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DECR chairman meets with the Primate of the O…

DECR chairman meets with the Primate of the Orthodox Church of Antioch

DECR Communication Service, 30/01/2024

On 29th January 2024, Metropolitan Anthony of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations, while on a visit to Syria with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Rus’, met with His Beatitude Patriarch John X of Antioch and All the East.

Taking part in the meeting held at the Patriarchal residence in Damascus were also Mr Alexander Yefimov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to the Syrian Arab Republic; Archpriest Nikolai Balashov, advisor to the Patriarch of Moscow and All Rus’; Archpriest Igor Yakimchuk, DECR deputy chairman; Archimandrite Philip (Vasiltsev), representative of the Patriarch of Moscow and All Rus’ to the Patriarch of Antioch and All the East; Priest Alexander Yershov, assistant to the DECR chairman; and representatives of the Patriarchate of Antioch – Bishop Romanos of Seleucia, chief secretary of the Holy Synod; Bishop Moussa of Darayya; Bishop John of Sergiopolis; and Prof Hassan Risheh, former Syrian Ambassador to Russia.

His Beatitude Patriarch John X of the Great Antioch and All the East greeted the Moscow Patriarchate’s delegation noting that to Syria and the whole world, the current visit to Damascus serves as a powerful sign of Russia’s and the Russian Orthodox Church’s support for Orthodox Christians in the Middle East. He thanked the DECR chairman and in his person the plenitude of the Russian Orthodox Church for the help given to the Orthodox Church of Antioch in Syria and Lebanon.

In his turn, Metropolitan Anthony of Volokolamsk wholeheartedly thanked His Beatitude Patriarch John for the warm hospitality extended to the delegation of the Russian Orthodox Church during its visit to Syria. The DECR chairman also expressed his high regard for the steadfast principled stance of the Patriarchate of Antioch in defending canonical foundations of the Church and unity of the worldwide Orthodoxy, as well as in strengthening bonds of friendship with the Russian Orthodox Church and supporting persecuted Orthodox Christians in Ukraine.

The participants in the meeting raised various topical issues of inter-Orthodox and international relations, focusing, in particular, on prospects of further cooperation between the Russian Church and the Church of Antioch.

After the meeting, members of the Russian Orthodox Church’s delegation visited the Church of St. Paisios in Jaramana and the Church of St. John Damascene in Damascus.

Later that day, Metropolitan Anthony of Volokolamsk met with Mr Alexander Yefimov, Russian Ambassador to Syria. They were joined by Archpriest Nikolai Balashov, advisor to the Patriarch of Moscow and All Rus’; Archpriest Igor Yakimchuk, DECR deputy chairman; Archimandrite Philip (Vasiltsev), representative of the Patriarch of Moscow and All Rus’ to the Patriarch of Antioch and All the East; and Priest Alexander Yershov, assistant to the DECR chairman.

 

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