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29 Jun, 2008 20:49

Medvedev praises efforts to unite Church

The President has attended a service on the 1020th anniversary of Christianity in Russia. It was held at the Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow. Speaking at the service, Dmitry Medvedev praised recent attempts to unite the Russian Orthodox Church.

“The Assembly for the first time has a major presence from the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad. By being held on such an important date, the Assembly has proved the unity of the Russian Orthodox Church and its dedication to preventing separation,” he said.

The president pointed out that representatives from Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova had taken part in a meeting of the Council of Bishops.

He lauded moves by the church to promote inter-faith peace, saying that such efforts helped countries combat extremism and aided social cohesion.

As part of the day’s programme, Dmitry Medvedev announced the handover of holy relics from the Moscow Kremlin museum to the Russian Orthodox Church. Among the  prized relics is part of the Virgin Mary’s Robe.