The international symposium on “Ethical Aspects of Banking and the Social Role of Banks: the Russian and Italian experience” opened at the St. Sergius Hall of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow on 7 November 2011. The Symposium is sponsored by the Synodal Department for Church-Society Relations, the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations; “Economics and Ethics” Council at the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, the Club of Orthodox Entrepreneurs, UBI Banca Banking Group, Cardinal Poupard Foundation (the Roman Catholic Church), the Public Chamber of the Russian Federation, the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation, the Association of Russian Banks, the Association of Regional Banks of Russia, the Institute of Economic Strategies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and the “Support of Russia” Public Organization of small and medium business.
Dr. Alexander Ageyev, president of the Club of Orthodox Entrepreneurs, greeted the participants.
Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, chairman of the Synodal Department for Church-Society Relations, read out the message of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia.
Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk presented a report on Spiritual and Moral Aspects of Current Economic Crisis. He reminded the listeners that though economic crises are not a new phenomenon in human life, the present situation radically differs from that of the early 20 th century. “The problems shaking a particular region of the world and even a particular country entail consequences for other participants in international economic relations,” the archpastor said.
Participants in the Symposium initiated by the Russian and Italian businessmen and sponsored by the Russian Orthodox and the Roman Catholic Churches discussed ideas aimed at the solution of social problems.