23 September, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 02/12/2009
RUSSIA – CHINA
Patriarch Kirill meets Ye Xiaowen, China’s Religious Affairs minister
For years the Moscow Patriarchate has been trying to breathe new life into China’s Orthodox Church, relying on the influence of politicians like Putin and Sino-Russian economic relations.

Moscow (AsiaNews/orthodox.cn) – The newly elected Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill met a delegation of the People’s Republic of China led by Ye Xiaowen, head of the State Administration for Religious Affairs, who is well-known for his anti-Vatican attacks.

The meeting took place on 2 February but was reported only yesterday on the Orthodoxy in China website. Kirill thanked Ye for the visit which took place “on the day of my enthronement”, he said. As a matter of fact, it occurred a day earlier.

The patriarch noted that the two had already met in 2006 during the World Summit of Religious Leaders held in Moscow at the time of a G8 summit.

It was a very good meeting and satisfactory conversation”, said Kirill. “Since that time our relationship has received many positive developments,” he added.

Improving relations between Russian and Chinese Orthodox (about 15,000 spread across China’s vast territory) is even included in the Sino-Russian Treaty of good neighbourliness for 2009 – 2012.

When he was in charge of the Moscow Patriarchate’s External Relations Department, Kirill had tried for the years to get the Chinese to allow the Russian Orthodox Church to train Chinese Orthodox seminarians train so as to re-establish a Chinese Orthodox clergy.

Several times the new patriarch had offered to send Russian clergymen to China for the care of Orthodox worshippers, to little success because religious freedom is not fully guaranteed in China since the Orthodox Church is not a recognised religious organisation in the country.

In recent years the late Patriarch Aleksij tried to get China to open up through Vladimir Putin’s influence and China’s need for Russian oil.

During his meeting with Ye, Kirill mentioned the various problems Orthodox communities face in mainland China. They include rebuilding the Dormition church on the grounds of the Russian Embassy in Beijing and the lack of Orthodox clergy in Harbin, Urumqi, Ghulja (Yining) and Labdarin (E'erguna).

The Russian Orthodox Church arrived in China some 300 years ago. Its first communities were made up of Russian immigrants concentrated in the north of the country. Currently most believers are still of Russian origin, living in four main locations: Harbin (Heilongjiang), where there is a parish dedicated to the protective mantle of the Mother of God, in Labdarin (Outer Mongolia), and in Kulj and Urumqi (Xinjiang).

China’s Cultural Revolution had devastating effects on Orthodox bishops and priests. Still today there are no local priests and worshippers meet on and off on Sundays to pray.

There are however 13 Chinese Orthodox seminarians studying at the Sretenskaya Theological Academy in Moscow and the Academy of St Petersburg.

Russian Orthodox priests come to China on Christmas and Easter to celebrate various services but inside Russia’s embassy and consulates.

China’s Orthodox Church is a separate jurisdiction, but the Patriarchates of Moscow and Constantinople are trying to draw it into their fold.

Hong Kong-based Metropolitan Nektarios’ jurisdiction comes under that of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople. His seat publishes material for Chinese worshippers and the metropolitan has often stressed the need for greater religious freedom in China.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
01/26/2009 RUSSIA
Vote for new Moscow Patriarch set for tomorrow; three candidates running, Kirill favoured
01/19/2009 RUSSIA
From Moscow a patriarch for the third millennium
12/10/2008 RUSSIA
Synod to elect new Moscow patriarch set for late January
11/28/2007 CHINA – RUSSIA
Russian patriarchate ready to train Chinese priests
12/19/2006 RUSSIA
Caritas asks for Orthodox priest to provide pastoral assistance

Editor's choices
IRAQ-VATICAN
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul": Archbishops’ thanks as first aid arrives
by Amel NonaMsgr. Amel Nona, the Chaldean Archbishop of Mosul, who is also a refugee himself, thanks all the donors to the AsiaNews campaign. The situation is increasingly difficult given the huge number of refugees and the arrival of winter and snow, making outdoor shelters and tents impossible. The crisis, an occasion that activates the faith of Christians.
ITALY - IRAQ
After raising € 350,000, 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul' campaign continues
by Bernardo CervelleraDonations raised up to 31 August have been sent to the patriarch of Baghdad and the bishops of Kurdistan. The campaign helps to feed, house, clothe, and bring comfort to more than 150,000 Christian, Yazidi, Turkmen, Shia and Sunni refugees who fled the violence of the army of the Islamic Caliphate. People in Italy and around the world have been generous, including the poor and the unemployed, a sign of hope for the world as well as those who suffer and those who give.
IRAQ-ITALY
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul," the thanks of the Patriarch Louis Sako; the concerns of the Bishop of Kurdistan
by Bernardo CervelleraThe head of the Chaldean Church is grateful for the AsiaNews campaign and hopes that "this chain of solidarity will reach far and wide”. Helping refugees to remain in Iraq. But many want to flee abroad. The bishop of Amadiyah where thousands of displaced people have found haven in churches and homes: We also help the Arabs (Muslims), and Yazidis, for free and without looking at our confessional differences.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.