Monday, October 2, 2006

Not Peace, But A Sword?

By Vladimir Legoyda

The words of Christ "I come not to bring peace, but a sword…" (Matt. 10:54) have been variously interpreted as bearing on the ascetic nature of the Christian struggle as well as the Christian role in progressive social activism. Many, citing the historical involvement of Christian societies in warfare, have sought to either defend or condemn the Church on the basis of the seemingly conflicting relationship between its doctrine and practice. In this article Professor Legoyda examines the relationships between Christianity and the Military, and in particular Russian Orthodox Christianity and the Russian military, to shed light of the respective roles they have played and could play in the future.


It is interesting that in modern Russian the only people who serve are the clergy and those in the military. The rest of us ordinary mortals just work. The idea implicit behind the linguistic parallel referring to both soldering and religious observance by clerics is that of performing a solemn or sacred activity, one that is somehow apart from ordinary activity in society.

To be sure, such a linguistic analogy is a contingent truth. Yet is this really an accidental lexical coincidence? How can we reconcile the ideas of Christian love for our neighbors and the inevitable slaughter of war? What models of ecclesiastical and military leadership should be cultivated within Russian society and, perhaps more importantly, are there any components for such models available within Russian culture? These and other questions relating to the Church, the military and our Orthodox culture need to be aired to gain perspective as the issues of compulsory military service, terrorism and the future of Russian military organizations and their spheres of activity press upon us as we rediscover our Orthodox Christian roots in the beginning of the 21st century.

In contemporary Russian society there still exists an oversimplified attitude that Christianity, as the embodiment of Divine love on earth, must consistently oppose any kind of violence and, it follows naturally, repudiate any kind of military operations, including their goals as well as their means. Or, at least, there is a feeling that Christians should not partake in such activity. Hence, if a priest should bless any soldier sent to war, is this nothing more than an ecclesiastical formality in the service of his country? If so, this would seem to imply a contradiction or at least gross negligence regarding tradition. Just how does this implied pacifism relate to the Christian confession?

When we turn to Orthodox history, even in ancient times, it is impossible to find any narrow, dogmatic response to the questions posed above. Moreover, this problem would appear to be outside the competence of dogmatic theology. The Orthodox Church considers dogmas or doctrines as various revelations from God, which "the clergy must disseminate as indisputable and true concerning the faith and salvation."[1] It is therefore absolutely impossible to speak of any unique, explicit position of the Church from a dogmatic point of view as such an issue does not pertain directly to the economy of salvation or ecclesiastical matters regarding the faith per se. As one Orthodox theologian has said, "the problem of war and how clergy must regard it are among the most difficult and problematic of our theology." [2] One could ague that any definitive theological solution to the problem is ultimately impossible due to the seemingly implicit, insurmountable antimony of war and Christianity. This in turn deflects the issue to the more general sphere of Christianity and its relation to culture and society.

Should we then try to define a specific Christian relationship to war or to approach the issue, we need, then, to seek an answer in the more conventional sphere of traditional Christian culture. Such an approach would be far removed from any ethic of non-resistance to the use of violent force. This latter concept has been defined in detail by the popular religious thoughts of Leo Tolstoy (who, as it is well known, was excommunicated from the Orthodox Church), Mahatma Gandhi and others. As for Christians, this position is maintained only by a few Protestant denominations, which take extreme positions regarding the use of firearms and weapons in general and specifically prohibit active military service. In general, however, the concept of non-resistance to evil or the violent use of force is essential to neither Christian ideology in general nor Orthodoxy in particular.

Within a specifically Orthodox context, this problem has been more often considered in relation to the question of evil and the means to resist it. From the Orthodox Christian viewpoint, the root of all evil is contained in fallen (that is perverted and unnatural) human nature. Any external manifestation of this nature, such as malice and individual or collective aggression are a consequence of the inherent human condition of spiritual deformity and moral imperfection. Since the time of Cain’s fratricide, war has been an integral part of fallen human existence. Therefore the principal Christian aim has been to salvage and renew the human personality through the means of grace in Christ and struggle against the cause of evil - fallen human nature, but not necessarily its consequences, viz. aggression and the use of force. The Orthodox struggle is then a spiritual struggle, the internal warfare within the human soul against the ego and the passions. In the New Testament the Apostle Paul defines the essence of Christian struggle in the following words: For we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against principalities, against powers against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Ephesians 6:12).

This said, it does not therefore follow that Orthodox ideology is ‘up in the clouds’ or passes over any real problems in silence. But unlike liberal humanist theory, which seeks to prevent wars and to achieve world peace at any price, the Orthodox notion proceeds from the assumption of eliminating the cause of depravity but not its effect. As A. Osipov, a professor of modern Orthodox Theology has noted, the definition of peace in the New Testament (or irini in the original Greek) within the Orthodox context means "humility,"[3] the inner spiritual rest attained by human beings who have overcome their passions and selfishness. According to Osipov, this notion has a broader sense then the Hebrew word for peace shalom used in the Old Testament where the word means simply the absence of war. While the former definition of peace does not exclude the latter, including the meaning of irini, it incorporates the meaning of shalom and expands upon it.[4] Modern discourse focuses more and more on the issue of the survival of mankind and the consequent imperative for peace, even world peace, but very rarely speaks on the issue of what kind of peace or, for that matter, what kind of humanity will survive. Certainly, the Orthodox opinion does not reject the idea of continued human existence, but if we speak about physical survival only, the prospect of such a peaceful coexistence would be nothing more than a utopian fantasy because, from the Orthodox point of view, the relevant cause of evil is rooted within human beings and not in their external condition. In other words, the absence of war does not equal the presence of peace.[5]

And if for L. Tolstoy or M. Gandhi pacifism is an imperative requirement for peace,[6] this doesn't have any stereological or Slavonic sense from the Orthodox Christian standpoint. War is not an absolute evil for which pacifism leads to human salvation and participation results in condemnation or vice versa.

It follows, then, that Orthodoxy is open to various interpretations regarding the question of war as well as to many other (no less important) questions not directly covered in the historical range of purely dogmatic theological issues. This would include, for instance, political structure and social order. Many followers who see Jesus Christ as a pacifist cite as an example His wording that it is necessary to …render therefore unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s; and God the things that are God’s…(Matt. 22:21) in an attempt to substantiate the notion that Christ was a kind of proto-anarchist or popular revolutionary and, consequently, an opponent of military service as an arm of governmental manipulation of the masses. Tolstoy, for example, was of this opinion. For him the non-violence ethic precluded any participation in military hostilities and even extended service in many governmental institutions, the courts in particular.

But this interpretation should be considered perfunctory and biased. In the said wording Christ emphasized the different natures of the state (the Kingdom of Caesar) and the Church (the Kingdom of God). While distinct, these two phenomena are not mutually exclusive at all. At the same time, Christ's words by no means point to Orthodoxy as a kind of Marxist-Leninist principle of the state as a "special mechanism of violence" to be avoided. On the contrary, Christianity has always considered Government pleasing to God, both in the Gospel (Matt. 17: 24-27, John 19:11) as well as in the Apostles' messages (Tit 3:1, I Peter 2:13, I Timothy 2:1-2, Romans 13:1-2) where respect toward lawful authority has been emphasized. In his Epistle to the Romans, the Apostle Paul warns frankly: For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of power? Do that which is good and thou shall have the praise of the same: For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid: for he beareth not the sword in vain. (Romans 13:3- 4).

More concretely, there are points where these two realm meet and they are particularly striking. When asked by soldiers who came to him what they should do to be saved, St. John the Baptist, in Church tradition known as the Forerunner or prophet of Christ, replied: Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages (Luke 3:14). The phrase do no violence in Church Slavonic is ne obezhaitye,[7] that is, be not a cause of offence. This specifies both the idea of not giving offence or doing harm without reason, or, more precisely, unwarranted aggression. Some consider this to be a linguistic subtlety and insufficient as proof for a pacifist interpretation. Either way, though, one can see clearly that St. John has in no way suggested that soldiers lay down their arms and abandon their duty.

All this, of course, does not mean that the Christians consider war as essentially good. Not in any sense. War is an evil act, just as any murder. Yet the early Christians did not compare murder with the premeditated intent to kill in a time of war. Giving one’s life in defense of another’s was seen as noble and good. In this vein Christ's words, Greater love hath no man more than this - that a man lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13) are often interpreted by Biblical scholars as a calling to be ready for death while guarding relatives and friends. From this, as in any case, we can see the primarily burden of sin is determined above all by the relevant motives and not necessarily by the nature of the conflict in which blood is shed.

The history of the early Church knows many examples of Christians who remained soldiers even after baptism. Many of them were high-ranking leaders and they generally had a concept of war as morally acceptable, however unpleasant. In one of his epistles, St. Athanasius the Great (4th century) wrote, "It is not permissible to kill, but to extirpate enemies during war is lawful and worthy of praise. This is why those who distinguish themselves in battle receive great glory and monuments which depict their deeds are built in their honor."[8] Its interesting to notice that canonicity (that is the norms of Church tradition) of this letter was confirmed in the Ecumenical Councils of the 5th and 6th centuries and possesses for the Orthodox the highest dogmatic and canonical authority. Of course, this concerns not war in general, but a "just" war, in other words warfare that proceeds as a result of defending against an assault or invasion of ones motherland from an enemy.

But even this seems to be only one approach to a definition and not a final solution to the problem. Moreover, such an evaluation is not the equivalent of a direct Church blessing or Church approval for the vanquishing of ones foes in battle. In the 4th century the most authoritative Christian saint, St. Basil the Great, stated in the 13th Cannon, "Having killed on the field of battle, our ancestors are not guilty of murder, and, in defense of them, it seems to me they are upholders of chastity and piety. But, perhaps, it would be good to advise them, as having unclean hands, to refrain from receiving the holy mysteries for three years."[9] In other words, soldiers who had participated in military operations and therefore the taking of life could not receive the sacraments for three years, this being among the severest punishment for any Christian. For comparison, according to the 56th Cannon of St. Basil, any person found guilty of aggravated murder was excommunicated for a period of twenty years while those found guilty of manslaughter for ten years respectively.[10] It should be noted that all these measures are founded upon the implied repentance of the person involved, that is to say that those committing acts resulting in the death of another human being, for whatever reason, acknowledge that killing itself is wrong regardless of the circumstances which predicated the act, whether necessity or human weakness.

Thus, it seems to me, even the understanding of a "just war" (i.?. defensive and not offensive warfare) is rather relative as well. Of course, the Church has always prayed and will continue to pray for those who are obliged to perform military service. But this is not because the Church blesses or consecrates this service or military operations in general, but is rather due to the fact that the Church cares for those human beings who may be killed. For instance, during the Russian-Japanese war of 1905, Orthodox believers in Japan prayed for the "Lawful Authorities and Armed Forces"[11] of their country, but not for the Orthodox Russians, that is for a victory of the Japanese Emperor's army over the Russians. Such an example, in my view, shows quite clearly the relativity of any human truth and further demonstrates the impossibility of any defensible concept of an "Orthodox" war.

As coda to these remarks, the following words of Orthodox Archpriest Vassily Zenkovsky are appropriate: "The Church does not conceal, but, on the contrary, clarifies and confronts the fundamental ambiguities in the world; in history and in war, the Church proceeds forward where such ambiguity prevails so as to magnify the good and to extract what is good from tragic conditions. Any denial of war, any prohibition from participation in it (which may be implied, for a Christian, by the mere absence of a blessing to participate) would mean a departure from the world we live in. The wisdom of the Church, embodying a clear awareness of this, with perpetual grief observes how the world has dominion over us, yet never leaves us alone without its guardianship." [12]


The relationship between the warrior class of the nobility and the Church is one of the oldest traditions in the history of Russian national culture. This relationship nurtured cultural offshoots and was the direct ancestor of the Russian army under the Orthodox Tsars. This tradition has always supposed an ‘active cooperation of the Church and the army, with the single purpose of training servicemen in the spirit of a Christ-Loving armed force, infusing boyars and later ordinary soldiers with an awareness of their high calling and responsibility.’[13] The Russian ideal for a warrior has always been that of the warrior-liberator or protector. The images of the saint and the warrior are deeply intertwined both in Russian history and national folklore. On the one hand, about half of all men in the Russian anthology Lives of the Saints are warriors.[14] The prototype of such an epic hero can be found in Ilya Murom, a quasi-legendary figure who personified the image of ancient Rus in the 12th century. He was an ordinary peasant who, touched by a mystical event in his life, later became a warrior defending his motherland. It is known that the historical Ilya Murom later became a monk. and that his earthly remains are located in the Kiev Caves Lavra, where he is venerated as a saint to this day. Another powerful example of one of the most famous warrior saints is Alexander Nevsky, the Grand Prince, who expelled the Swedes and the Lithuanian Teutons as well as negotiated a peace with the Huns. He later took the name Alexis and also became a monk. The images of these saints have not only formed the ideal for the Russian military, but have played a significant role in the formation of Russian culture as a whole.

Perhaps the most remarkable and culturally relevant illustration of the Orthodox attitude towards war is contained in the history of the life of St. Sergius of Radonezh, who blessed Prince Dmitry Donskoy to engage the enemy in the famous battle of Kullikovskaya. According to his Life, prior to marching off to fight the Tartar Khan Mamay, Prince Dmitry visited Abbot Sergius at the Troitskaya Monastery, now known as the Trinity St. Sergius Lavra. There the abbot did not immediately bless the prince for the coming battle, but first inquired of the prince if he had tried "to please that obnoxious Mamay with gifts or favor." And only when the prince confirmed that he had taken all possible measures so as to conciliate this warlike and yet inexorable Khan did St. Sergius give his blessing.

Moreover, at Dmitry's request the abbot sent two monks - Alexander Peresvet and Andrey Oslyaba - both former boyars who were well-known for their military skills when they lived in the world - to assist Prince Dmitry. According to an account, Abbot Sergius ordered them to wear ordinary monastic cassocks with a cross in the place of amour and helmets. Prior to the battle itself, St. Sergius sent another monk, Nektary, along with other clergy for the purpose of spiritually strengthening the Prince and his army. [15]

These ties between the Church and army remain a constant factor in the Russian Church history and are not a peculiar feature restricted to the Russian Middle Ages. Even during the reforms of Peter the Great, when the traditional Russian way of life was almost completely destroyed and the Church was transformed into one of the newly established state ministries, this relationship was not changed in principal. After Peter's era, Russian history could boast of some splendid examples of prominent commanders who were zealous Christians. Such renowned Russian generals as Alexander Suvorov and Mikhail Kutuzov were noted for their piety as well as their military ability.

Even during the Soviet era, books devoted to A. Suvorov's military genius didn’t fail to emphasize such characteristics as his sincere patriotism and love for his Motherland while also emphasizing his particular attention to soldiers and care for every warrior. For reasons of Party doctrine, there was never any mention of the deep spiritual or moral foundation of the greatest Russian strategist. Suvorov's adherence to Orthodox values, however, was neither a secret nor something unaccountable for his contemporaries. Pre-revolutionary biographical works as well as contemporary memoirs give us an image of a sincere and faithful person who led a devout life of religious fervor, which Soviet officers were aware of. Suvorov's daily routine included morning and evening prayers, obligatory attendance of Sunday services and holy days without fail.[4] Suvorov's faith was not his ‘private matter’ only: the general was quite convinced of the necessity of worship for soldiers because he considered it a form of basic spiritual and moral training for his men.

It was for this reason the Divine services were performed before each battle as an integral part of Suvorov's heroic life. The liturgy and thanksgiving services were performed solemnly in particular upon successful military campaigns. Many cathedrals and churches were built under Suvorov's direction. Uncompromising to the enemies of the Fatherland, Suvorov was nevertheless noted for his special mercy towards any prostrate adversaries. In his soldier's catechism, Suvorov expressed his ideas quite definitely: "The defeated must be spared because they are people all the same; to kill them unjustly is a sin." In an order on May 16, 1778, the composition was very Christian in tone and content: "Captives should be treated with humanity, we should be ashamed of any barbarism." (author's emphasis added)

Suvorov's deep religious sense may be evidenced by the fact that upon his resignation, he made a decision to withdraw from society and retire to a monastery. In December 1798, Suvrov even wrote a letter to the emperor asking His Majesty's permission to take the monastic vow at the Nilova hermitage near Novgorod where he intended to dedicate the rest of his life to "the service of God." But instead of obtaining the Sovereign’s permission, Suvorov received the Tsar’s order to prepare for an impending Italian campaign. After having a service of thanksgiving performed at the village church, the general obediently made his way back to his army.

In 1800, several months before his death, Alexander Suvorov himself wrote a Canon to Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, which reflected his deep penitence and reflected poetic influence from the Great Canon of Repentance of St. Andrew of Crete, a significant liturgical component of the Lenten (that is to say penitential) services of the Orthodox Church. Perhaps the example of Suvorov is an exceptionally striking one, but it is not, however, a unique example of a Russian military leader whose sincere faith in no way hindered his service to his nation in a martial capacity.

To be sure, the personal religiosity of various Russian generals was neither the most important nor the only foundation of the spiritual and moral education of soldiers. The Church itself has always carried the main burden of infusing society with the salt savor of Christianity, but special emphasis was made on penetrating the military ranks with Orthodox culture and piety. Regimental clergy served, naturally, as the main carriers of this ecclesiastic mission. At the beginning of the twentieth century, the institution of the military priesthood presented a developed network within the full tradition of the Church. It is necessary to underline that the Church supported the army not only in an exclusively spiritual sense but also practically. During the World War I, more than 200 monasteries opened their own temporary hospitals in parallel with many individual parishes. In 1914, there were 157 such hospitals in operation within the Moscow Eparchy alone. Along with Russian servicemen, more than 5,000 clergymen ran the gauntlet of war, more than 30 were killed in action and 14 were decorated with the Cross of St. George "for distinction in the service of their country." [17]

It is, no doubt, quite tempting to project from these present examples an idealized picture of a Russian Army permeated with the high spirit of Christian morality defending the motherland from generation to generation. The ecclesiastic reforms introduced by Peter I, however, served to erode much of what had been built up over the centuries. All examples previously cited can’t compensate for the fact that the spirit of the "Christian Army" in Russia was systematically disassembled over the course of time – as it was from Russian society in general. It is very bitter to note that all talk of pre-revolutionary Russia as an ideal of the Orthodox state and about the Russian Army as an ideal of the Orthodox Army has no real basis. Nevertheless, military service under the Soviets was even further removed from this mold. A single fact explains that after the October revolution, many former Orthodox began to actively destroy Orthodox churches and to shoot clergymen. On the eve of the February Revolution, Russian soldiers were obliged to attend Sunday services and the Liturgy. Consequently, attendance was almost 100%. The Interim Government, however, abolished the obligatory Church attendance for soldiers and already by 1917 the figure for servicemen attending Church was reduced to a mere 10% or less.[18] In essence, that left us with less than 10% of the soldiers in the Russian Army who were conscientious Christians on the eve of such a horrible national tragedy as the October Revolution.


In the Soviet era, when relations between the Church and Army were not only impossible but absolutely inconceivable, the remnants of former traditions and pious customs were finally lost altogether. Today, our nation’s army and its leader’s, in the wake of state officials and leaders, often appeal to the Church as a spiritual and moral authority. There is a conscious effort to revive the former traditions. In connection with this, it is necessary to bear two key issues in mind: Firstly, the Church can and must take part in the matter of the moral education of Russian servicemen. Army commanders should not consider the clergy as some kind of modern political tool, or as instructors in political ideology for other ends. Military leadership applying for assistance from the Church needs to take into account the position of the Church very keenly, including coming to an understanding of the true goals of priests who serve in the armed forces. The Army, as the state and society in general, cannot view the Church as a government institution with the purpose of indoctrinating its subjects with state ideology. It is true that this process will not be carried out at once, and yet it is quite difficult to speak about such collaboration without an emphasis on this fundamental understanding. [19]

Secondly, it follows that serving clergy and military leaders must not forget that the pre-revolutionary model, from which any future relationship of between the Church and the Army is to be built, is fundamentally different from our current situation. Russia is neither an Orthodox state (the Russian Federation, according to the Constitution, is a secular state), nor is the Church a state institution. This in no way prevents a viable relationship between the Church and Army, but it does presuppose a completely different legal basis for such a relationship. The modern Russian Army, in both composition and personnel, is multi-national as well as multi-confessional, so the sphere of activity of any Orthodox clergy is limited to those servicemen who have a desire for such a component in their tour of duty. To this end, Army commanders should be responsible to neither put obstacles in their way nor to drive these soldiers together against their will to "to listen to this or that priest."

Attempts at cooperation between the Church and Army have already been made: in 1994 and 1997 the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) and the Ministry of Defense concluded agreements on cooperation targeted towards forming and strengthening high morale. Such efforts have thus far produced tangible effects. One of the most interesting outcomes related to this has been the establishment of the Faculty of Orthodox Culture at the Military Academy of Strategic Missile Forces in 1996. This Faculty is a non-governmental organization of continued education under the RF Ministry of Defense and ROC, respectively. Studies at the Faculty are voluntary and outside the required curriculum. This initiative has been met with approval and is being developed further: in Spring of 2000, a similar Faculty of Orthodox Culture was established at the Military Air-Defense University for Ground Forces in Smolensk.

The goal of these faculties is to assist the Army in the matter of modifying its induction system for young soldiers. Colonel K. Sergeev, Deputy Dean of the Faculty of the Orthodox Culture at the Military Academy of the Strategic Missile Forces comments on this: "The methods and forms of the moral and psychological training for soldiers presently in use have been goal-oriented, mostly for the enhancement of political consciousness. In this case the necessity of arousing hatred, the use of cruelty and severity against an enemy are imperative to the formation of a soldiers' consciousness. From a spiritual standpoint, such a psychological attitude will lead to the degradation of the human personality. For the Orthodox soldier, there is always the very important issue concerning the purpose for which he must kill. Is it for the sake of the Motherland or the sake of protecting people, a human life perhaps? Or is it for some other political goal, unknown to the soldiers or even to the unit commanders? At the present time, soldiers and officers, unfortunately, have no idea of their responsibility in a given situation when they may be required to cross the threshold of violent force. And although they frequently say – "a la guerre comme a la guerre", meaning that some brutality, violence and excesses are inevitable in a time of war, the soldier must clearly understand that he has a right to use his weapon, to use force and aggression against an enemy only, but not against ordinary citizens. This is, if you will, a certain code of honor, and in breaking it, a person suffers the psychological consequences, often in the form of nightmares, heavy drinking and drug-use; in short, this man will have serious problems. We all are very much aware of the "Afghanistan syndrome" or now even the "Chechen syndrome." [20]

To this I'd like to add a final conclusion: the greater responsibility always lies with the senior officers and, even more, with the politicians who dictate policy. With soldiers lies the responsibility of fulfilling their sworn oath of duty. Therefore, while we concern ourselves with the matter of the spiritual formation of our servicemen, at the same time we need to remind our political leaders of the moral nature of their activities so that soldiers will not be put into a moral dilemma: to disobey a commander's order or to violate a moral law.


[1] Archbishop Macarius. Orthodox Dogmatic Theology (Russian) St. Petersburg, 1868. V. 1, p 7. (author’s emphasis added)

[2] Presbyter Gregory Shavelsky on Orthodox ministry. Cit.: D. Predein Ivan Ilyn’s Orthodox Sword, Vstrecha, 1998 ?3 (9), p 22.

[3] In Russian the word for peace is mir (мир) and the word for humility is smireniye (смирение), which contains the same root: s-mir-eniye (с-мир-ение).

[4] A. Osipov. The Sword and Peace: the Orthodox Outlook, Vstrecha, 1998, № 3 (9), p 7.

[5] In fact, the Orthodox theology perceives such a state of world peace in an apocalyptic context, a precondition for Antichrist and not part of the establishment of the Kingdom of God on earth at some point in the future, a concept that is completely alien to Orthodox Theology.

[6] The followers of the non-violence ethic often appeal to the words of Christ: …whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also (Matt 5:39). This idea can hardly considered a categorical imperative for Christians to be pacifists. Against this literal, tract like interpretation we have the Savior’s own behavior at the court proceeding where endures an insult from a soldier but does not turning the other cheek. Thus, here the matter concerns not advice for any specific situation but a general moral principle: go to meet your foe or offender, do not revenge yourself, but be able to forgive.

[7] In Church Slavonic не обижайте

[8] St. Athanasius the Great. Epistle to Monk Amoun // Tvorenniye. M.: Spaso-Probrazhenskovo Valaamskogo Monastery Publishers. 1994. ?.3. p 369.

[9] Cit. Alphabetic Syntagma of Matthew Vlastarya. M., 1996. p 427. (authors emphasis added)

[10]Ibid. p 426.

[11] Prayers from the litany in the Divine Liturgy.

[12] Archpriest Vassily Zenkovsky, regarding I. Ilyin's book Concerning Resisting Evil With Force I. Ilyin, Collected Works. M.: Russkaya Kniga, 1995. V. 5. p 436.

[13] D. Predein Ibid. p 23.

[14] The Lives of the Saints is an Orthodox anthology of biographies intended to inspire and edify the faithful.

[15] Archbishop Nikon (Pozhdestvensky). The Life of St. Sergius of Radonezh. St. Sergius-Trinity Lavra. 1997. pp 166-177.

[16] This material on Suvorov was obtained from the book I am Truly Yours… ?., 1998. It is of note that the author of this work on the Suvorov's life as a real Christian is M. Zhukova, daughter of the other great Russian commander-in-chief, Marshal G. Zhukov.

[17] O. Lebedev. For Your Friends. Clergy During World War I// NG-Religions. 26.06.97. p 3.

[18] D. Pospelovsky The Feat of Faith in the Atheistic State // Russians Abroad During the Millennium of the Baptism of Russia. ?.: Stolitsa. 1991. p 71.

[19] Here is but one observation which gives a very vivid testimony that there is as yet no deep mutual understanding between the Church and the Army: in many television broadcasts of funeral services for Federal servicemen who died in Chechnya, officers attending the service spoke openly of getting revenge. It is reasonable to concede the feelings of these officers who lost their men, but we cannot forget that revenge is a category that belongs outside the framework of the Christian ethic.

[20] An Army Without Faith Will Not Stand. Interview of Colonel K. Sergeev, Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Orthodox Culture, Peter The Great Military Academy of the Strategic Missile Forces.// Vstrecha. № 3(9), 1998. p 14.

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