Signed an Agreement on cooperation between the Russian Church and the Commissioner for human rights


6 December 2018 at the Patriarchal and Synodal residence in the Danilov monastery in Moscow hosted a meeting of his Holiness Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Kirill with the Commissioner for human rights in the Russian Federation Tatiana Nikolaevna Moskalkova, reports patriarhiei.

At the meeting, an Agreement was signed on cooperation between the Russian Orthodox Church and the Commissioner of human rights in the Russian Federation.

His Holiness Patriarch Kirill, Etc. Moskalkova put their signatures on two copies of the Agreement and exchanged the files with the signed document.

The Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church thanked the Commissioner for human rights “for their willingness to work more closely with the Russian Orthodox Church in such an important area as the protection of human rights and freedoms”.

“Christ made people free from those conventions that prevented the human race to find a direct path to God and create unnecessary difficulties,” his Holiness said after the signing ceremony of the document.

His Holiness said that when we say that Christ has brought freedom, we do not mean a specific historical epoch: “His mission in relation to people, which really gave people happiness to be free, extends to all times and all Nations.”

“And when we talk about freedom, we mean freedom from evil — continued the Primate of the Russian Church. — If a person is allowed, realizing their freedom to commit evil, then we are talking not about freedom. Therefore, freedom and goodness are closely related. Freedom in favor of the good is what liberates man, what makes right human relations. And freedom in favour of evil is a crime… the Laws and create government in order to help people not to commit evil deeds”.

According to His Holiness, from the Church point of view, when it comes to freedom and human rights, I mean first and foremost “the responsibility of people for using their freedom and their rights in favor of the good.”

“God grant that so it was, and that no one, referring to freedom and rights, did not commit acts that violate peace, peace, the welfare of his inner life, his family, surrounding people, society or the state. In this sense we are ardent supporters of freedom and human rights. And I’m very glad I had the opportunity with You today to sign this important document,” — concluded Patriarch Kirill.

In turn, T. N. Moskalkova said, “thank you, Your Holiness, for the great privilege of working with the Russian Orthodox Church more closely and effectively. Because the whole history of the Russian Orthodox Church is the history of humanism and mercy, in search not of the letter but of the spirit of the law. It is very important that the authorities acted in the spirit of the law… And it is very important to unite efforts in order to bring the good word to the world of men.”

“We are constantly engaged in legal education, because sometimes a man offends the man or gets into a difficult situation due to the fact that he did not know their rights, did not understand how to do it. And it is very important that today the work of the Sunday school, which explain to children what is good and evil, to transgress the law is always an evil to hurt another person is always evil. Importantly, from the very young age people understand the scale of moral values”, — said the Ombudsman.

According to T. N. Moskalkova, today in Russia “there is no detention facility or prison, which would not have sustained by the priests of the lost people and those in difficult life situation.” “They are asking for help in connection with the conditions in which they were. And what would be the fault of neither was the man, he is worthy of humanity, compassion and that Orthodox attitudes, moral attitude, with the light path” — said the Commissioner for human rights in the Russian Federation.

“And it is very important that we are able to do education and help people. Often a person unfairly gets in the millstones of law-enforcement system when it is not understood in truth and innocent people suffered. And it is very important that You give him strength and faith in yourself, and gave us strength and faith to fight for justice, for finding a brighter path,” said in the end T. N. Moskalkova.

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In the framework of the signed cooperation Agreements between the Commissioner for human rights in the Russian Federation and Russian Orthodox Church representatives of the Church and of the Commissioner for human rights, in particular, to hold regular bilateral and multilateral consultations on the issues of observance and protection of human rights, the organization of joint visits to orphanages, nursing homes, hospices, social rehabilitation centers, and other social institutions, carrying out activities to assist children, the elderly and persons with disabilities and other persons in difficult life situations, as well as ensuring freedom of conscience and freedom of religion for all citizens, in special circumstances (undergoing military service in the institutions of the penitentiary system, health care organizations on treatment in stationary conditions, in establishments of system of social services).

The agreement also provides that the office of the Commissioner for human rights in the Russian Federation will provide consultation, scientific and methodical help to the Russian Orthodox Church and human rights center of world Russian people’s Council and other relevant Church and community organizations on issues related to human rights violations and will contribute to their recovery, effective implementation and protection.

In turn, the Russian Orthodox Church will ensure the participation of their representatives in the activities that will be carried out by the Apparatus in the framework of the Agreement, as well as to invite staff to events the Russian Orthodox Church.

The aim of cooperation in the field of human rights protection, education, spiritual, moral and legal education is ensuring the rights of believers and the strengthening of respect for human dignity in the state and society.

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