MOSCOW: March 17, 2008
The Rector of St Tikhon Orthodox Humanitarian University Sends His Sympathies
TO ARCHBISHOP HILARION OF SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND, CHIEF DEPUTY OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE SYNOD OF BISHOPS OF THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH OUTSIDE OF RUSSIA
On behalf of the professorial staff and students of St Tikhon Orthodox Humanitarian University, allow me to express to you, the members of the Synod of Bishops, the archpastors, pastors and all the members of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia our genuine sympathies on the repose of His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus, First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, the Abba of the Russian diaspora.
The late Vladyka loved our University and often attested to the fact that the University made a great contribution in the matter of the unification of the two parts of the Russian Orthodox Church. Less than a month ago, we had the great joy of receiving him within our walls and celebrating with him the reestablishment of unity in a spirit of love. For all of us who teach and study at St Tikhon University who participated in this meeting, it will always remain an unforgettable event.
It is profoundly symbolic that the Lord called Vladyka Laurus to his Heavenly Abodes on the day of the Triumph of Orthodoxy. This is a clear sign that God was pleased with his service. He devoted 60 years of his long life to the monastic podvig, and the final achievement in his life was the healing of the rift. Without his fervent participation, his great courage, his search for the will of God and humility, the unification of the sundered parts of our Church could not have taken place.
May the blessed way in which the late Hierarch passed away serve as a sign for those members of the Russian Church Abroad who still doubt the correctness of the path of ecclesiastical unity that he chose! May His Eminence, our dear Vladyka Laurus, abide in the Kingdom of Heaven! Eternal memory to him!
Asking your archpastoral blessing,
Protopriest Vladimir Vorobiov
St Tikhon Orthodox Humanitarian University