His Holiness Patriarch Kirill greets Primates of Local Orthodox Churches with the Nativity of Christ
His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia sent Christmas greetings to His Beatitude Patriarch John X of Antioch, His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem, His Holiness and Beatitude Catholicos-Patriarch Ilya II of Georgia, His Holiness Patriarch Irinej of Serbia, His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel of Romania, His Holiness Patriarch Neofit of Bulgaria, His Beatitude Archbishop Chrysostomos II of Cyprus, His Beatitude Archbishop Anastasios of Tirana and All Albania, His Beatitude Metropolitan Sawa of Warsaw and All Poland, His Beatitude Metropolitan Rastislav of the Czech Lands and Slovakia, and His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon of All America and Canada. The message reads as follows:
Please accept my heartiest greetings with the great feast of the Nativity of Christ.
Today the promise of our salvation, which was heralded through the prophets in ancient times, is fulfilled. Amazed at the mystery of God’s Incarnation, St. John Chrysostom exclaims with awe: “The feast of all feasts has come and filled the universe with joy. The feast of the crowning of all virtues, the source and root of all our blessings” (Homily on the Nativity of Christ). The Eternal Word of the Heavenly Father is seedlessly born from the Most Holy and Most Pure Virgin Mary.
In our minds stepping under the vaults of the Bethlehem cavern together with the wise men, in awe at the meeting with Jesus the Divine Infant, we are repeating with affection the song of the angelic host: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men” (Lk 2:14).
Mindful of the astonishing humility and mercy of the Saviour, we are called to work without idleness for the sake of the preservation of the church unity, and to consolidate our efforts in order to overcome the arising disagreements, heal the divisions and restore the canonical order wherein it was destroyed.
On this great and holy day I prayerfully wish you good health and bountiful help from the Lord for many years of your Primatial ministry.
With brotherly love in Christ,
PATRIARCH OF MOSCOW AND ALL RUSSIA