Saturday, October 26, 2013

Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk opens International Conference on Martyrdom

Metropolitan Hilarion, as Chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate's Dept for External Church Relations (DECR) must employ at times the delicate art of diplomacy, so we should be thrilled at his emphasis on martyrdom, confessors and mass repressions, undertaken in the context of his role as Rector of the Ss Cyril and Methodius Institute.

One of the goals for this blog is to make known and to present for veneration new martyrs and confessors under the modern Islamic jihad. (You can click on links for several of these Holy Witnesses on the left-hand column to learn more about them.) 

When leading hierarchs of the Church put their full force, with the grace of God, behind such endeavors as this conference, it encourages the entire Church, laity as well as clergy, to strive to make know those who have confessed to the end their faith in Christ our God, and in turn to stir us all up to a fervent faith which does not hesitate to "take up our cross and follow Him."

Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk opens International Conference on Martyrdom, Confession and Mass Repressions
PRAVMIR — 10/24/2013

An international conference on Theological Reflection on Martyrdom, Confession and Mass Repressions opened at the conference hall of the Danilovskaya Hotel, Moscow. It is organized by the Ss Cyril and Methodius Institute of Post-Graduate and Doctoral Studies with the participation of Novospassky Monastery and the Educational Center “Butovo Firing Range” and with the support of the Russian World Foundation.

Addressing the meeting Metropolitan Hilarion in his capacity as rector of the Institute, said that he hoped it was the first but not the last martirological conference held by the Ss Cyril and Methodius Institute. “The fact that we all have gathered together here today speaks of the vitality of the theme of martyrdom and confession and of the church people’s attraction to the living experience of the Church”, he said. He also expressed hope that through new metropolias and dioceses the Church will be able to give special attention to the veneration of New Martyrs and Confessors associated with a particular part of the Russian Church.

Then Metropolitan Hilarion read a paper on Martyrdom as the Living Experience of the Church.

Mr. S. Mironenko, director of the Russian State Archives, in his opening remarks, said that the theme of the conference “has a great importance for the moral regeneration and formation of our Society”. He spoke of the importance of documents kept in the state archives for studying the feat performed by New Martyrs and Confessors and his archives’ cooperation with dioceses, parishes, theological schools and public organizations, saying in particular, “Our aim is to restore the true history of our Motherland and to glorify those who constitute her glory and honour”.

Then Hegumen Arseny (Sokolov), rector of the Parish of All Saints in Lisbon, Portugal, presented his paper on Martyrdom in Holy Scriptures.

After a short break, the conference continued to work under the chairmanship of Bishop Stefan of Gomel and Zhlobin, chairman of the Canonisation Commission of the Byelorussian Exarchate.