In this article, I address the Church-critical discourse on the relationship between Russian Orthodoxy and homosexuality that pervaded social media discussions after the Church hierarchy was publicly accused of engaging in homosexual relations and promoting same-sex behavior in its innermost circles. One of the most prominent critics of the so-called gay lobby within the Church is theologian and Protodeacon Andrei Kuraev whose LiveJournal blog entries on homosexual scandals gained significant resonance and sparked heated online debates. Combining quantitative and qualitative methods, this article demonstrates how the discourse on the gay lobby controversy takes shape online, examines argumentation strategies and communication patterns and reveals high levels of intolerance and hostility among the Internet users toward non-straight sexual desire. In broadcast media, as the subsequent analysis demonstrates, the discourse on homosexuality in relation to Orthodoxy has been significantly suppressed and remained largely invisible.

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