Charity Of Religious Organizations: Historical Aspect And Modern Trends


The article considers the charitable activities of religious associations of the Republic of Bashkortostan in the post-perestroika period. The tasks of moral education of the growing generation and society as a whole are shown. The materials of the Current Archive of the Council on Religious Affairs under the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Bashkortostan were used. In modern Russia, as in the whole world, there are many problems of an economic, political and social nature. Not to mention global issues like ecology. It is especially noticeable that the destructive impact of man on nature has recently become, when, along with the success of scientific and technological progress, environmental pollution is increasing, rivers dry up, and soils are destroyed. In raising environmental concerns, we tend to continue to view nature itself primarily as a resource storeroom. The priority tasks facing the Russian state and society should be: protecting public health, promoting a healthy lifestyle at the state level, combating drug addiction, namely merciless struggle, alcoholism, smoking, solving environmental problems, improving working conditions, reducing traffic accidents and combating corruption. To solve all these problems, adequate state measures are needed to restore the country's economic potential after the severe crisis of the 1990s. It is necessary to revive and multiply the spiritual and cultural values of multinational and multi-confessional Russia. To increase labour morality, to revive the former authority of the person of labour. Maintaining high motivation for work, protecting all types of labour initiative and entrepreneurship.

Keywords: God, charity, religion, Islam, Christianity


Regardless of national, confessional and social affiliation, all citizens of the country should participate in the work to achieve social stability. It is necessary to apply all the accumulated experience in overcoming these problems of Russian society. Today, the most acute problem is the moral education of young people. During the years of reorganization in the USSR, the Iranian leader Ayatollah Khomeini wrote to M. Gorbachev: "The main problem of your country is not in the economy, not in the absence of freedom, not in the introduction of private property. The main problem is the lack of faith in God. " It is impossible to disagree with these words.

Helping one's neighbour is the responsibility of every believer: from ordinary parishioners of mosques and churches to clergy of all levels. Bearing in mind Jesus "words:" Love your neighbour as yourself. "The famous Russian scholar orientalist Bartold (1966) wrote: "A Christian, in order to fulfill the requirements of his faith, must forget himself his deeds, did not forget God, performed a prayer ceremony at the right time and gave part of his property in favour of the poor" (p. 218). From God, we give you more than the rich, there is no need for gratitude and payment. These verses from the holy Qur'an should become a motto for all who are able to help the needy, disabled and orphans. The Holy Qur'an says: "And goodness is generosity, although you yourself desire benefits, giving to loved ones and wanderers and all those who are hungry and nag." Sura (91/2) (Sablukova, 1990). "If you smile at your brother, it will be a garden (alms), the removal of stone, barbs from the road on which people walk, it will also be a garden," said the prophet Muhammad, peace to him and the blessing of the Most High. They give food to the poor, orphans and captives, although they themselves need it, (and they say): "We give food only to please Allah, and we want neither reward nor gratitude from you. We fear the Lord that gloomy, angry day Allah saved them from disasters of that day and presented them with prosperity and joy" Sura (8.11) (Sablukova, 1990). Never achieve piety until you spend what you love. Whatever you're spending, Allah knows about it. Sura (3.86). Oh. Those who believed! Spend what We have awarded you before the day comes when there will be no trade, no friendship, no intercession of Sur (2.267).

The prophet Muhammad made peace to him and the blessing of the Most High took care of improving the morals and lives of people, tried to give them support in this life. He said he was sent to this land to ennoble people's morals. To this end, he spoke of the enormous importance of work for man and strictly prohibited poverty. The prophet said that it was necessary to achieve prosperity by honest, permitted sharia, so as not to need the mercy of others to maintain their family. The second righteous caliph Omar also urged believers to work, not to make themselves dependent on others. After all, you know - he said, gold and silver rains do not come from the sky (Bayazitov, 1887, p.171; Khasanova & Galiullina, 2018).

Problem Statement

In the current conditions of the pandemic, unstable political, economic and environmental situation in the country, charitable activities and the cause of charity are becoming particularly relevant. Religious associations of the Republic of Bashkortostan, since the mid-90s, have intensified their participation in solving social and humanitarian problems of society. The task of religious associations is to serve in matters of charity and charity, promote a sober lifestyle, moral education of children and young people, strengthen the foundations of the family, develop spirituality and affirm high moral ideals in society. Orthodox and Muslim organizations are particularly active in providing charitable assistance within their communities. Protestant organizations strive to provide social assistance to all those in need, regardless of their ethnic and religious affiliation, and fight against the social vices of our time - drug addiction, alcohol consumption and tobacco smoking. At the same time, they use the experience of foreign co-religionists. A Jewish religious organization also does charity work only within its community.

Research Questions

The subject of this study is the charitable activities of religious associations of the Republic of Bashkortostan from the beginning of perestroika in the USSR to the present time. Charitable activities provided to the poor, children who find themselves without parental care, as well as persons who find themselves in difficult life situations and in places of deprivation of liberty. Educational work to improve morals among young people and promote a healthy lifestyle.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of the work is to study the charitable activities of religious associations in the post-rebuild years. The tasks of this work are: to analyze the prerequisites for the revival of charity in Russia. Show the role of religious associations in the social service and moral education of the younger generation.

Research Methods

The materials of the Current Archive of the Council on Religious Affairs under the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Bashkortostan were used. The main methods of research were the principle of historicism, systemicity, comparative analysis, objectivity and chronological sequence.


Currently, religious organizations, having traditions and experience in the formation of integral worldview and centuries-tested humanistic principles of the human hostel, offer their support and guidelines. Many turn to religion as a reliable social institution and socio-spiritual force - capable of useful and good spiritual and social acts for the people. During periods of socio-economic complications, there is an increase in the level of national identity, ethnic and religious identification. Our multi-ethnic country is home to over a hundred peoples, who profess about thirty religions. During the years of Soviet power, a decline in faith occurred, the moral life of people began to collapse. The institution of society and the state is being destroyed. After restructuring, when there were major changes in political, social and economic life, as well as in culture in the Russian Federation, a new policy towards religion, towards believers, changed the place and role of religious organizations in society. After 70 years of atheism, Orthodox and other Christian churches took the first steps in the field of charity. Christian charity from the time of the Christianization of Russia until the Petrine reforms, the cause of "public charity" was in the hands of the church, was still fixed by Prince Vladimir. This order was also attested in the Judicial Book of 1550:..."and on the monasteries the lives of the poor, who feed on alms from the Church of God" (Dobrovolskaya, 1989, p. 279). In these difficult conditions of Russian reality, the Bishops' Council of the Russian Orthodox Church, held from October 3-8, 2005, recognized the priorities of state-church cooperation: "moral education of the individual, strengthening of the family, protection of motherhood and childhood, assistance to orphans, elderly and disadvantaged people, the fight against drug addiction, drunkenness, homelessness, a cult of violence and debauchery and other social vices" (Ufa diocesan gazette, 2005, p. 160). The State has also attempted to address the social problems facing society. In his address, President of the Russian Federation V.V. Putin expressed the hope that: Traditional religions should get all the opportunities for full service in such important areas as support for family and motherhood, upbringing and education of children, youth policy, solving social problems, which we still have a lot and a lot, strengthening the patriotic spirit of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. One of the acute problems is the increase in the number of children left without parental care, 90% of which are "orphans with living parents." Today, the State is trying to take effective measures to care for children deprived of parental care. Since 2004, as part of the implementation of the instructions of the President of the Russian Federation to solve the problem of increasing the number of children - orphans and children left without parental care, family forms of their device, alternative to orphanages and boarding schools, have been actively introduced. Every year the number of orphans who find a family grows (Dolganova, 2009. p. 710).

Currently, religious associations are engaged in charitable work, having adopted as a basis the Federal Law of 26.09.1997 No. 125-FZ (ed. From 02.12.2019) "On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Associations." Thus, part 1, 3 of article 18 of the Federal Law of 26.09.1997 No. 125-FZ (Charity and cultural and educational activities of religious organizations) states that:

Religious organizations have the right to carry out charitable activities both directly and through the establishment of charitable organizations (part 1).

The State shall provide assistance and support to the charitable activities of religious organizations, as well as their implementation of socially significant cultural and educational programs and events (part 3).

The religious associations of the Republic of Bashkortostan carry out charitable work among the needy and disadvantaged segments of the population and among those who find themselves in a difficult life situation, provide possible material and spiritual assistance to the needy parishioners. The network of rehabilitation centers for drug addicts created by religious organizations in all regions of Russia is vivid evidence of this. Representatives of the Russian Orthodox Church and Islamic spiritual centers also conduct explanatory work among the population of the Republic of Bashkortostan on the moral and ethical problems of modern life. Bashkir radio began broadcasting on Mondays the program of the Russian radio "Voice of Islam." Radio-television broadcasts on religious topics, especially on ethical and moral issues, are very popular among the population, condemning various social vices, such as drunkenness, drug addiction, fornication: on the TV channels Yoma, Ihlas, Road to the Temple, on the radio: "Moral values of Islam." Talgat Tajuddin, Archbishop Nikon and other prominent representatives of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Muslim clergy often take part in these programs. At the IX International Festival of Orthodox Television and Radio Programs "Radonezh," the television program "Road to the Temple" was awarded a diploma in the nomination "For Service to Mercy" (Information on a religious situation and on the relations of the state and religious associations in the Republic of Bashkortostan, 2005, p. 8). The greatest activity of clergy and religious organizations began to be noted in their charitable and merciful activities. The clergy began to actively participate in public life, began to speak more often on the pages of republican newspapers, on television and radio. Clergy meetings with labor collectives and students became frequent. They spoke mainly on issues of morality, moral education, humanitarian and material assistance to the elderly and the weak. The theme of mercy was constantly heard in the sermons of the clergy. One of the bishop's sermons in the cathedral said: "The Church should strive in every way to indicate its position on the problems that concern our society today. After prayed in church to Lord, it is necessary to go not home, and to hospitals, prisons, to nursing homes, to render any help in mercy, spirituality" (Information on a religious situation and on the relations of the state and religious associations in the Republic of Bashkortostan, 2005, p.9). On the initiative of the Secretary of the Diocesan Administration Sokolov, on March 17, 1989, a meeting of two churches in Ufa was held in the diocese building, together with the Ministry of Health of the BASSR. The head of the Republican Children's Hospital made a proposal to help hospitals in which children without parents are located. 2 groups of believers were organized to 35 people who began to visit children's hospitals, to be on duty in them, to help nurses, to visit children. Believers responded to the trouble of people affected by the railway disaster near Ufa, funds were raised (CGIA RB F.R.-4732.Opl. D.44.L.5). Secretary of the diocesan administration Sokolov travelled to the scene of the tragedy to comfort the relatives of the victims. They buried the dead in churches for free. Priests and believers did not remain indifferent to the trouble of the victims of the crackdown in Armenia. Funds were raised in the parishes of the Ufa diocese and sent for appointment. On the basis of the decision of the bishop's council, the diocesan administration considered it necessary that each parish send 50% of the amount allocated to the needs of charity to the diocesan administration for the formation of a general charity fund. The remaining 50% of the parish can spend on the same purposes at its discretion. From the created charity fund of the Diocese, financial assistance in the amount of 10 thousand rubles. was provided to the Republican Hospital for the purchase of medical equipment. Religious associations continued to carry their characteristic functions of charity and support. Clergy of the Russian Orthodox Church also visit places of imprisonment. Bishop Anatoly and rector of the Intercession Church Sokolov met with convicts, during the conversation they talked about morality, spirituality and art. The administration of the Ufa correctional labor institution expressed support for the continuation of such meetings, since these meetings have a positive impact on convicts. In the newspaper "Leninets" of November 4, 1989, a photograph of the meeting of the bishop with convicts entitled "With the Word of God" was placed.

According to the information of the Council on Religious Affairs under the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Bashkortostan in 1992, there were no officially registered charitable religious organizations in the republic. Although religious organizations provided charitable assistance to the poor and veterans with food, clothing, medicines for 30 million rubles in amounts for 1.04.1992 years (CGIA RB F.R.-4732.Opl. D.44.L.6). Monasteries in Russia played a large role in economic, political and spiritual life. They were centers of cultural life, had good libraries, were engaged in charity work. On the territory of the monasteries, shelters were found destitute, crippled. There they found peace of mind and safety. The October Revolution dealt a blow to the entire system of monastery functioning. In 1930, the last of the monastery in force at that time on the territory of the USSR, St. Danilov Monastery, was closed. Only in the 1980s did the monasteries of the Russian Orthodox Church begin to return. Orthodox monasteries gradually became centers not only of religious, but also of the country's general cultural life.

In 1999, 2 monasteries of the Russian Orthodox Church from the Ufa diocesan administration operated on the territory of the Republic of Belarus. A monastery in Ufa and a convent in Sterlitamak. In accordance with the decree of His Holiness Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Alexy II and the decree of the Holy Synod of December 28, 1998, another male Prophet-Iliinsky monastery was founded in the village. Ministers of the monastery carry out educational, charitable work. It is practiced to hold weekly open conversations on Sundays with the population about the dangers of drunkenness, drug addiction. The monastery provides assistance to needy parishioners with food, things, organizes transfers and parcels with food and spiritual literature to places of deprivation of liberty in Salavat (CGIA RB F.R.-4732.Opl. D.44.L.7).

Representatives of the clergy of the traditional religions of Russia and Bashkortostan published an appeal to young people in connection with the spread of drugs on a threatening scale. Representatives of different religions unanimously testify that drug addiction is not so much a disease as a grave sin; this is an attempt to fill the inner void with the imaginary wealth of drug experiences. Drug addiction is a threat to Russia's national security (Ufa diocesan gazette, 2003, p. 143).

Charity is also an important aspect of the activities of the Jewish community of the Republic of Bashkortostan. Helping their neighbor is one of the main commandments of the Torah, is holily observed by the Jews living in the republic. Single, low-income or sick elderly people do not feel forgotten, deprived. They know the community won't let them go. At the synagogue, hot daily free lunches are organized for them, and for those who, due to illness, cannot come by themselves, lunch will be delivered to the house. Single and sick volunteers - volunteers from the Hased Leia charity foundation, clean up the apartment, go to the store, pharmacy. There is a medical consultation center for those in need, where you can get advice from experienced specialist doctors and make a cardiogram for free. There is a subsidy for the payment of medicines (Information on a religious situation and on the relations of the state and religious associations in the Republic of Bashkortostan, 2005).

Protestant Christian organizations also hold charitable events. Before the New Year, children - orphans and children from poor families are given gifts. Evangelical Baptist Christians carry out charitable work in one of the correctional institutions of Ufa, up to the employment of their wards, after their release. The regional association of the ECHB of Russia in Bashkortostan acquired American-made wheelchairs for distribution to disabled people. Charity canteens have been opened for street children as well as children from disadvantaged families. The adherents of the Seventh Day Adventists religious movement, in addition to one-time actions, constantly provide patronage assistance to a bed for the homeless in the Shakshamicrodistrict, a detention center for the temporary stay of minors, and a nursing home on the street. R. Sorge (Information on a religious situation and on the relations of the state and religious associations in the Republic of Bashkortostan, 2005).


Thus, since the 1990s, monasteries, missionary and religious educational centers, charitable institutions and educational institutions have resumed their activities in the republic. Almost all registered religious associations of the Republic of Bashkortostan are engaged in charity work to one degree or another. Protestant denominations are characterized by active missionary service with a combination of social support for the population. Social assistance is provided to persons who are addicted to drugs and alcohol. Chief assistance is provided to elderly homes, sleepovers and prisoners of FSIN institutions.

Among the significant social problems of society that religious organizations currently deal with are: assistance to people with disabilities, the elderly, single citizens, children left without parental care (orphans' children), children with signs of deviance (in behavior), people with alcohol and drug addiction, families on the verge of divorce, single mothers. Youth education, urgent assistance in solving environmental and urban problems, and assistance in resolving inter-ethnic and inter-religious conflicts are also priorities. Charitable work requires desire and sincerity. In addition, an orientation to solve social problems will increase the authority and prestige of the clergy of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Central Duma of Russia, and other religious organizations registered in the Republic of Bashkortostan.


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Khasanova, A., Vildanov, R., Gerasimova, D., & Safina, E. (2021). Charity Of Religious Organizations: Historical Aspect And Modern Trends. In I. V. Kovalev, A. A. Voroshilova, & A. S. Budagov (Eds.), Economic and Social Trends for Sustainability of Modern Society (ICEST-II 2021), vol 116. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 2824-2830). European Publisher.