On Ritualism and Liberalism

St. Nikolai Velimirovich 1880-1956

Neither Ritualism nor Liberalism helps anything without the true Christian spirit. The modern Ritualism and Liberalism are absolutely equally worthless from the Christian point of view, being so hostile to each other as they are filled with the unclean spirit of hatred, unforgiveness, despising and even persecuting each other. They are equally unchristian and even antichristian. Measured by the mildest measure they are the new edition of the Judaistic Pharisaism and Sadduceeism. The Ritualists cling to their ritual, the Liberals cling to their protest against the Ritualists. But the true spirit by which both of them move and act and write and speak is the unclean spirit of hatred and despite each other, the very spirit which excludes them both from communion with Christ and the Saints. The Church has been equally de-christianized by Ritualists and Liberals, by Conservatives and Modernists, by bowers and talkers. The Church must now be rechristianized amongst all of them and through all of them. Let the Church be the Church, i.e. the community of saints. Let the world know that the Church’s mission on earth is not accumulate wealth, or to gain political power or knowledge, or to cling to this institution or to that, but to cleanse mankind from its unclean, evil spirits, and to fill it with the spirit of saintliness. Let the Church first change her spirit and then urge the whole of mankind to change theirs. (The Works of Rev. Nicholai Velimirovic)