Help Expand an Orthodox Seminary's Library in Russia
Project Code: 427-02-89
Young, soundly trained Orthodox priests, who are personally acquainted with Catholics and able to see them as their brothers and sisters, are helping to draw Orthodox and Catholic Christians ever more closely together. In Russia, where Catholics account for only a small minority, those Orthodox priests whom we have helped can also become valuable helpers for the Catholic communities as well.
There has been a good collaboration between Orthodox and Catholics in many places for years now in Russia. There are shared initiatives and campaigns, and reciprocal invitations. Many of the former seminarians who are now working as priests today, and whose training the benefactors of ACN help to support, see it as self-evident to work together with Catholics.
The Orthodox seminary in Stavropol, in the northern Caucasus, was founded in 1846, but throughout Soviet times, apart from a brief period of 14 years, it remained closed. Not until 1988 was it able to resume its work as a seminary. Today, the young men studying here spend five years training for ordination, including courses for choir leaders and icon painters. And in addition to the academic and spiritual formation, they are also already gaining practical experience in pastoral work, by caring for the elderly and handicapped.
Metropolitan Kirill of Stavropol and Nevinnomyssk takes a very personal interest in the training of these future priests. In fact, he is not only the bishop of the eparchy (diocese) but at the same time also rector of the seminary. He has now turned to ACN for help to improve the seminary library and obtain some new and important books. These also include works on Catholic theology which can help these future Orthodox priests to become better acquainted with the Catholic Church and more open towards her.
Since Islam is also growing in influence in the Caucasus region and there are also some signs of an increasing radicalization that did not exist before, there are also works on Islam among the books that the seminary wishes to acquire for its library. It is a sign that the bishop is keen to do everything possible to enable his future priests to be fully equipped to meet the challenges of the present day.
ACN has promised a contribution of $6,800. Will you join us in giving to help this Orthodox seminary expand its library in Russia to better prepare these future priests for their ministry?
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