Press Releases

The Fellowship of Christian Protestant Churches of the Tyl’skaya Region expresses Concern over the presence of Sectologists in the Council under the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation who are leading “a Continuous Attack on the Small Religious Movements of Russia.”

30 June 2009

The Fellowship of Christian Protestant Churches of the Tul’skaya Region has expressed concern over the presence of sectologists, headed by Dvorkin in the Council over the Conduction of State Theological Expertise under the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation, who are leading “an unending attack on the small religious movements of Russia,” reports the Press Service of the Slavic Center for Law and Justice.
 
Both the declaration of the Fellowship of Protestant Churches of the Tul’skaya Region supporting the Action “No to Inquistitors!” and the Open Petition to A. V. Konovalov, Minister of the Justice of the Russian Federation state:  “Of particular disturbance is the membership of the aforementioned Council which has included a group of figures that have repeatedly spoken out publically and negatively toward Russian religious organizations that are not part of the Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchy.”
 
The pastor of the Tul’skaya evangelical churches emphasizes: “Over several years, continuous attacks have been made upon the smaller religious movements of Russia and upon representatives of those religious denominations by the center headed by A. L. Dvorkin, which has caused a line of law suits.”  The clergymen request that the Minister of Justice of the Russian Federation raise a question about the conformity of Dvorkin and the colleagues of his center who are members of the Council and their current positions in connection with the obvious preconception of “sectologists.”
 
The pastors call upon the Minister of Justice of the Russian Federation to protect the interdenominational and international worlds, intervening against all attempts to destroy them.
 
The address was signed by 15 clergymen from the churches which are members of the Fellowship of Christian Protestant Churches of the Tul’skaya Region: Pastor A. A. Karavaev, from the Church of Evangelist Christians “The Vine” of the City Tula, Pastor S. V. Mel’nikov, from the Christian Presbyterian Church of the City Shchekino, Tul’skaya Region, Pastor N. N. Nikitin, from the Tul’sky Christian Center (Christians of the Evangelist Faith), Pastor V. N. Pisarev, from the Church of the Christians of the Evangelist Faith “The Word of Life,” of the City of Tula, N. A. Zadonskaya, Chairwoman of the Church Council, form the Christian Presbyterian Church “Radient,” Pastor S. S. Sinyakov, from the Christian Prebyterian Church “The Transfiguration,” of the city of Uzlovaya, Tul’skaya Region, Pastor V. V. Kukhtenkov, from the Church of “Christ the Savior” of Christians of the Evangelist Faith (Pentecostals), of the city Novomoskovska, Tul’skaya Region, Pastor A. Y. Puchkov, from the Christian Presbyterian Church “The Light of the World,” of the City Suvorovo, Tul’skaya Region, Pastor R. R. Uglev, from the Christian Presbyterian Church of “The End Time,” of the city Novomoskovska, Tul’skaya Region, Pastor S. I. Kuznetsova, from the Church of Christians of the Evangelist Faith “The Source of power,” of the city Novomoskovska, Tul’skaya Region and the Church of Christians of the Evangelist Faith “The Source of Life,” of the city Novomoskovska, Tul’skaya Region, Pastor A. Balaev, from the Christian Presbyterian Church “The Church of the Living God,” of the city Kireevska, Tul’skaya Region, Pastor P. T. Kolompar, from the Religious Group, The Church of Christians of the Evangelist Faith “The Light and The Life,” of the city of Tula, and Pastor V. I. Andrievsky, from the Church of Evangelist Christians of “The Holy Trinity,” of the city of Tula.
 
The members of the Church of Evangelist Christians, “The Vine,” of the city of Tula (Pastor Aleksandr Karavaev) who added 32 signatures to the Action “No to Inquisitors!” and stepped forward with a separate letter in support of the Address to Aleksandr Konovalov, Minister of Justice of the Russian Federation.  Their letter In the address it is notes: “We are we most troubled by the membership of the Expert Council, the majority of  in which the majority of the members lack the corresponding professional level of education to hold such a position, and also have a questionable business and professional reputations, as well as  and a preconceived and biased attitudes toward the various denominations.”
 
On April 22, 2009, a Russia-wide Perpetual Action – “No to Inquisitors!” – was started in protest against the presence of radical “sectologists” in the new membership of the Council of Conduction of Government Theological Expertise under the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation.  The Action is being conducted under the initiative of the Institute of Religion and Justice.  The foundation of the Action has been the collection of signatures for an Open Petition to Aleksandr Konovalov, Minister of Justice of the Russian Federation.  Copies will also be sent to the President of the Russian Federation, Dmitry Medvedyev, and to Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin.

We invite both scholarly and religious societies from all countries as well as public figures, lawyers and activists to contribute to and participate in this Action.  Your voices and opinions will be published on our web site.  An open petition to Aleksandr Konovalov, Minister of Justice of the Russian Federation, is necessary and can be directly sent from both religious organizations and scholarly centers, as well as ordinary citizens of Russia who do not agree with their activities being judged by “inquisitors” such as Dvorkin and his colleagues.  Furthermore, the membership of the Council under the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation has already been used and will continue to be used by “sectologists” to influence officials and law-enforcement agencies and to spread propaganda of their own “anti-sect” demands – on unjust grounds to limit the activity of “non-traditional” religious organizations in Russia.

The Action “No to Inquisitors!” is an opportunity to openly and clearly declare your own protest against the “inquisitors’” efforts to forcefully save our souls, without regard for our wishes and against the discredit of secular science, even theological expert evaluations, and also to protest against the clericalization of society and the destruction of the foundations of a just and secular government in Russia.
 
By order of the Ministry if Justice of Russia on March 3, 2009, No. 61, a Council of Conduction of Government Theological Expertise under the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation was to be created; and that Council would have authority to counsel concerning religious affairs.  Included in the council membership along with recognized scholars and experts were the following: Aleksandr Dvorkin, leader of the Sectological Center of Saint Iriney Lionsky; Aleksandr Kuz’min, leader of the Saratov Department of Dvorkin’s Sectological Center, author of material on which is based anti-sect which has been admitted as extremist by a court; Evgeny Mukhtarov, a Yaroslavl’ journalist-sectologist; Lev Semyonov, a priest of the Russian Orthodox Church, collaborator with Dvorkin’s Center, and also Andrey Vasil’chenko, a Yaroslavl’ sectologist and  specialist on German fascism, author of an entire series of popular books on the history of the Third Reich and one of the founders of an organization of nationalistic doctrine, “The League of Patriotic Youth,” along with Evgeny Mukhatorov in the 1990’s.

The Social Action “No to Inquisitors!” will be maintained until the scholars, lawyers, and religious people achieve their goal.  Support the Open Petition to Minister of Justice of the Russian Federation, A. V. Konovalov, to show that Russia is made up of a civil society.

 

 
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