Patriarch Kirill arrives in Solovki
Leader of the Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Kirill today arrived in Solovki, the holy islands in the White Sea. -This is one the spiritual capitals of our motherland, the Patriarch said when arriving.
The church leader was met at the local airport by regional Governor Ilya Mikhalchuk and Deputy Leader of the Presidential Administration A Beglov, a press release from the Patriarchy reads. The patriarch’s delegation includes a big number of high-ranking church officials, among them leader of the church’s department of external relations Metropolitan Illarion Volokolamsky.
The visit is the Patriarch’s second to the far northern archipelago of Solovki. As previously reported, the Patriarch during last year’s visit took on the conflict between the church and civil authorities on the islands.
The many years of tense relations between the church and the local authorities and population is likely to be an issue also during this year’s visit.
The Patriarch confirms that a meeting in a special commission will take place during the visit. –We will discuss the further development of the archipelago and the restoration work, which is must be completed as soon as possible in order to return this place its former beauty, Kirill said, his press service informs.
The visit is also historic in the sense that two archimandrites at the same time will be ordinated to bishops. That has never before happened at Solovki.