Vladimir Legoyda: look in the Church are not the party of people with beards, and of Christ

© RIA Novosti / Alexander Matroskasplitter of the Synodal Department for Church and society and the media Vladimir LegoydaVladimir Legoyda: look in the Church are not the party of people with beards, and of Christ© RIA Novosti / Alexander Natruskin

About the role the Russian Orthodox Church in politics and society, the search for the language of communication, about conflicts with the creative community, dialogue with youth, social Ministry and «Orthodox activists», summing up in 2017, said in an interview with RIA Novosti the Chairman of the Synodal Department for Church and society and the media Vladimir Legoyda. Interviewed By Marina Borisova.

— I don’t think there really is some kind of fault. Just the information field today is very fragmented, more fragmented society. And each has its own sources of information, which in most of these sources is very different. It’s in the Soviet time there was no alternatives to the newspaper «Pravda» (although even then many were able to read between the lines). Now sometimes there is a feeling that we are not just different sources read, and live on different planets. Therefore, the figures polls is easily explained.

If, however, the negativity of which you speak and which do have, not be judged by feelings and not by the publications of some media, but the objective of capturing the entire mediamass, we can responsibly tell you that the percentage of expressed negativity in relation to the Church is very small, its maximum for the last nine years was in 2012. By the way, the percentage of pronounced positive is always more, three times or four. The majority of media materials about the Church is neutral.

Yes, in absolute numbers of negative publications has increased, but this is including the fact that the total number of publications on the Church theme with 2009 increased by 10 times. The percentage of negativity, I repeat, does not change much and usually does not exceed 5% of the total number of publications.

Of course, in social networks, the picture is slightly different. But there it is other in relation to any social institution, not only in relation to the Church. I can only say that we are closely following everything that happens in the blogosphere. All of this information, of course, is reflected in the work of the Church.

— The theme is «Church and culture» in no way is reduced to discussions around the movie «Matilda». The organic interrelationships of religion and culture historically, the latter occurs in the form of religion. In addition, in the field of art, as in life in General, the important question of human freedom, its content and the various manifestations. Freedom is the property that all rational creatures — angels and humans — similar to the Creator. On the one hand, it led to the fall of man, on the other, it also gives you the opportunity of becoming like God, which is potentially present in all of us.

In creative field we see the fruits of human freedom most clearly. The artist creates a work, showing his inner world. What in the world? The desire to create, to love, to bear witness to goodness, truth and truth? Or the desire to destroy and mock, multiply Vice, to whitewash sin?

From a moral point of view can not agree that freedom to destroy, no matter where they are used, including creativity, is as valuable as the freedom to create. Including that related to the sharpness of the dialogue with the creative community, for part of which, unfortunately, freedom is equally valuable whether used for writing «Mona Lisa» or for nailing genitals to the cobblestones of red square.

And in the report of Patriarch Kirill, which you remember, there are important words that are directly linked to our discussion: «the Acceptance or rejection of a work of art or cultural phenomena is often due to taste preferences or even a certain special preparation of a person. It is impossible to establish a formal unshakable standards that require, say, all believers only one certain way to refer to a particular book, play or movie. The only exceptions are the obvious cases of sacrilege and blasphemy, deliberately permitted by the artist in his work».

I think the Church’s position is expressed clearly.

— Of course. And yet do not you think that in General the Church is not yet possible to find the right tone in its dialogue with society?

— From your question it can be concluded that society and the Church exist as completely Autonomous from each other actors, thus entering into a certain relationship. But this is not the case. Even purely sociologically. If we consider the Church as an Assembly of believers, the Russian Church today — large or a large part of society. In Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova and other countries of our pastoral responsibility.

But even if we talk only about, say, the agenda of the Church in the media, here things are not so simple. Of course, the problem of tonality or — wider and deeper — the problem of language is highly relevant. Again, not only for the Church. Society is rapidly changing and fragmented today is not even a language problem, but the problem of languages. Even young people need to be able to speak many languages because the young people are very different. Have you resolved this problem? No, not solved. But, excuse me, but what she decided?

In addition, I am not a supporter of conspiracy theories, but, I am convinced, against the Church of purposeful work, and from different centers. You have to be very naive to not see it. Of course, this does not mean that we are all white and fluffy, and the problems only «for enemies.» This, of course, wrong. Sometimes Christians — laity, priests, bishops themselves give rise to fair criticism. And this, by the way, in the same report of the Patriarch at the bishops ‘ Council told a lot.

But, I repeat, often and colleagues-journalists are contributing when the owners of those or other mass media put in front of their revision such tasks. The more elementary fact-checking in many of these media have long traded on the number of visits and likes.

And this applies not only to the Church. After all, there is life, there is her media image, and I have never met a person or organization, absolutely satisfied by its media projection. But I think a reasonable person it should go to only one — to develop and improve the critical perception of information flow.

But, you see, not media create all sorts of «Orthodox activists». We are dealing with real stock, carried out by people who call themselves Orthodox. And their actions are becoming more aggressive.

— With regard to specific aggressive actions, they are always given timely and absolutely unambiguous assessment. He feels the Church is responsible for this part of his flock? Of course, it feels. But if a person comes and says: «I am a Christian, I’ve created my «Christian state», and aggressive and illegal actions — he is a provocateur. And here it is absurd to say that, look what the Church brought people.

Especially surprising when it’s believers. What do you do when the very responsibility we should all share, move on… Who? Personally Patriarch? A Synod? Bishops? Yes, responsible. But we all, each in their own way. And it is necessary not to look guilty, and all together to think about how to make such distortions and eccentricities of the religious life, we had fewer. Unfortunately, it cannot be ruled out. Because of the fundamental fact about the fallen state of human nature.

I have many times talked about this and I repeat: there is a difference between religion and religious motivation. Extremist actions can be religious motivated, but that does not mean that we should automatically deny the sacred texts or to place all responsibility on a particular religious community.

It is often a serious lack of religious or theological education. Therefore, in particular, we are talking about the need to take a break — from school age — the foundations of traditional religions. To this knowledge ceased to be a luxury of the educated man, and became a real inoculation from any radical rhetoric, which is trying to fuck with your head.

Because when people who call themselves Orthodox, talks about anything but Christ, this is alarming. Christianity is about Christ and the gospel, everything else is secondary. And as soon as the secondary comes to the fore, you need to be at least careful.

Whether the influence of the Church on politics, including international? How to explain that, on the one hand, some politicians are afraid of the upcoming religious wars, and with another — only for all the obvious result of even such historical events as the meeting of Patriarch of Moscow and Pope, was that in Russia brought the relics of Saint Nicholas?

— But why only one? After the meeting, the Patriarch and the Pope has become impossible to ignore the fact that Christians are persecuted simply because they are Christians, not because they were in the wrong time in the wrong place.

Once again I want to remind you that before the meeting of the Patriarch with the Pope on the global agenda simply was not the topic of the persecution of Christians on religious grounds. Despite all the efforts of our Church to talk about it at various venues, including the prestigious international. Just after the meeting of the Patriarch with the Pope, the situation has changed, this meeting is made obvious by the fact that at the beginning of the enlightened XXI century in the world there is a genocide of Christians.

If to speak about concrete facts, it is little more than a year ago, in January 2017 was held in Paris V European Orthodox-Catholic forum on the issue of the terrorist threat. In may 2017 in the US capital hosted the world summit of in defense of persecuted Christians, which was attended by delegates from 136 countries. The summit was organized by the joint initiative of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Evangelical Association of Billy Graham. And in March, 2017 by the Commission on international cooperation of the Council for cooperation with religious associations under the President of the Russian Federation adopted a decision on creation of special working group which would coordinate the activities of the Russian religious communities to assist the people of Syria.

Pastoral visit of Patriarch Kirill to other countries is also a kind of public diplomacy. Especially when there are difficulties in relations between States. So, when they celebrated the 300th anniversary of stay of the Russian Orthodox Church in England, the Patriarch visited the UK, and recently the Archbishop of Canterbury visited the Anglican Church in Moscow. These visits, of course, were accompanied by meetings of Orthodox Anglicans. By the way, the Archbishop of Canterbury stressed that our relationship continues even when political relations are difficult times and that the Russian Church has an important place in the world and has serious influence in Russia.

Vladimir Legoyda: look in the Church are not the party of people with beards, and of Christ© RIA Novosti / Ramil to Setdiscoverable in Canterbury fotomontajes impressed with the pace of the revival of religion in Rossiia need to perceive the Russian Church as equal to States party to international relations. This status is only gosudarstvennyi education Vatican city, and it is caused by those with authority and their theological rationale, which adheres to the Holy see, but not the Orthodox Church. The Orthodox Church has never claimed to a total immersion in world politics. This, however, is not an obstacle in order to achieve the adoption of the views of Orthodox Christians, and — together with the other communities — all believers in international relations.

It is important that the world religions is practically no moral contradictions, so believers can always negotiate. And when there is a public moral consensus, can solve the other problems.

Of course, even all Christians are not equally obliged to look at the political, artistic, and any other issues. But I have observed the consistent upholding the same traditional family values by the most different countries of the canonical responsibility of the Russian Orthodox Church. And, I think, it is connected including with the personal faith of these people. It is through this faith that we can influence what is happening in the world.

If you are talking about personal faith, its real manifestation, expressed in a variety of social projects, — the subject is quite popular. Although, the more publications about the social service of the Church, it is clear that the scale of Russia — a drop in the sea.

— There are two levels. The first is that the Church does as an organization. For example, the first children’s hospice in Russia opened in 2003 in St. Petersburg priest Alexander Tkachenko. And drop it in the sea or not… we must Not forget that the sea is dried, so the drop can be invigorating, especially if we’re talking about, say, shelters for women who find themselves in a difficult situation.

Vladimir Legoyda: look in the Church are not the party of people with beards, and of Christ© RIA Novosti / Maria she said»Sometimes it is enough to buy boots»: how women saved from underground ebertowska, in the winter of 2003-2004 in Moscow were frozen to death 400 people. Then the Orthodox service «Mercy» created «Bus of mercy». First it was the old keyway in which volunteers toured the places where Moscow’s homeless and saved those who could stay warm, as the hospital they would still, no one picked up — there was no direct medical testimony. In the first winter of operation of the bus, the number of deaths from the cold have decreased five times. This is a drop in the bucket or not? Almost 10 years working the bus, and in 2013 the Moscow authorities learn from this experience, and today the streets of the capital around 30 cars. More such droplets, which fill the waters with life-giving moisture!

But there is a second layer, even more important. Although it may not be so obvious. The Church changes people. Let it come not quickly, and not even always, but it happens. The Church changes people, and people change lives.

Vladimir Legoyda: look in the Church are not the party of people with beards, and of Christ© Photo : photo courtesy of the press service of the Novosibirsk Metropolia of the Russian Orthodox Church»We are not homeless, we’re locals». Promised heaven on the banks Oiglane to the strap is not reduced to the title of Christian was seen as a gift and a responsibility to witness for Christ, not as a status in society.

But if the Church works in such a distant future, aware that the priests themselves? Are they able to calculate the results for generations to come?

The Church operates on a different perspective. There is a very specific reaction to what is happening today. The examples I gave above. As for changes in the human heart, which don’t happen simultaneously… I think any responsible priest understands that. He will not try to change whoever comes to him a man for one day. This is the pastoral approach.

The Church has a lot to do and are doing, is good, but that many do other. But on Christ and the gospel, but the Church won’t say. This is the main service of the Church. And everything else naturally built around. And the people in the Church in the first place looking for a life in God. Or, at least, should be looking for.

Although social service, from my point of view, plays a very special role. Remarkable moment: Christ with anyone himself never identified. Except one time when He said if you did it to one of these little ones (those who are in any need) — you did it to Me. That is, the charity is referred to as direct service to Christ.

Vladimir Legoyda: look in the Church are not the party of people with beards, and of Christ© Photo : courtesy of the press service of the Marfo-Mariinsky elitelimousine Martha and Mary convent: Moscow is not a hindrance to the life of the monastery — the last time the Church became more active in the information space: the Internet, on television. What is the reason?

— With the specifics of the present stage of development of the information society. Today’s pupils and students are prepared differently, from teenagers differently the brain works. They are used to obtain information on the channels through which they nobody gives a, because a generation of teachers not rebuilt. The volume and speed of circulation of information condemn us not look for her, and screening.

— Therefore, the Patriarch in his speech at the Council of bishops so much attention to youth Ministry?

Youth service priority for the Church. Let me remind you, the Patriarch, speaking about results of work with young people, said: «we Must soberly assess the situation. The result of this work is still a small part of what you need to do.»

Vladimir Legoyda: look in the Church are not the party of people with beards, and of Christ© Photo : home of O. maxima, Karlenko in the social network «Vkontakte»do it and repent: why do the Orthodox have taken over hip-Hoppy, speaking with the young, must avoid arrogance, hypocrisy, not to cling to worldly well-being, attachment to which is really annoying young people. If the whole point of the message —to show a list of what a young man should not do, then it is better to remain silent. The Church is called to teach — including and above all by their example — young people what to do: to love others, to sacrifice themselves, not afraid to speak the truth.

And it is a challenge to every Bishop, priest and layperson.

We must help the young to find a party of people with beards, and of Christ. I had a student who once said that «left the Church». Several years sang in the choir, something then he did not like; something really not very nice and not at all Christian. We talked a bit about this topic, and then I told him that he could not from the Church to leave, as long as it did not come. I just went to people in «the club»: someone in basketball, someone plays the violin, and he sang in the Church choir — you never know who where are we today sing. And no philosophical drama, he was rather social. Although it is, of course, no good… the Church is Christ. And I am convinced that my wonderful student, meeting with Him is yet to come.

Just do not be afraid to engage in any conversations with young people. Although I do not believe that to become understandable for the young can only be by calling for a rap battle of Oxymoron or Purulent. And in the hard struggle showing that we are not born yesterday. This youth subculture is still not widespread, despite the number of views.

Vladimir Legoyda: look in the Church are not the party of people with beards, and of Christ© Photo : photo from personal archive of Abbot Sergius (Rybko)»This rock-n-roll, my son!»: the monk and the pastor suggest a good rock

I do believe that there is no special «communication with youth». We create these boundaries. But any communication is a two-way street. I, for instance, offer their students write reviews of the movies that they have obviously not watched. For example, in the «Kalina red» Shukshin. And if you then see (and it happens) that they use in their texts Shukshin «shuffled.» you know, this works. But on the other hand, don’t despise what they live for, it is necessary to show attention to, and do not rush immediately to teach them life.

— Do you think that in the foreseeable future we will come to the state, when, hearing the abbreviation ROC person will understand that this is about the gospel and Christ, not about politics and some corporate interests?

Well, first, I hope that someday we will come to that abbreviation ROC finally stop using that our perennial request for it to be heard.

If you talk in fact… it Will take several years, and the perception as the Orthodox heirs of those who in the twentieth century suffered for the faith will go in the past. We will not be able to hide behind the saints and about the Church will be judged by what we represent — those who today call themselves Orthodox. And the only thing we can show society — our lives, the desire to live the gospel.

If Christians, members of the Church in the mass, not to live or try to live a Christian life, despite all the efforts of the clergy in all the Newspapers and magazines, all information strategy, we will begin sorely to lose salt of which the gospel speaks. Here it is necessary to think, speak and write. This need to live. And I very much hope that the call to authentic Christian life, which now always says the Patriarch, will be heard and implemented.