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Church of Russia

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The 10th and 11th centuries majestic churches and monasteries were built. St. [[Anthony of the Caves]] brought the traditions of [[Mount Athos|Athonite]] monasticism to Rus' (present day Ukraine) in 1051.
The Orthodox Church during the Kievan period was subject to Constantinople, and until had its autonomy. The Kyiv Metropolitan had a title of Exarch of the Ecumenical See. Until 1237 the Metropolitans of Rus' were usually Greek. The Rus' Church continues to sing in Greek the solemn greeting to a bishop, ''eis polla eti, despota'' ("Many years to you, Master"), in memory of the days when the metropolitan came from Constantinople. Most of the rest of the bishops were native Ukrainians or Russians.
===Mongol Tartars over Russia (1237-1448) ===
===Autocephalous Russian Church===
Liberating itself from the invaders, the Russian state gathered strength and so did the Russian Orthodox Church. In 1448, not long before the Byzantine Empire collapsed, the Russian Church became independent separated from Kyiv Metropolia and self proclaimed its independents from the [[Ecumenical Patriarchate]]without the blessing of Ecumenical Patriarch. Metropolitan Jonas, installed by the Council of Russian bishops in 1448, was given the title of Metropolitan of Moscow and All Russia.
The Russian Church thus gained its independence, more by chance than from any deliberate design. Hitherto the Patriarch of Constantinople had appointed the head of the Russian Church, the Metropolitan. At the [[Council of Florence]] the Metropolitan was a Greek, [[Isidore the Apostate|Isidore]]. A leading supporter of the union with Rome, Isidore returned to Moscow in 1441 and proclaimed the decrees of Florence, but he met with no support from the Russians. He was imprisoned by the Grand Duke, but after a time was allowed to escape, and went back to Italy. The chief [[see]] was thus left vacant; but the Russians could not ask the Patriarch for a new Metropolitan, because from year of separation in 1448 until 1453 1589 the official Church at Constantinople continued to accept the Florentine Uniondid not recognize Russian Church as canonical. Reluctant to take action on their own, the Russians delayed for several years. Eventually in 1448 a council of Russian bishops proceeded to elect a Metropolitan without further reference to Constantinople. After 1453, when the Florentine Union was abandoned at Constantinople, communion between the Patriarchate and Russia was restored, but Russia continued to appoint its own chief hierarch. Henceforward the Russian Church was self-governing, but its autocephaly was not ratified by the rest of the Church until 1589. It was non canonic for 141 years.
After the [[fall of Constantinople]] in 1453, there was only one nation that saw itself as capable of assuming leadership in Eastern Christendom. The growing might of the Russian state also contributed to the growing authority of the autocephalous Russian Church. To the Russian people, it was a sign from God, that at the very moment when the Byzantine Empire was ending, they themselves were throwing off the few remaining vestiges of Tartar control. To them, Moscow became the [[Third Rome]], a status never acknowledged by the remainder of the Church but nevertheless which served to inspire Russian Orthodox Christians.
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