Sunday, October 14, 2007

Saakashvili Praises Georgian Orthodox Church

/ Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 2007-10-14 16:13:27

President Saakashvili said the Georgian Orthodox Church was “a beacon” and “driving force” of Georgia’s strengthening and unification.

Saakashvili was speaking while meeting with visiting Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew I on October 13. Bartholomew I is regarded to be a spiritual leader of the world's Orthodox Christians, however he has no direct jurisdiction over the other patriarchs or the other autocephalous Orthodox Churches.

“Our church is prominent not only with its loyalty towards the Orthodox faith, but also with its tolerance and very consistent policy of promoting European values,” Saakashvili said.

He also spoke about Patriarch of the Georgian Orthodox Church, Ilia II, and said “under his leadership the Orthodox Church has gained extremely important role.”

“The fact that such an important delegation is now visiting Georgia demonstrates our Church’s huge international reputation,” he added.

On October 14, Patriarch Illia II and Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew I delivered a joint prayer in the Svetitskhoveli cathedral outside Tbilisi, attended by President Saakashvili and other top level officials.


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