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Russian president congratulates nation on Christmas

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  • Bill Samsonoff
    http://en.rian.ru/russia/20090107/119391260.html Russian president congratulates nation on Christmas MOSCOW, January 7 (RIA Novosti) - Russian President Dmitry
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 7, 2009
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      http://en.rian.ru/russia/20090107/119391260.html

      Russian president congratulates nation on Christmas

      MOSCOW, January 7 (RIA Novosti) - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev
      on Wednesday congratulated Russians on Orthodox Christmas.

      "Over many centuries this festival has given people the unfailing
      light of faith, hope and love," the presidential letter released by
      the Kremlin read. "Christmas festivities bring conciliation, good
      intentions, mercy and mutual respect into our lives."

      Some 110,000 people attended Christmas services in Moscow alone, said
      Anatoly Lastovetsky, a spokesman for the Interior Ministry's
      department in the Russian capital.

      Metropolitan Kirill, the interim leader of the Russian Orthodox
      Church since the death of Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Alexy II
      in December, led the festive service at Cathedral of Christ the
      Savior in central Moscow.

      There are more than 800 Orthodox churches in Moscow, and over 29,000
      subordinated to the Russian Orthodox Church across the globe.

      The Jerusalem, Serb and Georgian Orthodox churches, as well as
      monasteries on Mount Athos, Eastern Catholics and some Protestants
      following the Julian calendar, also celebrate Christmas on January 7.
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