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Senior official of the Russian Orthodox Church is outraged by glorification of Stalin

13.11.2011

Metropolitan of Volokolamsk Hilarion, who is considered to be second person in current hierarchy of the Russian Orthodox Church, gave a negative assessment to the statements made among the clergy and monastic, which give a positive attitude towards Stalin's role in history and condemn intelligentsia.

"I think that history has made everything clear and nostalgia for stalinism, especially from the lips of a priest, to me sounds like some kind of blasphemy"- Metropolitan Hilarion said in an interview published in newspaper "Rossiyskaya Gazeta".

Metropolitan Hilarion made that remark after newspaper asked him to comment on the statements of the Secretary of the Ivanovo eparchy abbot Vitaly Utkin, who in his blog, made no secret of respect for Stalin.

"How can someone worship the Holy New Martyrs and at the same time respect Stalin? It's like to worship John the Baptist but at the same time have respect for Herod, who beheaded him. How can we glorify the victims and executioner simultaneously?" - Metropolitan Hilarion wondered.

This is not the first time Hilarion publicly condemned Stalin. In 2009 being senior official of the Russian Orthodox Church he called him „a monster", accusing him of genocide, shortly before a European security forum equated the crimes of Stalin and Hitler.

At that time his words have stirred heated debate in the Russian media and blogosphere, American Orthodox Institute reports.

"I think that Stalin was a spiritually-deformed monster, who created a horrific, inhuman system of ruling the country," Archbishop Hilarion had said.

"He unleashed a genocide against the people of his own country and bears personal responsibility for the death of millions of innocent people. In this respect Stalin is completely comparable to Hitler.", he said.