure of Hilarion, who holds a doctorate from Oxford University and is seen as a potential successor to Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and all Russia.

At the synod meeting, Hilarion, 55, made a presentation on a visit he and Patriarch Kirill had made to Hungary, including discussions with the Roman Catholic Church, according to the minutes.

Hilarion, 55 and head of external relations for 13 years, will be replaced by Metropolitan Anthony, 37.

“The chairman of the Department of External Church Relations and a permanent member of the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church, with the title of Volokolamsk, will be Bishop Anthony,” the minutes read.

THE WAR GROWS

The Russian Orthodox Church is by far the largest of the churches in the Eastern Orthodox communion, which split from Western Christianity in the Great Schism of 1054. Today it has around 100 million followers in Russia and more outside.

But the February 24 invasion of Ukraine split the two largest Slavic congregations and aggravated a growing dispute within Slavic Orthodox Christianity that dates back more than a thousand years to the very roots of Russia and Europe. Ukraine.

The Kremlin says it is carrying out a ‘special military operation’ to defend Russian speakers in eastern Ukraine and presents it as a conflict with an ‘absolutist’ US-led West that wants to destroy Russia and its culture.

Kyiv and its Western supporters note that many Russian speakers have fled the Russian invasion, which they say is an imperial-style land grab that has given Ukrainian nationalism the biggest boost in a century.

Kirill, a close ally of President Vladimir Putin, sees the war as a bulwark against a West he describes as decadent although he has spoken of the pain of conflict as his flock is on both sides.

As many Ukrainians sought to rid themselves of Russian rule after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the Kyiv Orthodox Church of Ukraine was granted autocephaly by Constantinople, which oversees most modern Orthodox churches, causing discord with Moscow which considers it a usurper.

After Christianity came to Slavic lands in the 9th and 10th centuries, Kyiv had its own metropolitan, but it was subordinated to the Russian Church in 1685 under Tsar Peter the Great.

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Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; edited by Philippa Fletcher

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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The Summer Reading List: An Introduction to Ukrainian https://uaoc.net/the-summer-reading-list-an-introduction-to-ukrainian/ Wed, 08 Jun 2022 08:00:20 +0000 https://uaoc.net/the-summer-reading-list-an-introduction-to-ukrainian/ Given the trash about Ukraine spewed out by Russian propaganda trolls and regurgitated by stupid or ideologically dumb Americans, this year’s annual report summer reading list will focus on serious books that explain the context, including the religious dimension, of a conflict that will shape the future of Europe — and ours. Lost Kingdom: The […]]]>

Given the trash about Ukraine spewed out by Russian propaganda trolls and regurgitated by stupid or ideologically dumb Americans, this year’s annual report summer reading list will focus on serious books that explain the context, including the religious dimension, of a conflict that will shape the future of Europe — and ours.

Lost Kingdom: The Quest for Empire and the Creation of the Russian Nation, by Serhii Plokhy, follows the imperialist chromosomes of the Russian national genome for hundreds of years. Plokhy understands the crucial role that a distorted history of East Slavic Christianity – vigorously promoted by the leadership of the Russian Orthodox Church – plays in the “Russian world” ideology that underpins Vladimir Putin’s war on Ukraine. . The Harvard researcher’s 2015 book, The Gates of Europe: A History of Ukraineis also useful for unpacking an unusually complicated story.

My first Ukrainian tutor was the late Bohdan R. Bociurkiw, the first historian of the underground Greek Catholic Church in Ukraine during the Stalin era. Bociurkiw’s study, The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and the Soviet State, 1939-1950, uses documents from formerly classified Soviet archives to trace the brutal communist persecution of Ukrainian Greek Catholics and the acquiescence to this persecution by Russian Orthodox leaders who were in fact agents of Soviet state power. It is almost miraculous that today’s vibrant Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church survived the campaign of disintegration described by Bociurkiw. However, he not only survived, he prevailed – a compelling and inspiring example of God’s hand at work through resilience born of faith.

Imperial Russian and Russian Orthodox antipathies towards Ukraine and Ukrainian Greek Catholics are largely based on the Union of Brest of 1596, which restored full communion between the Bishop of Rome and certain ecclesiastical jurisdictions in Eastern Europe. ‘East. My friend Borys Gudziak, the priest-scholar-educator who is now the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Archparch of Philadelphia, wrote the definitive study of this consequential event: Crisis and reform: the metropolis of Kyiv, the patriarchate of Constantinople and the genesis of the union of Brest. Over dinner one evening, I had the pleasure of presenting an autographed copy of the book to John Paul II, and I am convinced that this voracious reader absorbed Father Gudziak’s analysis before the papal pilgrimage to Ukraine. in 2001, which helped heal many of the wounds that Poles and Ukrainians had inflicted on themselves. Crisis and reformis not, however, reserved for popes and scholarly historians; it is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand an important root of what is happening in Eastern Christianity today.

Since the beginning of the Russian war against Ukraine on February 24, the world has been deeply impressed by the courageous leadership of the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, Svyatoslav Shevchuk. Major Archbishop Shevchuk’s unshakable Christian faith, pastoral sense and mature patriotism reflect the qualities evident in many of his predecessors. One of them – the model of the “pope of the steppes” in Fisherman’s shoes (the novel, please, not the third-rate film) – was sketched by historian Jaroslav Pelikan in Confessor between East and West: Portrait of Ukrainian Cardinal Josyf Slipyj. After surviving 18 years in various Gulag camps, Slipyj was expelled from the USSR and exiled to Rome. There he nurtured the beginnings of the Ukrainian Catholic University that his former student, Borys Gudziak, would begin building within a decade of the cardinal’s death in 1984.

Cardinal Slipyj’s predecessor, Metropolitan Andrei Sheptyts’kyi, led the Greek Catholic Church in Ukraine for more than 40 years and played a key role in the development of Ukrainian cultural and national consciousness in the midst of two world wars. , Stalin’s Ukrainian terrorist famine (the Holodomor) and the relentless Soviet efforts to break the spirit of Ukrainians. Morality and Reality: The Life and Times of Andrei Sheptyts’kyiedited by Paul Robert Magocsi, explores the many facets of the life of one of the most outstanding figures of 20th century Catholicism: a man of great culture, theological originality and ecumenical sensitivity who lived the social doctrine of Catholic Church during some of the darkest of modern times, chillingly described by Timothy Snyder in Bloodlands: Europe between Hitler and Stalin. In doing so, the Venerable Andrei Sheptyts’kyi, Metropolitan Archbishop of L’viv and Halych, laid the foundations on which Ukrainian Greek Catholicism has been built since coming out of hiding in 1989: a vibrant and publicly engaged Church that has helped shape the Maidan Dignity Revolution in 2013-2014, and which now supports the Ukrainian people in their determination to build a humane society in contrast to Putin’s imperial kleptocracy and murderous ways.

I doubt Mr. Tucker Carlson reads any of these books. But he should.

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George Weigel is an independent columnist whose weekly column is syndicated by the Archdiocese of Denver. The opinions and viewpoints expressed by Mr. Weigel therein are his alone and do not necessarily reflect those of the Archdiocese of Denver or the bishops of Denver.
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The Summer Reading List: An Introduction to Ukrainian | George Weigel https://uaoc.net/the-summer-reading-list-an-introduction-to-ukrainian-george-weigel/ Wed, 08 Jun 2022 07:00:00 +0000 https://uaoc.net/the-summer-reading-list-an-introduction-to-ukrainian-george-weigel/ gDespite the rubbish about Ukraine spewed out by Russian propaganda trolls and regurgitated by dumb or ideologically dope Americans, this year’s annual summer reading list will focus on serious books that explain the background, including the religious dimension, of a conflict that will shape the future of Europe… and ours. Lost Kingdom: The Quest for […]]]>

gDespite the rubbish about Ukraine spewed out by Russian propaganda trolls and regurgitated by dumb or ideologically dope Americans, this year’s annual summer reading list will focus on serious books that explain the background, including the religious dimension, of a conflict that will shape the future of Europe… and ours.

Lost Kingdom: The Quest for Empire and the Creation of the Russian Nation, by Serhii Plokhy, follows the imperialist chromosomes of the Russian national genome for hundreds of years. Plokhy understands the crucial role that a distorted history of East Slavic Christianity – vigorously promoted by the leadership of the Russian Orthodox Church – plays in the “Russian world” ideology that underpins Vladimir Putin’s war on Ukraine. . The Harvard researcher’s 2015 book, The Gates of Europe: A History of Ukraineis also useful for unpacking an unusually complicated story.

My first Ukrainian tutor was the late Bohdan R. Bociurkiw, the first historian of the underground Greek Catholic Church in Ukraine during the Stalin era. Bociurkiw’s study, The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and the Soviet State (1939-1950), uses documents from formerly classified Soviet archives to trace the brutal communist persecution of Ukrainian Greek Catholics and the acquiescence to this persecution by Russian Orthodox leaders who were in fact agents of Soviet state power. It is almost miraculous that today’s vibrant Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church survived the campaign of disintegration described by Bociurkiw. However, he not only survived, he prevailed – a compelling and inspiring example of God’s hand at work through resilience born of faith.

Imperial Russian and Russian Orthodox antipathies towards Ukraine and Ukrainian Greek Catholics are based in large part on the Union of Brest of 1596, which restored full communion between the Bishop of Rome and certain ecclesiastical jurisdictions in Eastern Europe. ballast. My friend Borys Gudziak, the priest-scholar-educator who is now the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Archparch of Philadelphia, wrote the definitive study of this consequential event: Crisis and reform: the metropolis of Kyiv, the patriarchate of Constantinople and the genesis of the Union of Brest. Over dinner one evening, I had the pleasure of presenting an autographed copy of the book to John Paul II, and I am convinced that this voracious reader absorbed Father Gudziak’s analysis before the papal pilgrimage to Ukraine. in 2001, which helped heal many of the wounds that Poles and Ukrainians had inflicted on themselves. Crisis and reform is not, however, reserved for popes and scholarly historians; it is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand an important root of what is happening in Eastern Christianity today.

Since the beginning of the Russian war against Ukraine on February 24, the world has been deeply impressed by the courageous leadership of the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, Svyatoslav Shevchuk. Major Archbishop Shevchuk’s unshakeable Christian faith, pastoral sense and mature patriotism reflect the qualities evident in many of his predecessors. One of them, the model of the “pope of the steppes” in Fisherman’s shoes (the novel, please, not the third-rate film) – was sketched by historian Jaroslav Pelikan in Confessor between East and West: Portrait of Ukrainian Cardinal Josyf Slipyj. After surviving eighteen years in various Gulag camps, Slipyj was expelled from the USSR and exiled to Rome. There he nurtured the beginnings of the Ukrainian Catholic University that his former student Borys Gudziak would begin building in the decade following the cardinal’s death in 1984.

Cardinal Slipyj’s predecessor, Metropolitan Andrei Sheptyts’kyi, led the Greek Catholic Church in Ukraine for more than forty years and played a key role in the development of Ukrainian cultural and national consciousness in the midst of two world wars. , Stalin’s Ukrainian terrorist famine (the Holodomor) and relentless Soviet efforts to break the spirit of Ukrainians. Morality and Reality: The Life and Times of Andrei Sheptyts’kyiedited by Paul Robert Magocsi, explores the many facets of the life of one of the most outstanding figures of 20th century Catholicism: a man of great culture, theological originality and ecumenical sensitivity who lived the social doctrine of ‘Catholic Church during some of the darkest of modern times, described chillingly by Timothy Snyder in Bloodlands: Europe between Hitler and Stalin. In doing so, the Venerable Andrei Sheptyts’kyi, Metropolitan Archbishop of L’viv and Halych, laid the foundations on which Ukrainian Greek Catholicism has been built since coming out of hiding in 1989: a vibrant and publicly engaged Church that has helped shape the Maidan Dignity Revolution in 2013-2014, and which now supports the Ukrainian people in their determination to build a humane society in contrast to Putin’s imperial kleptocracy and murderous ways.

I doubt Tucker Carlson will read any of these books. But he should.

George Weigel is Distinguished Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, DC, where he holds the William E. Simon Chair in Catholic Studies.

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Historical and socio-cultural background: Russo-Ukrainian War (2022) — I – Opinion https://uaoc.net/historical-and-socio-cultural-background-russo-ukrainian-war-2022-i-opinion/ Sun, 05 Jun 2022 00:55:32 +0000 https://uaoc.net/historical-and-socio-cultural-background-russo-ukrainian-war-2022-i-opinion/ Russia attacked neighboring Ukraine on February 24, 2022 after a prolonged concentration of forces on Ukrainian borders. As the first major military invasion in Europe after World War II, it divided world opinion. So far, scholars of international relations have mainly focused on Russian-Ukrainian relations after the breakup of the Soviet Union after 1991. The […]]]>

Russia attacked neighboring Ukraine on February 24, 2022 after a prolonged concentration of forces on Ukrainian borders. As the first major military invasion in Europe after World War II, it divided world opinion.

So far, scholars of international relations have mainly focused on Russian-Ukrainian relations after the breakup of the Soviet Union after 1991. The fragmented description and analysis is mainly based on realpolitik while neglecting the dynamics of the long and rich arc of Russian history through paganism, monarchy, communism and lately a semblance of modernization.

Inasmuch as Ukraine was once a key constituent republic of the Soviet Union, the dynamics of the current conflict necessitate a brief look at the historical and socio-cultural underpinnings of the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine.

This article synoptically comprises three parts: first, an overview of Russian history; second, the contemporary religious resurgence of socio-cultural norms under President Vladimir Putin, and third, insight into the Russian-Ukrainian conflict and its possible end.

Since prehistoric times, patterns of migration and settlement in the territories of present-day Ukraine varied fundamentally according to three geographical areas: the Black Sea, the steppes and the land from the east through southern Ukraine to the coast that was for centuries was in the hands of the Mediterranean maritime powers.

From the 7th and 6th centuries BCE, many Greek colonies were founded on the northern Black Sea coast on the Crimean Peninsula and along the Sea of ​​Azov; these Hellenic outposts later came under the hegemony of the Roman Empire.

The formation of the Kyivan state which began in the middle of the 9th century, the role of the Varangians (Vikings) in this process, and the name of Rus by which this state became known. This was related to the development of international trade and the importance of the Dnieper route from the Baltic to Byzantium for Kyiv.

Trade along this route was controlled by Varangian merchant-warriors, and from their ranks came the princes of Kyivan, who were soon Slavicized. In early chronicles, the Varangians were also called Rus, and this social name became a territorial designation for the Kyivan region – the base territory of the Rus; later, by extension, it applied to the whole of the territory ruled by the members of the Kievan dynasty.

By the end of the 10th century, the domain of Kyivan covered a large area from the edge of the open steppe in Ukraine north to Lake Ladoga and the upper Volga basin. Like other medieval states, it did not develop central political institutions but remained a loose aggregation of principalities – a dynastic clan enterprise.

Kyiv reached its peak during the reigns of Volodymyr the Great, Vladimir I and his son Yaroslav-I (the Wise). In 988 AD, Volodymyr adopted Christianity as the religion of his kingdom and had the people of Kyiv baptized. Rus entered the orbit of Orthodox Christianity and culture. An ecclesiastical hierarchy has been established since 1037 by the Metropolitan of Kyiv, who was appointed by the Patriarch of Constantinople.

With the new religion came new forms of architecture, art, and music, a written language, Old Church Slavonic, and the beginnings of a literary culture ardently promoted by Yaroslav, who also promulgated a code of laws , the first in Slavdom. Although Byzantium and the steppe remained his main foreign policy concerns, Yaroslav maintained friendly relations with European leaders, with whom he forged marital alliances.

Before 1000 AD, Russia was a pagan society. Its Christianization began in different stages in AD 9 when Vladimir the Great baptized at Chersonesus and proceeded to baptize the family and people of kyiv. These latter events are traditionally referred to as the “baptism of Rus”.

According to the tradition of the Church, Christianity was first brought to the territory of modern Russia and Ukraine by Saint Andrew. He traveled all over the Black Sea to the Greek colony of Crimea, where he converted several thousand people to the new faith. Apparently, Saint Andrew also traveled north along the Dnieper River, where kyiv would be founded.

The Greek colonies of the North Bridge, both in the Crimea and on the modern Ukrainian shores of the Sea of ​​Azov and the Black Sea, remained the main centers of Christianity in Eastern Europe for almost a thousand years. Saint Cyril and Methodius were the missionaries of Christianity among the Slavic peoples of Bulgaria, Great Moravia and Pannonia.

By the end of the 10th century, the domain of Kyivan covered a large area from the edge of the open steppe in Ukraine north to Lake Ladoga and the upper Volga basin. Like other medieval states, it did not develop central political institutions but remained a loose aggregation of principalities – a dynastic clan enterprise.

Kyiv reached its peak during the reigns of Volodymyr the Great, Vladimir I and his son Yaroslav — I (the Wise). In 988 AD, Volodymyr adopted Christianity as the religion of his kingdom and had the people of Kyiv baptized. Rus entered the orbit of Orthodox Christianity and culture. An ecclesiastical hierarchy has been established since 1037 by the Metropolitan of Kyiv.

With the induction of a new religion came new forms of architecture, art, music, a written language, Old Church Slavonic, and the beginnings of a literary culture. Strongly promoted by Yaroslav, promulgated a code of laws – the first in Slavdom. Although Byzantium and the steppe remained his main foreign policy concerns, Yaroslav maintained friendly relations with European leaders, with whom he forged marital alliances.

Later, some Ukrainian writers promoted national consciousness like Taras Shevchenko and Marko Vovchok pioneered Ukrainian realism, portrayed village life and contemporary society and some tackled populist themes.

(To be continued)

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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