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XXIst International Ecumenical Conference,on Orthodox Spirituality

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  • Bill Samsonoff
    Press Release, 29 August 2013 *XXIst International Ecumenical Conference on Orthodox Spirituality*** /in collaboration with the Orthodox Churches / **THE AGES
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 2, 2013
      Press Release, 29 August 2013

      *XXIst International Ecumenical Conference
      on Orthodox Spirituality***

      /in collaboration with the Orthodox Churches /


      Monastery of Bose, 4-7 September 2013

      /The Ages of the Spiritual Life/ is the title, inspired by the book of
      the Russian theologian Paul Evdokimov, of the 21st International
      Ecumenical Conference on Orthodox Spirituality, organized in
      collaboration with the Orthodox Churches, which will be held at the
      Monastery of Bose on 4--7 September 2013.

      The passage from one age to another in life is the common experience of
      all, but is often difficult to live. Contemporary culture, held between
      the idolatry of immutable youth and the removal of old age and of death,
      appears to have lost a sense of the bounds between the ages of life and
      to postpone to an indefinite future the decisions of mature age. In the
      understanding of the Christian East the spiritual life is essential for
      authentic human maturity.

      The conference in Bose, with the participation of bishops and monks
      belonging to the Orthodox Churches, to the Reform, and to the Catholic
      Church and of scholars from various countries, intends to listen to the
      wisdom of the fathers and to offer a space for reflection on the theme
      of spiritual maturity through crises of passage and phases of trial.
      Particular attention will be paid to the final phase of life and of
      Christian hope in the face of death.

      In the inaugural session the speakers will be *Enzo Bianchi*, prior of
      Bose, bishop Iosif of Patara, delegate of the ecumenical patriarch
      Bartholomew ("Spiritual life and Christian unity"), father *Michail
      Z(eltov* of the Moscow Patriarchate ("Baptism, the source of life in

      In four days of meetings and discussions open to the public the speakers
      will be: Biblical scholars (*Andrej Desnickij*, Moscow; *Petros
      Vassiliadis*, Thessalonica), patrologists (*Sebastian Brock*, Oxford;
      *Andrew Louth*, Durham; *Symeon Paschalidis*, Thessalonica; *Norman
      Russell*, Farnham), eastern and western monks (fr *Michel Van Parys*,
      Chevetogne monastery; igumen *Metodije Markovic'*, Monastery of St
      Nicholas, Vranje; igumen *Nikolay Pavlyk*, Holy Trinity-St Sergius
      Lavra), theologians and writers (*Vassilios Thermos*, Athens; *Andrei
      Ples,u*, Bucharest; *John Behr*, New York; *Porphyrios Giorgi*, Balamand).

      Christian spiritual life is born in baptism, with incorporation in
      Christ, and grows to the measure of full maturity in Christ (Eph 4:13).
      In the ascetic tradition, spiritual growth goes through various stages
      or steps, in which the person learns to know its own limits, also the
      Spirit's action, which leads to the transfiguration of everything human.

      What indications does the Orthodox monastic tradition offer for
      understanding the relation between the various stages of human life and
      the ages of spiritual life? What is the relation between youth and
      spiritual fervor, between middle age and service to one's neighbor,
      between old age and Christian hope in sickness and in death?

      These are some of the questions that will be treated in an exchange of
      views moderated by Konstantin Sigov (Kiev), dedicated to /Christian hope
      in the ages of life/, with the participation of *Michel Evdokimov*
      (Paris), *Antoine Arjakovsky* (Paris), *Athanasios Papathanassiou*
      (Athens), and metropolitan *Vassilios* (Karayannis) of Kostantia and
      Ammochostos, delegate of the Archbishop Cyprus Chrysostomos II,
      moderator of the commission "Faith and Order" of the World Council of
      Churches, rappresented at the conference by *Michel Nseir*.

      Learning to discern the Spirit's action in every age means also opening
      paths of hope for men and women who experience suffering and loneliness.
      The Church, as a space of communion and of communication among men and
      between men and God, is also an occasion for a fraternal encounter so as
      to live time that has sense. This theme will be treated in the final
      paper of the conference, "Time in the life of the Church", by bishop
      *Maxim* of Western America of the Serbian Orthodox Church (Los Angeles).

      Those present at the conference for the Catholic Church will be:
      *Mansueto Bianchi*, bishop of Pistoia, president of the commission
      "Ecumenism and inter-religious dialogue" of the Italian Bishops'
      Conference, archbishop *Antonio Mennini*, apostolic nuncio in the United
      Kingdom, bishop *Gabriele Mana* of Biella, retired archbishop of Perugia
      *Giuseppe Chiaretti*, and *Hyacinthe Destivelle*, the delegate of the
      Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity.

      Bishop *Konstantin* (Ostrovskij) of Zarajsk will lead the delegation of
      the Moscow Patriarchate, which includes father *Dimitrij Sizonenko*,
      responsible for inter-Christian dialogue of the Departemnt for external
      relations. Other participants will be archbishop *Stefan* of Homel' and
      Z(hiobin (Exarchate of Belarus), metropolitan *Zosima* of Vladikavkaz,
      father *Stefan Domuschi*, delegate of the Moscow Theological Academy,
      archimandrite *Serafim* (Petrovskij), delegate of metropolitan Aleksandr
      of Alma Ata and Kazakhstan, hieromonks *Amvrosij* (Vajnagij) e *Pimen*
      (Vojat) of the Lavra of the Caves in Kiev, delegates of metropolitan
      *Antonij* of Boryspil, vicar of the metropolitan of Kiev and rector of
      the Kiev Theological Academy.

      Bishop *Ignatie* of Mures, of the Romanian Orthodox Church will
      represent patriarch Daniel. Other participants will be metropolitan
      *Dometian* of Vidin and bishop *Boris* of Agatonitsa (Bulgarian Orthodox
      Church), bishop *Alexander* (Golitzin) of Toledo and bishop
      *Melchisedek* of Pittsburgh (Orthodox Church of America), fr *Zakaria
      *(Baghumian) (Armenian Apostolic Church), delegate of the Catholikos of
      all Armenians Garechin II, archimandrite *Athenagoras* (Fasiolo)
      (Orthodox Archdiocese of Italy and Malta), canon *Hugh Wybrew* (Church
      of England), delegate of the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.

      To be noted is the presence of monks and nuns from Orthodox monasteries
      (Greece, Russia, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey, Mount Sinai,
      Armenia, France, England, United States), from Catholic and Reformed
      monasteries (Belgium, France, Italy, Switzerland, Hungary). We note also
      the presence of father *Joustinos* of the St Catherine Monastery on
      Sinai in Egypt, fr *Evdokimos Karakoulakis* of the Koutloumoussiou
      monastery on Mount Athos, of fr *Vasilije* (Grolimund) of Geilnau.
      Present at the conference will be the ambassador of Romania to the Holy
      See *Bogdan Tataru*, the consul general of the Russian Federation in
      Milan *Aleksandr Nourizade*, and professors *Gelian Prochorov* (St
      Petersburg), *Spyridon Kontoyannis* and *Nikitas Aliprandis* (Athens),
      *Pantelis Kalaitzidis* (Volos).


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