FIFA President visits Orthodox church in Moldova

President Sep Blatter, FIFA President, was awarded in the Orthodox Church Moldova's highest honour, 'Stephen the Pious, the Great and the Saint', by His Holiness Vladimir, the Metropolitan Bishop of Chisinau and all Moldova.

"I am deeply touched by this award. For me, religion and football have at least one thing in common: they bring hope and motion to the people," said the FIFA President.

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Benedict XVI in the Holy Land at the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate

On May 15, the Holy Father Benedict XVI traveled to the Greek-Orthodox Patriarchate in Jerusalem for an ecumenical meeting with the representatives of the Christian community in the Holy Land. After greeting His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilus III, the Holy Father recalled the "historic meetings" that have taken place in Jerusalem between Pope Paul VI and the Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras I, and also between Pope John Paul II and His Beatitude Patriarch Diodoros. "These encounters, including my visit today, are of great symbolic significance. They recall that the light of the East has illumined the entire world from the very moment when a 'rising sun' came to visit us and they remind us too that from here the Gospel was preached to all nations," the Pope said.

Benedict XVI's Address at Orthodox Patriarchate

Here is the text of the address Benedict XVI gave 15th May in an ecumenical meeting at the Greek Orthodox patriarchate of Jerusalem.

"Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

It is with profound gratitude and joy that I make this visit to the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem; a moment to which I have much looked forward. I thank His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilus III for his kind words of fraternal greeting, which I warmly reciprocate. I also express to all of you my heartfelt gratitude for providing me with this opportunity to meet once again the many leaders of Churches and ecclesial communities present.

Former Russian Health Minister becomes a priest

The former Health Minister of Russia Yury Shevchenko was ordained a priest: he conducts services in St. Nicolas Church at the National Medical and Surgery Center named after Pirogov. Shevchenko, currently, Father Georgy, became a priest only about a month ago. "I received an external diploma at the seminary where I studied for two years," Life.ru quotes him as saying.

Pilgrimage to Saint Tikhon of Zadonsk Monastery opens May 22

The 105th annual pilgrimage to Saint Tikhon of Zadonsk Monastery in South Canaan, will formally open on Friday, May 22nd, with the greeting of the Sitka Icon at the Archway at 3:30 p.m. followed by a procession to celebrate the blessing of the well. The Vigil will be celebrated at 4 p.m.