Last Thursday, at a ceremony which bestowed an honorary degree on him at the Diplomatic Academy of the Russian Federation, Patriarch Kyrillof Moscow and all the Russias said that the Inter-Orthodox Council proposed in Istanbul in 2016 will still be held, but its preparation has not been easy. He said, “If everything goes according to plan, the Council will take place in 2016″. He pointed out that this historic forum would address topics related to relations between Church and society and the concerns of believers on the issues of the day, “As ever, around important historical events there is intrigue and hidden agendas, with some trying to influence the outcome, including political forces. This faces all of us, especially, with the crisis in the Ukraine”. He also touched on the Middle East, commenting that a large-scale exodus of Christians from the region would violate local stability, creating a breeding ground for extremism, “In Syria, [terrorists] have destroyed 400 Christian churches just because they did not like the fact that the country has historically harboured a Christian community”.
30 April 2015