Russian Orthodox Church condemns gay ‘marriage’ legislation in UK, France
MOSCOW, March 11, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Russian Orthodox Church, through its Department for External Church Relations, has issued a statement saying the same-sex "marriage" legislation in France and the UK is a "revolution in the European societies’ understanding of marriage" that will lead to the eventual collapse of those societies.
The document notes that the "Russian Orthodox Church preserves and defends the primary Christian understanding of marriage and family, sanctifies marital relations in the church Sacrament and asserts the importance of marriage for the wellbeing and development of society as a whole."
It adds, "In the countries which have embarked on the path of a radical revision of traditional family ethics, this process has resulted in a demographic crisis which is growing from year to year."
"The revision of fundamental norms of family law on which the human community has been built for centuries and which are preserved as before in the moral code of major world religions is a path leading to the self-liquidation of whole nations," the Russian Orthodox Church states.
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"The legalization of same-sex unions is another step towards an attempt to give an absolutely new meaning to marriage and the family directly opposite to the Christian one," the statement says, adding that the impetus for these changes is not the betterment of society, but is based on "individualism and hedonism on the scale of society and state and ultimately on the scale of the whole [of] humanity."
The Russian Orthodox Church is especially concerned about the adoption of children by homosexual couples, calling such permissive legislation "dangerous."
"These children will develop a view of parents, family and moral and social values completely different from the traditional ones," the document states.
"All this will contribute to further obliteration of differences between the sexes and subsequently to forcing out from public conscience the image of woman as mother, wife and guardian of the household.
"The final rejection of the idea that man and woman have special vocations and complement each other in family life threatens with destructive consequences for both the individual and society."
The statement declares that the Russian Orthodox Church, which counts more than 150 million adherents throughout the world, will seek to establish supportive relations with "other religions and those proponents of non-religious worldviews who have preserved the traditional understanding of marriage as union of man and woman."
The document states that the Russian Orthodox Church will oppose "the attempts to use a radical legal reform to impose on the whole society a different understanding of marriage unprecedented in human history."
The full text of the "Statement by Communication Service of Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations on recent changes in family laws in France and Great Britain" is available here.