Scott Kenworthy

Senior Core Fellow
Period of Stay: 
October 2022 – February 2023
Discipline: 
Religious Studies
Institution: 
Miami University, USA
Project Title: 
Patriarch Tikhon and the Orthodox Church in Revolutionary Russia
Project Abstract: 

This project will be the first complete biography of Patriarch Tikhon Bellavin (1865-1925), who became head of the Orthodox Church during the Russian Revolution and played a decisive role in guiding the church in the face of a militantly hostile atheist regime. Based on extensive new primary sources, it follows his career in the Russian Empire and in North America before 1917, which played a formative role on Tikhon as a leader, as well as his role as head of the church from 1917 onward. Although the Soviet authorities labeled him a counter- revolutionary and repeatedly arrested him, Tikhon sought to defend the church against Bolsheviks’ assaults while at the same time was open to negotiation in a way that prepared the church for surviving in the hostile environment. The pattern of church-state relations during the revolutionary period not only shaped the entire Soviet period but became paradigmatic for other communist countries.