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Russian opposition leader and outspoken Christian, Alexei Navalny. Navalny voluntarily returned to Russia - knowing he would be arrested and imprisoned.

Navalny, 47, dies while serving a 19-year sentence in a penal colony north of the Arctic Circle.

In Navalny’s closing statement during his 2021 trial he spoke about his faith in Jesus.

“If you want I’ll talk to you about God and salvation. I’ll turn up the volume of heartbreak to the maximum, so to speak. The fact is that I am a Christian, which usually rather sets me up as an example for constant ridicule in the Anti-Corruption Foundation, because mostly our people are atheists and I was once quite a militant atheist myself,” Navalny said, as reported by the Moscow Helsinki Group, a now-defunct Russian human rights organization.

“But now I am a believer, and that helps me a lot in my activities, because everything becomes much, much easier. I think about things less. There are fewer dilemmas in my life, because there is a book in which, in general, it is more or less clearly written what action to take in every situation. It’s not always easy to follow this book, of course, but I am actually trying. And so, as I said, it’s easier for me, probably, than for many others, to engage in politics.”

Navalny went on to quote from Christ’s Sermon on the Mount: “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.” (Matthew 5:6)

“I’ve always thought that this particular commandment is more or less an instruction to activity. And so, while certainly not really enjoying the place where I am, I have no regrets about coming back, or about what I’m doing. It’s fine, because I did the right thing. On the contrary, I feel a real kind of satisfaction. Because at some difficult moment I did as required by the instructions, and did not betray the commandment.”

Source: Catholic News Agency - Feb 16, 2024

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