Before the beginning of the session, Patriarch Kirill congratulated His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufry of Kiev and All Ukraine on his forthcoming 70th birthday and awarded him the Order of St. Sergius of Radonezh. His Holiness thanked Metropolitan Onufry for his service as Primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and his zealous work at all posts, noting that His Beatitude always faced all life trials with “humbleness, trust in the will of God and honesty”.
“This way of your life has found a strong support of the Ukrainian episcopate during the primatial election and also our whole Church and all her members”, Patriarch Kirill said presenting His Beatitude with an old icon of the Dormition of the Most Holy Mother of God with a piece of the relics of St. Onuphrius.
Considering the first item of the agenda concerning the celebrations marking the 700th birthday of St. Sergius of Radonezh, Patriarch Kirill enumerated the main events of the closing celebrations and made a high assessment of the efforts made by the whole Church to hold them.
“Through these celebrations, St. Sergius has entered the life of our people, leading them to a new understanding of the great feat performed by this man of God. It is also important that very many state officials, representatives of our intelligentsia and business community took these celebrations to the hearts and responded with many good works”, the Patriarch said. Among them was the large-scale restoration work carried out in the St. Sergius Laura of the Trinity. “Never before did anything like this happen in the Laura”, His Holiness said assessing the volume of the restoration and archaeological work carried out in the monastery.
Among the most important events of the jubilee year, Patriarch Kirill made a special mention of the completed construction and opening of a new dormitory for the Moscow Theological Academy students.
After that, other items on the agenda were considered.
Patriarchate Press Service
DECR Communication Service
Photos by Patriarchal Press Service