The June 2012 issue of the Zhurnal Moskovsoj Patriarkhii [Journal of the Moscow Patriarchate] is prefaced by a letter from His Eminence Metropolitan Ilarion of Volokolamsk:
“Eminent Archpastors, Dear Fathers, Brothers and Sisters:
|Signing of the Act of Canonical Communion by Metropolitan Laurus and Patriarch Alexiy II in May 2008.|
The reasons for division are left in the past, but we have needed years of communication, of mutual recognition, and especially of wisdom, courage and discernment in order to achieve this. The path to unity was difficult, but all the more cherished as a result. Eternal memory to those who contributed to the matter of reunification: His Holiness Patriarch Alexy II and Metropolitan Laurus of blessed memory.
In May, the Russian Orthodox Church ceremoniously marked the feast day of SS Cyril and Methodius, Equal-to-the-Apostles, the Illuminators of the Slavs. On that day, the fullness of the Russian Church prayed for her Primate, His Holiness Patriarch Kirill, who was celebrating his namesday. Participating in the ceremonies with Patriarch Kirill was a delegation of the Greek Church, headed by His Beatitude Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and All Greece, who was making his first official visit to the territory of the Russian Church.
The namesday of His Holiness the Patriarch became a celebration of ecclesiastical unity, when all together, in the ancient Uspensky Cathedral, and later on Vasilievsky Spusk, representatives of Local Orthodox Churches prayed, along with hierarchs of the Russian diaspora, headed by His Eminence Metropolitan Hilarion of Eastern America and New York, a host of bishops and pastors, and thousands of worshipers.”