Author Topic: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?  (Read 29847 times)

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Alixz

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #30 on: June 18, 2007, 07:52:31 AM »
Tasria - Thanks  :D

I thought about Rasputin in Kiev as well.  And your theory about Rasputin keeping a close proximity to the Imperial family makes sense.

According to Alex De Jonge "Soon afterwards Rasputin displayed visionary power of a different kind.  From Nizhny he had gone to Pokrovsokoe for a short stay, to be joined there by Vyroubova, and from Pokrovskoe had travelled on to Kiev, where the tsar and tsarina were to celebrate the inauguration of local government in southwest Russia."

I know that only Nicholas and Olga and Tatiana were at the theater when Stolipyn was shot.

Again De Jonge  "It was arranged that Rasputin would stay with the leader of the local branch of a moderate monarchist organization -...   The next day Rasputin joined with members of the organization to watch the tsar parade through the city.  The leader had trained his men to produce a "Hurrah" of quite exceptional volume with which to attract the imperial attention.  Sure enough the empress turned to them as she passed and they shouted; she noticed Rasputin, who promptly gave her his blessing."

Where would the Imperial family have been staying while in Kiev?

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #31 on: June 18, 2007, 09:31:04 AM »
The IF stayed at the Imperial Palace in Kiev. Read nothing more into Rasputin being present in Kiev than any of the other members of the Court at the time. He was, after all, by then one of the family's confessors and considered (though hated by many others ) as a member of Court.

Alixz

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #32 on: June 18, 2007, 02:59:11 PM »
Thanks FA - I don't think that either tsaria or I were reading anything more into his bein Kiev than staying close to the Imperial Family.

And the fact that Anna V met up with him before he left Pokroskoe and (I assume. De Jonge doesn't say) traveled on to Kiev with him only solidifies that view.  And the IF or at least Alix must have known that he would be there as she would have known of Anna 's plans as well.

And about that "personal confessor" thing.  Did each of the members of the Imperial Family have their own "personal confessor"?  Someone who would be their main and special confessor?

Offline ChristineM

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #33 on: June 19, 2007, 06:16:53 AM »
You know, this aspect of Russian Orthodox Church worship is so special - it transcends description.

My spiritual father is Father Markel of the Feodorovsky Sobor (now Bishop Markel of Petergof).   Though thousands of miles divide us, I still hold to his opinions and advice.   Whenever in Russia, a meeting with Father Markel is my number one priority.   In fact, if necessary, I would travel there just to see him.

Therefore, I find no problem in understanding and appreciating Alexandra Feodorovna and the unbreakable strength between her and her spiritual father.   The fact that it was Grigory Rasputin is incidental to the fact.   

Unlike Rasputin, Father Markel is a properly ordained Orthodox priest - indeed in addition to his pastoral role(s), he is professor of Church history at the Theological Academy in St Petersburg.   However, it is the special relation between the individual and their 'personal confessor' or spiritual adviser that matters.

tsaria

Alixz

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #34 on: June 19, 2007, 08:24:38 AM »
Tsaria - That is exactly what I was asking.  FA said that Rasputin had taken steps to become a confessor to the IM. Then he said that Rasputin was one of many confessors.

But of course, we have all read that Alexander III sent his "personal confessor" to begin Alix's instruction.

So I asked if every member of the IF had a personal confessor.  I asked because knowing what we know about Rasputin and his sense of self importance to Alix, I thought it quite possible that she would have made him her 'personal confessor" and used him to the exclusion of all others except when he was unavailable.  I can't imagine Rasputin taking a back to seat to another after he had gained the confidence of the Empress.

And with what Alix believed that Rasputin could do, I thought that she herself would want him to be her primary source of spiritual comfort and spiritual forgiveness and spiritual link to God.  She would want to always have that special bond to Rasputin that would in turn give her a special access to the ear of God and his intervention in the illness of her son.

However, the sad part is that Rasputin, for all of his unexplained "miracles" was not a pure and properly ordained priest.  I think about this sometimes and wonder just what kind of a miracle worker Rasputin could have been had he indeed been a properly ordained and truly believing priest.

Offline ChristineM

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #35 on: June 19, 2007, 12:43:01 PM »
Father (now Saint) John of Kronstadt was the Imperial Family's confessor.   He was brought from St Petersburg to Livadia to be with Alexander III as he approached his death - and to comfort the family.   

Father John died in 1908 aged 79.   I am trying to remember the name of any other priest specially singled by the family who received the trust and devotion and respect in which Father John of Kronstadt was held.   Perhaps someone will know.

tsaria

Offline Helen

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #36 on: June 19, 2007, 01:55:24 PM »
Perhaps Father Ioann Yanishev (1826-1910)?
"The Correspondence of the Empress Alexandra of Russia with Ernst Ludwig and Eleonore, Grand Duke and Duchess of Hesse. 1878-1916"  -  http://www.bod.de/index.php?id=296&objk_
"Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig and Princess Alix of Hesse and by Rhine in Italy - 1893"

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #37 on: June 19, 2007, 01:56:23 PM »
According to Spiridovitch it was Bishop Theophane (see my translation on pg 2 of this thread)

Offline Helen

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #38 on: June 19, 2007, 02:11:18 PM »
Yes, Bishop Theophane was a priest who received the family's trust and devotion. Unfortuantely, he fell into disfavour.

Is it known what Father Yansihev thought of Rasputin?
"The Correspondence of the Empress Alexandra of Russia with Ernst Ludwig and Eleonore, Grand Duke and Duchess of Hesse. 1878-1916"  -  http://www.bod.de/index.php?id=296&objk_
"Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig and Princess Alix of Hesse and by Rhine in Italy - 1893"

Alixz

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #39 on: June 19, 2007, 03:17:02 PM »
Didn't Theophane fall into "disfavor" because he came to know and understand the "real" Rasputin?  And tried to do something about Rasputin?

Even such highly respected and highly placed individuals were no match for Alix's devotion to Rasputin  :-\

Offline Helen

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #40 on: June 19, 2007, 04:01:22 PM »
Yes, Bishop Theophane changed his mind about Rasputin, and his criticism didn't go down well.

Highly respected and highly placed as Bishop Theophane may have been, Alexandra was not the type of person to accept a priest's opinions automatically and unquestioningly just because someone was a priest, was respected by others or was highly placed. She had had deep discussions with Dr. Sell during her Darmstadt years and she was sufficiently well-read on theological issues to be able to corner a priest who had been asked to teach her certain aspects of the Orthodox faith in 1894. (And yes: Rasputin was not a priest, but Alexandra seems to have disagreed with him too at times.)
« Last Edit: June 19, 2007, 04:08:34 PM by Helen »
"The Correspondence of the Empress Alexandra of Russia with Ernst Ludwig and Eleonore, Grand Duke and Duchess of Hesse. 1878-1916"  -  http://www.bod.de/index.php?id=296&objk_
"Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig and Princess Alix of Hesse and by Rhine in Italy - 1893"

Offline anna11

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #41 on: December 04, 2007, 11:15:23 AM »
Has anyone seen the History Channel's 'Most evil people in history' Rasputin episode? It's appaling. It does nothing to condradict, and even encourages the suggestion that Rasputin and Alexandra were lovers, and it says Alexandra's letters are full of statments that if they didn't do what Rasputin says Alexei would die, and also it makes it seem like Rasptuin spent every second day with the IF, it's totally dramatized and paints poor Alexandra in a very negative light, even for people who don't like her that much. Anyway, this topic just reminded me of that.

I think because Nicholas was away so much during the war, Rasputin's actual visits were less frequent, and mosy communication was done through other people, and telephone. Doesn't Alix say in one of her letters 'I should have liked to see our friend, only never ask him here when you are away as people are so nasty' or something like that?
« Last Edit: December 04, 2007, 11:21:05 AM by anna11 »


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Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #42 on: December 04, 2007, 12:58:55 PM »
There are 2 types of "confessor". One is someone you confess your faith to,  the Apostles Creed, for instance.  You are affirming and reaasuring  your acceptance of the faith and tenets of the Church. This can be anyone.  The other type is someone you "confess" your sins to for forgiveness and pennance. Thsi is a sacrament admisitered only by an ordained priest.
 Alexandra, always being insecure in her faith, needed constant reassurance. Rasputin provided that for her, hence the first type of "confessor".
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Alixz

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #43 on: December 04, 2007, 06:46:25 PM »
Robert,

Is the first type someone you "confess" your faith to or someone you "profess" your faith to.  Are we not professing our faith by reciting the Apostle's Creed (which I used to have memorized, but no can only remember part of)?

Maybe it is just semantics.  But I think you are right about Alexandra needing constant reassurance and a constant source from which to get that reassurance.  Because Rasputin never "judged" and only offered sympathy and advise, he differed greatly from a "priest" who would command authority and repentance.

And then there was that pesky fact that Rasputin did seem to be able to quiet Alexei and to slow the bleeding.  Rasputin never "healed" Alexei because there is no cure, but he did ease his pain and more importantly eased Alexandra's pain.

Offline Georgiy

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Re: Question: Just how often was Rasputin with the Imperial Family?
« Reply #44 on: December 04, 2007, 08:44:06 PM »
Robert is on the right track. To receive Communion, one has to have Confession of one's sins, with an Ordained Priest (as witness). She may well have had spiritual discourses and councels with Rasputin, but the Sacrament of Confession - no.