24 July 2008, 14:57
Moscow, July 24, Interfax - European integration cannot develop without respect for the opinions and interests of the Orthodox people living in Europe, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Alexy II said.
"The Russian Orthodox Church welcomes the desire of the European People's Party [EPP] to work with the Orthodox peoples of Europe. It guarantees the preservation of a single European civilization and accord in our common European cause," Alexy II said in his welcoming address to participants in a conference held in Kyiv, which addresses the dialogue between the Orthodox Church and the EPP and the European Democrats in the European parliament.
The Orthodox peoples are ready for dialogue on public and political values and their involvement in development using their "centuries-long religious tradition and national spiritual experience," Alexy said in his address published on the official website of the Moscow Patriarchate on Thursday.
The Russian Orthodox Church is ready to propose for discussion the foundation of its doctrines on dignity, freedom and human rights adopted at the Bishop's Council, says the address.
Alexy II noted with satisfaction that the European Union and the Council of Europe have started to give more attention to the dialogue with the Orthodox community and issues relating to the cooperation between different cultures and religions in general, pointing out that Christian churches are "important institutions of civil society in Europe."
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