Moscow (AsiaNews) - A Duma State deputy, Vladimir Sysoev, has advanced a bill to recognize the civil validity of Orthodox religious marriage without the Church itself being consulted on the subject. The astonishing initiative is highlighting the different conceptions about state secularism in Russia, while the Orthodox Church appears more determined in marking differences than politicians.

The representative of the Patriarchate of Moscow, Vakhtang Kipshidze, deputy head of the Department for Relations between the Church and Society, told the Interfax-Religija correspondent in this regard that "this proposal has not been discussed with the Russian Orthodox Church, it was a surprise for us too. " He recalled that the practice of civil registration of religious marriages was normal in the Russian Empire before the Soviet Revolution, when the Orthodox Church was officially a State Church, as is also the case in some European states where there is still this union between the Church and State.

Today, according to Kipshidze, "the return to this practice, under the secular state that we have in Russia, could create a series of complications and confusion in the same civil law on the family. At a minimum, it would require detailed legislation." According to the Patriarchate, the rights and duties of spouses before the law would become even more complicated in the presence or absence of sacramental marriage. Indeed, Sysoev's proposal would distinguish the juridical conditions of orthodox marriage from those of other types of conjugal union.

On the one hand, it highlights the will of some politicians to introduce confessional elements into the life of Russian society. On the other hand, the Church is showing prudence, in order to avoid being overly identified with the more radical nationalist politics and trends. Patriarch Kirill's appeals often emphasize the need to defend the values ​​of the family and the defence of life, even in controversy with contemporary tendencies towards unlimited freedom of coexistence or gender, but he has never suggested the necessity to overthrow current legislation.

Link: http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Moscow,-the-proposal-of-the-orthodox-state-marriage--42121.html


Teachings of Christ

“If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’" (John 7:37-38 ESV)

Entrance of the Mother of God into the Temple

Today is the prelude of the goodwill of God * and the heralding of the salvation of mankind; * the Virgin appears clearly in the temple of God * and foretells Christ to all. * Let us also with a mighty voice cry out to her: * “Rejoice, O Fulfillment of the Creator’s divine plan.” (Troparion - Tone 4)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

The most pure Temple of the Savior, * the most precious Bridal-Chamber and Virgin, the sacred Treasury of the glory of God, * is brought today into the house of the Lord, * bringing with her the grace that is in the Divine Spirit. * The angels of God praise her in song: * “She is the heavenly tabernacle.” (Kontakion - Tone 4)

(November 21st)

Random Proverb

Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine. (Proverbs 3:9,10 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

"And when his eyes were opened, he saw nothing. And for three days he could not see." (Acts 9:9)

By no means would he [Saul] have been able to see well again unless he had first been fully blinded. Also, when he had rejected his own wisdom, which was confusing him, he could commit himself totally to faith. Since he had not believed that the Lord had conquered death by rising on the third day, he was now taught by his own experience of the replacement of three days of darkness by the return of the light.

Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles from the Venerable Bede