To the 15th Enthronement Anniversary of the Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church, His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Rus’

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Your Holiness, you have been on the throne of the Primates of Moscow for fifteen years now. These years are closely connected with your archpastoral labours – and not only within your fatherland. For it was a time of landmark, very difficult and truly crucial decisions for the canonical space of the Russian Orthodox Church and the entire Russian world. The results of your Patriarchal service to God and people are the doubling of the number of dioceses of the Russian Orthodox Church and the number of its bishops, the building and restoration of numerous churches, the opening of new parishes, the improvement of missionary, social and youth ministries, and the modernization of the religious education system. Thanks to your pastoral endeavours the three parts of the Russian Orthodox Church, which were formed after the 1917 Revolution, were reunited.

Sixteen states constitute the canonical territory of the Russian Orthodox Church, and beyond it there are over sixty countries in which there are more than twenty dioceses, almost 1000 active parishes, and over forty monasteries and convents. More recently, the Patriarchal Exarchates in Western Europe, centred in Paris, and in Southeast Asia, centred in Singapore, as well as the Patriarchal Exarchate in Africa, have been established. It is largely the result of your pastoral ministry and your high international authority both among the leaders of the countries under the canonical jurisdiction of the Russian Church and the leaders of other states.

To further promote the Word of Christ in the world such bodies for improving the activities of the Russian Church as the Supreme Church Council and the Inter-Council Presence have been set up.

Fifteen years of your pastoral ministry are associated with an increase in the number of Orthodox educational organizations, the intensification of the study of The Basics of Orthodox Culture, the growth of the number of theological academies and seminaries, the permanent social service of the Russian Church with its self-help groups, homes, sisterhoods, “mercy” buses and volunteer associations of various profiles. Your personal example, your heartfelt concern for the needs of people and Orthodoxy help us all take a fresh look at the concept of Christian duty. You teach us to live according to the commandments of Christ, which means according to conscience and faith.

You initiated the celebration of annual memorial services on 30th October in Russia for all Orthodox Christians who died innocently during the years of Soviet repressions or were imprisoned without guilt. For you the protection of Christians – in whatever countries they live and to whatever nations they belong – is one of the main prerogatives of your life.

And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus, the Epistle to the Philippians says (4:7). These beautiful, exalted words are also a sign of your Primatial ministry.

The Russian Mind magazine editorial team cordially congratulates you, Your Holiness, on the fifteenth anniversary of your enthronement and wishes you good health and God’s help in your high and responsible Patriarchal ministry.

On behalf of the Russian Mind magazine team,

Prince Alexander Trubetskoy

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