During an impassioned sermon in Moscow, Moscow Patriarch Kirill urged Russian citizens not to be afraid of mobilization and to go out and fulfill their military duty. If they fall in battle, their reward will be entry into the kingdom of God, report the Nexta news channel or the American Newsweek.
The head of the Russian Orthodox Church has repeatedly been among the supporters of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. And it’s no different even during the ongoing mobilization, which has caused panic among Russians, created hour-long queues at borders or bought tickets after the early hours.
“Go boldly to fulfill your military duty. And remember that if you lay down your life for your country, your neighbor, you will be with God in his kingdom, glory and eternal life,” Patriarch Kirill said in a sermon, According to the media, shortly after Russia announced a “partial mobilization” targeted according to Russian leaders, up to 300,000 more people will arrive at the front.
????Patriarch Kirill urged not to fear death amid mobilization
“Go courageously fulfill your military duty. And remember that if you die for your country, you will be with God in his kingdom, his glory and his eternal life”
Maybe Kirill will refuse an armored Mercedes and security? pic.twitter.com/Bo6WaYcUKp
– NEXT (@nexta_tv)
September 22, 2022
Kirill’s statements in support of President Putin and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine have sparked international outrage in recent months. Britain, Canada, Lithuania and Ukraine have put the conservative patriarch on their sanctions lists for his support of the war. The Hungarian government, with its veto in June, prevented the European Union from doing the same.
Pope Francis also responded to him last week. Religion should never justify war and God should not become hostage to man’s desire for power, he said at the start of a global meeting of religious leaders in Kazakhstan. According to Reuters, he said so in an apparent allusion to Russian Patriarch Kirill, who has repeatedly supported the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
On the contrary, Patriarch Kirill last week called on the faithful to pray for President Vladimir Putin and the Russian military. According to the high representative of the Russian Orthodox Church, the country has embarked on a “fatal mission” against foreign powers who want to destroy its independence. As invading Russian troops withdrew from virtually the entire Kharkiv region after the Ukrainian counteroffensive, the patriarch admitted that Russia was going through a “very difficult time”, Kathpress reported.