His Eminence Metropolitan Bartolomeu Anania passed away. A press release of the Press Office of the Archdiocese of Vad, Feleac and Cluj informs:
'It is with much regret and sorrow in our souls, as well as with the hope in the mercy and comfort coming from God, that the Eparchial Council of the Archdiocese of Vad, Feleac and Cluj announces that on 31 January 2011, 19.25 hours, our father, Archbishop and Metropolitan Bartolomeu Anania began his journey to the Kingdom of Heaven. The decease occurred at the Intensive Therapy Section of the Surgery Clinic I of Cluj-Napoca. Surrounded by physicians, friends, disciples and close collaborators, the body of His Eminence Bartolomeu could no longer fight against the many affections that marked the last period of his life. The body of the one who was Archbishop of Vad, Feleac and Cluj and Metropolitan of Cluj, Alba, Crisana and Maramures for 18 years will be laid in the Metropolitan Cathedral of Cluj-Napoca, where all those who wish can bring him one last homage.
Meeting the Primate of the Orthodox Church of Cyprus at the Sheremetievo airport were Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate's Department for External Church Relations (DECR); Metropolitan Athanasius of Kyrenaica, representative of the Patriarch of Alexandria to the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia; Archbishop Mark of Yegorievsk, head of the Moscow Patriarchate's Management of Institutions Abroad; archpriest Nikolai Balashov, DECR deputy chairman; Rev. Igor Yakimchuk, DECR secretary for Inter-Orthodox relations; H.T. Petros Kestoras, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Cyprus to the Russian Federation; and Prof. Valery Alekseyev, president of the International Foundation for the Unity of Orthodox Christian Nations.
The Primate of the Orthodox Church in America was met at the gates by Archbishop Yevgeniy of Vereya, rector of the Moscow Theological Schools. Metropolitan Jonah venerated the relics of St. Sergius of Radonezh in the Cathedral of the Trinity and other holy sites of the Laura, and saw the exhibits of the Church Archeological Museum at the Moscow Theological Academy.
The Feast of Theophany in Berat (photo gallery)
The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace (Ps. 28:11).
PATRIARCHAL ADDRESS ON THE NEW YEAR
Dear Children of our Holy Church,
Beloved in the Lord children of our Church,
We glorify and sing praises unto our highly generous and most merciful heavenly Father, as He has been preserving us by His graceful providence during the year which passed away in peace, keeping us in safety and protecting us from every harm and destruction, maintaining us consolidated in our faith and diligent in good works and patient along the way of truth and justice. The days past however sink not into oblivion and our responsibility binding us to the course of these days makes for our feeling great satisfaction about every success we have achieved as well as for our feeling high regret over every failure we have experienced in the hard struggle against the worldly passions and temptations. The New Year's Eve is distinguished not only by noisy celebrations, for we refer to it also as time of detailed reconsideration of all the past months as well as of an exciting coming together the new annual ring which we are to join regenerated and pure in heart (cf. Math.5:8) in order to experience the new creation (cf. Gal. 6:15).