On September 21st, when the Church commemorates the birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Patriarch Kirill addressed the people with a sermon concerning the unfolding global challenges:
In our national history this day is marked by many events, but perhaps the most striking and significant is the Battle of Kulikovo over 600 years ago... The formidable enemy, fully convinced of his victory, was defeated, set back and eventually withdrew, realizing that it was impossible to defeat this nation.
Why did Russia stand so firmly? Because Russia preserved her language, her faith, her culture, and even under alien oppression our national life continued to thrive. The reason why is clear: our Christian Orthodox faith. One could retreat from any point, but never from the faith. If you betray the Lord, then everything is lost...
Faith makes men exceedingly strong: it transfers our mindset from material concerns to concern for eternity. And when this eternal dimension is present in our soul, we become invincible, we have no fear of death. And it is precisely the fear of death that makes one run away from the battlefield, pushes the weak to betray and even to rebel against his brother.
True faith obliterates the fear of death, purges all human cowardice, malice and treachery... And so it is important that, as a great priority, the basis of our national life should be faith, and with it the system of Christian values, which elevate the soul from Earth to Heaven, to eternity, and makes one therefore invincible.
Watch the sermon by Patriarch Kirill in full on video with subtitles in English.