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On 22nd August 2019, Mr. Heiko Maas, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Germany, who had arrived in Moscow on a working visit the day before, visited the Novospassky Stavropegic Monastery.

Accompanied by Bishop Dionisy of Voskresensk, abbot of the monastery, the head of Germany’s Foreign Office visited the monastery’s museum and the Cathedral of the Holy Transfiguration.

Later, a meeting between Mr. Maas and representatives of the Russian Orthodox Church took place at the Patriarchal chambers in the Novospassky Monastery.

Taking part in the meeting on behalf of the Russian Church were Bishop Dionisy of Voskresensk, abbot of the Novospassky Monastery, Patriarchal First Vicar for the city of Moscow; Mr. Vladimir Legoyda, chairman of the Synodal Department for Church’s Relations with Society and Mass Media; Archpriest Sergy Zvonarev, DECR secretary for far abroad countries; Rev. Iliya Kosykh, head of the DECR Communication Service; and Deacon Andrei Titushkin of the DECR Secretariat for Far Abroad Countries.

Accompanying Mr. Maas were Ms. Beate Grzeski, temporary charge d’affaires of the Embassy of Germany; Theologian Regina Elsner; Prof. Dr. Barbara Hallensleben; Dr. Andreas Görgen, Director for Culture and Communication of Germany’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and Ms. Regine Greenberger, personal assistant to the Minister.

Opening the meeting, Bishop Dionisy warmly greeted the high guest and those accompanying him.

Mr. Vladimir Legoyda told the members of the German delegation about the present-day structure of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Church’s relations with state and society.

Archpriest Sergy Zvonarev highlighted major spheres of external activities of the Russian Orthodox Church and dwelt, in particular, on The Petersburg Dialogue Russian-German Forum of Civil Societies, noting that the Russian Orthodox Church and the German religious communities take an active part in its work.

Mr. Maas thanked Vladyka Dionisy for the hospitality and expressed his gratitude for the meeting with the church representatives, emphasizing the importance of developing contacts between Germany and the Russian Orthodox Church.


DECR Communication Service