11 May 2006, 12:02
Metropolitan Kirill rejects rightists’ criticism of Declaration on Human Rights and Dignity adopted by the World Russian People’s Council
Moscow, May 11, Interfax - Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad rejected the Union of Right Forces’ (SPS) criticism of the Declaration on Human Rights and Dignity adopted by the World Russian People’s Council and expressed readiness to make his case in a further discussion.
He stated this in his reply to the letter sent by Leonid Gozman, deputy chairman of the SPS Political Council, to the head of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations. The text of this letter has been conveyed to Interfax on Thursday.
In his response to Gozman’s criticism, the metropolitan wondered in particular why his opponent denied the Church the right to relate human behaviour and public laws to ethical norms.
‘Allow me, referring to the same liberal tradition, to remark that nobody - neither individuals, the less so subjects of civil society - can be excluded by anybody from public debate’, the hierarch stressed.
Metropolitan Kirill also drew Gozman’s attention to the fact that ‘the Church should have an opportunity to carry out her manifold service among those citizen who claim to be Orthodox and for whom the Church is a freely chosen authority’, and reminded him that these people comprise today from 60 to 80 percent of the people in Russia.
Metropolitan Kirill also suggested that Gozman should think over the limits of human freedom.
‘You insist that society can permit such things as gay-parades or exhibitions like ‘Beware of Religion!’ You believe this ‘will preserve freedom’. But I believe that support of such things will destroy freedom and sow enmity in society’, the metropolitan writes.
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