Ten Commandments Party established in Russia
- Moscow, February 18, Interfax - The inaugural congress of the Russian Ten Commandments Party took place in Moscow.
The total of 134 delegates from 45 Russian subjects, including Christians of different confessions, Muslims, and Jews, participated in the inaugural congress on February 17. The political council, the decision making body of the party, was headed by Sergey Mezentsev, Ph.D.
"I hope that your activity will help to restore moral values, God's Ten Commandments in the everyday political life, in the life of our society. I hope that you will stay faithful to these God's Commandments, that you'll be able to unite a considerable number of people," chairman of the Synodal Department for Church and Society Relations Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin said at the congress.
He said he was happy that the party was based on the Ten Commandments, which were shared by different religions, and some of commandments were even shared by non-believers. Moral standards are unchangeable, "they weren't invented by people, they aren't a subject of public agreement, they were set once and for all," he said.
"We need a real moral revolution, or counterrevolution. The moral values should return to political, economic life, to interpersonal relations," the priest said.
Head of the Russian Muslim Department for Working with Public Organizations Ahmad Makarov said that morals were being degraded, and the Pussy Riot performance in the Christ the Savior Cathedral, which insulted not only Orthodox believers, but "all of us", proves it.
"Unfortunately, a lot of our citizens consider civil state to be a display of militant secularism, which is unavoidably related to the destruction of the traditional cultures of our country's people. No religion will be able to respond adequately to all these challenges on its own," Makarov said.
Head of the Congress of Jewish Religious Organizations and Communities in Russia Rabbi Zinovy Kogan said that his organization would cooperate with the Ten Commandments Party, which "should become a platform for religious dialogue so that civil and god-fearing citizens felt confident."
The program of the Ten Commandments Party stipulates that the party regards the commandments as a basis for its activities. The party members intend to put religious social doctrines and humanistic ideals into practice, to facilitate the appointment of honest people as government officials, to develop the institutes of civil society, to form a social law-based state, to defend national interests, to fight against corruption, and to establish a favorable investment climate, the program said.
George C. Thomas