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St PETERSBURG, July 21. /TASS/. The directorate of the St Isaac’s Cathedral Monument Museum in St Petersburg plans to appoint a special for communications with the Russian Orthodox Church, museum director Yuri Mudrov told TASS on Thursday.
"An expert will be appointed very soon," he said. "I don’t think we’ll set up a big department for the purpose or, as it was previously, establish a special position of a deputy director. But a separate specialist will be appointed at any rate to coordinate the steps (together with the Church) more precisely."
As of 2016, the directorate has a special section for communications with the Church and a deputy director in charge of these contacts but these positions were eliminated at the beginning of last month.
At this moment, the museum does not have any specially designated persons in charge of these contacts and the functions are performed by staff-members of various departments as need be.
Mudrov said he had a meeting with Metropolitan Varsonofy, the ruling hierarch of the Russian Orthodox metropolitan diocese of St Petersburg and Ladoga, after his appointment to the director’s position on June 15, 2017. They discussed further collaboration between the museum and the Church.
"We plan building good relations and developing the ones we have already," Mudrov said. "Our cooperation with the St Petersburg diocese follows the previous pattern that was set up by my predecessors at this post. We have an agreement on partnership signed in 2005 and it spells out all the terms, that is, two church services every day."
"The new aspect of our agreements concerns something that we didn’t always manage to do in the past," he said. "On major religious feasts, all the services will be chanted in the central part of the cathedral. This won’t create any inconveniences for us and as for the Church, solemnity is an important element for the liturgies."
Mudrov stressed the absence of any harm from the services to the tourists’ interests.
"They always have interest in the services and the guides - our own experiences guides and the ones working for other organizations - assess the situation and allow the tourists to take pictures for some time and watch the liturgies," he said. "We don’t have any complaints where the visitors would tell us something or someone was annoying them.".