Georgi Wassiljewitsch Florowski

Georgi Wassiljewitsch Florowski, also Georges Florovsky, (Russian ГеоргийВасильевичФлоровский; * 23. August 1893 in Odessa; † 11. August the 1979 USA) was one of the most outstanding orthodox theologians 20. Century, which engaged itself also much in the Ökumene.

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Georgi Wassiljewitsch Florowski was born in Odessa as a fourth child of an orthodox priest family. In a formed environment he already learned English, German, French, latin, Greek and Hebrew as a pupil. With 18 years it studied philosophy and history. After a first conclusion it informed three years at schools in Odessa and made then its conclusion including licensia docendi at all universities in the Russian realm. he began to teach 1919 at the university from Odessa to, but 1920 were forced the family to leave Russia. Florowski was itself from the outset over the fact in the clear one that there was no return for him, since the history and philosophy, which it taught, would not be accepted by the marxism.

Florowski had a close personal and vocational friendship with Nikolai Alexandrowitsch Berdjajew in the twenties-years. This did not become in later years somewhat reserved, among other things by Florowskis Priesterweihe, for the Berdjajew understanding had and by Florowskis of ways of Russian theology, which Berdjajews religion philosophy critically opposite.

1925 became Florowski as a professor for Patristik to the pc. Sergius of institutes of orthodox theology to Paris appoint. In the area of the Patristik he found his actual appointment and the Patristik became for him also the yardstick for orthodox theology and the interpretation of the writing, just as the source for many of his contributions and criticisms for Ökumeni movement. For the remainder of its life Florowski should teach at theological universities, although he did not have later an academic conclusion in theology (however various honour doctorates and other honors were added).

1932 could Florowski be ordinieren to the priest of the orthodox church. In the thirties-years it undertook expanded research in European libraries and wrote its most important works in the area of the Patristik and its Magnum Opus, “the way of Russian theology” in which it among other things the western influences of Scholastik, Pietismus and idealism on Russian theology analyzed and in addition called to evaluate Russian theology in the light of the Patristik again. The work was partly praised by the Russian emigrants into the sky and partly condemned - a neutral attitude did not give it. The work was rejected among other things by Sergei Nikolajewitsch Bulgakow, the director/conductor of the pc. Sergius of institute and representative of the Russian theological tradition 19. Century however likewise of Nikolai Alexandrowitsch Berdjajew, the representative of the religious Renaissance 20. Century.

1937 participated Florowski in the second conference for faith and church condition in Edinburgh . It represented energetically the position that it was important and necessary, the actual differences between Christians to reveal and also thought positions apparent not possibly which can be united not to express - in another way a genuine ökumenischer dialogue was not possible. When the Lutheraner and Prebyterianer looked for each other verbally relative a compromise concerning the formulation of the grace teachings, Florowski her on it that no real unit of the teachings can be, so long Lutheraner and Calvinisten two different churches were white.

A result of conference of Edinburgh was the plan to create a world church advice. Florowski belonged to the fourteen persons, who were appointed, in order to compile a condition for this body. Thus it a top position in the world-wide Ökumene had reached to reach in which it for the remainder of its life years would work untiringly, in order an essential Christian unit.

The Second World War spent Florowski in Switzerland and in Belgrade, after the war he took his training activity in Paris, connected with many journeys and lectures on ökumenische questions. Also its written works of this time reflect its ökumenisches commitment: in many essays it presented the orthodox theory of the church to a ökumenischen public.

At the conference of opening of the Ökumeni advice of the churches 1949 in Amsterdam Florowski was the theological speaker for the orthodox churches and held a speech over Ökumeni goals and doubts.


Florowski published on Russian, French and English. Before its death its collected works in English in fourteen volumes appeared short. The main topics were orthodox church and theology history, church fathers and Ökumene.

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  • Christoph Künkel: Totus Christ. Theology Georges V. Florovskys, Goettingen 1991. ISBN 3525562691
  • Andrew Blane: Georges Florovsky. Russian Intellectual and orthodox Churchman. ISBN 0-88141-137-X
  • Peter A. Chamberas: Georges Vasilievich Florovsky: Russian intellectual historian and orthodox theologian - 1893-1979 - Religious history to, East and west. Decay Age, winters 2003 (FindArticles on-line version)


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