HIS HOLINESS PATRIARCH KIRILL: “THE MEETING ON CUBA WAS AN IMPORTANT STEP ON THE WAY TO RESOLVING THE MORE RELEVANT ISSUES OF THE MODERN-DAY WORLD BY THE JOINT EFFORTS OF THE TWO LARGEST CHURCHES OF THE CHRISTIAN WORLD”
Recent years have been marked by a development in the cooperation between the Russian Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church in the sphere of social problems, noted His Holiness Patriarch Kirill in his presentation at the Episcopal Council taking place in Moscow.
“A high degree of mutual understanding was shown during the course of my meeting with Pope Francis on the 12th February 2016 in Havana,” said His Holiness, noting that in Russia and throughout the world this event had a broad positive resonance. The Patriarch expressed his belief that the meeting on Cuba would become an important step on the way to resolving the more relevant issues of the modern-day world by the joint efforts of the two largest Churches of the Christian world.
His Holiness the Patriarch reminded his listeners that the main reason for organizing the meeting on Cuba was the tragic situation in which Christians in the Middle East and North Africa had found themselves. The Episcopal Council in February 2016 resolved “to do all that is possible that the genocide directed at Christians by extremists, who sacrilegiously justify their evil deeds with religious slogans, be halted,” and called upon 2016 to be the year of special efforts undertaken in this direction.”
“The meeting in Havana became a concrete and genuine step towards carrying out this decision,” His Holiness Patriarch Kirill testified. “The joint declaration which Pope Francis and I signed at the end of our meeting contains a call to the world community to do all that is possible for an end to violence in the Middle East, which is impossible to achieve without the coordinated action of all forces opposed to extremism.” The First Hierarch of the Russian Church especially noted that soon after this joint appeal the tragedy in the Syria began to be called a genocide in the West. For example, similar declarations were made by the State Department and the US Congress.
“The time has come to think seriously on how to solve the problems which Syria will encounter after peace has been restored in the country. A most important issue is the creation of conditions for a life of security for Christians and the return of refugees. Destroyed church have to be restored, as well as the infrastructure and living accommodation,” His Holiness the Patriarch reminded listeners, noting that the Russian Orthodox Church was taking all measures to help this process.
He spoke of how a concrete step in developing the Orthodox-Catholic interaction in this field was the visit by a group of representatives of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church to Lebanon and Syria in April of 2016. “The consultations held during the visit with the representatives of the local religious confessions ought to serve as the basis for developing further joint projects aimed at supporting our brothers and sisters who are enduring hardships,” His Holiness testified.
In heeding the call which was expressed at the meeting in Havana, in 2017 Orthodox and Catholics organized a number of joint events in defense of Christians of the Middle East. Thus, in January of 2017 in Paris there was the V European Orthodox –Catholic Forum dedicated to the problem of the threat of terrorism directly linked to the situation in the Middle East and which concerns everyone today without exception. In its final document the forum’s participants spoke of the need for close cooperation between Orthodox and Catholics when confronted by the hitherto unforeseen challenges which the modern-day world is experiencing, expressed their solidarity with the suffering Christians of the Middle east, Africa and Asia and condemned all forms of discrimination on religious grounds.
An important event was the World Summit in Defense of Persecuted Christians in May of this year in the US capital Washington and which brought together 600 delegates from 136 countries. The summit was organized thanks to the joint initiative of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Evangelical Association of Billy Graham. Representatives of the Local Orthodox Churches, the Roman Catholic Church, various Protestant denominations, as well as the ancient Oriental Churches, were invited to participate in it. A most active part in the summit was taken by the Archbishop of Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl and representatives of the Papal Council on Christian Unity.
In March of 2017 the Commission for International Cooperation under the Presidential Council for the Interaction with the Religious Organizations of Russia adopted a resolution on the setting up of a special working group to coordinate the activities of Russian religious communities in the cause of rendering aid to the population of Syria. The Christian and Muslim communities of Russia, including the Russian Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church, will combine their efforts in collecting things essential for the suffering population of Syria.
An important place in the joint declaration signed by Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia and Pope Francis is occupied by the call to active peace-making and public solidarity in Ukraine. “Both the hierarchy of the Orthodox Church and the Holy See have repeatedly stressed that the only means of resolving the conflict in Ukraine is by implementing the Minsk accords,” His Holiness Patriarch Kirill reminded listeners. “An important prerequisite for achieving inter-confessional peace in Ukraine was the declaration on the topic that the Unia is not the means of attaining unity between the Churches and that proselytism is unacceptable in any form in Orthodox-Catholic relations. For the first time in history the Unia was evaluated in this manner not only by the Orthodox side, but also on the part of the head of the Roman Catholic Church.”
The Patriarch also mentioned with gratitude the support towards the Ukrainian Orthodox Church on behalf of the Papal See, expressed in the condemnation of the laws no.4128 and no.4511 which are discriminatory in relation to the largest Christian community in the Ukraine and the drafts of which have already been discussed by the Supreme Rada.
Finally, a positive result of the meeting in Havana was the unprecedented event of the bringing from Bari to Moscow and St. Petersburg in May and June of 2017 a part of the relics of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker. “It is only thanks to the agreement reached at the Havana meeting that it was possible to bring to Russia the relics of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, which have never left Bari for 930 years,” the First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church noted, reminding listeners that throughout the two months that the venerable relics were in Moscow and St. Petersburg millions of believers from Russia, Belorussia, Moldova and other countries were able to venerate them.
- 02.12.2017 23:58Final session of the Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church held with the participation of Primates and representatives of the Local Orthodox Churches
- 02.12.2017 16:50Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church adopts its final documents
- 02.12.2017 14:00Resolutions of the Holy Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church (29th November – 2nd December 2017)
- 02.12.2017 13:58Message by the Holy Episcopal Council to the Clergy, Monks and Nuns and All Faithful Children of the Russian Orthodox Church
- 01.12.2017 18:48Speech by His Holiness Patriarch Kirill at the Meeting of the President of Russia Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin with the Participants of the Episcopal Council of the Russian Orthodox Church
- 01.12.2017 18:38Speech by the President of Russia Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin before the Participants of the Episcopal Council of the Russian Orthodox Church
- 01.12.2017 16:30Briefing on situation around former Metropolitan Philaret of Kiev’s appeal
- 01.12.2017 12:38Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church begins its third day
- 30.11.2017 23:56Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk comments on spreading reports on the appeal of the former Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine
- 30.11.2017 23:50Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church completes its second day work
- 30.11.2017 23:45Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church adopts a Resolution ‘On the Appeal of the former Metropolitan Philaret of Kiev and All Ukraine’
- 30.11.2017 23:30Former Metropolitan Philaret of Kiev and All Ukraine: ‘I ask for your forgiveness in everything in which I sinned by word, deed and all my feelings’
- 30.11.2017 12:12Report by Metropolitan Onufry of Kiev and All Ukraine to the Russian Orthodox Church Bishops’ Council (November 29-December 2, 2017)
- 30.11.2017 12:08His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufry of Kiev and All Ukraine gives an address at the Bishops’ Council
- 30.11.2017 12:05Second day of the Bishops’ Council’s work
- 29.11.2017 22:30METROPOLITAN HILARION OF VOLOKOLAMSK SPEAKS AT THE SESSION OF THE EPISCOPAL COUNCIL OF THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH ON THE RESULTS OF STUDYING THE DOCUMENTS OF THE COUNCIL ON CRETE
- 29.11.2017 22:15HIS HOLINESS PATRIARCH KIRILL: “THE MEETING ON CUBA WAS AN IMPORTANT STEP ON THE WAY TO RESOLVING THE MORE RELEVANT ISSUES OF THE MODERN-DAY WORLD BY THE JOINT EFFORTS OF THE TWO LARGEST CHURCHES OF THE CHRISTIAN WORLD”
- 29.11.2017 21:28His Holiness notes positive dynamics in Church-state cooperation in Uzbekistan
- 29.11.2017 21:25His Holiness Patriarch Kirill expresses hope that the dialogue between the Church and Turkmenistan’s leadership will help resolve current difficulties
- 29.11.2017 21:22His Holiness specifies pressing problems of the Orthodox Church in Tajikistan
- 29.11.2017 21:20Primate of the Russian Church expresses satisfaction with the level of Church-state cooperation in Kyrgyzstan
- 29.11.2017 21:18His Holiness Patriarch Kirill: Republic of Kazakhstan has been giving an example of constructive Church-state relations for many years
- 29.11.2017 21:17His Holiness Patriarch Kirill: Dialogue of Azerbaijani authorities with Diocese of Baku offers ample opportunities for solving problems of the Orthodox
- 29.11.2017 21:16His Holiness Patriarch Kirill notes a high level dialogue between the Church and the state in Belarus
- 29.11.2017 21:14Positive tendencies in church-state relations in Moldova are noted in the report of His Holiness the Patriarch at the Bishops’ Council
- 29.11.2017 21:10His Holiness Patriarch Kirill: Peacemaking heroic deeds of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church show its true patriotism
- 29.11.2017 19:35HIS HOLINESS PATRIARCH KIRILL: “SIN OUGHT TO BE EXPOSED, BUT WE SHOULD NEVER HUMILIATE ANYONE”
- 29.11.2017 18:51HIS HOLINESS PATRIARCH KIRILL: “COMMUNICATING WITH THE MEDIA IS A CHANCE TO SPEAK ABOUT THE GOSPEL IN AN ACCESIBLE LANGUAGE ON ISSUES WHICH AFFECT TODAY’S PEOPLE”
- 29.11.2017 17:38His Holiness Patriarch Kirill told members of the Bishops’ Council about the preparation of the Catechesis of the Russian Orthodox Church
- 29.11.2017 17:34Primate of Russian Church calls to adopt more systematic approach in opposing sectarianism and neo-paganism
- 29.11.2017 17:27His Holiness Patriarch Kirill: What is sometimes forgotten in pursuit of different technologies is that mission is not a collection of methods, but practical work
- 29.11.2017 17:24His Holiness Patriarch Kirill: The main task of the Church is not to fill children’s mind with vast knowledge, but to help them enter into its life
- 29.11.2017 17:18Primate of Russian Orthodox Church: Theology should be regarded not only as a set of subjects taught at seminaries, but also as a serious science
- 29.11.2017 17:08Reorganization of the system of theological education remains priority for supreme church authorities
- 29.11.2017 17:06His Holiness Patriarch Kirill: While inviting young people to dialogue and using their language, the Church must not lose its integrity
- 29.11.2017 16:59Patriarch Kirill: For the youth it is important that Christianity is a religion of freedom, not a religion of bans
- 29.11.2017 14:33Patriarch Kirill: Signing the Act of Canonical Communion has given us joy over the unity of the faithful of the one Russian Orthodox Church
- 29.11.2017 14:32Patriarch Kirill announces statistical data on the life of the Russian Orthodox Church
- 29.11.2017 14:28Bishops’ Council given information on Patriarch ministry in inter-council period
- 29.11.2017 14:19Patriarch Kirill: Continued attempts are made to impose on the Church a life according to the rules of this world
- 29.11.2017 14:10THE FIRST HIERARCH OF THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH : THE MINISTRY OF THE BISHOP IS INEXTRIABLY LINKED TO THE ORTHODOX UNDERSTANDING OF CONCILIARITY
- 29.11.2017 14:07HIS HOLINESS PATRIARCH KIRILL: THE LOCAL COUNCIL OF 1917-1918 WAS TRULY AN EXTRAORDINARY PEHNOMENON IN THE HISTORY OF THE CHURCH
- 29.11.2017 14:04HIS HOLINESS PATRIARCH KIRILL: THE MAIN HERITAGE OF THE NEW MARTYRS IS THEIR LOVE OF CHRIST AND NEIGHBOUR, FOR WHOM THEY LAID DOWN THEIR LIVES
- 29.11.2017 14:01Opening of the Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church
- 29.11.2017 13:56President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev sends greetings to participants in Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church
- 29.11.2017 13:55President of Moldova Igor Dodon sends greetings to participants in Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church
- 29.11.2017 13:53President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko sends greetings to participants in the Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church
- 29.11.2017 13:50President Putin’s message of greetings to the Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church