A post I do not want to write, but beg you to read. Please.
I have saved these links for some days as I wished to enjoy, and allow people to enjoy, the holidays. Mine were wonderful, and I hope yours were, as well, but there is still a war in Ukraine with people dying every day.
"Putin's Orthodox Jihad"
This is a harsh post, but a necessary one. Russia is sparing no tool in its undeclared war on Ukraine, and one of its strongest allies is the Russian Orthodox Church. For a detailed and well-defended explanation, please see this lengthy but important post here (if you are familiar with the background, you may safely skip the first few paragraphs):
"Remembering the Russian Priest Who Fought the Orthodox Church"
"He defied the atheism of communism and the empty religious practices of Putinism. With Father Gleb Yakunin's death on Christmas, Russia has lost a liberal voice of conscience." Do you not believe me, or believe that there is nothing you can do? Please read about the life of Fr. Gleb Yakunin, one of the courageous RUSSIAN priests who fought for the church he loved:
Do you stand with the Fr. Glebs and the poor grandmothers, or with the jewel-encrusted, chauffeur-driven, jet-setting bishop friends of V. Putin? Do you approve of ethnic cleansing and murder in the name of Orthodoxy? If not, speak out. It is so much easier for us outside of Russia to do so, and our voices are needed, both to give strength to those in Russia, and to deny use of the Diaspora church as a tool for Putin.
"Pope Francis gives Russian patriarch's gift to Pope Emeritus Benedict "
A past example of a small gesture that was powerful:
"Soviet Dissidents: martyrs and confessors of freedom, truth, and human dignity"
A tribute to Fr. Gleb Yakunin by a priest of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, with extensive links documenting the background of corruption against which Fr. Gleb and others fought:
Oliver Carrol photo of Ukrainian military chapel in Debaltsevo regularly shelled throughout 'ceasefires'.
[This blog entry was adapted from a 13 January 2015 Facebook post by the authour.]