21 May 2009, 11:33
Patriarch Kirill to visit Middle East
Moscow, May 21, Interfax - Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia will soon visit the Orthodox Church of Antioch in the Middle East.
Head of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations Archbishop Hilarion of Volokolamsk, Russian Ambassador to Syria Sergey Kirpichenko and Antiochian Patriarch Ignatius discussed the upcoming visit in Damascus, the Moscow Patriarchate website said.
The date of the visit and possible traveling of Patriarch Kirill outside Syria are as yet unknown. The canonical territory of the Orthodox Church of Antioch includes not only Syria, but also Lebanon, Iraq and Kuwait.
The Antiochian Patriarchate is one of the 15 local Orthodox Church presumably founded by Apostles Peter and Paul in Antioch circa 37 AD.
An Orthodox Church head visits other Orthodox Churches in accordance with the list of local churches, a source at the Department for External Church Relations told Interfax-Religion. The Antiochian Patriarchate comes third after the Constantinople and Alexandria Churches on the list of the Russian Orthodox Church.
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