24 March 2007

Russian patriarch urges attention to Kosovo shrines

INTERFAX (RUSSIAN FEDERATION), 06 January 2007, 13:26


Moscow, January 6, Interfax - Patriarch Alexy II of Moscow and All Russia has expressed regret that the problem of Kosovo's holy shrines remains unsettled.


"We share the grief over the destruction of churches and monasteries with the silent agreement and at the connivance of those who must speak in defense of these holy shrines," Alexy II told journalists in Moscow ahead of Orthodox Christmas.


The Serb Orthodox Church's main holy shrines are in Kosovo - the land filled with the blood of the Serbian people, Alexy II said.


The Russian patriarch highly commended Patriarch Pavle of the Serb Orthodox Church, who has served in Kosovo for over 35 years.


"He would put through his heart all the trials that befell Kosovo. The blood shed in former Yugoslavia was his pain. He would conduct prayers wherever he traveled. The heroic feat he has performed makes all of us bend our heads in a prayer," Alexy II said.


Patriarch Pavle's selflessness and devotion are what the Serbian people need in this time of trials, Alexy II said.