No preparations for Alexy II meeting with Pontiff - Moscow Patriarchate

Preparations for a possible meeting between Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Alexy II and Pope of Rome Benedict XVI have not begun, told head of the Secretariat for Christian Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations Priest Igor Vyzhanov.

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew addresses Synaxis of the Heads of Orthodox Churches

Synaxis of the PatriarchsHis All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew addressed the leaders of the world's Orthodox churches on Friday, October 10, 2008, for the official opening of the Synaxis of the Heads of the Orthodox Churches and Pauline Symposium. The three-day meeting is being held at the Patriarchal Cathedral of Saint George in Istanbul, Turkey. The church leaders will later travel to sites visited by Saint Paul in Turkey and Greece later this week.

Bishop Hilarion of Vienna issues open letter concerning the question of his candidacy as OCA Metropolitan

In an open letter sent to the OCA Chancery on November 6, 2008, His Grace, Bishop Hilarion (Alfeyev) of Vienna and Austria addressed recent discussions about his possible candidacy as Metropolitan of All America and Canada.

Bishop Hilarion's letter reads as follows.

"In recent weeks my name was mentioned many times in connection with the forthcoming elections of the OCA primate. I also received letters, e-mails and phone calls asking for permission to nominate me for this position at the All-American Council. I am grateful for this unexpected outpouring of love and appreciation, and I am humbled and touched by the trust that so many Orthodox Americans apparently have in me.

Paris Cardinal praises Russian Orthodox Church

The archbishop of Paris says he found the Russian Orthodox Church to be a "living and holy Church, strong because of the testimony of its martyrs." Cardinal André Vingt-Trois affirmed this in a communiqué after his trip to Moscow last week. The cardinal was returning the visit made by Orthodox Patriarch Alexy II to Paris last October.

Seminary Chancellor awarded honorary doctorate

On October 28, 2008 at a fall academic convocation at Nashotah House Seminary in Nashotah, Wisconsin, the degree Doctor of Divinity, honoris causa, was bestowed on SVS Chancellor, Archpriest Chad Hatfield.