Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem has dubbed Prime Minister Mykola Azarov a knight of orthodox crusaders of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre.
The ceremony of ordination took place in Theophilos III residence in Jerusalem, Israel.
“I want to proclaim you a grand commodore of orthodox crusaders of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre,” the Patriarch said.
Theophilos III decorated Azarov with a golden cross, a crown, a wreath and a star.
He stressed, Azarov’s visit to Jerusalem was of not only political, but also of significant religious meaning.
“Your current visit is important as in political, so as in religious sense,” the Patriarch said.
Azarov in his turn thanked the Patriarch and noted that for him this was a great honour and that the world was living out hard times, and more than ever it was necessary to pray for spreading Christian values of light, warmth and good.
As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Patriarch Cyril of Moscow and all Rus in July 2010 decorated President Viktor Yanukovych with an order of the Russian Orthodox Church – of Saint Equal to Apostles Knyaz Vladimir of grade I, and the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Moscow patriarchate decorated Yanukovych with an insignia of distinction of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church primate.