2005-06-21 09:52:23

5. Multilateral dialogue and participation in the work of inter-Christian organisations

5.1. The Russian Orthodox Church conducts dialogues with non-Orthodox confessions not only on a bilateral but also on a multilateral level, while also participating in pan-Orthodox delegations and in the work of inter-Christian organisations.

5.2. With regard to her membership in various Christian organisations, she adheres to the following criteria. The Russian Orthodox Church cannot participate in international, regional or national Christian organisations in which (a) the constitution or rules require the renunciation of the doctrine or traditions of the Orthodox Church; (b) the Orthodox Church has no opportunity to bear witness to herself as the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church; (c) the decision-making process does not take into account the ecclesiological consciousness of the Orthodox Church; and (d) the rules and procedures make a "majority opinion" obligatory upon the members.

5.3. The level and forms of the Russian Orthodox Church's participation in an international Christian organisation should take into account its internal dynamics, agenda, priorities and general nature.

5.4. The scope and extent of the Russian Orthodox Church's participation in an international Christian organisation is determined by the Church authorities on the basis of its usefulness for the Church.

5.5. While stressing the great importance of theological dialogue and discussion concerning the norms of faith, Church order and the principles of the spiritual life, the Russian Orthodox Church, like the other Local Orthodox Churches, considers it possible and beneficial to participate in the work of various international organisations in such spheres of service to the world as diakonia, social service and peacemaking. The Russian Orthodox Church maintains co-operation with various Christian denominations and international Christian organisations in the task of common witness before secular society.

5.6. The Russian Orthodox Church maintains working relations on the level of membership or co-operation with a wide variety of international Christian organisations, as well as with regional and national Councils of Churches and Christian agencies specialising in diakonia, youth work and peacemaking.