Academic journal article Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies

Reactions of the Romanian Orthodox Church to the Proposed Legislation to Legalize Prostitution

Academic journal article Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies

Reactions of the Romanian Orthodox Church to the Proposed Legislation to Legalize Prostitution

Article excerpt

Abstract: This article's main goal is to highlight the conflicts but also the similarities between religion and politics that exists in different subjects, views or situations. This study will have a theoretical part but also an empirical part. The empirical part will be supported by the theoretical part of the study in which we will try to demonstrate the assumptions written above. The empirical part will analyze concrete case being the church's reaction to the legislative proposal of legalizing prostitution. Choosing this topic for discussion, in the context of the relations between the Romanian Orthodox Church and politics, is a scientific approach that aims to highlight and underline the reactions that the Romanian Orthodox Church (BOR) has to the controversial legislative proposals in Romania and elsewhere, such as the legalization of prostitution. Through our research we aim to achieve a brief overview of this topic, analyzing the reactions that BOR has, in the written press in Romania, on the issue of legalizing prostitution. Also, the theme may be considered a good source of knowledge on the Romanian society and how it accepts or not such a legislative proposal.

Key Words: political decision, religion, church, communication, involvement, values, conflicts, common point.

Introduction

Romania unlike other countries from the United Nations, is different when it comes to general belief in subjects such as Church and religion. Polls show that this general belief has down scaled in the western Europe countries , but in Romania this common belief is situated somewhere between 70% and 80%1. Moreover, the literature tells us that the influence of religion in European space decreased with the advent of the modern state because 'the ideas promoted by the French humanists and afterwards by the American ones who believed in the power of reason as a means of solving all the humankind problems."2 Yet today, the same author says that we are witnessing a revival of religion and man's relationship to divinity. Citing Huntington,3 the author justifies this statement by saying that this is a 'reaction against laicization, moral relativism, lack of self esteem, and a reaffirmation of value, order, labour, discipline, mutual help and human solidarity."4

In the Romanian space, we consider that there is a reason of this phenomenon of Romanian collective mind in comparison to central and western European. In the view of the clergy, this issue could be the fact that Romanian people still come to Church because they are more of a believers and also they belief that the national Church, is in fact, the true keeper of faith. This point of view might be correct. From a sociological point of view it might say that 50% of the Romanian population still live in a rural environment thus is easier to keep traditions alive but also because the level of information is very low in such environments. Another view could be expressed in terms of psychology, and in accordance with this there are too many problems that can be overwhelming, so people belief that they can solve their problem turning to God or religion. These are only three points of view regarding the religious phenomenon in Romania but there can be other points of view as well. We wanted to highlight the fact that whenever a society will be confronting a problem or will be searching for answers to a type of question there will be found lots of fields and domains that will express their opinion regarding the subject in matter. This study will concentrate more on the reaction of two fields, being the Church and politics, regarding one of society's problems. Our analysis will be focused on the Romanian Orthodox Church but it does not exclude any other religious cults. We focused on the Orthodox Church because it has the majority of believers but we are well aware of the fact that this represents a limitation in our study. The other domain is the political one that is a extremely powerful one as well regarding the mental belief of the society but not as powerful as the religious field. …

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