EPISTLE TO THE YOUTH SYMPOSIUM
Dear in the Lord archpastors and pastors, dear young attendees and parishioners of the Russian Church Abroad and Patriarchal parishes, dear brothers and sisters!
I send my heartfelt greetings to you, participants and guests of the Orthodox Youth Symposium dedicated to the 90th anniversary of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia.
In the years of forced emigration, all the years of the difficult service far from our historical homeland, Russian Orthodoxy actively preached to the youth in word and in deed, calling them onto the path of the true faith, actively serving our Lord Jesus Christ.
It is heartwarming that the good traditions of a youth movement continue, a tradition set in motion by the founding fathers of our Church, by all those who labored so much in the work of establishing the Church far from the homeland.
Today many young people also choose new forms of unity and cooperation. We can only welcome this. But whatever they do, our main goal must be to actively preach Christ the Savior in the community of the faith, active love towards each other, respect for elders, the desire and ability to help each other.
On this day I appeal to you, father pastors, spiritual guides of the young generation. Your challenge is to help the youth make the right decision in their life’s path. We must strive to reveal to our young people the joy of spiritual life in Christ, the beauty of Christian and human relations; to seek out new forms of dialog and work with youth.
Communion with young people demands special sensibilities and a fatherly heart, along with able spiritual guidance. If you equip oneself with patience, your efforts will be rewarded.
I wish the young people of the Russian Church Abroad and of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA and their spiritual leaders Divine aid in their further efforts and good works. We must apply maximum efforts so that not only will present Christians be the foundation for the future of the Orthodox Church, but that many of those who for various reasons are found outside the Church now will come to Christ, too. For these people, we must serve as an example of good Christian life and active service to God and our neighbors.
May Christ the Savior and all His saints help us in this!