2008-12-07 12:43:00

The Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia says Alexy II was a historical personality

Moscow, December 7, Interfax The Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia condoles with the Russian Orthodox Church in connection with Patriarch Alexy II's decease.

"The great man has died and the whole epoch has passed away with him. Patriarch Alexy II's death is a great loss for the Russian Orthodox Church and for the entire religious community," FJCR President Alexander Boroda said in his address handed over to Interfax-Religion.

"His life was laid on the altar of serving people. Patriarch Alexy II often undertook the mission of peace-maker in times difficult for Russia and his word kept people from unrighteous deeds," the address went on to say.

Its author reminds that the Patriarch came up with peacemaking initiatives on the days of confrontation near the Russian White House in 1993, during the Balkans conflicts, the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan in Nagorny Karabach, military actions in Moldavia, conflicts in the Northern Caucasus and Far East.

"Patriarch Alexy II was not only a great religious figure of the present, but a historical personality as well. It is impossible to imagine new Russia without enormous work on reviving the country that Alexy II carried out during the years of his patriarchal ministry," the Federation President stresses.

The Patriarch paid much attention to interreligious dialogue and good neighborly relations between various religions, Boroda reminds.

According to him, the Jewish world remembers when Alexy met with the group of New York rabbis in 1991 and said: "Your law is our law, your prophets are our prophets."

More than twenty years of Patriarch Alexy's leadership in the Russian Orthodox Church formed and strengthened cooperation between the country's Orthodox world and Jewish community, with Muslim community, with representatives of other religious trends on the questions of social ministry and opposition to various vices of today's society," the FJCR says.

"Jewish tradition says that people who led righteous life don't die as their deeds go on living. Today Alexy II is not with us anymore. But his outstanding deeds have stayed with us as well as the blessed memory of a person who did so much good for Russia," the Federation head summed up his address.