Papal message sent to Earthquake victims

As the city of L'Aquila gathered to mourn the loss of hundreds of its citizens, victims of a deadly earthquake, Benedict XVI sent a message of solidarity and hope. The Holy Father sent a letter today to the national funeral of the victims of the earthquake that hit the capital of the Abruzzo region of central Italy. Friday was declared a day of national mourning and a moment of silence was observed nationwide.

Christians in Kerala celebrate Palm Sunday

Christians across Kerala celebrated Palm Sunday, which marks the beginning of the holy week before Easter, by attending church and offering special prayers. Churches distribute palms to commemorate Jesus Christ's entry into Jerusalem, when palm branches were placed in his path before his arrest and crucifixion on Good Friday.

Master iconographers to present workshops in St. Vladimir's Academy in NY

Two master iconographers, one painting in the Russo-Byzantine style and the other painting in the Byzantine (Greek-Cretan School) tradition, will offer exclusive workshops on the campus of St. Vladimir's from June 11-17, 2009. Fr. Protodeacon Nazari Polataiko, of the Ss. Alipij & Andrei Rublev Icon Studio in Winnipeg Canada, and Khouriya Erin Mary Kimmett of Norwood, Massachusetts, will open their summer workshops to 12 students each, and will accept students with experience ranging from none to decades-long practice, and expertise ranging from novice to master.

The Moscow Patriarchate urges various political forces of Moldavia to dialogue

The Moscow Patriarchate urged participants in the political conflict in Moldavia to dialogue. "The Church urges to peace as it has always urged to peace, the Church urges various political to dialogue. It is evident that it is difficult to reach anything without such a dialogue," head of the Synodal Church and Society Department Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin said answering students of the High School of State Management at Moscow State University.

$2 Million Gift Funds Chair in Orthodox Theology and Culture

Fordham University has received a $2 million gift to establish the Archbishop Demetrios Chair in Orthodox Theology and Culture.

The donation comes from the Jaharis Family Foundation, which provides grants to arts, cultural and religious institutions.

Patriarch Bartholomew met President Obama

President of USA B. Obama held a separate meeting with Greek Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew, whose international role as the spiritual leader of hundreds of millions of Orthodox Christians worldwide is not recognized by Ankara.

Bartholomew, following the meeting, sounded optimist regarding the problems the patriarchate faces, particularly in reopening Halki Seminary.

Metropolitan Jonah on Orthodox unity

Metropolitan Jonah, St Seraphim Orthodox Cathedral, April 5, 2009

It is a great joy to see everybody here this evening from so many different communities, from different traditions. Orthodoxy is a celebration of diversity in unity, and unity in diversity. Our unityis in our one Lord and savior Jesus Christ, and our one Orthodox faithand our one commitment to living the truth, to living as Christians.Not to live according the spirit of the world, not to live accordingto our passions, not to live according to the desires that flit bythrough our minds and lead us into all sorts of trouble, but to livethe truth, to live Orthodox. And, our diversity is something wecelebrate, not a diversity of lifestyles, but a diversity thatreflects the whole spectrum of our community, people of all races,people of all colors, people from a multitude of different ethnicbackgrounds.