From Russia with intolerance
August 26, 2003 at 11:45 AM ET
Moreover (via Pravda)
Harry Potter is everywhere these days, including Russia, where fans have already begun placing their orders for the Russian-language version of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, due at the beginning of next year. But it seems that, wherever Harry goes, trouble always seems to follow.
Priest Alexander from the Church of Ksenia of St.Petersburg in the city of Irkutsk says it is his personal opinion and at the same time he confirms the negative attitude of the Russian Orthodox Church to the films about Harry Potter. "Why do you think the number of drug addicts, criminals and alcoholics has so considerably increased among children and teenagers? This fact is mostly explained with the lack of spirituality and much cruelty we see on TV."
Then the priest was told that the situation in Russia has been evident for several years already, while the books by JK Rowling appeared just some time ago. But the priest still insisted that books of the Harry Potter type just aggravate the negative situation.
To tell the truth, there are many Russian fairy tales with witches, house-spirits, wood-goblins and werewolves. What about these fairy tales? After a second of consideration priest Alexander admitted that the church treated such fairy tales negatively as well as they are in fact remnants of paganism in people's minds; it is no good to support and develop these remnants. "It is now very important to bring up youth properly. Remember that the church cannot prohibit anything it can only recommend."