Russia TLIG Magazine

T R U E L I F E I N G O D 88 M ost R everend S imon A tallah , oam B ishop E meritus of B aalbek -D eir E l -A hmar (M aronite ), L ebanon F ormer P resident of the E piscopal C ommittee for E cumenical A ffairs Good evening, our great, good, open Sheikhs, we miss you already! Your presence with us was very good, it added a special taste to this gathering. This will be marked down and recorded in the history of our country, our civilization, our culture and our faith.We ask our Lord - I ask from our Lord specially, to bless you and to bless your families and to keep you always in this beautiful spirit, with open hearts and minds.We also ask that our hearts and minds be open to the grace of God that works in us and unites us and makes us meet You, O God! And when we meet God, then everything will be ok; and everything will be done in joy and happiness. I wish you all that is good and I thank God for being with you, for being with each other in this pilgrimage to Russia. Until we meet again! Pilgrimage to Orthodoxy in Moscow My dear friends of True Life in God, 1) With great joy I would like to congratulate you on the success of the pilgrimage you have organized in Moscow to honor the Orthodoxy that exists in the Russian Federation.This Orthodoxy is a great heritage for humanity. Having a chance to get acquainted with this heritage on the spot, is a grace for us, and, on the other hand, an opportunity to evangelize us ecumenically and spiritually in order to build bridges of fraternity and participate in the building of peace between men. 2) It is not easy to organize a pilgrimage of 800 people; yet you did. Congratulations! The Lord has filled you with many graces, especially the presence of Vassula, Theodora and Yolla with their collaborators and com- munity leaders from all over the world. Please accept my congratulations. May the Lord bless your labors and your continued efforts to continue your mission in the world according to your own charism, while re- viewing certain points, certain activities which might present certain difficulties and reservations among the competent authority. 3) Allow me to give you a few remarks, which for me, at least, could improve two sides: the “form” (organiza- tion and logistics) and the “depth”, in order to enrich our relationships, consolidate our conviviality and walk the path of truth, peace and unity. 4) Prepare, more in depth, the required talks. 5) Set up reflection groups - (workshops) - to share ideas and translate them into reality, as far as possible. 6) Organize common prayers in the workshops, outside the Eucharist, in which, pilgrims who don’t believe in the Eucharist, can participate. 7) Lighten the daily programs. 8) Prepare those participating in the pilgrimage in their own countries, one year in advance. 9) Organize accommodations, taking into account the age of each pilgrim and their state of health, etc. 10) Prepare official and semi-official meetings in the countries of the pilgrimage. Objective of the pilgrimage: The aim of our pilgrimage is to practice charity, or love, which generates peace, spreads it and makes us apostles of peace among men. This love is the main engine of evangelization and the building of the desired peace, which is unfortunately lost, for lack of the spirit of dialogue, self-denial and lack of truth. “Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” Any church that does not evangelize is self-destructing and denying itself.