Historical Stages and Forms of Interaction Between Medicine and Orthodox Christianity in Russia

  1. Lemma
  2. Исторические этапы и формы взаимодействия медицины и православия в России
  3. Russian
  4. Asliturk, Miriam
  5. Scientific theories and disciplines > Medicine
  6. 17-05-2018
  7. Левчук, Карина Анатольевна [Author]. Исторические этапы и формы взаимодействия медицины и православия в России
  8. Journal of Siberian Medical Sciences
  9. Russian Empire - Post-Soviet Russia - Russian Orthodox Church - medicine - charity - medical clinics - hospitals - pharmacy - Monastery - doctor - Orthodox doctors - Community of the Sisters of Mercy
  10. Click Here
    1. <p>Левчук, К. А. (2009). Исторические этапы и формы взаимодействия медицины и православия в России. <em>Journal of Siberian Medical Sciences</em>, (2), 8. Retrieved from: <a href="https://cyberleninka.ru/article/n/istoricheskie-etapy-i-formy-vzaimodeystviya-meditsiny-i-pravoslaviya-v-rossii">https://cyberleninka.ru/article/n/istoricheskie-etapy-i-formy-vzaimodeystviya-meditsiny-i-pravoslaviya-v-rossii</a> </p>
    1. The article looks at Christianity through historical lens. The author argues that Christianity had an important impact on the development of medical science in Russia. The author points out that it was the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) that – inspired by the Christian commandment to love one's neighbour – developed medicine in Russia by creating hospitals, clinics and pharmacies in monasteries and setting up the community of the sisters of mercy.

      The first medical facilities in monasteries appeared in Russia in the 11th century. The Church remained the major medical services provider during the Tatar-Mongol invasion of Russia. The church reform of Peter I, which essentially put the Church at the service of the state, also affected the nature of the ROC’s social activities. Peter I demanded the creation of hospitals all over Russia, shelters for disabled people and orphans in monasteries and churchyards. More hospitals, pharmacies and shelters for the elderly would be created by joint efforts of the state and Church in the 18th -19th centuries.

      The Church’s role was also crucial in the emergence of a new institution in the 19th century - the community of sisters of mercy. It was another important milestone in the development of Russian medicine. It opened up opportunities for women of all classes and allowed them to study sciences. The communities of sisters of mercy were also the first public organizations in Russia. These new communities were particularly efficient in taking care of the blessed and wounded soldiers.

      During the Soviet era, the State took the entire responsibility for all medical care of Soviet citizens. The Church was thus deprived of its traditional social activity in the medical field. In the 1990s, the ROC reacquired its social role. Currently, many charity activities are carried out not only at the highest Church level but also at the level of dioceses, monasteries, parishes, brotherhoods and sisterhoods. For example, church children's shelters were created in a number of regions. Schools of mercy were opened in Voronezh, Yoshkar-Ola, Moscow, St. Petersburg and Stavropol. Every year, several thousand low-income residents of Moscow and other regions of Russia receive free medical care at the Central Clinical Hospital of the Moscow Patriarchate. Hundreds of the elderly and disabled live in the parish and monastery alms-houses of the Vyatka, Kostroma, Krasnoyarsk, Oryol, Petrozavodsk, Ryazan, Cheboksary and Yaroslavl dioceses. The Church also devotes considerable attention to the treatment of alcoholics and drug addicts. The relationship between the ROC and the state are regulated by a cooperation agreement signed in 2005. Recently Orthodox Church doctors have established the Society of Orthodox Church doctors, which sees its main goal in the introduction of Christian values into medicine in Russia and the improvement of the quality of health of Russian citizens.