26 June 2006, 17:39
Yavlinsky: Russian Orthodox Church’s initiative in human rights advocacy is an act of civic courage
Moscow, June 26, Interfax - Grigory Yavlinsky, leader of the Yabloko party, has given a high assessment to the Declaration of Human Rights and Dignity adopted recently by the World Russian People’s Council.
‘In a situation when authoritarian tendencies are growing both in the state and society, such sentiments if manifested in the Church are very dangerous. In the final analysis they discredit Christianity. Therefore, when the Church in this situation comes to speak on human rights, it is an act of civic courage’, the politician said as cited by the Thomas magazine July issue.
He believes it is a step called to ensure the development of the Church as one of the most important civil society institutions and ‘to break once and for all with the age-old, dangerous and hopeless tradition of the Church’s subjection to the state’.
Yavlinsky believes such documents are also adopted for the purpose of self-identification. Having adopted the Declaration, the Russian Orthodox Church has stated its intention to join the global Christian democratic movement’, he noted.
In his opinion, the Church as uniting those ‘for whom life centers on love’ should struggle for human rights advocacy in Russia, ‘but struggle not so much politically as through the very works of charity, compassion, help and consolation’.
To this end, he continued, the Church should patronize more asylums for the homeless and old lonely people, orphanages with believing staff, hospitals and other institutions, ‘because help is given to people really and daily there so that they may live and survive preserving their human dignity.
‘This is what human rights work ultimately lies in’, Yavlinsky believes.