Vladimir Legoyda, Head of the Synodal Department for Church Relations with Society and Mass Media, pointed out that the Church stands for solving the issue about the construction of a church in honor of St. Catherine in Yekaterinburg with dialogue, harmony and peace, because churches in Russia have always been built jointly.
“Certainly, the construction of a church should never be a reason for conflict. This contradicts the very meaning of a church and the Christian faith. Churches have beautified all European cities for centuries. They become centers of not merely prayer, but also of social activities, and of help to those in need,” wrote Vladimir Legoyda on his Facebook.
According to the representative of the Church, a temple cannot threaten anything nor create difficulties either in Yekaterinburg or anywhere else.
As for those who protest against the construction of the church, Vladimir Legoyda believes that they can be contingently divided into three groups.
“The first group is people who do not understand what a church is and why it is better than a park, an incineration plant, or a crematorium. It is essential to work with them and explain that a church will not destroy a park, but will inevitably beautify the territory it will be located on. I hope that, in the end, such protesters will baptize their children in the very church that once supposedly disturbed them,” the head of the Synodal Department stated.
In his opinion, the second group is people “who simply hates faith – any faith – and believers too”.
“And the third group is those who consider themselves to be the political opposition. The above-mentioned groups are cannon fodder for these people. They need this cannon fodder to gain political points. Mostly they do not care whether the church will be built or not,” Mr. Legoyda added.
According to him, “it is important and right that the local authorities try to solve the conflict with dialogue” in this situation. Belivers call for such solution as well.
“The faithful have always stood for dialogue and the opportunity and the need to come to an agreement. Indeed we want to build a church, not a casino, not a brothel, nor a dump. Churches in Russia have always been built jointly. I hope that it will be like this this time as well,” Vladimir Legoyda stressed.
He mentioned that the construction of St. Catherine Church “have passed all necessary approvals, including public hearings. It is carried out on a completely legal basis”. He believes that protests of young people “are actively being heated and directed”.
“Despite all this, the Church has always stood for dialogue, harmony, and peace. I’m sure it will be like this,” summarized Mr. Legoyda.