At this brief service, Patriarch Aleksii II praised the new president for his "thoughtful and responsible style of leadership" and suggested that like never before Russia needed "the restoration of the spiritual powers of the nation and a rebirth of its commitment to genuine moral values .
Certainly the Russian Orthodox Church enjoyed a public preeminence, evident in its representation at major state functions, the granting of certain economic concessions to the church, the tendency of Yeltsin to visit Patriarch Aleksii II on the eve of major foreign visits, and in the church's endorsement of Yeltsin during the 1996 presidential election.
At the end of 2000, Patriarch Aleksii II blamed the West for the moral degradation of young people, with its powerful "corruption industry" bringing pornography, sexual liberation and social decay He described this as a "planned, bloodless war" being carried out with the aim of destroying the Russian people.
Above all, the church returned to its argument from a sociological majority perspective, with Patriarch Aleksii II suggesting that "educational activity should be naturally and justly guided by the desires of the majority of pupils and their parents" who he assumed to be Orthodoxy Critics were less convinced, arguing that the proposed course was in effect a denominational text and would divide pupils on a religious basis if made compulsory in schools.
3) Patriarch Aleksii II sometimes argued that the religious free market needed proper regulation to work effectively and to prevent undesirable elements from entering Russia.
18) See the interview with Patriarch Aleksii II, "Liberal idea extremely dangerous and deceptive," Komsomolskaya pravda, 24 December 2002 (translated by Paul Steeves, http://www.