01 February 2013, 18:02
Putin praises Russian Patriarch's care for citizens' concerns
Moscow, February 1, Interfax - President Vladimir Putin has
congratulated Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia on his
"You have assumed enormous responsibility for the entire Orthodox flock,
and your heart is filled with concern for each churchgoer, for each of
the smallest of the parishes," Putin told the Patriarch on Friday.
Putin also said he had discussed various aspects of life in Russia on
many occasions with Patriarch Kirill. "I know - not by hearsay - that
you are one with the country and with the people in tackling tragedies
and in celebrating successes," he said.
"You have been doing a great deal to bring up the younger generation in
the spirit of patriotism and to help our compatriots abroad maintain
contact with their homeland," the president said.
The Patriarch thanked the president for his greetings and for his being
open for meetings and discussions of the most pressing problems. He also
said that since he was enthroned four years ago, dialogue between the
church and the state has been broadening. "This dialogue helps solve
many problems arising in Russian citizens' lives," the Patriarch said.
"Quality of life is measured by spiritual values, not only material
wealth," he said. "Relations between church and state in Russia help the
church to fully administer its service, inspire people in their
spiritual and material life, engage in charitable activities, and take
care of the younger generation, and disabled and elderly people," he said.