Filaret (Vasiliči Mikhailovich Drozdov)

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Russian theologian, metropolitan of Moscow; b. Kolomna (Moscow Region), Dec. 26, 1782; d. Moscow, Nov. 19, 1867. The son of the Orthodox archpriest of the cathedral in Kolomna, he studied at the seminary there (179199) and at Troïtskii (180003), and then taught Hebrew, Greek, poetry, and rhetoric in the Troïtskii seminary. In 1808 he became a monk and took the name Filaret (Philaret), but was called to St. Petersburg the same year as inspector and professor of philosophy in the seminary there. In 1809 he was ordained. He went to the St. Petersburg Ecclesiastical Academy as professor (1810) and rector (1812). He became bishop of Reval (1812), member of the holy synod (1817), and archbishop (1821) and metropolitan of Moscow (1826). Filaret was brilliant and zealous and exercised enormous influence on the inner life and theology of the Russian Church and on Church-State affairs, although he encountered much opposition in some of his projects, such as the translation of the Bible into Russian and a new edition of the catechism. He sought legislation to force the conversion of the raskolniks and played an important role in efforts to reunite Catholics of the ukrainian catholic church with the Orthodox. His hostility to the Catholic Church, especially to the pope, was constant, but he avoided the violent polemics common to Greek apologists. He favored the emancipation of the serfs. Filaret was a prolific writer, but much of his work was published only after his death. His principal theological work was his Catechism (1823), which was translated into several languages.

Bibliography: m. jugie, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique (Paris 190350) 12.1:137695. a. m. ammann, Storia della Chiesa russa e dei paesi limitrofi (Turin 1948), Ger. tr. (Vienna 1950). i. smolich, Russisches Mönchtum (Würzburg 1953).

[j. papin]