Russia Prohibits Evangelizing anyplace except in Church


effective 7/20/2018 not online or in homes, for example


This is what oppression of religion really looks like - as opposed to employees getting birth control pills… in my opinion.


Dollars to donuts he doesn’t apply this to Eastern Orthodox under the Moscow Patriarchy.


No. Insult wasted. From the article:

“Proposed by United Russia party lawmaker Irina Yarovaya, the law appears to target religious groups outside the Russian Orthodox church. Because it defines missionary activities as religious practices to spread a faith beyond its members, “if that is interpreted as the Moscow Patriarchate is likely to, it will mean the Orthodox Church can go after ethnic Russians but that no other church will be allowed to,” according to Frank Goble, an expert on religious and ethnic issues in the region.”


Well, I guess Russia isn’t so big on individual rights. Who knew that before the Senate jumped the gun and said that it would be ridiculous for Russian investigators be allowed to interview former American government officials? I guess all of us are shocked.


It just means the Orthodox Church will have to carry out the Great Commission, and the Protestant bodies will have to stop kidding themselves they’re the only ones who can do so.


What does it mean for the Roman and Greek Catholic Churches?
What sorts of persecution can we expect?


Actually, the news article was written in 2016, the law came into effect in that year, not now.

It was discussed in this thread: Russia's Newest Law: No Evangelizing Outside of Church.


Probably the only people to whom Catholic churchmen or laymen can talk about religion are the descendants of Poles and Lithuanians Stalin exiled into Siberia. To my understanding, it’s fairly close to that right now. The Moscow Patriarchy considers Catholic proselytization of any Russians “sheep stealing”.

I think the persecution will be less dramatic than Stalin’s by quite some measure. Rejected passports, no work permits, no permits for new churches, the occasional “show prosecution”.


Actually tha MP considers charity by Catholics proselytization.
It considers accepting inquirers proselytization.

It is not as bad in ts in the murderous days of Stalin. So far no murders.


It could get there easily.


I am afraid so. Putin has murdered political opponents. There is no question that the Greek Catholic Bishops in Ukraine are opponents of Russian policy to Ukraine.


Nobody is trying to prevent employees for getting birth control pills any more than a refusal to provide a company care is an attempt to force employees to walk every where.


And not just the Byzantine Catholics. Patriarch Kirill has said some pretty harsh things about the non-Moscow Orthodox churches in Ukraine.


is typically very cagey about this, blaming the “uniates” even when he is actually talking about the independent Ukrainina Orthodox churches. He toes Putin’s line.


I talked to plenty of people when I lived there, the Moscow Patriarchy does indeed consider Catholic proselytization sheep stealing and there are unfortunate underlying reasons for that rooted in history. Then again we are not supposed to proselytize with regards to the Orthodox which to an extent avoids the problem. Certainly sadly many Russsians do view Catholicism with either suspicion or are ignorant about it (then again most western Catholics are quite ignorant with regards to Orthodoxy) and unfortunately for many the religion is associated historically with forced conversions and this is what produces much of the lingering distaste for our faith in many places. Mostly though, people don’t really think about our Church a great deal at all.


The narrative about forced Orthodox to Catholic conversions is at best archaic and at worst just phony.
Sadly that is not true in reverse: Even in living memory the Russian Orthodox Church collaborated with the Soviets in the brutal suppression and liquidation of Greek Catholic Churches.


This is true, but people’s narratives are what they create and sustain them whether they are incomplete or not. Also I wouldn’t say given the madness of the Ustate in countries near to Russia that such events are altogether archaic and I’ve had a Serb ask me personally how I can as a decent man (which he viewed me as) believe in the wickedness of the anti-Christ who sits in Rome. As I pointed out on another post not too long ago my wife’s great-grandmother who lived to a very, very old age firmly believed Catholicism was a work of the devil and that those trapped in whilst individually not responsible suffered under an evil system. We were to an extent (God forgive me for saying this) less worried when she passed on as telling her that her great-granddaughter was dating a Catholic would be have been a huge blow for her. Other family members don’t share this outlook thank God, my mother-in-law regard all Churches as equally silly places where people ‘play at dressing up’ and she laughs at all of them but views it as personal matter and that if they help you to get through life feel free to believe in them. My brother-in-law is a moderately devout Orthodox believers. My wife’s cousin who I am close to is very devout but also respectful of other faiths due to her spiritual director cautioning her to not insult people’s religion as it is not a Christian virtue to do so. He will tell you honestly where he disagrees but not in a hectoring or unpleasant manner. My view of this whole matter is akin to the history of religious persecution in my own nation, both sides have plenty of blood on their hand to be going on with and games of ‘whataboutery’ are unwise.


And where did she learn this? From the Russian E.O. church, that’s where.


There are those who are bigoted in the Church as in our own. This woman was a product of small village in a remote area of Russia and had little formal education. That said, if you were Catholic and starving or ill she would have been the first to offer you food or medicine if she had it. She was nearly a hundred years old at the time of her death and her daughter had a great deal more education as does her grand-daughter (my mother-in-law). I myself only had one bad experience with a priest in Russia and the others simply answered questions when asked in a honest and straightforward manner and were generally people worthy of respect. To be fair there were elderly clergy when I was growing up who had some appalling stupid things to say about Protestants. I can think of one particular priest who actually caused a walk out at a Mass for parents and kids. He didn’t realize (or care) that some of the Parents were non-Catholic and started of a diatribe about protecting the youngster from the heretics and how their parents should not let their kids play with non-Catholics. Five minutes into that about half a dozen kids and parents stormed out. One of them called him a four letter word on the way out, it was a very ugly incident and the Bishop of the diocese made him personally apologize to all concerned via letter and visiting them. Idiocy and intolerance flourish everywhere.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit