Representatives of 67 NGOs that defend women’s rights and assist women and children victims of domestic violence, exploitation, sexual assault and human trafficking have expressed concern about the messages that priests – some with high positions, convey in the last period and regarding the scandals of sexual assaults and domestic violence, in the center of which are the servants of the Church, without there being an official position on the part of the Romanian Orthodox Church regarding the mentioned situations.
Romania has a population of 89.45% declared Christian-Orthodox, 51% of Romanians being female. Therefore, the addresses of the Romanian Orthodox Church must equally apply to all citizens of this country: women, men, children, regardless of their social status, education, ethnic group to which they belong or their sexual orientation.
In accordance with art. 29 of the Romanian Constitution, citizens are equal before the law and before public authorities, regardless of their religious beliefs or opinions about the world and life they have. Also according to the Constitution, freedom of conscience is guaranteed; it must be manifested in a spirit of tolerance and mutual respect, and religious discrimination, as well as incitement to discrimination and the promotion of religious hatred, are prohibited.
Incitement to hatred and abuse, lack of respect for fundamental human rights are contradictory to both the Christian faith and national law, and the servants of the Romanian Orthodox Church have often called for love of neighbor, peace and conciliation.
However, in the face of new challenges, we ask you to respond to the faithful with a firm public position that does not encourage slippage.
The statements made by the Archbishop of Thomis, His Eminence (HE) Theodosius, who stated: “There is no discrimination, it is about the status of man and woman. Surely no woman can be a priest and then there is discrimination? Why? Because this is her condition. She cannot be perpetual in a prayer, because she has the condition of her weaknesses. How to discriminate? This is how women are. She began the sin, and behold, she is in this impotence because St. John Chrysostom tells us that if it were not for sin, the human race would not have multiplied in this way, but through the power of the divine words that he spoke to them. before sin: grow and multiply and possess the earth. They did not know their intimacy before sin, our ancestors were clothed in grace, and then take what I told you, the woman was told, “In sorrow you will give birth to sons.” If he had not sinned, he would not have been born in pain. “
In the context of our society, where women are victims of domestic violence, trafficking, aggression and sexual exploitation, such expressions can legitimize the perception that women have a lower status, so they may be forced to do certain things, they are weaker, sinful and must be punished by beating and sometimes more.
Necuvinte Association is a private legal entity with non-patrimonial, apolitical, independent purpose, established in 2013 in accordance with O.G. 26/2000 on associations and foundations, having as main field of activity the fight against domestic and gender violence, the violation of fundamental human rights and abuses against women and children. Necuvinte Association is a member of Women Against Violence Europe (WAVE), the VOLUM Federation, the Federation of Non-Governmental Organizations for Social Services (FONSS) and We Break the Silence on Sexual Violence. Details on www.necuvinte.ro
Romanian Women’s Lobby (ROWL) represents the national coordination in Romania of the EUROPEAN WOMEN LOBBY (EWL). The mission of the Romanian Women’s Lobby (ROWL) is to work for the achievement of equality between women and men, to promote women’s rights in all spheres of public and private life, to move towards economic and social justice for all women in their diversity, and to eliminate all forms of male violence against women. ROWL has 22 member NGOs in the country and the diaspora. https://www.facebook.com/ROWLobby/
The Federation of Non-Governmental Organizations for Social Services (FONSS) – is a national federation currently consisting of 44 social service providers across the country, including organizations that provide services to women and children victims of domestic violence, exploitation and human trafficking. Details about us are posted on www.fonss.ro