Church of Serbia – 20/6/21
His Holiness Porfirije, the Serbian Patriarch, received His Excellency Alexander Grushko, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, at the Patriarchal Palace in Belgrade, on June 18, 2021.
Patriarch Porfirije and Deputy Minister Mr. Grushko in an open and friendly conversation expressed satisfaction with the strong friendly relations between the Republic of Serbia and the Russian Federation, which are reflected at all levels. Patriarch Porfirije pointed out several important joint projects, crowned with Russian participation in the interior decoration of the Saint Sava Memorial Cathedral in the Vracar district, and thanked the Russian Federation for its support and understanding of the problems facing the Serbian Orthodox Church in the southern Serbian province of Kosovo and Metohija.
To the same extent, His Holiness emphasized the principled and just position of the Russian Federation in relation to other issues facing our Church and people, emphasizing the need to preserve peace and the just position of all peoples in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and especially the stability of Republika Srpska as a guarantor of survival not only the Serbian people but also the Christian culture in that area.
The serious problems of the Serbian Orthodox Church and the faithful in the Republic of Montenegro were also discussed. His Excellency Alexander Grushko pointed out that immediately after his election, Patriarch Porfirije won the sympathy of the Russian people with his principled attitudes and further improvement of cooperation with the Russian Orthodox Church. Mr. Grushko emphasized the role of the Russian Federation in preserving peace and stability in the Balkans, and that the contribution of the Serbian Orthodox Church is of special importance in that regard, and that he especially appreciates the efforts made by its head personally.
The audience was attended by the Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Republic of Serbia, His Excellency Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko, the Vicar Bishop Stefan of Remesiana, Director of the Fourth European Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, Mr. Yuri Phillipson; Minister Counselor at the Embassy of the Russian Federation to the Republic of Serbia, Mr. Andrey Temyashov, third secretary and translator at the Embassy of the Russian Federation in the Republic of Serbia; Mrs. Margarita Komisarova, elected Vicar Bishop Sava of Marca, Director of the Information and Publishing Institution of the Serbian Orthodox Church, Mr. Dusan Stokanovic; and the head of the Office of the Serbian Patriarch, Deacon Aleksandar Prascevic.