Voices from Russia

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Millions Pray Throughout Russia for the Defence of Christ’s Church Against Its Enemies… Thousands Turn Out to Answer HH’s Call in Moscow


On Sunday, the RF MVD reported that about 65,000 Orthodox believers gathered at the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow as part of a nationwide prayer action in defence of the faith and desecrated holy places. Earlier, the MP estimated the number of worshippers at the event at 50,000. MP First Hierarch Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev served liturgy in at the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in downtown Moscow, during which he urged believers to take part in the nationwide prayer action outside the Cathedral “for our faith, for our Church, for our holy things, and for our Motherland”. His Holiness hoped that the prayer action would “multiply our spiritual strength” to fight faithlessness.

Led by Patriarch Kirill, bishops and priests prayed together with Orthodox believers in front of holy relics outside of the cathedral, including ones recently desecrated by vandals. Anton Alyalichev, a participant in the action, said, “This was necessary. We can’t and don’t want to hold meetings to show our position… we just wish to get together and pray”. Holy Orthodox relics were purposefully brought to the Cathedral for the action. Amongst the relics was a 3.5-metre veneration cross damaged by an attacker in a cathedral in Nevinnomyssk (Stavropol Krai). There were also five of the 30 icons vandalised with an axe in the town of Veliki Ustyug (Vologda Oblast) this March; an icon of the Holy Mother of Vladimir, shot at in the early 1920s, was also brought from the same city. Other prayer actions occurred in front of other Russian cathedrals.

Vandalism and church desecration cases have become more frequent in Russia after the female punk group Pussy Riot performed what it called “a punk prayer” in February in front of the royal gates at the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, which is off-limits to all but priests. Five group members, clad in balaclavas, chanted a song entitled Holy Shit against Prime Minister Vladimir Putin that was also insulting to Patriarch Kirill. Priests and believers prayed that those who desecrated holy things in a series of recent blasphemous actions across Russia would change their ways, and they prayed for the good reputation of the Church. A number of high-profile scandals embroiled the Church recently. Bloggers and opposition media criticised top MP officials for their “lavish” lifestyles. Earlier this month, the MP Supreme Council said in a statement that it had been targeted by “those pushing through radical liberal values” {“radical liberal” in Russian terms is “libertarian conservative” in American terms… that is, the Church opposes the Free Market and “greed is good” vulture capitalism: editor} over its opposition to same-sex marriages and consumerism.

22 April 2012




Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: