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Archive for May, 2010

All from Russian Orthodox Church’s Department for External Relations (via Byzantine, Texas):

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On 19 May 2010, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, Chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations, currently in Italy with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, celebrated the Divine Liturgy at the burial site of St. Peter in the crypt of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. Concelebrating were Archbishops Kirill of Yaroslavl and Rostov and Feognost of Sergiev Posad. … Present in the crypt were believers who arrived from Russia to take part in Metropolitan Hilarion’s pilgrimage.  After the divine service, the hierarchs, clergymen and all worshippers venerated the particles of St. Peter’s holy relics, singing magnification to the apostle.

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Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, head of the Moscow Patriarchate’s department for external church relations, who is on a visit to Italy with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, officiated at Matins at the Shroud in the cathedral of Turin, on 17 May 2010. … Over 800 pilgrims from Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Italy, Germany, Great Britain, France, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland and other countries came to the solemn service at the Shroud of Turin. (more)

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Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, head of the Moscow Patriarchate’s department for external church relations, who is in Italy with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, visited Ravenna on 15 May 2010.

In the 5th century [church of] Sant’ Apollinare in Classe, the DECR chairman celebrated the Divine Liturgy, assisted by Archimandrite Mark Davitti, rector of the Moscow Patriarchate parishes in Bologna and Ravenna, Archpriest Nikolay Makar, rector of St. Ambrose of Milan’s Parish in Milan, Hegumen Philip Vasiltsev, rector of St. Catherine’s, Rev. Dimitry Sozonenko, DECR acting secretary for inter-Christian relations, and clergy of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Italian Deanery. (more)

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Archbishop says Anti-Pope attacks ‘outside of the church’

By George Psyllides, Cyprus Mail
Published on May 19, 2010

THE [Orthodox Archbishop of Nova Justiniana and All Cyprus, Chrysostomos II,] yesterday slammed religious groups who oppose the Pope’s visit in June, warning that they put themselves outside the Church.

A group, calling itself the ‘Autocephalous Orthodox Church of Motherland Traditions’, has been circulating a booklet entitled Pope: The Cause Of Evil.

“Unfortunately there are in Cyprus too, the mindless who go against the decisions of the official Church,” Archbishop Chrysostomos II said.

He warned that these people were placing themselves outside the Church.

The Archbishop said the Pontiff had been officially invited to Cyprus by the government with the Church’s agreement and “as the official Church we will welcome him with love and respect.”
Chrysostomos II said there will not be any talks between the Church and Pope.

“We will exchange views and I believe his visit will be positive and beneficial for our country and our people,” Chrysostomos II said.

He urged those who opposed the visit to “come round” and listen to the official church.

The 134-page booklet that is being put in people’s mail boxes seeks to remind people of the serious differences between Orthodoxy and “Papism” so that clerics and laypeople “view this visit in accordance with the holy rules of the Orthodox Church.”

Among other claims, the booklet makes historical references to the Second World War and the alleged actions of Catholics against the Orthodox.

“Many naïve Cypriots … will tomorrow raise their eyes to view the blessing hand of the Roman Pontiff, ignoring the fact that the blood dripping from this hand has created rivers,” the booklet said. “The institution of Papism is not only godless and antichrist but also criminal and murderous.”

“Popes did nothing substantive to condemn their sinful past and try and correct their crimes,” the booklet said.

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Via two excellent blogs with serious ‘traditionalist’ credentials – Ora et Labora (Russian Orthodox) and Rorate Caeli (Roman Catholic) – I present the following new official liturgical texts for St Justin (Popovic) of Celije (+1979), a newly glorified Saint of the Serbian Orthodox Church.

Apolytikion, Mode 1

Let us honor with splendor the divinely inspired theologian, the wise Serb Justin, who by the scythe of the Holy Spirit hath thrashed the error of atheism and the insolence of the Latins, being a mystic of the God-man and lover of piety, crying out: Glory to Christ Who hath glorified thee, glory to Him Who hath crowned thee, glory to Him Who hath rendered thee a luminary to those who are in a state of darkness.

Kontakion, Mode 1

We proclaim to the faithful the inexhaustible fount conveying the Orthodox doctrines, and an angel-like man full of divine zeal, the divine Justin, the offspring of the Serbs, who by his sound teachings and writings hath strengthened the faith of all in the Lord.

This (as Mr Palad of Rorate Caeli points out) coming mere months after the election of the new Serbian Patriarch, Irinej (Gavrilovic), a ‘moderate’ who apparently welcomed the idea of a papal visit to Serbia (which would be the first in history) and even proposed that it happen in 2013, in commemoration of the 1,700th anniversary of the Edict of Milan.

Some readers may be familiar with St Justin’s famous (or infamous, depending on your perspective) declaration: “In the history of the human race there have been three principal falls: that of Adam, that of Judas, and that of the pope.”

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