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From history of Russian Orthodox Church in the Far East (China, Korea and Japan)

Russian Abroad
     Priests A.V. From history of Russian Orthodox Church in the Far East (China, Korea and Japan) // Christianity in the Far East. Materials of the international scientific conference. - Vladivostok: DVGU. - 2000. - With. 149-154

From history of Russian Orthodox Church in the Far East (China, Korea and Japan)

Before revolution 1917 in Russia missions of Russian Orthodox Church in the Far East were available in China (with 1715), Japan (with 1871a.) and Korea (with 1900).
Orthodoxy in China takes the beginning from so-called albazinskih the captives taken by Chineses in a captivity at osade of fortress Albazin in 1685, withdrawn in Pekin and invited on service Chinese bogdyhanom. Together with albazinskimi captives Maxim Leontev has been withdrawn to Pekin and ierej. In Pekin iereem by Maxim in 1696 the first Russian orthodox church in the name of over Sofia which also long referred to Nikolskoj named brought of Russia and chtimogo albazintsami an image of Sacred Nikolay has been arranged.
In 1715 under the offer of Metropolitan Feofila Tobolsk with the consent of bogdyhana to Pekin the first Russian spiritual Mission has been sent. It consisted from 10 person under command of Archimandrite Ilariona (Lezhajskogo). Russian spiritual Mission in China contained due to the Russian government. In the activity it was limited to limits of Russian flock and should not politicize. Before opening in 1861 of the Russian diplomatic Mission spiritual Mission carried out as well diplomatic functions. In 1863 the Peking Mission has been placed from conducting the Ministry for Foreign Affairs under the authority of the Most holy Synod.
In second half XIX century the beginning of XX century Mission undertook efforts and for actually missionary activity among Chineses. Missionary activity has reached the greatest scope during 18-th Mission and is connected with a name of its chief, the future metropolitan, Innokentija (Figurovskogo) which headed Mission with 1896 on 1931
Revolution and the subsequent civil war have cardinally changed a role and a place of Russian orthodox church outside Russia, initial bases of its existence abroad. First of all it is caused by that outside Russia there was a plenty (about 2 million person) the Russian orthodox people who have become by refugees after defeat of white armies in civil war. Together with flock there were many orthodox priests and arhipastyri.
From the official report of Main priest Zemskoj of the Host of Archpriest Leonid Viktorova addressed to its Eminence Mefodija, Archbishop Harbinskogo and Manchurian: In the end of October, 1922 of army Zemskoj of the Host under pressure of bolsheviks should leave limits of Seaside area and pass through border, chastiju to China, chastiju to Korea. At ostavlenii Vladivostok by me it has been informed to military clergy on those heavy prospects what on foreign land expected each of us, and it is brought a attention to the question on a free choice of the decision by each priest. The part of clergy after that, has remained in the city of Vladivostok, has declared a part desire to follow with parts of the Host abroad and to divide the general destiny. Before transition of border, last time the Lord has resulted to serve the Divine Liturgy in the new-Kiev village here again already was felt, that there comes any resolute moment; All tested especially disturbing sincere condition and before everything, both before pastors, and before soldiers there was an edge a question: What further where when and how the Lord will result to pray in the future?. But the lot has been thrown also a new cross became inevitable also to everyone is certain Supreme. Armies, their families, old and small have moved one on foot to China, others by steamships in the Korean ports. That expected all and everyone in the another's ground, was the uttermost uncertainty; all assumptions and plans fell by itself. First believed, that movement will be accelerated to the central cities to a line of road, but it has in practice turned out far not so. The group which has left to China, prinuzhdena was involuntarily prostojat two months in small town Hun-Chun, near border Russian, and the group, left by sea, has unloaded in and has settled in the first got to port Genzane. The moment when people were entirely in authority of external conditions has come. And the life at all did not reckon with position of people usual cheredoj. People were born, died and, strangely enough, even married. In the spiritual attitude in all there was any invisible change; the especial melancholy on all native was felt. At such position did not remain without attention and the orthodox pastor. To it addressed with the needs spiritual and with one persevering question: whether there will be a divine service in the pagan country and when. It was necessary to meet this desire and inquiries of weight with infringement, perhaps, that usual order blagochinija and disciplines in what were long since brought up. And pastors and soldiers were in Vladivostok under spiritual care and management Preosvjashchennogo of Lord Michael, and in China and Korea and this opportunity have lost. Including the created position absolutely abnormal, I as the senior on a post the priest, has considered as the duty to address to your Eminence with the corresponding application sent with the Chief of Office of the Governor Domracheevym also has given the order to uplift prays to the Lord to the God in all camps of military refugees about your health. Apparently my application has not been delivered to destination. And time went day after day, week after a week and did not suffer delays. Children and adults hurted, died; parents asked about Over the Participle. In one Genzane for this time the whole children's cemetery, where shoroneno more than 300 children has opened. In a kind of the created position I behind the responsibility have given the order in Genzan and personally in hun-?oia began to make efforts receiving from Chineses the sanction to fulfilment of divine services and have organized the last, including long ierejskoj conscience to repent in sodejannom before Bishop and as soon as possible to ask Svjatitelskogo blessing on fulfilment of Divine services. Efforts have been topped by success. Chineses have authorized for fulfilment of Divine services, and the administration of English customs has kindly given for them one of pure premises. Here in current of two months I also made nightlong vigils obednitsy, with participation of all clergy of group at singing two amateur choruses. For familiarizing babies and adult confessors before Christmas Hristovym on portable Over antiminse Divine Liturgies have been accomplished some. Divine services for refugees in cities of ?i-oe-Ghana and Genzane have been in the same way organized, and the building for church in a Genzane is equipped by diligence orthodox and buddistskogo the Japanese societies. With transition of military units to area of Girin the question on divine service hramozdatelstve again became on turn. In current of month in Girin the premise for church in soldier's camp is equipped, and now is started efforts about creation of church also in officer camp. Anywhere and everywhere before opening of divine service were served vodosvjatnye molebstvija. Informing on the above-stated to your Eminence, should testify, that all bezhenskie the organizations scattered on China and Korea, unanimously think of itself being under yours Arhipastyrskim care and cherish an idea, that on fulfilment of divine service, and, especially, the Divine Liturgy in current days Over CHetyredesjatnitsy and the Great Holiday Light Hristova Revivals the sanction and svjatitelskoe blessing will follow. Such desire bezhenskih groups is caused by deep respect of all military grades of your Eminence and natural gravitation to Harbin, as unique Diocese, free from bolshevitskogo dominations and corrupting influence of alive church..
Events of civil war, change of borders, emigration, absence of a continuous communication with the Patriarch and the sacred Synod in Moscow have caused numerous splits, changes jurisdiktsionnoj accessories of many dioceses, churches. After the termination of civil war, formation of new church diaspora outside Russia (1920-1930-a) in the literature often name the period the period of a great church distemper. And split was characteristic not only for orthodox outside of Russia, but also for church in the Russia that brought additional decomposing, dezoorganizujushchuju a component and in the organization of a church life outside of Russia. To the full it concerns and to activity of Mission in China.
In 1920 the Russian Spiritual Mission in China has passed in submission of the Maximum Church Management abroad, subsequently Arhierejskogo Synod RPTS abroad. The new diocese Peking and Chinese led by the chief of 18-th Mission by lord Innokentiem has been formed. Except for that in Manchzhurii the diocese, coping has been organized by metropolitan Harbinskim Mefodiem directly submitted Arhierejskomu to Synod Harbinskaja.
In 1922 already at the first Eparchial Assembly the petition before Arhierejskim the Synod temporarily opened Harbinskuju a diocese has been raised to approve by a constant. But the petition has been rejected Arhierejskim by the Synod in a kind of that formation independent Harbinskoj dioceses has been protested by the Vladivostok bishop Michael and Archbishop Peking Innokentiem. And in the further Russian life in China was characterized infinite tjazhbami and mutual recriminations between clergymen of the Peking Spiritual Mission and Harbinskoj dioceses. In particular metropolitan Mefody in the letters in Arhierejsky abroad repeatedly specified Synod RPTS: Archbishop Innokenty clearly also has definitely revealed the bias in a Catholicism a recognition oshibochnago katolicheskago doctrines about primatstve apostle Peter on whom the Catholic theology has constructed the flase doctrine about papal absolute power, the flase doctrine more harmful and dangerous, than all heresies, the flase doctrine brought incalculable harm of Church. Claims of daddies on universal absolute power was the main reason otpadenija papacy and a Catholicism from sedmi universal cathedrals of universal true and break with East Church. This claim on universal absolute power always was and will be the main and insuperable obstacle of rapproachement of the West with the East. To recognize papal authority means that to recognize papacy in the maintenance and its volume and to renounce Orthodoxy. Arhiepskop Innokenty should know, that speaks, if it so speaks, to it to be in the ranks of bishops of novices of the daddy, instead of in the ranks of orthodox bishops more decently. What authority can have bishop before orthodox bishops and the believing orthodox people, evaded from cleanliness of the orthodox doctrine and run in error in such important point, as a question on the papal absolute power which has split the uniform Christian world on two irreconcilable half. Whether has after that Archbishop Innokenty even the moral right to solicit any domination above other bishops. Harbinskaja the diocese has entered already the fourth year of the existence and, operating under the most constrained conditions, has reached a degree of an accomplishment of former normal dioceses, and third Eparchial Assembly therefore was from February, 24th till March, 1st, 1926 is again decided to petition before Foreign Arhierejskim the Synod for statement Harbinskoj of a diocese of a constant. Representing about the above-stated I take boldness to ask Arhierejsky the Synod:
1) to recognize harassment of Archbishop Innokentija absolutely insignificant, not having any force, bringing only a distemper and nestroenija during a life of a diocese as the question about trehrechi in which Archbishop Innokenty has become interested only has shown it after has assumed to rent there the ground and to arrange the revenue for Pekin.
2) to confirm full independence Harbinskoj of a diocese outside of any dependence from Pekinskago Archbishop, as jako the chapter of bishops (not existing) people (nevernago) kitajskago. Such acknowledgement will give greater stability to the order of an eparchial life and greater authority of eparchial authority.
Yours svjatejshestva nizhajshy novice Mefody, Archbishop Harbinsky and Manchurian.. Harbinskaja the diocese applied for the superiority in the Far East. That subsequently has led to formation of two church centers Ekzarhata in Harbin and Mission in Pekin.
Russian orthodox church in China, Orthodoxy in China there were many years and have sustained many tests. Heavy for Russian church in China was XX century After revolution communication with mother church has interrupted, not clear became initial position, did not promote church rest and constant splits. In 1956 the Moscow Patriarchy granted to the Chinese Orthodox Church an autonomy and has withdrawn all Russian priests. But especially tragic for Orthodoxy of steel of 1960th, years of a cultural revolution when the orthodox church in China has stopped the existence, and temples and monasteries have been destroyed.
Orthodoxy in Japan originates from the end of 50th of XIX century when at Russian consulate in Hakodate the orthodox church first in Japan has been opened. Missionary activity has begun in 1871 from the moment of formation of Spiritual Mission which chief had been appointed ieromonah Nikolay (Kasatkin) erected in a dignity of archimandrite. Before the death in 1912 it has christened about 10000 Japanese and has translated into the Japanese language the New testament, many prayer books. Orthodoxy in Japan has passed a complex way and has entered a new stage in 1972 when there was intronizirovan the first metropolitan-Japanese Feodosy. With 1945 on 1970 the Japanese orthodox church was under jurisdiction American Mitropolii. In 1971 the Moscow patriarchy has given to Orthodox Church in America avtokefaliju. Last has returned the Japanese Orthodox Church under jurisdiction of Moscow, and Moscow, in turn, has declared the Japanese Church independent. Now in the Japanese Church of 3 dioceses and 150 arrivals. All clergy of the Japanese origin also has received the formation in a theological seminary in Tokyo.
Orthodox Spiritual Mission in Korea has been called for the existence in 1897, but has actually opened the actions in 1900 the First chief of Mission Archimandrite Amvrosy (Gudko), gone to a place of the service in the same 1897 has been appointed, but by virtue of some circumstances which have developed for it it is adverse, prinuzhden was to come back from road back to Russia. The second Archimandrite Hrisanf (SHetkovsky), begun the basis of Mission and missionary activity and served with 1900 on 1904 Mission with 1904 on 1906 has been closed in connection with the military actions which have opened between Japan and Russia (from February, 2nd, till August, 15th, 1906) . The third Archimandrite Paul (Ivanovo), served with 1906 on 1912 the Fourth Archimandrite Irinarh (SHemanovsky), served with 1912 on 1914 the Fifth has been appointed as operating by mission Hegumen Vladimir (Skrizhalin), served with 1914 on 1917 the Sixth Ieromonah the Palladium (Seletsky), as managing 2-3 months which have served only. The seventh Archimandrite Feodosy (Passes) which have served with 1917 on 1920 as the manager, and with 1920 on 1927 in a rank of the chief of Mission.
The church missijskaja in honour of prelate and chudotvortsa Nikolay had temporary character. With 1900 on 1903 it was in the house of Diplomatic mission, then, with 1903 when have been ended missijskie constructions, is transferred to own premise, namely in a school building.
The staff of Mission consisted of Archimandrite, ierodiakona and psalomshchika. The maintenance went from means Over the Synod, all over again in the sum of 6.870 roubles, then (with 1903) in the sum of 10.170 roubles of year. From this sum 3.000 roubles were due to Archimandrite, 2000 roubles - ierodiakonu, 1.500 roubles - psalomshchiku and 3.670 roubles - on heating, illumination, a maid and schools. Mission received such maintenance since time of its basis up to 1917 inclusive.
After revolution 1917 Mission has remained without means of subsistence. To not interrupt the undertaken activity its head prinuzhden was to find itself means and to support establishment. So, per 1918-1919 local Anglican Bishop Trollot helped it the means, having given out the check for the sum of 5.100 yens. Simultaneously with it Russian citizen A.M.Ginsburg of 2.100 yens has offered. Per 1920-1922 under the request of the chief of Mission our Embassy in Tokyo has given out the sum of 4.700 yens. Thus, in the first years after revolution Mission all found means for the maintenance. In 1920th it existed exclusively on the incomes received from delivery of apartments in employment, but these incomes were very insignificant.
Except for Seoul Mission had five missionary stanov or, more truly, arrivals to provinces, with a small number of Christians korejtsev. At each of stanov there was a prayful house-oaica and a small plot of land. Stany up to 1918 were served by the priest, psalomshchikom and five katehizatorami korejtsami. In 1918 when the means of subsistence serving stanov have run low all have stopped the activity and settlements have remained without heads. After 1918 a role katehizatorov executed local storozhily-ei?aeou. In stany there were from time to time arrivals of members of Mission.
School business with 1906 on 1917 went more or less successfully. Employment were conducted at 5-6 schools at 10 learning and 220-240 pupils. But they for the same material reasons have been suspended in 1917
In the administrative attitude Mission submitted with 1897 on 1908 to the Petersburg Metropolitan on the general for foreign Missions the bases, with 1908 on 1923 to the Vladivostok Archbishop, with 1923 on present time - Japanese Arhipastyrju.
In 1924 to the Chief of Mission to Archimandrite Feodosiya was possible to register the central site with houses in local district court and to become the investor of the Property Society of Orthodox Church of Japan on the same bases on what was the Tokyo Mission is registered.
With 1927 after departure of the Chief of Mission of Archimandrite Feodosiya to Japan activity of Mission has actually stopped. As a whole it is possible to tell, that missionary activity RPTS in Korea has not crowned success. The reasons of it are indirectly specified in the letter of Archimandrite Feodosiya to Metropolitan Antoniju (Hrapovitskomu) in which it writes: I Feel not on forces otjagoshchyonnym on management of the Mission entrusted to me, especially in its present position, and also on a state of health my, strongly reeled lately, I have honour pochtitelnejshe to ask your Eminence to not give up in purpose me in other any secluded place, in a silent corner of the Christian world that I could feel somewhat the at home, in a circle of the relatives on belief and spirit edinoplemennikov, whether it be in a monastery or where it is indifferent. Korea for me the another's country to which I for all days of the service have not got used and hardly probable when I shall get used, as well as to Korean people pagan both absolutely not similar on views and a life with us, Europeans.
Summing up missionary activity and history of Orthodoxy in the Far East countries China, Japan, Korea, it is necessary to note, that hristianizatsija these countries has not reached significant successes. In many respects it speaks alienation of Far East people from christianity as from belief of strangers, materialism and konfutsianstvom, taken roots among the formed layers of the population.


1. History of the Russian Spiritual Mission in China. M.: Izd. The Piously-Vladimir Brotherhood. 1997. With. 17
2. In the same place, With. 55
3. V.S.histor's hare of the Russian Church from the basis up to now. A?i?aaiaeeu.1993. With. 371
4. F. 6343, ii.1, a.235 ll. 1-10
5. F. 6343, ii.1, d. 236, ll. 65-68
6. Roberson R.Vostochno-hristianskie of church. The oa?eiaii-historical directory. SPb. 1999. With. 111-112
7. The decree Over the Synod from July, 2-4nd, 1897 for 2.195
8. GARF f. 6343, op. d. 234, ll. 20-25
9. GARF o.6343, op. 1, a.234, l. 36