Orthodoxy in the West will revive. There’ll be Orthodoxy in Britain and Ireland, in France and Germany, in Holland and Spain and in America, too! Every language and nation will have Holy Orthodoxy. This is the charge laid upon our Russian emigration for our repentance.
St John of Shanghai
Moscow, March 27, Interfax – The Russian Orthodox Patriarchate will continue to include the names of the saints venerated in the early West in its calendar.
“This process is not completed, it has only started,” said the head of the Synodal Department for External Relations, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, on the Church and the World programme on the Rossiya-24 TV channel.
As was reported, in early March the Patriarchate included in its calendar St. Patrick and 15 ancient saints glorified in the countries of Europe before the schism of 1054. St. Patrick the Enlightener of Ireland was among them. It was decided that he would be commemorated on 30 March according to the secular dating system.
According to Metropolitan Hilarion, these saints were included at the request of the many Russian Orthodox dioceses in Western Europe.
“There are also other Western saints whom I hope will also soon be included in the calendar of our Church,” said Metropolitan Hilarion.
He explained that the main criterion for including the name of the saint in the calendar is veneration of the saint in a certain locality. Besides this, this saint should have lived before the schism of 1054, “as everything that happened afterwards belongs to the separate history of the Orthodox Church and Catholicism.”
The hierarch noted that it was important that the person had not participated in struggle against Orthodoxy, “as happens with certain Western religious figures.”
He also said that he would not interpret the inclusion of Western saints in the Russian Orthodox Church calendar as a step towards drawing closer to local Church reality,” said the Metropolitan.