To: His Holiness IRINEJ
Archbishop of Pec
Metropolitan of Belgrade-Karlovcy
Kindly accept the expressions of our profound condolences from His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church and me personally over the demise of His Eminence Metropolitan Ioann of Zagreb and Ljubljana, an outstanding hierarch of the Serbian Orthodox Church.
The Orthodox faithful in Croatia and Slovenia have lost a beloved spiritual father and mentor who wisely and humbly bore the burdens of his God-loving flock in difficult times marked with tragic trials for the Orthodox people of Serbia.
The deceased treated the Russian Orthodox Church with great warms and remained her sincere friend till the last days of his life. I hold dear my remembrances of our communion in prayer with His Eminence Ioann that we had during my visit to the Metropolis of Zagreb and Ljubljana and his lively interest in Russian church art and his reverence for the memory of Russian saints.
May the Divine Chief Pastor, Who has called the zealous worker of Serbian Orthodoxy to Him, give rest to the late archpastor in the dwellings of the righteous. Eternal memory be to him!
With respectful love in the Lord,
Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk
Chairman of the Department for External Church Relations