His Holiness Patriarch Kirill chairs session of the Supreme Church Council
On 28 February 2020, session of the Supreme Church Council of the Russian Orthodox Church took place at 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.
His Holiness greeted all members of the Council and delivered an opening speech:
“The current year has begun with return of the theme of family to the focus of the state, mass media and public agenda. It was with great attention that we were listening to the annual address of our President Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin to the Federal Assembly. He called the saving and growth of the people of Russia the most important national task.
‘Our new government led by Mikhail Vladimirovich Mishustin pays attention to the problems of families, including those with many children. No doubt, a new law on these families, about which the Church has spoken for a long time, will be adopted and implemented in the near future. Attention of the state to the family is very important for the atmosphere in society. A large happy family should become a social norm. Material support is important but nothing can replace morals in the family.
‘The investors know that in order to get something one must invest, but any investment is risky. Those who reject family life want to get without any investment. If you do not invest love and faithfulness you will not be happy. Family relations are the strongest. Nothing, even close friendship, will give you more than your belonging to the family. Addressing young people I say: think that maybe only your wife and children will support you in need, trouble and sorrow.
‘Family is a little church, without which a large Church cannot be. Our pastoral task is to help families with problems, to share their troubles and treat them with love. Not only kind words are important, but charity to the poor and single-parent families. It is necessary to pay close attention to this important issue at the parish, diocesan and church-wide level.
‘The struggle for family values never stops, and all believers must defend and uphold little churches by deeds and personal example manifesting the fullness of life in love and care for those close to them.’
The participants considered the implementation of the decisions of the Supreme Church Council and the Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church.
Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations and Rector of the Church Post-Graduate School, presented ‘Regulations on the interdepartmental task force on teaching theology in the institution of higher education’.
Metropolitan Merkury of Rostov and Novocherkassk presented topics of the International Christmas educational readings 2021.
Mr. Roman Silantiev, head of the Human Rights centre of the World Russian People’s Council, told the participants about publication of the textbook on the basics of destructology.
The Supreme Church Council consists of:
Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Department for External Church Relations;
Metropolitan Dionisy of Voskresensk, chancellor of the Moscow Patriarchate;
Metropolitan Clement of Kaluga and Borovsk, chairman of the Publishing Council of the Russian Orthodox Church;
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 Religious Education and Catechization;
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 Mitrofan of Murmansk and Monchegorsk, chairman of the Patriarchal Commission for Physical Culture and Sport;
Metropolitan Tikhon of Pskov and Porkhov, chairman of the Patriarchal Council for Culture;
Metropolitan Antony of Korsun and Western Europe, head of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Administration for Institutions Abroad;
Archbishop Feognost of Kashira, chairman of the Synodal Department for Monasteries and Monasticism;
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 Foma of Pavlovsky Posad, head of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Administrative Secretariat;
Bishop Serafim of Istra, chairman of the Synodal Department for Youth Affairs;
Bishop Stefan of Klin, chairman of the Synodal Department for Cooperation with the Armed Forces and Law Enforcement Agencies;
Archpriest Maxim Kozlov, chairman of the Holy Synod’s Education Committee;
Archpriest Dimitry Smirnov, chairman of the Patriarchal Commission for Family and Protection of Motherhood; and
Mr. Vladimir Legoida, chairman of the Synodal Department for Church’s Relations with Society and Mass Media.