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 — January 27, 200927 janvier 2009

Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad[Moscow • Interfax] The delegates to the Church Council meeting under way in Moscow have elected Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad the 16th Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia.

Metropolitan Kirill garnered 508 (72%) out of the 702 votes during the election on Tuesday. To be elected Patriarch, a candidate had to be supported by more than half of the delegates.

Another 169 votes (24%) went to Metropolitan Kliment of Kaluga and Borovsk.

Metropolitan Filaret of Minsk and Slutsk, who was also nominated for Patriarch by the Bishops’ Council several days ago, had withdrawn from the elections in favor of Metropolitan Kirill about two hours before the voting.

Out of the 702 ballots given out to the delegates for voting, 700 were retrieved from the ballot box, and 677 of them were found valid and the other 23 invalid.

Metropolitan Isidor of Yekaterinodar and Kuban, the head of the tabulation board, proclaimed the result of the voting from the ambo of the Cathedral of Christ the Savior.

The belfry of the Cathedral of Christ the Savior announced the election of the 16th patriarch of Moscow and All Russia by a peal of bells. The Czars’ Bell started tolling first, and then all the other bells played a historic melody dating back to the 17th century. The Reut, one of the oldest bells in the Kremlin, also started chiming immediately after the voting result was announced.

[Moscow • ENI] Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad has been elected as the new head of the Moscow Patriarchate in the Orthodox Church after serving a period as interim leader and following an election in which he got an overwhelming majority of votes.

Church officials said after the election on 27 January that the 62-year-old Kirill garnered 508 votes in a secret ballot of the Local Church Council in Moscow while his challenger Metropolitan Kliment of Kaluga and Borovsk got 169 votes. The election involved more than 702 Russian Orthodox clergymen, monks and laymen from 64 countries.

“I accept and thank the Local Church Council for my election as Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia,” Kirill said after the election results were announced and before leading the congregation in a church service.

Kirill will be installed on 2 February as the successor to Moscow Patriarch Alexei II, who had headed the church from 1990 and died on 5 December after leading a revival of the church in a post-Soviet era revival of Orthodoxy after decades of atheism being at the fore under communism.

The son of a priest, Kirill was born in Leningrad which reverted to its old name St. Petersburg after the end of the Soviet Union and he had headed the external relations department of the world’s largest Orthodox church for almost 20 years.

Many observers believe Kirill’s relationship with the Russian State will be as crucial as his relations with other churches, which he has in the past favoured and also his relationship with the Roman Catholic Church following a meeting he had with Pope Benedict XVI in December 2007.

Russian Orthodox Church elects new patriarch with long-standing ecumenical commitment

[WCC News • January 28, 2009] In a letter congratulating Metropolitan Kyrill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad on his election as the new patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church, World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Samuel Kobia expressed the appreciation of the worlwide ecumenical fellowship for this “outstanding Orthodox theologian, leader and hierarch”.

“We give thanks for your friendship and companionship in the area of inter-Christian relations and we pray that your commitment to the dialogue, deep knowledge of the present ecclesial and ecumenical developments and challenges, and critical, yet constructive attitude will strengthen the relationships between the divided churches and their common witness within a world in search of values,” Kobia wrote.

“We recognize the church leader who has played an important role in the realm of inter-religious dialogue and international relations and we pray that the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church will continue to speak to the world openly and courageously, frankly and caringly, promoting and defending the human person, every human person, created in the image and likeness of God”, the letter dated 28 January continues.

The 62-year-old Kyrill was elected with an overwhelming majority of votes at a 27 January meeting of the church’s local council, which is made up of more than 700 priests, monks and laypeople representing each diocese and foreign mission of the Russian Orthodox Church.

Kyrill had headed the external relations department of the world’s largest Orthodox church for almost 20 years. He also served as permanent representative of the Moscow Patriarchate to the WCC in the 1970s and as member of the WCC Executive and Central Committees – the Council’s governing bodies in the years between its assemblies – from 1975 to 1998.

Kobia also announced he will be attending the 2 February ceremony during which Kyrill will be installed as the successor to Moscow Patriarch Alexy II, who had headed the church from 1990 until his death on 5 December 2008.

• Full text of the letter: www.oikoumene.org/?id=6574
• Russian Orthodox Church: www.mospat.ru

Posted: January 27, 2009 • Permanent link: ecu.net/?p=546
Categories: NewsIn this article: Kirill, Moscow Patriarchate, Orthodox, patriarch
Transmis : 27 janvier 2009 • Lien permanente : ecu.net/?p=546
Catégorie : NewsDans cet article : Kirill, Moscow Patriarchate, Orthodox, patriarch

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