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Academic Periodical

The Quarterly Journal of St. Philaret’s Institute

Russia Abroad and its Ecclesiastical and Historical Significance

Vladimir Cherniaev, Ph.D. in History, Associate Professor, SFI (Moscow; Saint-Petersburg)
pp. 67–87
DOI: 10.25803/SFI.2020.35.3.003
The article is devoted to the analysis of the ecclesiastical and historical significance of the Russia Abroad. It shows a conceptual difference of the Russia Abroad from the Russians oversees which are often mistakenly used as synonyms. The Russia Abroad was a unique phenomenon in the World History of XX century. The Russsian Council of ambassadors’ activities which did not recognize the power of the Bolsheviks have assigned Paris, the main center of the intellectual forces of Russian exiles, the role of the capital of the Russia Abroad. The article shows the role the League of Nations and especially the role of F. Nansen and K. N. Gulkevich at the solution of the problems of Russian refugees, exiles and emigrants. Official representation in the League of Nations of the Council of ambassadors and other Russian public organizations and the acquisition of their internationally recognized Nansen passport meant de facto recognition of the Russia Abroad by the States of the League of Nations. Being a temporary State organization without its own territory, the Russia Abroad has its own (Nansen’s) passport and its own anthem, memorable dates and holidays. Only in the Russia Abroad did the Russian culture of the Silver age continue to develop. The particular attention this article gives to the role of the Russian Orthodox Church at the Russia Abroad and to the relations between its leaders abroad, metropolitan Evlogy (Georgievsky) and metropolitan Antony (Khrapovitsky). Exiled Russian philosophers associated their main hope for spiritual overcoming of the political split between Russians outside and inside Russia with the Russian Orthodox Church abroad. Despite its positive role, the Russian Orthodox Church abroad, unfortunately, could not become the main connecting and organizing force of the Russia Abroad, largely due to the competition of hierarchs. The Russia Abroad was unable to overcome its internal political disunity and create a unified will. The second and third waves, as well as the new generations of the first wave, could not breathe strength into the expiring Russia Abroad Foreign Russia. The Russia Abroad disappeared along with the collapse of the Communist system, which was facilitated by its opposition and struggle. So far, only the tip of the huge iceberg of the Russia Abroad has been explored. Historians are still only on the way to this worldhistorical phenomenon and the development of its religious and philosophical, literary, scientific, technical, artistic and architectural heritage. Special attention is paid to the scientific and practical value and significance of the research and to the use of research on scientific problems in the Russia Abroad to solve the problems of migrants in modern Russia.
Keywords: the Russia Abroad, the Russians oversees, the Russian Orthodox Church, the League of Nations, F. Nansen, K. N. Gulkevich, metropolitan Evlogy (Georgievsky), metropolitan Antony (Khrapovitsky), the Russian Foreign Congress of 1926.

Last IssueIssue 44 (autumn 2022)

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