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Priest dismissed from post at Moscow Patriarchate says may found own media outlet

December 25, 2015, 21:37 UTC+3 MOSCOW
"I never clutched at my positions, nor am I afraid of anything and I remain a free person," Reverend Vsevolod Chaplin said
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 Vsevolod Chaplin (center)

Vsevolod Chaplin (center)

© ITAR-TASS/Vladimir Astapkovich

MOSCOW, December 25. /TASS/. Reverend Vsevolod Chaplin, a Moscow-based priest of the Russian Orthodox Church who occupied the position of the chief of Moscow Patriarchate’s department for rapport between the Church and society and who, on top of that, is known to millions of Russian-speaking TV viewers and radio listeners as a commentator on religious problems, may found a mass media outlet of his own.

The Rev Chaplin mentioned a possibility of this move as he spoke to reporters on Thursday, a day after his dismissal from the position and Patriarch Kirill I’s decision to merge the department for rapport between the Church and society with the Synodic service for public relations and information.

"That’s possible," the Rev Chaplin said when a reporter asked him about a possibility of launching new projects. "We’ll wait and see."

"I never clutched at my positions, nor am I afraid of anything and I remain a free person," he said.

"In the past three or so years I’ve more than once voiced my disagreement, both orally and in writing, with the decisions adopted by the Church," the Rev Chaplin told a news conference earlier on the same day. "Also, I don’t agree with the way that relations between the Church and the government."

"I’ve always insisted that Church should not smile to the authorities but rather take a position of faultfinding solidarity," he said. "Namely, we shouldn’t be enemies with anyone but we should give out straightforward, personal, public assessments to the activity of certain government officials."

"I realized I would be compelled to quite someday," the Rev Chaplin said.

He said he would keep up the duties of the father superior of St Nicholas’s Church on the Three Mounts in downtown Moscow near the World Trade Center. In addition to it, he is a member of the World Russian Congress and a member of Russia’s Public Chamber.

"I don’t know at the moment what I’m going to do and I’m not sure whether or not I should keep up the previous rate of activity in the Public Chamber," the Rev Chaplin said.

He said he could possibly name an increasingly systemic character of decisions taken by the Public Chamber as an achievement at his personal record.

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