Thursday, May 29, 2008

Turkmen President receives Metropolitan of Smolensk and Kaliningrad

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has received a prominent hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Chirch, Chairman of the Department for External Ecclesiastical Affairs of the Moscow Patriarchate Metropoplitan of Smolensk and Kalinigrad Kirill in Ashgabat, May 27. Igor Blatov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to Turkmenistan, attended the meeting.

According to the Turkmen State News Agency (TDH), the high guest conveyed the heartfelt greetings on behalf of Holy Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Alexy II and expressed the wishes of wellbeing and prosperity to the people of Turkmenistan.

Thanking for the wishes the Turkmen leader said he was very glad to welcome on the Turkmen land the envoy of the Russian Orthodox Church that, “like in other major world religions, builds its activities on the principles of kindness, humanism and love of mankind”.

“Tolerance and respect for other religions are the main traits of the national character of the Turkmen people, who highly rate the universal virtues and postulates”, said Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov. “The people of Turkmenistan cherish the interethnic and religious harmony reigning in the country. They consider it as one of the most important conditions of maintaining peace and stability and a basis for further strengthening of mutual understanding among nations”.

Metropolitan Kirill expressed sincere gratitude for the attention and tolerant attitude toward the Russian Orthodox Church and its parishes in Turkmenistan saying that the leadership of the Russian Orthodox Church highly appreciates this attitude.

“I have seen many spiritual faces on which I was able to realize the atmosphere of peace and confidence in the future that the citizens of your country live in”, the Metropolitan said and told about the service he had held at an orthodox church in Ashgabat.


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