District deans, confessors, members of disciplinary commissions were called yesterday to the work meeting of the Central Diocese at the Metropolitan administrative residence. His Eminence Metropolitan Vladimir came up with a message to the audience, listing the actions taken by the Church in order to overcome various challenges and temptations that have affected the society. His Eminence Vladimir specifically referred to state decisions on the amendment of the legislation covering religious cults, registration of islamic league, attribution of identity codes to the citizens of the Republic of Moldova, and the recent approval of the law ensuring equality by the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova.
The Hierarch presented to the participants all actions that have been made till present, including appeals to the Authorities, meetings with clergymen and lay Christians, meetings of the Holy Synod, and public activities. The Metropolitan expressed concern that in the end this activity was qualified as “passiveness of the Church leaders”, while the real achievements were not given value. Instead, the ecclesiastic authority was object of much manipulation and speculation. Another issue discussed was that of certain mass-media instigating statements that caused protests of clergymen and lay believers.
The Metropolitan talked about the negotiations with the central public authorities that resulted in modification of the draft law on equality, but expressed concern that the controversial notion was still included into the mentioned bill.
Discussions followed, where clergymen supported the position of the Hierarch as to organize actions in the spirit of the Orthodox teaching. Thus, the following resolution was approved in the end:
“Priests – district deans, confessors, and members of disciplinary commissions, elder monks and nuns of monasteries from the Central Diocese of the Metropolis of Moldova who met on May 31, 2012 at the Metropolitan administration, declare the following:
We are concerned by the events that have occurred within recent years, when the Orthodox Church of Moldova, especially the Metropolis of Moldova, is exposed to denigrating attacks in the society. Contemporary political trends often come against Christian moral norms and provoke division among citizens. Paradoxically, we live in a Orthodox Christian setting, but a big part of Christians are far from the spirit of experiencing the faith in which they were baptized. Thus, these are the Christians who often accept anti-Christian norms and values.
Another aspect is the way the Church is presented in mass media – in the context when journalists comment and make statements without understanding dogmatic and moral principles of this institution that cannot be perceived as a simple laic institution, but should be viewed as a Divine-human setting.
Last year was marked by debates on antidiscrimination draft law. The subject had been discussed during work meetings of ministries and local authorities for over five years. Following several appeals and protest actions of church-goers and clergy, the draft law was postponed, but in the end it was adopted by the Parliament
The proposals of the Church Synod were analyzed but only partially adopted. In this sense, certain church-goers were ready to express their opinion in public, going out into street protests. It could appear as something natural, if not for certain hostile and malevolent voices that accused the Metropolitan administration of complicity and non-involvement into solving these problems.
This is probably the first case when some clergymen are trying to instigate the believers against the Metropolitan and the Synod.
In reality, this is not a case of confrontation between the Church and the state, but rather between the promoters of lawlessness and the people educated for thousands of years in the spirit of moral normality and family blessed by God. Thus, the Church never tolerated and will never tolerate sin and passion, but will contribute to rooting out it, confessing and protecting the truths of faith, through prayer and spiritual guidance…”
After the meeting, the clergymen followed Metropolitan Vladimir, heading to the Metropolitan Cathedral and celebrated a Te-Deum service before the wonder-working icon of the Mother of the Lord “Of Lyubech”.