Adventists Hold High-Level Moscow Talks About Law Restricting Missionary Work

Seventh-day Adventist Church leaders have raised concerns with senior Russian officials about new legislation that would severely restrict missionary activity in Russia by outlawing home churches and the free distribution of religious literature.

The legislation — part of a raft of antiterrorism bills — was signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin into law on July 7, days after the lower and upper houses of parliament rapidly approved it in separate votes.

The Adventist Church had appealed to Putin not to sign the law, and Adventist believers across Russia observed a day of fasting and prayer last week.

Ganoune Diop, director of the public affairs and religious liberty department for the Adventist world church, discussed the legislation with leaders from the lower house of parliament, known as the State Duma, and the advisory Russian Public Chamber during a visit to Moscow this week.

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