A Russian Orthodox theologian says the Russian government should refuse to let Madonna into the country for her planned Aug. 9 concert because she says she will use the event to support the gay community in St. Petersburg, the Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported.
Madonna vowed to support the LBGT community in Russia after St. Petersburg passed a law March 7 that bans activities that would promote gay culture among minors.
RIA Novosti reported:
Archdeacon Andrei Kurayev, a professor at the Moscow Theological Academy, urged the St. Petersburg authorities to ask the Foreign Ministry to deny a visa for Madonna, “because the purpose of her visit, as she put it herself, is to violate [regional] Russian law.” …
Kurayev … warned against any public protest from believers against Madonna’s concert, saying it would only provide extra advertising.
If she violates the new St. Petersburg law, Madonna would have to pay a fine of 5,000 rubles ($170) and the concert organizers would face tougher sanctions.
The Russian law against homosexual activities was revoked in 1993, but anti-gay sentiment remains widespread in Russia.