International Orthodox Christian News

May 11 marked 100 days of service by Patriarch Kirill

Moscow, May 11, Interfax - This Monday, May 11, Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia will mark his first 100 days of service.

To this date, which the secular world traditionally considers the baseline to sum up the first results achieved by a public figure, correspondents of Interfax-Religion asked some well-known Russians to discuss how they remembered the first 100 days of Patriarch's ruling and what results of this period showed.

According to Professor of the Moscow Theological Academy Archdeacon Andrey Kurayev, a new Patriarch has focused on economy, and the economy of compliments, above all. "As far as I know, it is forbidden to greet Patriarch singing Many Years more than once and toast him during any meal which he attends. Priests arriving to congratulate Patriarch on Easter were warned in advance that they should not give expensive bunches of flowers from each parish. In this regard, the economy of compliments means cost-cutting, that is, less emphasis is put on outward demonstrations, even promotion, I would say, and more focus will be given to the actual work," Fr. Andrey thinks.

Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna Romanova points out Patriarch's missionary efforts: "When we listen to him preaching with his inherent rhetorical and spiritual gift, when we see him fostering the expansion of catechesis, sermon and mission, in particular, among young people, we can feel new trends arising. Such trends have already existed under Holy Patriarch Alexy II, whose memory we continue to commemorate. But we believe that Patriarch Kirill will bring the work started by Alexy II to a new and higher level. Patriarch Alexy II laid the foundation for reviving our spiritual life, and Patriarch Kirill will have to put up the whole building."

The Apostolic Nuncio of the Holy See in Russia Archbishop Antonio Mennini believes that Patriarch Kirill "has talent for talking and listening to young people." "I view Patriarch Kirill as a true religious leader who seeks the unity of his Church, and understands the value and importance of all its constituent parts which is the most essential thing, perhaps," Mennini said.

According to a well-known political scientist and President of the Russian World Foundation Vyacheslav Nikonov, Patriarch Kirill positions himself as "the head of the Church of a Universal scale," and takes all possible steps to prevent schism within the Russian Orthodox Church.

A spokesman for the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia Boruh Gorin thinks that the main distinguishing feature of Patriarch Kirill is "his knack for bridging the gap between the so called secular and religious minds, his ability to show that there is nothing secular which can be alienated from spirit, and nothing spiritual that can successfully compete with the so called secular vision."

Head of CIS Institute Konstantin Zatulin said that "Patriarch Kirill remains a figure of high moral authority for many members of community - whether believers or not - and a person whose election to the Patriarch's office was greeted with overall understanding," and "his activity as Patriarch meets the expectations of people."

Patriarch Kirill was elected to the Patriarchal See by the Local Council with 75% of votes on January 27, 2009, and thus became the 16th Moscow Patriarch, the successor of Patriarch Alexy II who died on December 5, 2008.


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