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Bishops’ Council of Russian Orthodox Church completes its second day’s sessions

On 3 February 2013, the Bishops’ Council of the Russian Orthodox Church continued its work. His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia opened the second day’s sessions.

Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Department for External Church Relations and of the Synodal Biblical and Theological Commission, presented a report on the activity of the working group for compiling contemporary catechism of the Russian Orthodox Church and on the issues of pan-Orthodox cooperation and Orthodox-Catholic dialogue.

The participants discussed the issues raised by His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia in his report delivered at the session on February 2.

Also discussed was the election of members of the General Ecclesiastical Court. His Holiness Patriarch Kirill appreciated its present activities and suggested to extend its term until the next Bishops’ Council. The motion was passed unanimously. In compliance with the Council’s decision, the General Ecclesiastical Court, consisting of Metropolitan Isidor of Yekaterinodar and Kuban (chairman), Metropolitan Onufry of Chernovtsy and Bukovina, Archbishop Yevlogy of Vladimir and Suzdal, Archbishop Feodosy of Polotsk and Glubokoye, and Bishop Alexander of Bryansk and Sevsk (secretary of the Court), will continue its work.

Metropolitan Varsonofy of Saransk and Mordovia, chancellor of the Moscow Patriarchate, secretary of the Bishops’ Council, presented a report on the options of procedure for electing Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia. As is known, the Inter-Council Presence elaborated four versions of the document that expounds on the procedure and submitted it to the Bishops’ Council for consideration.

The participants took the unanimous decision to proceed to a secret vote on the election procedure. After the vote, Metropolitan Sergy of Ternopol and Kremenets, chairman of the counting board, announced the results: the majority voted for the current version of the document.

Metropolitan Varsonofy told the participants about the proposals of the Inter-Council Presence on the alterations and amendments to the Statute of the Russian Orthodox Church; discussion followed.

The archpastors considered draft Regulations on the Local Council of the Russian Orthodox Church.

Alterations and amendments to the Statute of the Russian Orthodox Church and to the Regulations on the Local Council gained all votes.

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