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5 May 2016

Metropolitan Pavel, Archbishop Guryi to attend Holy and Great Council of Orthodox Church

MINSK, 5 May (BelTA) - Metropolitan Pavel of Minsk and Zaslavl, Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus and Archbishop Guryi of Novogrudok and Slonim will attend the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church as part of the Russian Orthodox Church delegation, BelTA informs with reference to the official website of the Belarusian Orthodox Church.

The decision to hold the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church was taken at a meeting of Primates and representatives of the Orthodox churches in Istanbul in March 2014. Every autocephalous church is represented by a delegation consisting of the Primate and not more than 24 bishops. The Russian Orthodox Church delegation will be headed by Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill.

The Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church will be held in the Greek island of Crete in June 2016. The council is a fruit of long work carried out by local Orthodox Churches for more than 50 years. It is assumed that all decisions will be taken after the churches reach consensus. The Council will discuss and adopt important documents to regulate different aspects of religious life.

Attempts were made in the 20th century, to convene the council. In 1923 Constantinople (Istanbul) hosted the Pan-Orthodox Council but it was not attended by representatives of such ancient and authoritative churches as Jerusalem, Antioch and Alexandria. Then on the initiative of the USSR the all-Orthodox meeting was held in 1948. But it was not attended by all Orthodox churches as well. For example, there were no delegations from Jerusalem and Cyprus.

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