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BUENOS AIRES: August 23, 2010
Festive Services at Holy Resurrection Cathedral in Buenos Aires

On August 22, 2010, Divine Liturgy was celebrated at the Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ in Buenos Aires, which preceded a round table titled Compatriots and the Russian Orthodox Church: Experiences in Cooperation in Latin America. Divine services were led by His Eminence Archbishop Mark of Yegorievsk, Head of the Moscow Patriarchates Administration for Foreign Institutions, and His Grace Bishop John of Caracas and South America. The hierarchs were joined by clergymen who arrived to participate in the discussions from various countries of Latin America, as well as clerical representatives of the MPs Department of External Church Relations: Hegumen Filipp (Ryabykh), and Priest Sergei Zvonaryov, Secretary for the Far Abroad.

Praying during Divine Liturgy were also members of the laity, active members of Russian organizations and the Cathedrals parishioners. Alexander Chepurin, Director of the Department for Cooperation with Compatriots Abroad of Russias Ministry of Foreign Affairs; IV Romanchenko, Acting Plenipotentiary for the Russian Federation in Argentina, and members of the lay organization Russkiy Mir.

At the end of divine services, Archbishop Mark addressed those in attendance, sharing his joy over serving jointly at Resurrection Cathedral of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, which marks its 50th anniversary this year.

Vladyka Mark stressed the importance of preserving ecclesiastical unity in Latin America and expressed his hope that those who departed the Church would return to her bosom. Today, serving together with us were priests of the Moscow Patriarchate in Latin America, thereby bearing witness to church unity, said the archpastor. Touching upon the importance of spiritual life for Russian living abroad, Vladyka Mark emphasized: This church is a place of service, a site for prayer for Russian people who are far away from their Homeland. Here they turn to God and draw spiritual strength. Today, the Gospel was read, in which the Lord gave His disciples the parable of the vineyard husbandmen. These words have their own meaning, their own values. Using these words, we can draw parallels between the Russian people and the husbandmen, for us to hear and heed.

In his response, Vladyka John greeted those in attendance and those with whom he served: For us who live in Argentina, this is a genuine gift, for todays hierarchal service is an important event. We have the great joy of seeing clergymen from all corners of South America, to pray together and exchange brotherly emotions, being in communion with each other.

With the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, Archbishop Mark of Yegorievsk gave the Third-class Medal of St Daniel of Moscow of the Russian Orthodox Church to IN Andrushkevich, President of the Union of Russian Cadet Corps, in honor of his efforts towards strengthening church unity.

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