Moscow, October 24, 2016
Over 2,000 people from the capital and a number of other regions of Russia participated in the action. The rally was initiated by “For Life,” “Forty Times Forty,” “Orthodox Volunteers,” “Women for Life” and other movements, reported the organizers to Interfax-Religion.
During the event signatures were collected for the petition to ban abortion and for legislative protection of life from the moment of conception.
“We should call things by their proper names at a national level and tell the girls who are tricked into abortions the truth. It has become a habit with the majority of gynecologists to recommend abortions to young girls, citing their studies and so on. Thus we recognize the legality of the operation which kills a baby and causes grave injury to the mother’s health,” the State Duma Deputy Vitaly Milonov said at the rally.
In turn, the coordinator of the “Forty Times Forthy” movement, boxing champion of Russia and Europe Vladimir Nosov, emphasized that a great number of athletes are the fathers of many children.
For instance, boxing champion of Russia David Arustamyan is raising six children, mixed martial artist and world champion Oliksiy Oliynyk is rearing five children, and two-time Olympic boxing champion Oleg Saitov—five children.
Another “Forty Times Forty” member Andrei Kormukhin came up on stage together with his spouse and nine children.
“This is something I can really be proud of. Having one kid is one joy, having two kids is two joys, and having nine kids means a lot of happiness! Children cannot be divided into embryos, fetuses or babies,” he stressed.
Many churches around Russia are currently collecting signatures for the legislative protection of human life from the moment of conception at the initiative of the “For Life” movement. To date more than 300,000 signatures have already been collected. The organizers plan to collect one million signatures in total after which they will be sent to the federal authorities for consideration.
The petition was earlier signed by Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia which provoked a lively debate in Russian society.
Chairman of the Synodal Department of the External Church Relations (DECR) Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, and Head of the Patriarchal Council for Culture and Abbot of Moscow Sretensky Monastery Bishop Tihon (Shevkunov) of Yegoryevsk along with State Duma Deputies, well-known actors and athletes joined the primate of the Russian Orthodox Church in this action.