Metropolitan Hilarion, Chairman of the Department for External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate, encouraged Protodeacon Andrei Kuraev to repent and stop blaspheming the Church, reports Interfax Religion.
“The fact that he lost his ordination is a natural result of his activities. And if he continues these activities in the same spirit, then, probably, this will lead to his excommunication from the Church,” the metropolitan said during the program ‘Church and the World’.
As reported, on December 29, the court of the Moscow Diocese found signs of “blasphemy against the Church” in the statements of Protodeacon Andrei Kuraev and declared him subject to be defrocked from his ordination. The decision will enter into force if it is approved by the patriarch.
Metropolitan Hilarion said that he sincerely regrets what happened to Kuraev, who once did a lot for the Church: thanks to his books and lectures, people came to God. “But from a certain moment he took the opposite path, and now, with his slander against the Church, he repels many people from God, from religion, and from the Church. Therefore, in fact, nothing connects him with the Church now,” the metropolitan said.
At the same time, he said, it is never too late to stop and repent. Metropolitan Hilarion expressed great hope that Kuraev would change his attitude towards the Church, the hierarchy, towards religion in general, “and nevertheless take the path of repentance.”
He spoke about the plans of the protodeacon to appeal the decision of the church court to Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople:
“I think he can appeal anywhere, even to the World League of Sexual Reforms, as the famous character of the novel “The Little Golden Calf” by Ostap Bender advised another character of this novel, Panikovsky, to do, who complained that girls did not like him”.
In his opinion, Kuraev had “more than enough” opportunities to appeal to the General Church Court and send a letter of repentance to the Patriarch.
“He was banned from the ministry last April, he had months to think about his own fate, he was invited to the church court, nothing happened behind closed doors, he was invited three times, but he did not appear at the court. Therefore, the decision was made. I think that this decision will not be revised. But, of course, one can appeal to anyone and anywhere, ” the Metropolitan concluded.