His Holiness Kirill, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, officiated a memorial service on Victory Day for the dead and deceased participants of the Great Patriotic War at St. Alexander Nevsky Church near his residence in Peredelkino, reports Interfax Religion.
“Today, the prayer for our dead is united with the prayer for our Fatherland, so that the Lord will protect our people and our country from external and internal enemies (…), so that He will strengthen us in the feat of serving and helping each other, just like the soldiers did on the field fighting in the Great Patriotic War. They risked their lives when the life of their neighbor, the life of their friend, the life of another soldier who was nearby, were so important and significant that people for the sake of the life of their neighbors were ready to lose their own life,” said the Patriarch at the end of the service.
The Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church wished that people would be able to have such love for their neighbors not merely under extreme conditions, but also in ordinary, even quite comfortable, conditions of modern life.
“Today we also especially pray that the Lord will protect all of us from that terrible affliction that came upon us in this jubilee year*, which claimed lives and continues to do so. But maybe the memory of the great heroes of the Great Patriotic War will help us to be more courageous, including in the face of this adversity, remembering that under these conditions we should think not only about our own lives, but also about the lives of those who are close to us, following the example of the heroes of the Great Patriotic War,” said Patriarch Kirill.
After laying flowers at the fire of Memory and Glory near the Victory Monument, His Holiness Patriarch Kirill sang “Eternal memory” to “the leader and soldiers, who laid down their lives for the faith and the Fatherland”.
* it is the 75th anniversary of the victory in the Great Patriotic War in 2020