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The reign of Ivan III and his successor was plagued by a number of heresies and controversies.One party, led by Nil Sorsky and Vassian Kosoy, called for the secularisation of monastic properties.The ROCOR was instituted in the 1920s by Russian communities outside then Communist Russia, which refused to recognize the authority of the Moscow Patriarchate then de facto headed by Metropolitan Sergius Stragorodsky.The two churches reconciled on May 17, 2007; the ROCOR is now a self-governing part of the Russian Orthodox Church.As Kiev was losing its political, cultural, and economical significance due to the Mongol invasion, Metropolitan Maximus moved to Vladimir in 1299; his successor, Metropolitan Peter moved the residence to Moscow in 1325.Following the tribulations of the Mongol invasion, the Russian Church was pivotal in the survival and life of the Russian state.In December 1448, Jonas, a Russian bishop, was installed by the Council of Russian bishops in Moscow as Metropolitan of Kiev and All Russia (with permanent residence in Moscow) without the consent from Constantinople.This occurred five years prior to the fall of Constantinople in 1453 and, unintentionally, signified the beginning of an effectively independent church structure in the Moscow (North-Eastern Russian) part of the Russian Church.
The Kiev Metropolitan's residence was originally located in Kiev itself, the capital of the medieval Rus' state.
The Christianization of Kievan Rus', widely seen as the birth of the ROC, is believed to have occurred in 988 through the baptism of the Kievan prince Vladimir and his people by the clergy of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, whose constituent part the ROC remained for the next six centuries, while the Kievan see remained in the jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarchate until 1686.
The ROC currently claims its exclusive jurisdiction over the Orthodox Christians, irrespective of their ethnic background, who reside in the former member republics of the Soviet Union, excluding Georgia and Armenia, although this claim is disputed in such countries as Estonia, Moldova and Ukraine and consequently parallel canonical Orthodox jurisdictions exist in those: the Estonian Apostolic Orthodox Church, the Metropolis of Bessarabia, and the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, respectively.
The Trinity monastery north of Moscow founded by Sergius of Radonezh became the setting for the flourishing of spiritual art, exemplified by the work of Andrey Rublev, among others.
The followers of Sergius founded four hundred monasteries, thus greatly extending the geographical extent of the Grand Duchy of Moscow.
Her grandson, Vladimir of Kiev, made Rus' officially a Christian state.