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Pres emphasizes Churches’ role in bringing Poland, RF closer

August 16, 2012, 22:58 UTC+3

The majority of Orthodox believers live in Poland’s eastern and southeastern provinces

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WARSAW, August 16 (Itar-Tass) — At a meeting with visiting Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill, Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski emphasized a big role the Churches could play in Polish-Russian rapprochement.

Patriarch Kirill arrived in Poland on Thursday for the first-ever visit of a Russian patriarch to mostly Catholic Poland.

“I believe that it is the Churches that can contribute to a great degree to Polish-Russian rapprochement. Only they can help our peoples overcome the existing prejudices that prevent them from looking at each other with trust,” President Komorowski said.

He expressed gratitude to the Russian Orthodox Church “for the moves done towards reconciliation of the two peoples”.

“We value all your moves aimed at fixing relations and establishing a dialogue,” the president stressed.

Patriarch Kirill was invited to pay a visit to Poland by head of the Polish Orthodox Church Metropolitan Savva of Warsaw and All Poland.

Orthodoxy is professed by about two percent of Poles, or about 600,000 people. The majority of Orthodox believers live in Poland’s eastern and southeastern provinces.

Patriarch Kirill will end his Polish visit on August 19. On August 19, the Transfiguration of Christ Day, and in the evening on August 18, the Russian and Polish Patriarch will administer the divine service at the Holy Mount of Grabarka (Holy Hill of Grabarka), a sanctuary for Orthodox Christians in Poland. The message to the peoples of Poland and Russia will be signed here.

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