The Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Kirill during his upcoming visit to Britain will meet with the Archbishop of Canterbury and, perhaps, with Queen Elizabeth II. This was reported by “Interfax” the Chairman of the Department for external Church relations Metropolitan Hilarion (Alfeyev).
“Is supposed to be meeting with Queen Elizabeth II, which this year celebrated its 90th anniversary with the Church of England’s Archbishop Justin Welby,” said the Metropolitan. Recall that the Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church congratulated the Queen on her birthday, wished her good health, prosperity and God’s help in her Ministry.
Hilarion said that some of the details of the visit of the Patriarch to the UK are still in the stage of clarifications. However, it is already known that great attention will be paid to the Middle East.
“The Middle East is one of the Central, because it’s one of those hot topics, which, unfortunately, does not descend from the agenda. The situation in the middle East is changing for the better. If to speak about the situation of Christians in the region, it remains critical and tragic. And, of course, this topic will be discussed at the meetings,” said Hilarion.
At the same time, he noted that the main purpose of the visit – a meeting with the Orthodox flock. “It’s primarily a pastoral visit. It is timed to the 300th anniversary of Russian Orthodoxy in the British Isles. His Holiness has decided to respond to the invitation of the diocese of Sourozh, which was associated with this date. In addition, were carried out extensive restoration work in the Cathedral of the diocese of Sourozh, and it is now ready for consecration. This is also an important event in the life of our diocese in the UK,” said the priest.
According to Hilarion, the flock of the Russian Orthodox Church in great Britain has hundreds of thousands of people. “They are representatives of different nationalities – Russians, Ukrainians, Belarusians, people from the Baltic States, Central Asia. In addition, it is the British who have converted to Orthodoxy, he said. Is the mixed ethnic origin group, and are very numerous”.
The Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church will visit the United Kingdom on October 15-18. During the visit, held a number of Church and community events. The key event of the visit will be the Patriarchal divine service at the Cathedral of the Dormition in London – the main spiritual center of the Moscow Patriarchate in the British capital, reports the official site of the Moscow Patriarchate.