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05.06.2019

Meeting of the flock of the Holy Metropolis of Abkhazia

On 5 June, 2019 in the cathedral church of the monastery of St. Apostle Simon the Canaanite in New Athos held a meeting of the parishioners of the monastery and the flock of the Holy Metropolis of Abkhazia. The meeting was also attended by residents of New Athos, public figures of Abkhazia, deputies of the National Assembly, the Parliament of the Republic of Abkhazia, Orthodox Christians from other regions of Abkhazia.

In addition, the meeting was attended by clerics of the Sukhum-Pitsunda Diocese of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church: Hieromonk Ignatius (Kiut), Basilisk (Leiba), David (Gvazava) and Priest Dalmat (Gopia).

Opening the meeting, Archimandrite Dorotheos (Dbar) told about the situation around the Abkhaz church problem and the outcome of the negotiation process, moderated by the Head of the New Athoa Administration Felix Dautia and the Chairman of the City Assembly of New Athos Ramaz Smyr, People’s Assembly Deputy of the Parliament of the Republic of Abkhazia Natalie Smyr and public figure Miron Chalmaz.
On 4 June 2019, an appeal was made to His Holiness Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill, which contains a request from the President of the Republic of Abkhazia R. D. Khadjimba and the Chairman of the Church Council of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church, Priest Vissarion Apliaa, to lift the ban on priesthood imposed on Archimandrite Dorotheos (Dbar) and Hieromonk Andrey (Ampar) in 2011.

Then the deputy of the National Assembly, the Parliament of the Republic of Abkhazia, Nathalie Smyr thanked all the participants in the negotiation process for their efforts in drafting the Appeal, also thanked the clergy of the Sukhum-Pitsunda Diocese of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church, Priest Vissarion Apliaa and President of the Republic of Abkhazia R. D. Khadzhimba.

M. Chalmaz on behalf of the members of the Council and the staff of the Holy Metropolis of Abkhazia also thanked all the participants in the negotiation process for the achieved results.

Concluding the meeting, Archimandrite Dorotheos (Dbar), Chairman of the Council of the Holy Metropolis of Abkhazia, expressed his gratitude to all participants of the meeting for their active aspiration to solve the Abkhazian church problem.

According to the achieved agreement, the Holy Metropolis of Abkhazia gives an opportunity on June 5 and 6, 2019, in the days of the Ascension of the Lord – the Twelve Great Feasts of the Orthodox Church, to celebrate the corresponding Church services in the New Athos Monastery in the following order:

• On 5 June, at 5:00pm in the central part of the cathedral church of the monastery of St. Apostle Simon the Canaanite Great Vespers with Litany will be held by the clergy of the Holy Metropolis of Abkhazia, led by Archimandrite Dorotheos (Dbar), at 6:30pm in the aisle of St. Alexander Nevsky cathedral church of the monastery of St. Apostle Simon the Canaanite will be held the All-Night Vigil by the clergy of the Sukhum-Pitsunda Diocese of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church.

• On 6 June, at 7:00 in the central part of the cathedral church of the monastery of St. Apostle Simon the Canaanite will be held Matins and the Divine Liturgy at 9:00am by the clergy of the Holy Metropolis of Abkhazia. At 10:30am in the chapel of St. Alexander Nevsky cathedral church of the monastery of St. Apostle Simon the Canaanite the Divine Liturgy will be held by the clergy of the Sukhum-Pitsunda Diocese of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church.

After the finishing of the festive divine services of the Ascension of the Lord on June 5 and 6, 2019 and until receiving a corresponding response to the Appeal of the President of the Republic of Abkhazia R. D. Khadjimba and the Chairman of the Church Council of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church Priest Vissarion Apliaa, all clerics of the Holy Metropolis of Abkhazia and the Sukhum-Pitsunda Diocese of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church continues their activities in their parishes and monasteries.

All participants of the meeting hope that the Appeal will be heard by the hierarchy of the Russian Orthodox Church and the church problem of the Abkhazian people will be solved by the grace of God.