To the Children of the Russian Orthodox Church Who Are Dispersed in Exile.
Beloved in Jesus Christ:
The punishing hand of the Lord is stretched out above us. Russia is suffering immeasurably for our grave sins. Russian people have been scattered through the whole world. There is no measure and no limit to the crimes of those who have polluted the land of Russia. Churches have been defiled, holy objects profaned, a battle is being fought against God, blood is being shed.
Even the blood of the Lord’s Anointed has been spilt, and he has ended his life as a martyr.
The land is impoverished, people perish, power is in the hands of the godless, the Church is under persecution. The land of Russia is in darkness and human reason seeks in vain for the means of salvation.
To the Russian people on the threshold of despair, the divine mercy has left an unfailing light – the Orthodox Church. Providence has raised up the Patriarch as the head of the Russian Church, so that in the unity of the Church there lives on the unity of the nation.
In sorrow and torment the Russian people seek the succour of the Church. The churches are packed, and in them rises the unceasing, sorrowful cry of repentance, together with prayers for mercy and for protection. The limits to God’s wrath have not yet been reached, the suffering is not yet complete.
The duty of those abroad in the diaspora, those who have preserved their lives and who do not share in the grief which is destroying our people, is to keep the unity of the Christian spirit beneath the banner of the Holy Cross and under the protection of the Orthodox faith, according to the tradition of the Russian Church.
Let this be our persistent prayer to God in his mercy: May the Lord forgive us and our land our great sins and transgressions, may he enlighten our minds with the light of the truth, our hearts with the flame of love, and may he strengthen our will for the way of righteousness.
From the beginning, our Russian land was saved and formed by the faith and prayers of the saints and the ascetics, by the labours of our anointed princes and tsars.
And now may our prayer flame up unsleepingly and may the Lord show us the path of salvation and of the restoration of our native land. May he defend the faith and the Church and all Russia. May he protect the people’s hearts from evil and may he restore to the Russian throne the Lord’s Anointed, strong in the love of his people – the legitimate Orthodox Tsar of the House of Romanov.
Praying for the forgiveness of our sins and asking for light in the future, let each one of us take upon himself the burden of his brother, so that, united in faith and love, we may all re-enter our home, when the Lord opens the doors to us, as one flock of the One Shepherd, with a sacrificial readiness to serve our native land and the good of the people.
May God bless every endeavour made for the sake of the Orthodox Church and the building up of the Russian state that it has sanctified.
President of the Russian Church Council Abroad
Eastern Churches Review 7.1 (1975)