10 December 2008, 19:23
Local Council in Moscow to gather over 700 delegates
Moscow, December 10, Interfax - The Russian Orthodox Church Local Council will be attended by over 700 delegates, who will elect a new Patriarch.
Each diocese (currently, there are 156 of them) will elect three delegates who will attend the Council, Patriarchal Locum Tenens Metropolitan Kirill said on Wednesday after the Synod, which set up a commission in charge of preparations for the Council. Patriarchal parishes in the United States, Canada and Scandinavia will be represented each by two persons.
Also, a special quota will be assigned to religious schools and stauropegial monasteries (being in direct management of the Church leader). Currently, there are 25 cloisters in Patriarch's direct management, and 38 seminaries in the Russian Church.
The total number of archbishops in the Moscow Patriarchate today is 190, the Department for External Church Relations told Interfax-Religion.
According to the Synod's resolution, the lists of diocesan delegates will be sent to Moscow before January 15. There will also be two events before December 31: a meeting of seminary rectors, at which delegates will also be elected, and a congress of abbesses from stauropegial convents to elect the nuns who will attend the Council.
It was announced on Wednesday, the Local Council will be held in Moscow on January 27-29, 2009.
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