Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Ladies Bible Group in Bucharest

One of the recent initiatives at the Church of the Resurrection has been the introduction of a weekly Ladies Bible Study Group, led by our Chaplain the Revd Martin Jacques. The idea came from one of new members, Johana Soper (photo above on the left), who with her husband Jonathan has recently moved to Bucharest from Istanbul.

The meetings are held at the home of the Soper's, and even though this blogger is a man he has managed to get some photographs of this weeks meeting! From all accounts the coffee and cakes are excellent, but even more interesting and fulfilling is the sharing of experiences, thoughts and ideas that are stimulated through the careful and caring leadership of the Chaplain.

So,if you're a lady and in Bucharest any Tuesday morning between 1000 and1200 you will be most welcome to join the group. You can find full details on our new Church of the Resurrection website; the address is www.churchoftheresurrection.eu

Flowers for the Patriarch's Funeral

One of the traditions associated with funerals in Romania is to present floral tributes in memory of the deceased.

For the funeral of the Patriarch, wreathes were received from individuals and organisations from all over the world. The Chaplain and Reader presented wreathes on behalf of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Diocese in Europe (in the name of Bishop Geoffrey) and on behalf of the British Embassy in Bucharest.

For the church wreathes we requested the two flowers that were the particular favourite of the Patriarch, white lilies and white roses.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

On Friday morning the funeral of the Romanian Patriarch was held at the Patriarchy cathedral in Bucharest. The Church of England was invited to send three representatives. The Bishop of Woolwich, the Rt. Revd. Christopher Chessun, represented the Archbishop of Canterbury, and was supported by the Chaplain and Reader from the Church of the Resurrection in Bucharest.

From 9-11am eulogies to the Patriarch were read in the imposing Synod, where the wall behind the visiting Patriarch was dominated by a wonderful fresco. Representatives of churches from all corners of the world presented tributes. At 11am the funeral was held in the cathedral, with many thousands of people who were unable to be inside the cathedral following the service on screens outside.

At the conclusion of the service the Patriarch was buried inside the Cathedral. During the traditional Orthodox forty days of mourning we will burn a candle in the Church of the Resuurection in memory of a true servant of Christ. May his soul rest in peace.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

On Monday at 5pm we heard the very sad news that Patriarch Teoctist, Head of the Orthodox Church of Romania had died, aged 92. Only one month ago the Patriach received Bishop Geoffrey during his pastoral visit to Romania for a meeting that lasted one hour.

Today, Thursday 2nd August there were queues of people waiting to pay their last respects to the Patriarch. On behalf of the Archbishop of Canterbury, our Chaplain the Revd Martin Jacques delivered a floral tribute to the Patriachy Cathedral and wrote on behalf of Archbishop Rowan in the memorial book. The chaplaincy Reader delivered a similar floral tribute on behalf of Bishop Geoffrey of Gibraltar in Europe.

Tomorrow there will be the funeral service at 1100. Enormous numbers of people are likely to attend to pay their respects to a much loved servant of the Orthodox Church of Romania.

Dumnezeu sa-l ierte!