“We still have some doctrinal disagreements, but no one is preventing us from fighting, hand in hand, to end the persecutions, the ousting of Christian values, to end the de-Christianization of the 21st century human civilization,” the patriarch said, after conducting a prayer service near the Jesus Christ statue on Mount Corcovado, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the world’s largest Catholic country, on Saturday.
All travelers, especially seafarers, know, and not so much these days as they did in the days when the Americas were being discovered: when the human ability to weather a storm or other hardships runs out, there is always hope for the power of God, the Russian Church leader said.
Today, many Christians are being killed in the Middle East and Africa, their churches and monasteries are being destroyed, and whole settlements and towns of believers are being exterminated, all the while, the global community has been unable to work out joint approaches on how to combat terrorism, and “very often attempts to defeat terrorism involve the attaining of other ends far from this declared goal,” thus instilling “the fear of a greater war.”
Christians also suffer in Europe “where an evil political force disguised as tolerance is ousting Christianity out of the public life; when people are banned from wearing, in public places, and especially at the workplace, the cross that was laid upon them when they were baptized; when some countries ban the use of the word ‘Christmas’, and replace it with an incomprehensible one, or simply call it a ‘winter holiday’; when a country passes legislation that justifies the human sin in the refusal to understand marriage as a sacred union between man and woman; when humankind still suffers from a huge number of abortions killing children, from the ever increasing number of divorces,” said the Russian patriarch.
“Like those ancient seafarers caught in a dreadful storm, we have no other hope but only in God,” he said.