Russian Orthodox Church sends money to Patriarchate of Antioch to help people affected by armed conflict in Syria20. August 2013 - 12:46
The Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for Church Charity and Social Service transferred 1,320,407 $ to the bank account of the Patriarchate of Antioch in the beginning of August 2013. The money was collected at the Russian Orthodox churches with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia to help people affected by the military hostilities in Syria.
On Thursday, August 15, 2013, His All-Holiness celebrated the great feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos at the historic monastery of Panaghia Soumela in Trabzon. This is the fourth consecutive year that His All-Holiness has led an annual pilgrimage to the historical monastery since its closure nine decades ago. The monastery was founded in 386 and functioned without interruption until 1923. Among those in attendance were Bishops Seraphim of Apollonias (from Australia) and Theodosios of Brovary (from Ukraine), Armenian Archbishop Aram Atesian, clergy of the Patriarchal Court and hundreds of pilgrims from around the world.
The Russian Monastery of St. Panteleimon on Mount Athos solemnly celebrated its patronal feast. Among the participants in the celebrations was a Russian Orthodox delegation led by Metropolitan Rostislav of Tomsk and Asino. The delegation included Archbishop Onufry of Kharkov and Bogodukhov, Bishop Veniamin of Borisovka, and Hieromonk Stefan (Igumnov), a DECR staff member.
In a letter of 16 August 2013, His Grace Bishop Irinej of Australia and New Zealand extended his heartfelt, sincere prayers and the deepest sympathy of his clergy, monastics and faithful to Their Graces, Coptic Orthodox Bishops Suriel of Melbourne and Affiliated Regions and Daniel of Sydney and Affiliated Regions and to their faithful during this Holy Lent of the Virgin Mary, whose intercessions serve as a true source of consolation for those who now mourn.
Bishop Irinej wrote with utter dismay, relative to the tragic events, resulting in the loss of so many innocent lives and rampant destruction in Egypt on Wednesday, 14 August 2013. "Yet again," he noted, "frenzied violence prevails throughout Egypt, offered as a thinly veiled political solution in violation of the free will of the Egyptian people."
On Sunday, August 11, 2013, His All-Holiness visited the second session of Paidopoli, a children's Summer Camp program of the Ecumenical Patriarchate that is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year on Proti Island. Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew presided over the Paraklesis Service at the historic Patriarchal and Stavropegic Monastery of the Transfiguration. Afterward, at a reception prepared in the monastery's courtyard, Ms. Maria Apostolidou, president of the camp committee, thanked the Ecumenical Patriarch for his support. There followed a play and musical performances by the children attending the camp. Among those in attendance were Metropolitans Irenaios of Myriophyton and Peristasis as well as Elpidophoros of Bursa, members of the camp's Board of Directors, together with local volunteers and visitors from Greece and abroad.