MOSCOW: November 30, 2017
The first day of the Council of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church
On November 29, 2017, the Hall of Church Councils of Christ the Savior Cathedral hosted the first day of the Council of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church. The gathering will also celebrated the 100th anniversary of the reestablishment of the Patriarchate. The enthronement of Patriarch Tikhon took place in Uspensky Cathedral in Moscow’s Kremlin on December 4, 1917, on the feast day of the Entrance Into the Temple of the Most-Holy Mother of God.
The relics of St Tikhon, Patriarch of Moscow, were brought to the Council from Donskoy Stavropighial Monastery.
Divine Liturgy opened the event, celebrated by the Senior Priest of the Cathedral, Protopriest Mikhail Ryazantsev and other clergymen of Moscow. His Holiness Patriarch Kirill and other hierarchs prayed during the service.
The Patriarch then led a moleben service before the reliquary of St Tikhon.
His Holiness then opened the Council. A total of 347 archpastors of the Moscow Patriarchate from Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldavia, Azerbaidjan, Kazakhstan, Kyrghizia, Latvia, Lithuania, Tadjikistan, Turkmenia, Uzbekistan, Estonia, as well as other nations of the world with dioceses of the Russian Orthodox Church attended.
In his keynote address, Patriarch Kirill spoke about social and charitable service; youth ministry; theological training and education; religious instruction and rearing the young; the flourishing of Sunday schools and pre-schools; work with adolescents; monasteries and monasticism; missionary work; communications; diocesan administration and cooperation between metropoliates; initial results of the establishment of assistant deans; Church and culture; Church-state relations on the canonical territory of the Russian Orthodox Church and other matters.
Statistics were presented on Church life and the work of His Holiness since the last Council of Bishops convened. Today, the Russian Orthodox Church comprises 303 dioceses, 10 more than in 2016 and 144 more than in 2009. In the inter-Council period, three metropoliates were established, bringing the total to 60. At the present time, the Russian Orthodox Church unites 39,414 clergymen, including 34,774 priests and 4,640 deacons. Including numbers from the “far abroad,” there are 36,878 churches or other houses used for Divine Liturgy, which is 1,340 more than last year, 462 men’s monasteries, or 7 more than a year ago, and 482 convents, or 11 more than in 2016. There are over 900 parishes and monasteries of the Russian Orthodox Church in the “far abroad” including those of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia.
Information Service of the Council of Bishops.