His Holiness Patriarch Kirill has advocated for the extension of the recently enacted law in the Republic of Mordovia, which prohibits encouraging abortion, to be applied nationwide in Russia.
"Not long ago, a law was adopted in Mordovia banning the encouragement of abortion. I hope this initiative will be supported in other regions and at the federal level," stated the Head of the Russian Orthodox Church on November 12, 2023, during the opening of the 11th All-Church Congress on Social Service.
Patriarch Kirill emphasized that women are often pushed toward terminating pregnancies, even by healthcare professionals. He suggested that mothers should have the opportunity to hear an alternative perspective, and the presence of Orthodox volunteers—women providing necessary consultations or advice—in medical institutions could be beneficial.
"It's your business, sisters. You will find the words, and you will be understood. Again, no argumentation, no preaching, no scare tactics, but to help a conversation partner understand, in a human, maternal, or sisterly way, that she may soon regret the decision she has made, and regret it even more if she never has children again," explained the Patriarch.
In Mordovia earlier this year, Russia introduced fines for encouraging pregnant women to have abortions, marking the first instance of such penalties in the country. The fines for individuals range from 5,000 to 10,000 rubles, while legal entities face penalties ranging from 100,000 to 200,000 rubles. The law, however, does not consider informing a woman about medical justifications for the procedure as encouraging abortion. The initiative's proponents believe that the law will contribute to improving the demographic situation in the region.