Metropolitan Theodore (Chuadze) of Akhaltsikhe and Tao-Klarjeti, together with the priests and clergy, met Archbishop Justin Welby of Canterbury, who made an official visit to Georgia and the Patriarchate of Georgia, on October 3.
Archbishop Justin Welby said that he was happy to visit Georgia and the Georgian Patriarchate. He added that Georgia had a great history and culture and that the Orthodox Church had a special role and importance for the country for more than 1600 years.
The Archbishop expressed grief over the Russia-Ukraine war, the occupation of part of Georgia’s territory, and the internally displaced persons. He also expressed hope that with God’s help, the time will come when such painful problems will be resolved.
The Chairman of the Department of Foreign Affairs of the Patriarchate of Georgia, Metropolitan Gerasime (Sharashenidze), spoke about the current events in the Caucasus region and the world. He said that maintaining peace and normalizing relations among nations is of particular importance and that the Georgian Orthodox Church had been always trying and was still trying to promote peace within the country, in the Caucasus region and, of course, in the confrontation between Russia and Ukraine.
Metropolitan Andrew (Gvazava) of Gori and Ateni, who is the representative of the Patriarch of Georgia in Great Britain and Ireland, thanked the Archbishop of Canterbury for the support to the Georgian diaspora.
Metropolitan Theodore thanked them on behalf of Patriach Ilia II of Georgia and expressed his readiness to further deepen their cooperation.