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Russia: Catholic and Orthodox Churches, “Summer University” for priests in Moscow. The result of a meeting between Kirill and Francis

Over these days, Moscow is hosting the third Summer University for priests, organised by the Institute for Advanced Theological Studies St Cyril and Methodius of the Orthodox Church of Moscow and by the Pontifical Council for the Unity of Christian, represented by father Hyacinthe Destivelle. The initiative, which this year will be attended by twelve people from August 25th to September 3rd, aims at “strengthening relationships between the Russian Orthodox Church and the Catholic Church in the academic area and in humanitarian cooperation”. That’s why in the last few days the students visited Churches and monasteries and met delegates and presidents of the Synod’s departments of the Orthodox Church, such as the department for charity, led by reverend Alexander Alyoshin, who “described the areas of social service of the Church”, as explained in a release from the Patriarchate: disability, drug-addiction, orphans, homeless people, disadvantaged families, single mothers, are the social emergencies the Church mainly devotes to. The students were also received by Patriarch Kirill: these exchanges that, by now a tradition, shape “a system for the mutual knowledge of the life of the Churches” “sound like a good idea to me”. The Patriarch pointed out that such a system was created after the meeting with Pope Francis in Havana in 2016, an event that “gave a strong, lively boost to the development of our bilateral relationships”.

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