Charity in the russian orthodox church

  • Almost two thousand years ago the question was asked, "And who is my neighbor?", and Jesus answered it with the parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10. 29-37), and so the idea of charity was inseparably linked with Christianity. However, it is almost a common opinion that Western Christianity and Russian Orthodoxy have quite different approaches to this item. According to that opinion, the Catholic Church had more concern about one's bodily needs and explicit welfare, while the Russian Orthodoxy paid less attention to the ''explicit man" and took more care of "the inner man". The Russian Orthodox tradition - though it has its own method in ascetism, apotheosis, general and private prayer - pays too little attention to the needy and deprived members of society. To raise the question about mollification of the deprived people's torments and to see it as a way towards the Kingdom of God seems alien to the very essence of Russian Orthodoxy. Did the Russian Orthodox Church ever refuse to help beggars and cripples? Or do the facts still show another picture? Since when did Russian Orthodox Church start to neglect that task? Which reasons have proved that charity has been unable to flourish in the Orthodox Church and especially Russian Orthodox Church as flourished her spirituality and arts: icon painting, choral singing, and church architecture? Let us have a brief outlook on the history of the Russian Orthodox Church and find out if there are any reasons to explain the reason.

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Author:Natalia Pecherskaya
Parent Title (German):Journal of religious culture = Journal für Religionskultur
Series (Serial Number):Journal of religious culture = Journal für Religionskultur (89)
Place of publication:Frankfurt am Main
Document Type:Part of Periodical
Year of Completion:2007
Year of first Publication:2007
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2007/10/25
The paper was presented at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University, Frankfurt on Main, 26th of January 2006
Institutes:Angeschlossene und kooperierende Institutionen / Institut für Wissenschaftliche Irenik
Dewey Decimal Classification:2 Religion / 23 Christentum, Christliche Theologie / 230 Christentum, Christliche Theologie
Licence (German):License LogoDeutsches Urheberrecht