On March 18, 2015 at the Cathedral of Christ the Savior Cathedral in Moscow, the legendary writer Valentin Rasputin was laid to final rest.
His Holiness Kirill – Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia led the funeral service along with other prelates. Large number of people came to pay their final respect for the legendary author.
Protopresbyter Thomas Hopko, Dean Emeritus of Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, Crestwood, NY, and noted Orthodox Christian priest, theologian, preacher, and speaker, fell asleep in the Lord on the afternoon of March 18, 2015.
Father Thomas was the beloved husband of Matushka Anne [Schmemann] Hopko. They were married on June 9, 1963. Together, Father Thomas and Anne are the parents of five children, sixteen grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.
Thomas John Hopko was born in Endicott, NY, on March 28, 1939, the third child and only son of John J. Hopko and Anna [Zapotocky] Hopko. He was baptized and raised in Saint Mary’s Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Greek Catholic Church and educated in Endicott public schools, graduating from Union-Endicott High School in 1956.
In the evening of March 11, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations, who was visiting Mount Athos with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, arrived in the Vatopedi Monastery. During Grand Compline, Metropolitan Hilarion was praying together with the brethren of the monastery and pilgrims. After the evening service the delegation of the Russian Orthodox Church met with Archimandrite Ephraim, father superior of the abode.
On 14 March 2015, a new social canteen of the Archdiocese of Bucharest was inaugurated at Cernica Monastery, county of Ilfov. “Metropolitan Nifon” canteen was blessed by His Beatitude Daniel, Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church assisted by a group of priests and deacons.
To end with the blessing service, the Patriarch of Romania showed that this work was the result of a good cooperation and collaboration: “This canteen was made mostly with donations, as well as with a 333,350 lei loan on behalf of the Eparchial Centre of the Archdiocese of Bucharest. Thus, this is a co-responsible work and this is the result. Good results are based on consulting and cooperation. It is an example of saving old dilapidated houses, of renewing, consolidating them and using their attic space for social-charitable and cultural activities. The leadership of the Social-Cultural Centre of “Saint Hierarch Calinic” organised all these meals and agapes, and accommodations too as a way of aid, so that the poor and hungry were blessed by God by the good care of the Church.
His Beatitude John X, Patriarch of Great Antioch and All the East, sent a letter to His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, expressing gratitude for brotherly Christian love and Abraham’s hospitality according him during his visit to the Russian Orthodox Church.
Among the highlights of Patriarch John’ visit was the prize presented to him by the International Public Foundation of the Unity of Orthodox Nations.
In his letter, Patriarch John says that his visit, which took place from February 18 to 22, 2015, was a new testimony of traditional fraternal and sincere relations that have bound the Patriarchates of Antioch and Moscow for centuries.