2007-07-19 12:49:00

Presidential envoy Konovalov denies taking monastic vows

Moscow, July 19, Interfax - Alexander Konovalov, Presidential Envoy for the Transvolga region, has denied the allegations that he was secretly tonsured.

“The rumour about ‘monastic vows taken in secret’ is one of the most idiotic and ignorant gossips to have been put in circulation in recent years. But as for Orthodox theological education, I did receive it when I studied by correspondence at St. Tikhon’s Humanitarian University back when I worked at the prosecutor’s office”, he said in an interview with the Rossijskaya Gazeta on Thursday.

According to Konovalov, ‘the country will only benefit from the traditional confessions, including Orthodox, ranking again among the commonly accepted, authoritative and truly credible public institutions’.

The envoy believes this helps to rally the nation and in perspective will bind up the past with the future. ‘Throughout the world it is a powerful uniting factor. It is not accidental that recently we have seen the unification of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Church Outside Russia’, he noted.