Medvedev Backs More Religion in Russian Schools and in the Russian Army

russian_priest_on_tank

By Nabi Abdullaev / The Moscow Times

President Dmitry Medvedev pledged Tuesday to support the study of religion in schools and hiring chaplains from major Russian religions, in what could pose a major challenge to the constitutional separation of religion and state.

“I have made a decision to support both these ideas: teaching the basics of religious culture and secular ethics in Russian schools, and I also consider it expedient to organize on a regular basis the work of clergymen representing traditional Russian confessions in our Armed Forces,” Medvedev said at the meeting with top religious and government officials at his Barvikha residence outside Moscow.

The so-called traditional Russian confessions include Orthodox Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Buddhism.

Medvedev said he based his decision on requests and suggestions sent to him by religious leaders.

The two initiatives are among the most debated and controversial in Russian society. Their critics claim that the Russian Orthodox Church is significantly better prepared to install its priests in schools and garrisons, which would leave others at a disadvantage. Opponents also say a conflict of subordination could arise in military units between priests and commanders. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

WHAT TO DO ABOUT A BAD PRIEST (by St. Theophan the Recluse)

St. Theophan the Recluse

St. Theophan the Recluse

From The Letters of St. Theophan the Recluse

Question: “We had a good priest; but he was transferred to another parish. In his place came another, who is a grief to the soul. In his serving the services, he is careless and hurried; when conversations occur, he talks only about trivial things; if he starts to talk about the things of God, then it is all with a kind of limitation and truncation of the strict truth. How is one to escape from such a temptation?”

Answer: You yourselves are at fault. You made poor use of the good priest, and the Lord took him away. Tell me, did you become better from your previous good priest? Here you falter to say, “Yes.” But I from a distance shall say that you did not become better, judging by the fact that you are judging the new priest, not knowing how to control your feelings in relation to him as you should. Indeed, you had a good priest even before this good priest who has now departed from you, and the one before him was good too. You see how many good priests the Lord has sent you; but you all have not become any better for it. And here He has decided: why waste good priests on these people? I’ll send them one not so good. And He did. Seeing this, you should have at once paid attention to yourself, to repent and improve, but you just judge and keep judging over and over again. Improve yourselves, and then the priest will at once be changed. He will think: “With these people I cannot carry out my holy work carelessly; I must serve reverently and conduct edifying conversations.” And he will mend his ways. If priests are negligent and hurried in serving the services and are trivial in conversations, then most of the time it comes from conforming to the parishioners. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

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