MOSCOW – Recently, the Russian Orthodox Church has been enhancing its clout in the nation’s politics. ROC officials have actively been offering comment on the executive’s various initiatives and are seeking to gain a higher profile in public policies.

The ROC has been most vocal over the introduction of sexual education in Russian public schools, but has also been a long advocate for an Orthodox basics course. Although Russia is not a mono-confessional nation, the church and state, for now, are separate.

Last week, the ROC contributed a series of slogans to the Strategy of Russian Socio-economic Development-2020 that go beyond purely religious topics. The ROC claims the present-day economic downturn is a “moral crisis,” and suggests governemnt ride out the “values of justice, efficacy and public solidarity.”

Experts believe the ROC is seeking to ingratiate itself to the current regime so they can better affect the shaping and implementation of the state policies. This policy line is fraught with serious threats to the preservation of Russia as a single secular and multi-confessional nation.