Synod - is ... Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church

Holy Synod - a last supreme governing body of the Orthodox Church affairs.It operated from 1721 to 1918.On the Local Council of the Russian Orthodox Church 1917 - 1918, it was decided the patriarchate.At the moment, this body plays in the affairs of the church only a minor role.

Church early period

ROC was founded in 988.The original hierarchical structure of clergy adopted at Constantinople.Over the 9 following centuries Russian church was largely dependent on the Byzantine Empire.In the period from 988 in 1589 practiced mitropolitskoe device.Then from 1589 to 1720 was head of the Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch.And from 1721 to 1918 the church was governed by the Synod.Currently, the sole ruler of the Russian Orthodox Church is the Patriarch.Today Synod - this is just an advisory body.

rules of the Universal Church

by the general rules of the global Orthodox synod can have the judicial, legislative, administrative, and regulatory power to supervise.Interaction with the state produced by the government appointed a secular person.For effective work of the Synod are the following bodies:

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  1. Synod Office.
  2. Spiritual Training Committee.
  3. Management Synodal printing.
  4. Office of the Procurator.
  5. Spiritual and school boards.
  6. of economic management.

Shareable ROC diocese in the limits of which coincide with the boundaries of areas of the state.Resolution of the Synod must be recommended for the clergy and parishioners.For their adoption held a special meeting of the Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church (2 times a year).

Creating a Spiritual Rules

Spiritual regulation was established on the orders of Peter I, Metropolitan Theophanes Prokopovich.This document reflects all the ancient church rules.Faced with the resistance to the reforms of the clergy, the Russian Emperor, and has initiated the abolition of patriarchal power and the establishment of the Synod.Doubtless is the fact that it was after this, and after the introduction of the post of Procurator, the ROC lost its independence from the state.

Official reasons for the Church Synod control

Background on which the Russian Orthodox Church has once accepted it is this form of management (by order of Peter I), listed in the Spiritual Rules and consisted of the following:

  1. few clerics can setthe truth is much faster and better than one.
  2. Solutions cathedral authorities will have a much greater weight and authority than decisions of one man.
  3. In case of illness or death of the only ruler of the case will not be stopped.
  4. few individuals can take much more impartial solution than one.
  5. authorities are much more difficult to influence a large number of priests than the sole ruler of the church.
  6. In one such person may bring power pride.The common people in the same breath it will be difficult to separate the church from monarshestva.
  7. Holy Synod can always condemn unlawful actions of one of its members.To parse the wrong decisions of the Patriarch should be called the Eastern clergy.But it is expensive and time consuming.
  8. Synod - is primarily a kind of school in which more experienced members can teach beginners the case of church government.Thus, increasing performance.

main feature of the Russian Synod

characteristic feature of the newly created Russian Synod was that he confessed hierarchically equal to the Eastern patriarchs.Such bodies in other Orthodox countries played only a minor role in the sole supremacy of man.Only the Greek Synod have the same power within the church of the country, like Russian.God's House of the two countries have always had a device in his lot in common.Eastern patriarchs called the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church "beloved brother in the Lord," that is recognized its power equal to his own.

historic part of the Synod

Initially, the governing body consisted of:

  1. President (Stefan Jaworski - Metropolitan of Ryazan);
  2. Vice-Presidents in the amount of two people;
  3. Advisors and assessors (4 people).

Synod members were elected from among archimandrites, bishops, abbots and urban archpriests.Church rules were adopted that protect the freedom of opinion in the filing.So the work of the Synod did not have to take part at the same time with the abbots and Archpriest standing over them bishops.After the death of Stephen Yavorsky post of president was abolished.From that moment all the members of the Synod were equalized in rights.Over time, the composition of this body varies periodically.So, in 1763 it consisted of 6 people (bishop 3, 2 and 1 Rev. Archimandrite).In 1819 - 7 people.

Almost immediately after the decision on the establishment of the Synod was followed by an order of the monarch's membership in this body supervising secular person.He was elected the representative of the State of respectable officers.He called granted him the position of "chief procurator of the Synod."According to the instructions approved by the monarch, this man was the "eye of the Emperor and an attorney for the state."In 1726, the Synod was divided into two parts - the spiritual and temporal cost.

A brief history of the synodal administration from 1721 to 1918.

In the early years of great influence on the decision of the Synod of Bishop Theophane had.Neither church book could not be published without his approval.The man was a friend of Bismarck and Osterman and all the bishops, anyway, were depending on him.Theophane has reached such power after the fall of the Great Party of the Synod.At that time, the Soviet government was going through hard times.The confrontation between Anna Ivanovna and daughter of Peter the Great led to the persecution of the supporters last.Once all the members of the Synod Feofan except for denunciation were simply dismissed, and in their place appointed others, much more loyal to him.Of course, then he reached unprecedented power.Theophanes died in 1736

Eventually, Elizabeth still ascended the throne.After that, the links have been returned during the time of all the exiled priests Feofan.The period of her reign was one of the best for the Russian Orthodox Synod.However, the Empress of the patriarchate is still not restored.Moreover, it was especially intolerant appointed chief procurator Ya Shahovsky, reputed to be a zealous adherent of the state of affairs.

In times of Peter III, the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church was forced to endure the German influence, which, however, ended with the ascension to the throne of Catherine II.No particular innovations, this queen of the Synod is not introduced.The only thing she did - closed college savings.Thus, the Synod was again united.

Under Alexander I, the chief prosecutor becomes Prince AN Golitsyn, in his youth reputed patron of all sorts of mystical sects.As a practical man, he even considered helpful to the Synod, especially at first.A prominent figure in the Church of Nicholas I became Filaret, built by the emperor to the rank of Metropolitan in 1826.Since 1842 the priest took an active part in the work of the Synod.

«Dark Ages" of the Synod of the early XX century

main reason for returning to the patriarchate in 1917 - 18 years.It was meddling in church management Rasputin and the aggravation of the political situation around the body.Synod - is the inviolability of bishops.The events related to the death of a member of the chief of the body of Anthony appointment in his place of Metropolitan Vladimir, and later Pitirim led to inflame unacceptable in higher ecclesiastical managerial passions and create a heavy atmosphere of distrust.Metropolitan Pitirim most clergy considers "Rasputinists."

Considering that by the end of 1916, and many other members of the Synod were followers of the king's henchman (for example, the chief prosecutor Rayev, managing the office of Sasha and his assistant Mudrolyubov), the church began to look almost the main opposition to the royal throne.The members of the management body who do not belong to the select group of "Rasputinists" once again afraid to express their opinion, knowing that it will be immediately transferred to the Tsarskoye Selo.Operating affairs has, in fact, not the Synod of the Orthodox Church and personally Rasputin.

Return to patriarchal rule

After the revolution in February 1917, the Provisional Government in order to rectify this situation, issued a decree on dismissal of all members of this body and the convening of the new summer session.Fifth August 1917 abolished the post of chief prosecutor and the Ministry established faiths.Decrees of the authority on behalf of the Synod published until January 18, 1918 From February 14, 1918 has been published recently ruling council.According to this document, the authority of the Holy Synod passed patriarch.Himself this body became a collective.

Features of the structure and powers of the modern Synod

Today, the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church is an advisory body to the patriarch.It is composed of permanent members and temporary.Recently called to meetings of their dioceses and likewise dismissed without awarding the members of the Synod.Today, this body has the right to amend the rules institutionalized and spiritual definitions, pre-sent for approval to the Patriarch.

Chairman and permanent members

Today Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church headed by (served as chairman), Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev.Permanent members are the metropolitans:

  1. of Kiev and All Ukraine Vladimir.
  2. Ladoga and St. Petersburg, Vladimir.
  3. Slutsk Filaret of Minsk and.
  4. Chisinau and All Moldova Vladimir.
  5. Kolomna and Krutitsy Juvenal.
  6. Astana and Kazakhstan Alexander.
  7. Central Asian Vincent.
  8. Administrative Director of the Patriarchate of Moscow and Mordovia Saransk Metropolitan Varsonofy.
  9. Chairman of the Department for External Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk.


Immediately after the establishment of the Synod was in St. Petersburg at the City Island.After some time the meeting began in the building of the Twelve Colleges.In 1835, the Synod moved to the Senate Square.From time to time the meeting were transferred to Moscow.For example, during the coronation of the monarchs.In August 1917 the Synod finally moved to Moscow.Before that there had only Synodal office.

In 1922, the patriarch was arrested.The first meeting of the Synod was held only five years later, in 1927.Then legalize the ROC succeeded Metropolitan Sergius of Nizhny Novgorod.It is to organize a temporary Patriarchal Synod.However, in spring 1935 the organ was again dismissed on the initiative of the authorities.

Permanent Synod

In 1943 the Council of Bishops was elected permanent synod meeting which began in a house provided by Stalin №5 in Clear lane.From time to time they were transferred to the Patriarch's chambers in the Trinity-Sergius Lavra.Since 2009, meetings were held in different places at the choice of the head of the Church.In 2011, in December, it was opened and consecrated Synod residence of the patriarch in the renovated St. Daniel Monastery.It is here passed the last meeting at this point, opened on October 2 of 2013.

Last session

At the last meeting (held in October 2013), much attention was given to the celebration of the 1025th anniversary of the baptism of Rus.Important enough for the church is the decision of the Synod of the need to continue the tradition of celebrations on each anniversary in cooperation with state authorities.power.Also at the meeting it was discussed the establishment of new dioceses in different regions of the country and clergy appointments to new positions.In addition, the ministers adopted a Regulation on the programs related to the training of young people, as well as the missionary and social activities.

Modern Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church, though not a governing body, still plays in the life of the Church is not the last role.Its rulings and decisions are binding on all dioceses.Positions Procurator at the moment does not exist.As everyone knows, the church from the state, we separated.And so much influence on the policy of both internal and external, in spite of patriarchal rule and the modern independence, has not.That is, the public authority it is not.