26 March 2012, 17:44
Russian Church deplores UK ban on wearing crosses at work
Moscow, March 26, Interfax - The Moscow Patriarchate has deplored the ban in Britain on wearing religious symbols in the workplace and described it as a manifestation of totalitarianism.
"Those Western liberals who are actually forcing totalitarian regime standards on free people are making a big mistake," Metropolitan Hilarion, the head of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations, said on Rossiya 24 television.
These people have not gone through reprisals against the Church "and therefore they do not know what it feels like when your cross is being ripped off your neck," he said.
The Metropolitan said he had had an experience of living in Britain and he could see "liberal and Anarchist patterns spreading fast in the public space."
Reports said earlier that the British government wants to defend its ban on wearing crosses at work in the European Court of Human Rights.
"The introduction and even a discussion of such standards looks like a symptom of some madness or extreme moral decay," he said, adding that believers will never put up with this and will fight.
The Strasbourg Court will hear the suits, filed by four Christians, who lost their cases in British courts and who protested religious discrimination.
Archpriest Mikhail Dudko, the sacristan of the Russian Assumption Cathedral in London, said recently that one of the parishioners, a woman, lost her job for wearing a cross at work, even though it was not visible. The woman said she had asked her manager to allow her to wear the cross and promised to stick it up with scotch tape, but her request was ignored.