Tbilisi, August 6, 2018
His Holiness Catholicos-Patriarch Ilia II of Georgia, the most beloved and trusted man in the nation, has condemned the recent move by the Constitutional Court to legalize marijuana use.
Addressing the topic in his Sunday sermon in Holy Trinity Cathedral in Tbilisi, the patriarch called on all to take care of their homeland and children, and not to allow such “lawlessness” to reign, reports the site of the Georgian Orthodox Church.
In a ruling last Monday, the Constitutional Court removed all administrative punishments, such as fines, for marijuana use. Criminal punishments had already been removed in November.
His Holiness also expressed his conviction that those who made this legal decision did so only under pressure and influence.
The patriarch preached:
We live in a difficult time when people find it difficult to discern where is good and where is evil; where is white and where is black. But if a man is a believer, if he has the fear of God, he will distinguish evil from good.
A great excitement has come to Georgia recently. This concern is about the fact that it has become permissible to use drugs, permissible to use marijuana. This is a huge mistake.
We must remember that drugs do not stay on the same level. The more time passes, the more human nature requires heavy drugs, and it is no longer restrained.
We must remember that permission to use drugs is enmity towards our nation. I am certain that the people who gave this permission for drugs themselves do not agree, but the pressure was so great, and the weight upon them that they were forced to make this ruling.
We must not forget that if we allow drugs, then we must allow drug trafficking and drug cultivation. The main thing is that this will lead to the arrival of youth from neighboring countries—young people who have fallen out of mainstream life will come from neighboring countries and create a whole drug center. Therefore, I ask everyone, and firstly the authorities, intelligentsia, and youth, to take care of our motherland, take care of our children.
We must realize that every time someone tries drugs, it’s the beginning of a fall. I am asking you, do not destroy our children, do not allow this lawlessness. May God give us strength and wisdom.
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