MOSCOW: February 22, 2005

Representatives of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia to Participate in the International Russian People's Council

His Eminence Archbishop Mark of Berlin and Germany, President of the Committee on discussions with the Moscow Patriarchate; His Eminence Archbishop Hilarion of Sydney, Australia and New Zealand; His Eminence Archbishop Kyrill of San Francisco and Western America; Mitred Protopriest George Larin and Protopriest Alexander Lebedeff have been invited to participate in the 9th International Russian People's Council, to be held at Christ the Savior Church and Danilov Monastery on March 9-10. The Council will include the following areas of discussion: "The Church. The Army. The People. The Past. The Present. The Future," "Contemporary Threats to the World and Security," and others.

International Russian People's Councils discuss the most important and urgent matters of the day. Past Councils have concentrated on: "Faith and the State," "Dialog of Civilizations," "The Health of the Nation," etc. The last Council, held in February of last year, was devoted to the topic: "Russia and the Orthodox World." Protopriest Peter Holodny, Treasurer of the Synod of Bishops, spoke at that Council. Participants of past Councils have included the President, the Chairman of the Russian Government, Federal ministers, Heads of the Federal Assembly, renowned scientists and cultural figures, military leaders, archpastors and priests of the Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, representatives of Local Orthodox Churches, theologians and sociologists.