Patriarch Kirill of Moscow sent his heartfelt wishes for peace and prosperity to the President of the Hellenic Republic, Katerina Sakellaropoulou, and the entire Greek nation on the occasion of the 200th anniversary from the beginning of the War of Independence in 1821.
In particular, he pointed out in his message the following: “The blessing of the blue and white Greek flag in the Monastery of Saint Lavra in 1821 marked the beginning of the sacrificial national struggle for the rights and freedom of the Greeks but also was a symbol of the unity of the people and showed their inherent love for their homeland.”
He also highlighted the role of the Greek community living in the territory of the Russian Empire and the philhellenes of Russian descent: “The Russian people have never been indifferent to the fate of their brothers in relation to the spirit and faith of the Greeks,” he said. “The Russian people have been expressing sympathy during the period of their sufferings and have been offering their support in difficult times by defending the right of the Greeks to a peaceful life in the land of their ancestors. The Russians have proved their love in practice. The prominent figure of Ioannis Kapodistrias has shown that the history of our countries has been very close,” he added.
Finally, he concluded: “The peoples of the Land of Russia and Greece, who are connected with the same faith and the same spiritual culture and they have similar traditions, have a common cultural mission in the modern world. Our Saints, our Orthodox ancestors, taught us to take their sacrifices into account and deem them as superior to rationalism, and to deem friendship as superior to benefit, truth as superior to power, and freedom as superior to prosperity.”
“I am convinced that the heirs of the Holy Land of Rus and Orthodox Greece have not only a common past but also a common present and, of course, a common future,” he stressed.