People come to Church with the confidence that she needs them all to allow

A person comes and says: “I am wealthy, can contain two wives, the second want to get married”. He said: “You know, in the Orthodox Church it is impossible.” And he literally starts to shout: “Look, Jacob had two wives! Change, you have to go!” And left, deeply offended the Church. Who is really to blame for the troubles of the laity, and how to learn to be responsible for my life – thinking priest Fedor Borodin, rector of the Church of Cosmas and Damian on Maroseyka (Moscow).


  • The feat of sapogenin
  • What is forbidden to the believers?
  • “I realized, why not go to the temple: there are priests on the Mercedes”
  • Archpriest Theodore Borodin: the Priest must humble himself before the man
  • Archpriest Theodore Borodin: Adopt the character of his wife as God’s Providence

Who is to blame, if the priest is commanded to obey her husband

– Happens that the person did not work, for example family life, and he begins to accuse the Church: the priest is commanded to obey her husband, even though he insulted and humiliated. Who’s really to blame and what to do?

– A person often hears that he tells the priest that he wants to hear and takes note of what is desired.

If you take a specific example that you gave – sometimes the priest, not having time to delve in detail in the family situation, just saying some obvious things. For example, the fact that the wife must obey her husband.

We did not come up, it’s the Lord say so, this is the teaching of the Church. But you can’t listen to the husband more than to obey the Lord, and this is also the teaching of the Church. The apostles said: “is it right before God to obey you rather than God?” (Acts. 4:19).

Yes, there are situations when the husband behaved unworthily… All power in the Church similar to the authority of Christ, and the power of Christ manifested in His ascent to the Cross. And her husband, parents, a teacher, a priest – all of their power in the kind of love that serves and is crucified for the sake of someone you love.

Archpriest Theodore Borodin. Photo Anna Galperina

And if instead of serving his wife and children the husband drinks, beats his wife or cheats on her, he loses the right to rule in a Christian family.

If a person broke up the family, he is in any case necessary to look for and its share of the blame. And any priest it sure will say, no matter how it annoyed the source. Most likely, the pair was crowned, that is, the grace of God to build a family these people were there.

If they really worked and were reconciled to each other, working on these relationships, then all would be well.

– What if one serves and the other…

– Any person – is a system in development, today it may be one, but tomorrow is completely different, no one equal to himself yesterday.

If today she married a godly young man with burning eyes, it is quite possible that in 15 years it will be a drinker who raises a hand on her – that is the way of his freedom. Then it is not no family, no not a small Church… Can you imagine that Christ has the apostles?

If she feels that living with this man, an alcoholic can not go on, his behavior is almost as adultery, she might leave him. But it should not be a priest.

– But it requires effort, inner freedom. It is much easier to come to demand the “right” recipe, but if it does not “load” – to blame the Church.

– Education freedom – is a very laborious and lengthy work of the Confessor. When you raise a child, it must be taught to take responsibility and implement it in all their actions, and to do that you need him more and more every year to expand these opportunities. If you’re all for him to decide, he for twenty years to remain a child, because the will is not generated in effect.

Similarly, in duhovniceasca: a man came to the priest to confess, and he will gradually accustom him to the fact that there will be for him to solve his everyday problems, simply won’t, and all he has no right. The priest may say: “In this situation I would have done so” – and then the freedom of man.

I can’t decide for you, God gave this job to you

– I know, alas, is not one story, when the young couple was said to bear much work, and they had neither physical nor moral resources for large families. In the end, deprivation of children, the deterioration of relations of the parents. As it would be right to act the priest in such cases?

– If the priest gives some blessing or some Council, he should humbly pray and think well because what really happens is that the girl, married, more than three children can not stand, simply on his mental and physical dispensation, she screamed.

If you think that you need to bear as much as rugaetsa, let it be in your family, and others speak, stand by and witness that childbirth is a Grand and glorious service, but there may be such and such kind of difficulties. The priest, if he respects human freedom, is much easier.

– And the man himself? He also needs to understand that it is to give birth, to feed, not to a priest.

– Of course. You see, we, young and inexperienced priests, in the nineties got of parishioners, just like we do. We had no family experience of the older generation in the Christian life. Now our children grow up, and we can formulate the error of the time. And then there was no one to teach us, most people’s parents were unbelievers. And clergymen were young. So it happened that the congregation impose their desire to the inexperienced Director.

But if you have a heart of contrition, if you know your limitations, even if you are a young man supplied the Abbot and all around you run and clap, you’re still not going to solve for people, you’ll say, “I do not decide issues relating to marriage.” “I don’t know to sell you the apartment or not. I can pray, let’s do a prayer.” “I don’t know which treatment is correct, this or this. I can’t for you to decide to vaccinate or not to do. I can pray that you have recovered, I will pray, because you are dear to me. But I can’t solve these issues, because of their power to decide not me, you have it. God has created so that you have to solve them. This is the job for you, and not me.”

Photo: vk/simbirskaya_mitropolia

I have a wonderful parishioner, who for 24 years was cared for by my childhood. And all the 24 years I struggled with his desire to get me to solve his issues for him. 24 to a greater or lesser extent, I was brought up in this freedom. Now this man went to another priest. At first I was very bitter about this, then I realized that that’s why I brought up that he could grow up and decide: I always told everyone that if you see that guidance from another priest will be more useful to you, then go. And was happy for him!

The most severe damage in the spiritual life

– Here the priest says the mother of a child born sick, what is it – for the sins of his parents, and my mother, maybe for the first time crossed the threshold of the temple, will think that in the Church so decided.

– I think to say so is only entitled to the Saint, which causes sorrow opens God Himself. Even these words might tell a priest who has experienced serious illness or the death of a child. But he probably won’t tell. And to say this may itself suffering. “Woe is me for my destruction; painful my wound, but I say [he] [a]: truly this is my grief and I must bear it” (Jeremiah 10:19).

In other cases, it is necessary to understand that before you people completely immersed in terrible pain. Any parent in this situation, he is ready to bear that carries his child to a greater extent, he suffers immensely, and suddenly he is told that he is to blame for the illness or death of their beloved child. Terrible cruelty bore down on him where he expected at least some consolation. Question about his fault he’s asked himself a thousand times. Now he just need help to remain living soul.

Every priest, looking back, the longer he serves the more he sees his pastoral errors. Some of which are not so terrible, and some are very heavy. The priest inflicts the most serious damage to the spiritual life or even endangering his faith when acting on passions.

Ambition and conceit, if these passions, for example, are present in the husband, they sorrow and pain affect all family members. But if the passions in the priest and especially the rector, the parish formed an appropriate environment. All jealous of each other, spread gossip, “all about eve”, say nasty things, someone who is not friendly, not talking.

What kind of preaching, what kind of missionary work with such communities can be said? People recently votserkovitsya, comes to the temple and realizes that the Church live together like snakes in a pit. The trouble is that very often provokes the Abbot. Saying that like priest, like parish, it is about the Abbot. The Dean generates and gathers these people and emphasizes their behavior in a way he works, how his soul.

What is the temptation of the priest, especially the head of the parish or even the diocese? That gradually formed around the circle of people who in all his assent, because it depends on whether they work in Church or to serve in the diocese. And it creates the illusion that he is always right and is versed in everything. But when you have someone to consult, no one to consult, because there could be only obedient, assents passive people.

If the priest in such an environment is not critical to yourself, if you live by the principle “there are two opinions – mine and wrong”, that the trouble of this parish.

I know one of the ancient Russian diocese, whose head, the Bishop insists that even in odnokolernyh churches the Liturgy was celebrated every day. The perfect and obvious solution for a monk who wants to revive parish life. But he does not even understand that just destroys a priestly family, depriving them of spousal communication. There are cases when a priest with this humble, but his wife leaves him. The trouble is that nearby there is not one person with whom you could consult, he all removed.

– You have mentioned several times about the problem, when monks interfering in family life – something is changing in this respect?

– It is now much better. Thanks to the brothers the monks for what they are in the confessional were less likely to ask questions about the intimate life of people.

I had a case where a monk, having received the blessing, started to serve in our parish. He was older than me, smarter and better educated, and so I calmly asked him to posovetovat parishioners.

As it turned out, in vain: a few girls I had just months to pump out after the questions that he asked. They didn’t even know about those sins, which the monk asked them. Dozens of examples can be given, as the man went to the monastery, where he meets a hairless, yesterday ordained monk and begins to give him instructions. And the objections: “I Have a spiritual father, and I ask him,” he says that white clergy – it’s all wrong, listen to me or perish. Ambition in all its glory!

On the arrival of the arrogant man will have no life

But as the Confessor of “news” of the believer and not to give the wrong advice?

– Please note, in the parable of the prodigal son when the son decides to leave, the father with him, argues and proves nothing. He realizes that now it’s useless, and he respects the free will of the son. God respects our freedom. But somehow it happens that a priest this freedom is not respected. Assumes a categorical solution, which is then a pain in the lives of people. There are issues in which the priest must be steadfast witness to the truth of God. And there are those that it should not be taken in any case. Experience the culture of the Confessor to distinguish one from the other.

The aim of the Confessor is to educate the adult free Christian that their freedom realizes itself and adapts it to the will of God. When human freedom coincides with the will of God, it is the realization of the gift of freedom. The Confessor needs to teach, not to take away the freedom of man.

Photo: vk/simbirskaya_mitropolia

Where can we find the spiritual fathers who think about the freedom of the believer?

– The smaller the passions of the priest, the more respect for the individual person. How many times was the confession of Archimandrite Kirill (Pavlov), never faced not that rude, and even just with pressure or disrespect.

It seems to me that before you ordain the person a priest should not only test his knowledge and canonical according to Sana, but to see if he has any basic Christian skills.

For me, one of the main indications that I have already passed a great path of internal transformation of the Christian is his ability not to be offended.

My mother always told me: “for a Christian to be Offended indecent”. If the person is able not to be offended, so he has his own deep repentance culture and the experience of a broken heart. So he knows how not to judge, so he did not destroy, is able to separate his own pride from the work that is involved.

Why is it important to the ordinations to test the candidate’s pride (we are all proud, but someone is fighting with their passions, and who is not)? Because in the Church everything that is created – is created by God. And if a clergyman proud and power-hungry, God not only will not help him, but will resist. “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (Jas. 4:6). Let us ponder these great words. Here you come to a city and want to open a commercial enterprise. If the city leaders don’t like you, against you. Nothing will create a lot to lose, you can barely carry. And there is not the mayor, not the Governor, God Himself will resist. It will not work. So, if you put the proud to lead the parish will have no parish life. If you put to lead the youth work and missionary Department – scatter all the young people and nobody would listen.

In the end, we Christians, we preach? What in the world Christ came that He allowed each of us to be transformed and the possibility of transformation of relations between people. Now the man is not a wolf, and brother, or even an angel. “That they all may be one, as Thou, father, in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us, – that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me. And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, they may be one as We are one. I in them and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that Thou hast sent Me and hast loved them, as thou hast loved Me” (Jn. 17:21-23).

Christ says that the world knows It, the world will believe that he was sent by the Father, if we are United in imitation of the unity of the Holy Trinity.

All missionary work is to ensure that we showed the world a transformed man – so the best missionaries are saints. And showed transformed the relationship between people, that is a community United in love of people. No preaching will work if in our parishes discord and dislike. “Be brotherly to each other with tenderness” (ROM. 12:10), says the Apostle.

The lack of basic Christian skills hostel repels external people is stronger than any atheistic propaganda. Show me a Christian community, and I believe – that is the main expectation of the modern man.

People come to Church with the confidence that she needs them all to allow

– If the person is disappointed and begins to look guilty, it also has something to do with internal freedom, inability to answer for himself?

It is important to understand that if we put off from the Church, he had not been animating a deep personal encounter with Christ. If Christ became the most important in life, no one can make you lose It, no you cannot take away.

If you loved Christ, loved me truly, what do you say, careless priest? You see Christ came to the temple, He’s in charge. The priest doesn’t behave, don’t judge him, pray for him, for the poor guy, because the priest for the sins and temptations which he sows, even scary to think about how to respond.

We are every day in prayer, at every Liturgy, in the creed say that we believe in the Church, and it’s not random words. The Church is a matter of faith, as the Lord Himself because it is the Body of Christ.

In fact, the person who seeks Christ will break through any obstacles and any mistakes of the priests.

If we read the opinion of Ignatius Bryanchaninov, he repeatedly says in his writings that by faith man, even a negligent priest would give him the right advice. But it is in any case not excuse any priest who behaves incorrectly in relation to the parishioner.

Of course, there are people who always looking for a reason, I constantly face it. Remember how we sit before the bus to take the children to a summer camp, and I walked past a man, obviously drunk, and he started screaming all sorts of insulting cries in my address: “You’re stealing. You all steal. I see what you shoes. Now the children on the bus will be put in your Lexus to jump in and drive off”.

I wanted to remove the shoes and show him that I have a hole I have no money to buy a new. My car is not a Lexus. And even if I give Lexus, I will not sit, do not accept this gift, because I know that will offend people.

There was a case when we in the Church worked as an Intern Woodcarver. In Sunday we with another priest stand and two Bowls prigashaem people in the Liturgy. See that two seniors, husband and wife, apparently, come to the Sacrament the second Cup, and I see them for the first time. Ask: “have you confessed?” It was parents of Carver, and they replied in the affirmative. Since the two priest, I thought, that they confessed the other.

After the service they come to me and say: “You know, we don’t understand your question, we had not been to confession”. Ask: “have You ever received communion?” “No, never, this is the first time”. – “Baptized in childhood?” “Yes.” “You know, it’s not good that it happened – I say absolutely respectful, not raising his voice, absolutely tactfully. – You after all, please take the opportunity to come to confession, and this, too, in the confessional, tell us what you ignorantly so communion”.

Photo: vk/simbirskaya_mitropolia

They came home and my son said that never in the Church will not come, because their obhamil priest. While all around were people who could testify that there was no rudeness on my part even remotely. A little bit told them that they are wrong, and they will never come to Church. Sad and funny: they found a reason why life didn’t go to the temple. So when people say that the Church is awful, this is not always true. It is very often just a distorted perception of people who are accustomed to the fact that all they have to listen and indulge them.

A few years ago I was carrying obedience in the canonical Commission, and once there came a man and asked permission to remarry. The first thing I did in this case, the blessing of the hierarchy, accepted the documents. This time say, “please Give me a certificate of dissolution of marriage and the certificate on the conclusion of a new marriage.” He says: “I Have no certificate of dissolution of that marriage, I’m divorcing the previous wife.”

To my surprise, he said: “Well, how? I’m a wealthy man, can have two wives. They agree they don’t mind. We all live together with all the children together and well. I want the second wife to get married”.

Trying to explain: “You know, in the Orthodox Church it is impossible.” And he literally starts screaming, angrily say: “Look, Jacob had two wives! You make me more Holy man, than he who is in you icon? Give me permission. Me, you time! What is it?” And left, deeply offended the Church.

People come to the Church with full confidence that she needs them all to allow what they want. Even if very politely in form, gently and respectfully, but firmly position the priest says it is wrong, they angrily depart in the belief that the Church is not the same as they have drawn in your view.

We talk a lot about repentance, but we can not live only on the Foundation

– As a person, the layman, become an adult, responsible for my life and to trust the Church following it?

– First, you need to constantly read the Holy Scriptures and the Holy fathers, that is those people who have implemented the commandments of God in your life, and learn, as they did in similar situations. Especially a lot of the material can give the lives of the saints recently, devotees of twentieth-century martyrs.

We see that the Holy Reverend Elizabeth Feodorovna was a humble man, to the depth, that’s why she has so much time and so much could. The famous episode, as she arrives to check in founded and funded a house for orphan girls. Scared a high checking the girls all washed, combed, dressed, starched, nagladili clothes. Girls were warned: “both will go great Princess, you say “Hello” kiss the handle, and all.”

Comes Elizaveta Fyodorovna said: “Hello, children.” Children hand her the pen, saying: “Hello and kiss hands.” Teachers and cool ladies all white from fear: what happens now? Because passionate people eyebrows would move and all would be officers changed after the scandal. How dare you?! Elizabeth Feodorovna, smiling, walked around everyone and kissed the girls hands. She had no pride, so thanks to her, so much nice was created.

– Now one can often hear that in the Church – the only constant about sin, about the internal dirt, and so forth, and nothing about the joy…

– In 90-e and zero years we are the main emphasis of the entire spiritual life were made into a penitential culture. After repentance, the words of St. Ignatius Bryanchaninov, the only Foundation on which to build the entire building of the human spiritual life. Without a solid Foundation the house will not be built. But somehow, often clergy and laity are limited only by the Foundation, start to live it instead to build houses, so no joy from churching is born.

But you can not live forever on the Foundation.

Because in the end should be combined seemingly incongruous. On the one hand, a constant heart-contrition, or, as he calls his Barsanuphius the Great, “heart disease”, on the other hand is a joy.

Pain is she talking about? That you discover the Christ, and you his actions are often not worthy of Him, and the years of your Christian life you realize that growing and learning who you really are. But you do realize ever more clearly that in spite of all this, God loves you. And it’s a great source of joy.

That is, without real repentance, and without joy there is no natural, not fake spiritual life.

If one does not achieve Christian joy, not coming to her, only a penitential culture can really a person to drive in a completely unhealthy spiritual and mental condition. So the priest and the Confessor must observe to avoid this bias.

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