The Ambassador of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Vatican is concerned about the destruction of the foundations of Christian civilization

© RIA Novosti / Vladimir Astapkovich in photovacation. Archival photoThe Ambassador of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Vatican is concerned about the destruction of the foundations of Christian civilization© RIA Novosti / Vladimir Astapkovich the image Bank

A large field for cooperation between the Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches provides a modern situation in the world, in which there is destruction of moral-ethical foundations of Christian civilization, said in an interview with RIA Novosti Russian Ambassador to the Vatican Alexander Avdeev.

«A large field for cooperation provides the current world situation, in which destroyed the moral and ethical foundations of Christian civilization, is the same for believers and for unbelievers. Both our churches see this as a serious threat. Destroyed the institution of family and marriage, birth and education of children. People begin to live according to the laws of Christian civilization, and it can not disturb Catholics and Orthodox,» said the diplomat.

According to him, the current phase of interchurch relations is very fruitful, it is distinguished by the depth of the dialogue. «This dialogue was greatly supported by the statements of the Pope on two issues that have always divided the Orthodox and the Catholics. First of all, the Pope said that proselytism is a sin. This is the first such statement, probably, in the history of the papacy. He also said that cooperation and dialogue between Orthodox and Catholics needs to go on the basis of equality and the principle «Everyone should be themselves,» — said Avdeev.

In this regard, the Ambassador recalled the decisions taken at the historic meeting between Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Kirill and Pope Francis in February 2016 in Cuba. According to him, the spirit then adopted the Havana Declaration today is backed up by concrete actions.

«The churches cooperating in the provision of humanitarian assistance in the middle East, their experiences in the social sphere. I should note that our experience is very interesting the Vatican in particular, in the field of interaction between Christians and Muslims in Russia. Five centuries of experience of such interaction shows that where the Orthodox and Muslims live together, the situation is most quiet. That’s just such an experience for Catholics is not» — said the source RIA Novosti.

«We are also very interested in the experience of Catholics in the field of religious education and preservation of family values. Suffice it to say that the last two Synod of the Roman Catholic Church was devoted to the situation of the family in all parts of the world. Was made a detailed analysis for 14 parameters, including the position of the lonely and abandoned children, taxation of young families and other specific problems. Such an analysis was not carried out even in the framework of the UN», he stressed.

Avdeev also said that currently, active inter-Church cooperation Council, which is headed by the Chairman of the Department for external Church relations of the Moscow Patriarchate Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk and head of the Pontifical Council for promoting Christian unity cardinal Kurt Koch and the Commission for culture, which oversees Bishop mark Tikhon and cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi.

According to the Ambassador, there is a clear intensification of religion and cultural cooperation. In the near future for this line in the Vatican, will include two exhibitions, including one dedicated to the new martyrs of the twentieth century and the other modern Church architecture. The third exhibition, which will show the work of Russian artist Leonid Brailovsky from the archives of the Vatican Congregation for Eastern churches, about half a year will open in Russia.

Answering the question about the prospects of the Pope’s visit to Russia, Avdeev went on to quote Metropolitan Hilarion: «Every passing day brings us closer to this event».