Patriarchs Bartholomew and Cyril co-celebrated service in the temple of St. George in Istanbul
The Heads of the Constantinople and Moscow Patriarchy, Patriarchs Bartholomew and Cyril has celebrated together a Divine Liturgy in the church of St. George in Istanbul last Sunday. It happened at the second day of the visit of Russian Patriarch Cyril to Istanbul. Ever since in Saturday, right after the arrival of the Russian delegation the official negotiations took place, in which the relations between Moscow and Constantinople, the Orthodox unity and the care about the Russian-speaking believers in Istanbul have been considered. It has been also discussed about the Pilgrimage Tourism in Turkey, and the preparations for the Holy Ecumenical Assembly of the Orthodox Church. The talks lasted two and a half hours. Patriarch Cyril has met the Prime Minister of Turkey after this, and has sanctified a Chapel in the Russian Embassy.
In his after Divine Liturgy sermon, Patriarch Bartholomew said: “Today, the most important event of the visit of our Holy Constantinople’s Church happened - our common Divine Liturgy celebration, and the Communion of the Holy Flesh and Blood of God, our Unity with the Holy Spirit. Indeed, the life of the Church of Christ is concentrated around the Eucharist, there is the wholeness, and from there the life of our Church is taking strength. As we fulfil the Commandment of our God Jesus, we remember the power of His Atonement and taking part on one Eucharistic dinning table, we become one body and one spirit with Him (compare: Eph. 4,4; 1 Cor. 6,17), unifying with Him in the closest manner. And, as He was dieing because of us, the Saviour was praying for all His disciples to be like one, just as the Son is One with Father (John 17, 22), therefore cordially must we, the followers of Jesus Christ our Lord, take care of the unity among us. And, the common celebration of all the Heads of Local Churches is a clear and solemn sign of such unity.”