- Project Runeberg -  A practical guide for Russian consular officers and all persons having relations with Russia /
146

(1916) Author: Alfons Heyking - Tema: Russia
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146 MARRIAGE OF RUSSIAN SUBJECTS ABROAD. P. v., Сн. iv.

effect that the prospective marriage ceremony would be recognised
in Russia as establishing a valid marriage.

It is desirable that mixed marriages of English women with Russian
men should not be performed by clergymen or representatives of the
civil authority without production of these two certificates.

According to Russian law every Russian subject who has come of
age has the right to change his religion if he chooses to do so.
However, when a marriage is solemnised in a Russian or Greek Orthodox
Church the contracting parties must sign a written obligation stating
that their prospective children shall be baptised into the Russian
or Greek Orthodox Church, and brought up in that faith.

In 1909 a Russian subject of the Lutheran faith, of the name of
Plaoneck, resident of the Government of Vitebsk, whose wife of the
Russian or Greek Orthodox faith, was dead, applied to the Governor
of Vitebsk with the request to bring up his children in the Lutheran
faith. The Governor, in his turn, applied to the Holy Synod, and
received the following resolution from it.

In accordance with Russian law, persons who belong to different
Christian denominations, in contracting a marriage with a party
belonging to the Russian or Greek Orthodox Church, must sign an
" obligation " to the effect that the children who may be born of
that marriage will be baptised and brought up in the faith of the
Russian or Greek Orthodox Church. Notwithstanding having signed
this " obligation," if parents bring up their children in any other
than the Russian or Greek Orthodox faith, they are punished by
imprisonment in a fortress—and clergymen of any other or of the
Russian or Greek Orthodox faith, who may have christened or taught
such children, are punished by a money fine, and by the temporary
suspension of their clerical license. In the case of Plaoneck, his
children must be entrusted to their Russian or Greek Orthodox
godparents.

This decision of the Holy Synod makes the position sufficiently
clear.

In the case of marriages in Finland between persons of different
Christian faiths, including members of the Russian Orthodox Church
if permanently settled in the Grand Duchy, the religious ceremony
must be performed in accordance with the rites of both churches,
and the children of such a marriage must be brought up in the faith
of the father. Special arrangements to any other effect between
the parties are prohibited.1 According to the General Regulations
of Finland,2 a man desiring to wed a woman to whom he is betrothed,
must acquaint the father of his fiancee with his intention six weeks
before the date fixed for the marriage. In addition, the parties must
be " called " in the parish church to which the bride belongs for three
consecutive Sundays. Men are not permitted to marry before the
age of 21 and women before the age of 15.3 A Finnish maiden may,
on attaining her 21st year, marry without the consent of her parents.4

1 Russian Code of Civil Laws, Art. 68.

2 Section relating to marriages, Ch. VII., Arts. 1 and 2.

3 Ibid., Ch. i. Art. 6. 4 Finnish Law of the 31st October 1864.

§114.

§ 114»

Marriage
Laws of
Finland.

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