The urgent statement claims that the discrediting campaign is backed by certain forces, who find the high authority and rating of the Church and Catholicos-Patriarch Ilia II unacceptable. According to the Georgian Patriarchate, these forces attempt to involve the Church in their political games.
«It is unacceptable for them that the Church protects the sanctity of the family, territorial integrity of the country, national and traditional values, cares for the appropriate upbringing of the younger generation. It is unacceptable for them that the Church opposes LGBT lifestyle approval, expresses protest against the drug policy liberalization and gambling propaganda», – stated the Patriarchate.
Georgian Patriarchate encourages the public not to react to any slander, provocation and “purposeful villainous acts“.
It was noted in the statement that lately the Georgian Orthodox Church had been repeatedly exposed to criticisms by political parties and non-governmental pro-Western organizations. The clergy are accused of using expensive automobiles and lobbying for their own business interests. The authority of the Church is also undermined by an assassination attempt against the Secretary of Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia, Shorena Tetruashvili. The accused, Archpriest Giorgi Mamaladze, was sentenced to 9 years of imprisonment.
This article was translated from Russian by Kirill Nikolaev.