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Russian church objects to canonization of Rasputin, Ivan the Terrible

MOSCOW. Oct 4 (Interfax) - Head of the Synodal Canonization Commission, Metropolitan of Krutitsy and Kolomna Yuvenaly, strongly objects to the canonization of Ivan the Terrible and Grigory Rasputin.

"Initiators of this canonization must realize that the very discussion of such veneration [] leads to temptation and discredits the idea of canonizing saints," the Metropolitan said at the Bishops' Council of the Russian Orthodox Church which opened in Moscow on Sunday.

The Metropolitan read a report on the activities of the Synodal Canonization Commission and dwelt on the veneration of historical characters who have not been canonized by the Church.

"Ivan the Terrible and Grigory Rasputin are presented as symbols of people's piety, which is juxtaposed to the official piety of the Church," he said.

The Canonization Commission has been studying the matter for several years and concluded that there were no reasons to revere such people, the Metropolitan said.