The participants in the consultation “Anthropological and Ethical Foundations of the Church Teaching on Social Order, Human Rights and the Dignity of Person” had an intensive discussion on a number of theological and philosophical issues related to the Christian point of view on the human being and contemporary society. They met in Moscow, at the Department for External Church Relations of Moscow Patriarchate on 14-15 June 2007.
The meeting was opened and chaired by Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad, Chairman of the DECR MP, and Peter Cardinal Erdo, Archbishop of Estergom-Budapest, President of the Council of the Catholic Bishops’ conferences in Europe. The papers were presented by Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, DECR MP Vice-Chairman, Reverend Wojciech Giertych, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Bishop Anton Stress, Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, Father Sergiy Hovorun, Assistant to the Chairman of the DECR MP, Mons. Bernard Munono Muyembe, Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, professor S.S. Khoruzhiy, Director of the Institute of Synergetic Anthropology.
The discussed topics included the theological notions of freedom, will, value and dignity of human nature and personality, as well as the relations between natural moral law, the modern state / international law and the current moral situation in the society. The issues of understanding human nature, presence of the image of God in it and influences of sin on it were also actively discussed during the consultation. The participants expressed their opinion on the conflicts around the “new elements” of human rights theory and practice, including “rights” to abortion, “homosexual unions”, desecration of holy objects, etc., which restart the discussion on tension between certain rights, freedoms and values. Among the topics were the presence of Christian values in the modern society, including economy, family life, social order, lifestyle.
The participants considered it useful to continue such profound theological discussions in different formats in order to facilitate the cooperation between the Roman Catholic Church and the Russian Orthodox Church in their service to peaceful and spiritually rich life of all people in East and West, North and South.