The message reads, in part:
”This joyful holiday nourishes our kindest feelings and aspirations, serves to strengthen the unity of millions of people on the basis of common spiritual values and historical traditions, an integral part of which are mutual respect and accord, charity and helping care.
The Russian Orthodox Church, along with other Christian confessions of Russia, takes an active and constructive part in the life of the country and society. It plays a major role in teaching moral values to the younger generation, supports family, motherhood and childhood, tirelessly works to preserve our unique cultural heritage, and takes part in educational activities and charity.“
On Christmas night, Vladimir Putin attended mass at the newly built Church of the Acheiropaeic Image of Christ the Saviour near the Sochi Olympic Park in the Imereti Valley.