Agreement Between the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia
and the Moscow Patriarchate on the Joint Construction in Beslan
of a Monastery and Rehabilitation Center is Signed
On March 10, 2005, at the Patriarchal Residence on Chisty pereulok,
an agreement was signed between the Stavropol and Vladikavkaz Diocese
of the Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate and the
Diocese of Berlin and Germany of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside
of Russia on the joint construction of Epiphany Convent in Beslan
(Northern Ossetia/Alania). A therapeutic and trauma center will
be built at the convent as well.
In the presence of His Holiness Patriarch Alexy II of Moscow and
All Russia, this agreement was signed by His Grace Bishop Feofan
of Stavropol and Vladikavkaz and His Eminence Archbishop Mark of
Berlin and Germany. Also participating in the event were Chairman
for the Chancellery of the Moscow Patriarchate, Metropolitan Kliment
of Kaluga and Borovsk; Secretary of the Department of External Church
Affairs, Protopriest Nikolai Balashov; and clergymen of the German
Diocese of the Russian Church Abroad, Protopriest Nikolai Artemoff
and Deacon Andrei Sikoev.
Upon signing the documents, His Grace Bishop Feofan thankfully noted
that the Diocese of Berlin and Germany of the Russian Orthodox Church
Outside of Russia did not hesitate to respond to the tragedy in
Beslan. "Even before the hostage crisis in Northern Ossetia
was resolved in such a dramatic fashion, the parishes of the Church
Abroad began to collect funds to help the people of Beslan, and
medications were sent to Ossetia. The tragedy left terrible scars:
the pain mothers whose children died endure continues unabated,
many of those who survived are in need of further treatment. We
decided to build a children's rehabilitation center, and work has
already begun. The premises of Epiphany Convent have been renovated,
where a medical clinic will be established, and we are collecting
funds for construction.
The hospital will be the first rehabilitation center in Northern
Ossetia specializing in treating those who suffered from the Beslan
Today we ask the blessing of the President of the Russian Orthodox
Church for this God-pleasing effort."
His Eminence Archbishop Mark of Berlin, in turn, stressed: "The
manifestation of this project bears witness to our common desire
to bring the light of Orthodoxy to the people. I think that this
is a significant step in our rapprochement to the glory of God,
for the good of the Church."
In his address before the signing ceremony, His Holiness Patriarch
Alexy II of Moscow and All Russia noted that this evil terrorist
act, committed in the Beslan school on the first day of the school
year, resounded painfully in the hearts not only of those living
in Beslan and Russia, but also in the hearts of those who lived
far outside the borders of the country. The President of the Russian
Orthodox Church expressed gratitude to Vladyka Mark that he and
the diocese he heads, during the very first days of the tragedy
responded not only in word but in deed to the sorrow of the people
of Northern Ossetia.
Orthodox Christians of Western Europe to this day continue to help
the residents of Northern Ossetia; in part, a decision was made
on the participation of the Diocese of Berlin and Germany of the
Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia in the construction of
a rehabilitation center, where those who suffered from this terrorist
act can be helped overcome the psychosomatic effects of the trauma
wish once more to thank the clergymen and laity of the Church Abroad
for earnestly responding, with all their hearts, to the tragic events
in Beslan" said His Holiness Patriarch Alexy.
must be noted that this is the second joint action by the Moscow
Patriarchate and the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia.
Over the course of seven months, the holy relics of Martyrs Grand
Duchess Elizaveta Feodorovna and Nun Varvara were in our country,
visiting over 60 diocese and over 140 cities. In many cities, a
smaller reliquary was taken even to the remotest churches, far from
their cathedral cities. For all the Orthodox Christians in our Fatherland,
the travels of these relics proved to be of moral and spiritual
support," noted the Head of the Russian Orthodox Church.
Now the Stavropol Diocese of the Moscow Patriarchate is working
with the Diocese of Germany and Berlin of the Russian Orthodox Church
Outside of Russia in helping the people of Beslan who suffered from
the inhuman terrorist act, who are burdened with their memories
of the tragic days of September 2004.
express heartfelt thanks to Vladyka Mark for his participation in
the transporting to the Fatherland of the holy relics of SS Elizaveta
and Varvara and in the construction project of the rehabilitation
center in Beslan," said His Holiness Patriarch Alexy in conclusion.
Communications Department of the DECA/MP
Synod of Bishops asks those interested in helping the people of
Beslan to send donations to:
Synod of Bishops/Beslan Fund"
75 East 93rd Street
New York, NY 10128