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Orthodox spiritual center to be built in Berlin

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  • Bill Samsonoff
    http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/60970.htm Orthodox spiritual center to be built in Berlin Berlin, April 18, 2013 An Orthodox center with a stone church,
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 22, 2013
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      http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/60970.htm

      Orthodox spiritual center to be built in Berlin
      Berlin, April 18, 2013

      An Orthodox center with a stone church, Sunday school, library, hostel
      for pilgrims and kindergarten is to be built in the Marzahn district of
      Berlin, said Abbot Daniel (Irbits), the Superior of St George’s
      Monastery in Gotschendorf and secretary to the Archbishop of Berlin and
      Germany, in an interview withRIA Novosti on Wednesday.

      According to him there are currently six parishes of the Russian
      Orthodox Church in Berlin, including "one German-language parish opened
      at the request of native Germans converted to the Orthodox faith".
      According to the media about 40,000 representatives of the
      Russian-speaking population live in the Marzahn district of Berlin.

      A piece of land which is 5,572 square meters in size, situated on
      Cosmonauts Avenue, was recently acquired by the Russian Church.

      "The need to build an Orthodox church in the eastern district of
      Berlin--Marzahn--became apparent long ago. This is because the majority
      of our compatriots live precisely in this district and they need an
      Orthodox church. Letters were constantly received by the diocese of
      Berlin addressed to the ruling Bishop, Archbishop Theophan of Berlin and
      Germany, from the district's residents asking for an Orthodox community
      to be founded there. And now, glory be to God, such an opportunity has
      come," said Abbot Daniel.

      According to him the Orthodox community of Marzahn at present has to
      rent premises, but at the same time preparatory work to build a
      temporary wooden church has begun. Its total area will be 225 square
      meters and 17 meters in height. The wooden church is expected to
      accommodate up to 250 people (until the stone church has been completed).

      "The community wishes to finish building the wooden church by 28 August
      this year," said Abbot Daniel. The Orthodox Church celebrates the feast
      of the Dormition of the Mother of God on that day.

      At the same time he specified that the wooden church will be built using
      donations. However, he did not give the donors’ names, explaining that
      "those who contributed as they could to building the wooden church in
      Marzahn wished to remain anonymous".

      The agency's spokesman had difficulty in replying when he was asked how
      many people there are in the Orthodox community in Berlin today. "On
      great feasts it happens that even our Cathedral (the Cathedral of the
      Resurrection) is not big enough to accommodate all the worshippers," he
      noted.

      Speaking about the appearance of the Orthodox center in Berlin, Abbot
      Daniel said that "First of all, an Orthodox church will be here to
      accommodate a living community". "With premises for a Sunday school, an
      icon-painting workshop, an Orthodox library, a hostel for pilgrims, a
      dining-room for the needy and, of course, an Orthodox kindergarten which
      is also much needed in the center of the German capital, will be located
      around the church. The main thing is that the city authorities will meet
      us halfway," said the agency's spokesman.

      According to him, as soon as a kindergarten is open at the Orthodox
      center, Church representatives will be ready to sit at the negotiating
      table with the city deputies to discuss obtaining the various
      authorizations. "This is justa question of time," he added. When the
      stone church will be built is not yet known. According to Fr. Daniel,
      everything depends on possible financial helpfrom donors. "And first of
      all, before starting this work, we must receive a blessing from his
      Holiness Patriarch Kirill and submit the general architectural plans to
      his discretion and approval," said the Abbot.

      He specified that they hope to draw up three possible plans for the
      future church which then will be shown to the Church authorities. The
      Moscow architect Alexander Novikov is running the project to build the
      stone church and the Orthodox center.

      According to information from the official website of the Diocese of
      Berlin and Germany of the Russian Orthodox Church, at the moment there
      are about 1 million Orthodox believers in Germany, among them Russians,
      Serbs, Greeks, Bulgarians and Romanians. In the last 15 years over
      300,000 people have arrived in the country from Russia and countries of
      the former Soviet Union, and many of them are Orthodox Christians. There
      are currently over 60 parishes in the diocese of Berlin and Germany and
      over 50 priests and deacons serve in them. There are parishes of the
      Russian Church in all German cities.
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