May 24, 2013
On 24 May 2013, His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia presented His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos III of the Holy City of Jerusalem and All Palestine with the Order of the Holy Prince Vladimir, Equal-to-the-Apostles. The ceremony took place at the Throne Hall of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour.
Members of the delegation, accompanying His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos, were also presented with high awards of the Russian Orthodox Church: Metropolitan Kyriakos of Nazareth; Archbishop Aristarchos of Konstantina, secretary general of the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Orthodox Church of Jerusalem; and Archbishop Theophylactos of Jordan, Patriarchal Commissioner to Bethlehem – with the Order of the Holy Prince Vladimir, Equal-to-the-Apostles (2nd class); Archimandrite Stephanos (Dispirakis), representative of the Patriarch of the Holy City of Jerusalem and All Palestine to the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia; Archimandrite Galaktionos, hegumen of the monastery in Ramallah; and hierodeacon Athanasios (Themistokleos) – with the Order of the Holy Prince Vladimir, Equal-to-the-Apostles (3rd class).
“We have recently carried out a reform in the system of Orders of the Russian Orthodox Church and you are the first to receive the orders designed in compliance with traditions of pre-revolutionary Russia,” His Holiness Patriarch Kirill said. “They are exact copies of the Orders of the Holy Prince Vladimir, Equal-to-the-Apostles, which were used in the Russian Empire, made of the same metals and having the same design. This award is an expression of our profound love to you, Your Beatitude, and of our recognition for your ministry and for the work of those accompanying you.”
His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem thanked the Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church and said, in particular, “Your Holiness, we will keep the Orders, you have presented us with, as a symbol of our relations.”