Patriarch Alexy at St. Catherine's/Moscow
International stability depends on relations between Russia and the USA � Alexy II
Moscow, December 7, Interfax � Patriarch Alexy II of Moscow and All Russia noted that it is important to develop Russian-American relations for sustaining general stability on the international stage.
�Peace and stability in the world largely depend on the relations between our countries (Russia and the USA - IF)�, Alexy II has said Friday addressing the US ambassador to Russia William Burns and parishioners of the Moscow St. Catherine in-the-Fields church, the representation of the Orthodox Church in America.
The Patriarch considers the 200th anniversary of establishing diplomatic relations between Russia and the USA celebrated this year �a joyful and bright event�.
Alexy II expressed his gratitude to the American ambassador for giving a possibility to a numerous delegation of the Russian Orthodox clergymen and laymen to visit the US parishes of the Russian Church Outside of Russia. According to him, it contributed to �setting up a live prayerful contact between people in America and Russia �.
�There are spiritual bonds between our peoples and we have to strengthen them�, the primate of the Russian Orthodox Church noted.
Burns noted that �the Orthodox Church has contributed to developing relations between our countries� during the last two centuries.
�On behalf of all Americans I would like to give the Church its due as it has made so much to establish good relations between Russians and Americans�, the USA ambassador noted addressing the Patriarch.
The church�s rector, representative of the Orthodox Church in America Archimandrite Zacchaeus (Wood) presented Alexy II an icon of St. Catherine and St. German of Alaska as a symbol of unity between the two Churches.
The representative of the Holy See in Russia Archbishop Antonio Mennini also attended the service. He kissed a big cross Alexy II had in his hand on the pulpit.
***3 photos at this Russian-language site: http://www.sedmitza.ru/index.html?did=48814
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