Russian Orthodox Church

Official website of the Moscow Patriarchate

Русская версияУкраинская версияМолдавская версияГреческая версияАнглийская версия

Metropolitan Hilarion speaks at second All-Russia Academic Conference on Theology in Present-Day Academia

Metropolitan Hilarion speaks at second All-Russia Academic Conference on Theology in Present-Day Academia
Version for print
4 November 2018 year 12:02

November 2, 2018 – The 2nd All-Russia Academic Conference on Theology in the Present-Day Academia held its final session at the National Research Nuclear University MEPhI in cooperation with the Ss Cyril and Methodius Institute of Post-Graduate Studies (CMI).

The main plenary session heard a paper presented by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk on Theology in Education and Science: Development of the Industry.

In his address, Metropolitan Hilarion put an emphasis on the problems of theological scholarship and education faced by the conference and the Theological Scholarly and Educational Association (TSEA) as a whole. The metropolitan also offered possible ways of solving these problems. He stressed that what is necessary is ‘to ensure a systemic information support and state demand’ for specialists in theology, to involve theologians in the work in schools and to include in humanities curriculum the units reflecting ‘the religious components of our culture and the historical past of our people’. As the hierarch pointed out, involving in the educational process the theologians who ‘have pedagogical skills and the right to pedagogical work will not come into conflict with the secular nature of our school education and cultural approach adopted in school’.

In conclusion of this address, Metropolitan Hilarion outlined ‘quite a number of other tasks beginning from the need to provide the teaching of theology on all the levels of education with textbooks and educational aids and methodological materials to the need to define the very strategy of the development of this branch of knowledge’. The task to solve these problems is placed on the TSEA ‘as a field for cooperation among universities and for pooling of their resources, as well as on the support of the Ministry of Education and the Russian Academy of Education’.

The work of the plenary session was continued by presidents of the TSEA universities who presented the pressing agenda, made their own proposals and outlined priority tasks.

Metropolitan Feofan of Kazan and Tatarstan highlighted the unique experience of teaching and studying theology in the Metropolis of Kazan in which Orthodox Christians and Muslims live in equal number. Kazan, he said, is ‘a fruitful soil’ for Orthodox-Islamic dialogue. He also spoke about a project of the working committee in Tatarstan for coordinating the work of the TSEA institutions and the effots to involve leading higher education institutions in Tatarstan in the Association.

The first deputy head of the Russian Federation Muslim Board, Damir-khazrat Mukhetdinov, spoke about special features of the Muslim theology and the process of its successful development. In a continuation of his presentation, Metropolitan Hilarion spoke about the experience of an inter-confessional academic exchange organized by the CMI and the Bulgarian Islamic Academy.

The rector of the Russian Peoples’ Friendship University (RUDN), V. Filippov, in his remarks, touched upon the international dialogue of specialists in theology conducted in the RUDN by an international symposium as part of the current conference. He made a special emphasis on the need to develop not only an educational but also professional Theology standard.

The chairman of the Russian Orthodox Church’s education committee, Archpriest Maxim Kozlov, in his report, stressed the need to apply to the Theology standard as strict criteria and demands as are applied to other disciplines.

The rector of the North Caucasus Federal University, Ms. A. Levitskaya, and the chief of the Ivanovo Fire-Rescue Academy of the Ministry of Emergences Situations, Gen.-Left. I. Maloy, highlighted the work to develop theological knowledge and its peculiarities in the MES higher education institutions.

The work of the session was concluded with a report by the rector of the St. Tikhon Orthodox University of Humanities, Archpriest Vladimir Solovyev, who spoke, in particular, on prospects for the development of theology. While the Church cannot work without relations with the state, he said, she is the only force capable of ensuring the proper spiritual and moral education of the younger generations in school.

After the plenary session, there was a ceremony of awarding the TSEA certificates to the university rectors who have joined the Association.

After a break, the conference continued its work in the form of symposia and round-table talks dealing with various problematic areas of theological knowledge, such as Theology as a Branch of Knowledge, the Structure of Theology and Problems of Method, Church History: Pressing Areas of Studies, Theological Subjects and Modern Educational Technologies, Theology and Higher School, Scientific and Educational Cases of Theology, Spiritual and Moral Work with Youth, Theology as a Factor of Interreligious Relations.

Along with Russian Orthodox hierarchs and clergy, the conference was attended by presidents of leading Orthodox, Islamic and secular universities in St. Petersburg, North Caucasus, Moscow Saratov, Kuban, Tula and other cities.

In total, there were over 50 rectors of theological and secular higher education institutions. The conference was also attended by members of the Interreligious Council in Russia, including Russia’s Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar, professors and lecturers from universities that have chairs of theology, as well as representatives of dioceses and theological schools.

The conference also included the first organizational meeting of the TSEA Academic Council. It was chaired by Metropolitan Hilarion in his capacity of the TSEA president. He introduced D. Shmonin, CMI pro-rector for academic work and the academic secretary of the Ministry of Education Supreme Attestation Committee’s theological experts board, as the chairman of the TSEA Academic Council elected in accordance with the TSEA statute.

CMI Website Editorial Board/

Version: Russian

Materials on the theme

Statement by the Communications Service of the Department for External Church Relations on the Expulsion by the Bulgarian Authorities of the dean of the metochion of the Russian Orthodox Church in Sofia [Documents]

DECR Chairman meets with Charge d'Affaires of Russia in Japan

Exarch of the Most Holy Sepulchre in Cyprus sends letter of support to Metropolitan Jonathan of Tulchin and Bratslav

Metropolitan Hilarion of Budapest and Hungary officiates at commemoration of the New Martyrs of Jasenovac

A textbook for Bachelor of Theology degree “Professional English for Theologians” has come out

“The tasks before us are large and interesting,” Metropolitan Hilarion said about the work of the Scientific and Educational Theological Association [Interview]

Metropolitan of Volokolamsk Hilarion speaks at the opening of the V All-Russian Theology within the Scientific and Educational Expanse conference [Article]

Metropolitan Hilarion speaks at the Russian National Forum of Young Theologians

Representatives of DECR and Church’s Postgraduate Institute attend festive reception at the Assyrian church in Moscow

In His Own Words book by His Holiness Patriarch Kirill is published in the Serbian language

Appointments of new Сhairman of the Department for External Church Relations and new rector of the Ss Cyril and Methodius Institute

DECR Chairman partakes in celebrations marking tenth anniversary of the consecration of the Armenian church complex in Moscow

Delegation of the Russian Orthodox Church visits the fold of the Serbian Orthodox Church

DECR Chairman meets with Locum Tenens of the Metropolitan See of the Japanese Orthodox Church

DECR Chairman meets with Charge d'Affaires of Russia in Japan

2nd St. Petersburg International Religious Forum takes place in the Northern Capital of Russia

Primate of the Malankara Church of India visits the Russian Children’s Clinic in Moscow

DECR Chairman meets Primate of Malankara Church of India

Moscow Patriarchate representatives attend festivities of the Assyrian Church of the East in Iraq

DECR secretary for inter-Christian relations visits Angola

Representative of the Russian Church visits Faculty of Theology at the Melkite Greek Catholic Patriarchate in Damascus

“The tasks before us are large and interesting,” Metropolitan Hilarion said about the work of the Scientific and Educational Theological Association [Interview]

Interfaith Dialogue and Peace among Religions [Article]