Delegation of the Russian Orthodox Church takes part in enthronement of the new Primate of the Orthodox Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia.
The enthronement of His Beatitude Metropolitan Rastislav, the new Primate of the Orthodox Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia, took place at the Cathedral of St. Alexander Nevsky in Prešov on February 9, 2014.
The Divine Liturgy was celebrated by His Beatitude together with representatives of the Local Orthodox Churches, Archbishop Jáchym of Prague and the Czech Lands, Archbishop Jurai of Michalovce and Košice, and clerics of the Orthodox Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia.
Taking part in the celebration with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia was a delegation of the Russian Orthodox Church. The delegation was led by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations. Archbishop Feodor of Mukachevo and Uzhgorod, Bishops Filaret of Lvov and Galich, and clerics of the Mukachevo and Uzhgorod diocese attended the celebration as well as clerics from the dioceses of the Moscow Patriarchate.
Represented at the celebrations were the Patriarchate of Antioch, the Polish Orthodox Church, and the Orthodox Church in America. Archimandrite Timothy, hegumen of the Monastery of St. John the Russian of the Cassandra metropolia of the Orthodox Church of Greece prayed in the sanctuary.
Attending the divine service were representatives of the state authorities of Slovakia, ambassadors of Russia, Belarus, Cyprus and Bulgaria, and Consul General of Ukraine, as well as representatives of the non-Orthodox confessions.
At the end of the Divine Liturgy, Archbishop Jurai of Michalovce and Košice read out the decision of the Local Council of the Orthodox Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia on the election of Archbishop Rastislav of Prešov as the Primate. Archbishop Jáchym of Prague and the Czech Lands read the prayer for spiritual gifts and God’s mercy to His Beatitude Metropolitan Rastislav. The Primate prayed for God’s help and guidance in his new ministry.
Metropolitan Rastislav was greeted by the hierarchs of the Orthodox Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia and heads of the delegations from the Local Orthodox Church. Metropolitan Hilarion brought greetings from His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia.
His Beatitude Rastislav received greetings from the President of the Slovak Republic, the Conference of Catholic Bishops of Slovakia and the Evangelical Church of Slovakia.
The new Primate cordially thanked all those who have shared the joy of his enthronement and added his special thanks to the Local Orthodox Churches for the support extended to his Church during hard times.
After ‘Many Years’ proclaimed by an archdeacon, all those who celebrated or attended the Divine Liturgy proceeded to the residence of the Archbishops of Prešov., where a festive reception was given.