05 December 2008, 15:20
Holy Synod to hold emergency session on Saturday
Moscow, December 5, Interfax - The Holy Synod will convene an emergency session on Saturday to discuss a funeral service for Patriarch Alexy II of Moscow and All Russia and his burial, Bishop of Yegoryevsk Mark, deputy head of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations, told Interfax.
A Patriarchal locum tenens will be elected at the emergency meeting, he said.
All members of the Synod have gathered at the Patriarch's residence in Peredelkino, Moscow region, where Alexy II died on Friday morning, he said.
According to the Russian Orthodox Church statute, the Holy Synod elects a Patriarchal locum tenens out of its permanent members when the Patriarch's See is vacant.
Under the statute, the Patriarchal locum tenens and the Holy Synod should convene a Church Council to elect new Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia no later that six months after the Patriarchal See is vacated.
Candidates for Patriarch should be bishops no younger than 40 years old with a degree in theology and sufficient experience of eparchial governance.
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