Czechia Forces A Political Collision Into Overtime
14 October 2021
The Belarusian Orthodox Church has the habitual tendency to support any state authorities but there is support for the Belarusian regime specifically because of certain privileges. Following the protests, this loyalty to the regime reduces trust in the hierarchy, leading to more stratification between the Church and the people, which will have long-term consequences for the religious community in Belarus.ion between the Church and the people, which will have long-term consequencesfor the religious community in Belarus.
The dramatic events of the presidential campaign in Belarus gave rise to an unprecedented wave of protests against the regime of Alyaksandr Lukashenka, who has been leading the country since 1994.
In contrast to previous pre-election periods, in 2020 the presence of religion in the political sphere was not visible. But in the post-election period, the religious community, including the Orthodox, became so actively involved in the protest movement and in criticism of the regime’s actions that it shocked Lukashenka and led to unprecedented repression by the regime.
This repression included a hasty change of the head of the Belarusian Orthodox Church (BOC), Metropolitan Pavel, the refusal of entry to the Metropolitan of the Roman Catholic Church (RCC) in Belarus, Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz, into Belarus, and later threats of criminal prosecution of the Orthodox priest Vladimir Drobyshevsky and the Catholic priest Viachaslau Barok, as well as the head of the Synodal Information Department of the BOC, Archpriest Sergiy Lepin and Auxiliary Bishop of the Minsk-Mogilev Diocese of the RCC Yury Kasabutsky.