Staunton, July 21 – If Russia continues to exist as a single country, Dimitry Savvin says, it almost certainly will be “a predominantly godless country” where most of its residents will be as godless as the Soviet leadership ever wanted. But within that world, there are likely to be numerous large Protestant denominations.
The editor of the conservative Russian nationalist portal Harbin which is based in Riga says this falling away from religion is a worldwide phenomenon, one that Russia is unlikely to be able to escape, but there are two special reasons for drawing the most negative conclusions about the future (kasparov.ru/material.php?id=64B9F1A2C9213).
“On the one hand,” Savvin says, Russia experienced “a genocidal atheistic terror in the 20th century; and on the other, there are serious historical defects in the development of the Russian Orthodox Church. As a result, even before 1917, the Russian people were ‘baptized but not enlightened by religion,’” a feature that allowed the Soviets to move against religion.
What this means, he continues, is that when the current Russian regime with all its talk about “’spirituality’ and ‘traditional values’ disappears,” it will become obvious that “the level of real religiosity in Russia will be about the same as in the Czech Republic, a place where the vast majority of people are neither for or against faith but for nothing at all.”
The only positive spots on this mental map will be provided by Protestant denominations, such as Baptists and Pentecostals who “most likely will be the most united and organized” and thus the largest, far larger than the Orthodox.