Moscow Patriarchate appeals for Orthodox unity in Ukraine

Patriarch Kirill I of the Russian Orthodox Church, on an official visit to Ukraine, has appealed to Orthodox believers there who have broken with the Moscow Patriarchate to return to its jurisdiction.

Crucifix ban in Italian school comes under fire from churches

Roman Catholic and Orthodox bishops have urged the European Court of Human Rights to revoke a judgment against school crucifixes in Italy as the institution prepared to consider an appeal on the issue.

"We hope people's religious feelings will be taken into account," the Italian (Catholic) Bishops' Conference had written in a statement on 16 June. "A decision not to penalise the presence of the Cross and religious symbols in the public sphere would reflect the principle of subsidiarity which regulates relations between States and European institutions."

Orthodox women seek "theology of healing"

The need for a "theology of healing" was the central theme of a recent international encounter between Orthodox women and Christians of both sexes from other traditions.

Female leadership in the life of the church - be it in the area of worship, education, administration or social care - should not be "understood as seeking power and prestige but as a deeper commitment to love and service that responds to the sacrificing love of Christ" stated the women and men who took part in the 8-12 July meeting at the St Vlash Theological Academy in Albania.

Metropolitan Vladimir of Kiev meets with Rev. Andrew Hamburg, president of the Synod of German Evangelical Luther Church

The Primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, His Beatitude Metropolitan Vladimir of Kiev and All Ukraine, met on 30 June 2010 with the president of the Synod of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Ukraine, Rev. Andrew Hamburg. They discussed bilateral relations, the website of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church reports. The Rev. Andrew Hamburg is also deputy chairman of the group ‘Reconciliation in Europe - the Churches' Task in Ukraine, Belarus, Poland and Germany'. The aim of this group is to seek ways of cooperation between Christian Churches in solving social problems in Eastern and Central Europe. At present, the group is preparing an international conference on migration in today's Europe.