09 December 2008, 15:17
Metropolitan Kirill didn't faint at Patriarch funeral service - Moscow Patriarchate (updated)
Moscow, December 9, Interfax - The Russian Orthodox Church has expressed surprise about news reports stating that Metropolitan of Smolensk and Kaliningrad Kirill fainted during the funeral service for late Patriarch Alexy II.
The reports were published in some media around noon on Tuesday.
"Metropolitan Kirill did not lose consciousness," Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, deputy head of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations, told Interfax-Religion.
"The Metropolitan was very sad when he said good bye to the Holiest Patriarch, everyone saw how much feeling was in the speech he gave at the Patriarch's coffin. They were very close: they had known each other for 44 years and had worked shoulder to shoulder for twenty years," Fr. Vsevolod said.
"Of course, such moments cannot be easy. It is true that the Metropolitan felt unwell and had to sit alone in the altar for some time. But I would like to comfort, in a brotherly and humble way, everyone who rushed to give diagnoses and invest various scenarios: there is no danger to the patriarch's locum, he, as everyone saw, quickly returned from the altar and took part in the service until the end," the priest said.
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