His Holiness Patriarch Kirill chairs the first in 2019 session of the Supreme Church Council
On 1 March 2019, the first in 2019 session of the Supreme Church Council of the Russian Orthodox Church took place in the Supreme Church Council’s Hall of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour under chairmanship of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia.
Prior to the meeting, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations, congratulated His Holiness on the 10th anniversary of his enthronement and on behalf of all members of the Supreme Church Council presented him with the five-volume antiquarian ‘Geographic-Statistical Dictionary of the Russian Empire’ compiled by Pyotr Semyonov-Tyan-Shansky and issued in St.Petersburg in 1863-85.
Metropolitan Hilarion addressed Patriarch Kirill, saying: ‘Your Holiness! I tender heartfelt congratulations on the 10th anniversary of Your enthronement on behalf of all members of the Supreme Church Council and state that the system of church administration has become more mobile and effective after reorganization and optimization carried out on Your initiative and under Your guidance.
“The establishment of the Supreme Church Council was one of the initiatives. It was not an invention or novation, but a resort to the legacy of the Local Council of 1917-18 and at the same time a reinterpretation of the Council’s intentions. The new Supreme Church Council was not established on the old model; its purpose was to correspond with the needs of our time and – first and foremost – to coordinate the work of the Synodal departments. Now we can be ‘on the same page,’ as we have an opportunity to take part in one another’s work. This is a valuable experience. Any time we gather for the Council’s session, we learn something new and gain experience.
‘We would like to wish You, Your Holiness, to lead the Russian Orthodox Church during many years. Heartfelt congratulations and many and good years to You!’
Patriarch Kirill thanked Metropolitan Hilarion and addressed those gathered with opening remarks.
The agenda includes the following items: the enforcement of decisions of the Supreme Church Council and the Bishops’ Council and of other decisions of the supreme church bodies taken in the period before the Bishops’ Council; the report on the work of the Moscow city diocese with children and young people and on the prospects of such work at the church-wide level; and approval of the topics of Christmas Readings-2020.
The Supreme Church Council consists of
Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Department for External Church Relations;
Metropolitan Savva of Tver and Kashin, chancellor of the Moscow Patriarchate;
Metropolitan Clement of Kaluga and Borovsk, chairman of the ROC Publishing Council;
Metropolitan Arseny of Istra, first Patriarchal vicar for Moscow;
Metropolitan Ioann of Belgorod and Stary Oskol, chairman of the Synodal Department for Mission;
Metropolitan Merkury of Rostov and Novocherkassk, chairman of the Synodal Department for Education and Catechization;
Metropolitan Sergy of Singapore and Southeast Asia, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Administrative Secretariat;
Metropolitan Kirill of Stavropol and Nevinnomyssk, chairman of the Synodal Department for Relations with the Cossacks;
Metropolitan Ignaty of Vologda and Kirillov, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Finance and Economic Administration;
Metropolitan Tikhon of Pskov and Porkhov, chairman of the Patriarchal Council for Culture;
Archbishop Feognost of Kashira, chairman of the Synodal Department for Monasteries and Monasticism;
Archbishop Antony of Vienna and Budapest , head of the Administration of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Institutions Abroad;
Bishop Irinarkh of Krasnogorsk, head of the Synodal Department for Prison Ministry;
Bishop Panteleimon of Orekhovo-Zuevo, chairman of the Synodal Department for Church Charity and Social Ministry;
Bishop Mitrofan of Murmansk and Monchegorsk, chairman of the Patriarchal Commission for Physical Culture and Sport;
Archpriest Maxim Kozlov, chairman of the Holy Synod’s Education Committee;
Archpriest Sergei Privalov, chairman of the Synodal Department for Cooperation with the Armed Forces and Law Enforcement Agencies;
Archpriest Dimitry Smirnov, chairman of the Patriarchal Commission for Family and Protection of Motherhood and Childhood;
Archpriest Kirill Sladkov, acting chairman of the Synodal Department for Youth Affairs;
Mr. Vladimir Legoida, chairman of the Synodal Department for Church’s Relations with Society and Mass Media.
Invited to attend the session were Bishop Nikolai of Balashikha, head and editor-in-chief of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Publishing House; Bishop Dionisy of Voskresensk, first deputy chancellor of the Moscow Patriarchate; Archimandrite Savva (Tutunov), deputy chancellor of the Moscow Patriarchate; Rev. Alexander Volkov, head of the Patriarchal Press Service; Hieromonk Onisim (Bamblevsky), chairman of the Department for Religious Education of the Moscow city diocese; and Mr. A.Schipkov, first deputy chairman of the Synodal Department for Church’s Relations with Society and Mass Media.