Patriarch congratulates military on Easter

The leader of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Alexy the Second, has congratulated all the members of Russia's military and security establishment on Easter. "The Church has always blessed the military valor and service to the Fatherland," Alexy wrote in his Easter greeting. "So was it and so does it happen now, when the Russian state must confront numerous challenges of time - defend its territorial integrity [and] fight terrorism and crime," continues the Patriarch's message to Russia's army and law enforcement community ahead of coming Orthodox Easter. "Law enforcement officials spare no effort, not even their lives to fulfil their sacred duty," Alexy added, emphatically. "Russia is living through hard times. Yet, as of old, the Orthodox faith alone can give hope of the country's recovery." "I am heartened that everywhere, return is being witnessed to our people's spiritual origins," the Patriarch noted. "The yearning for faith is growing [among] our military, all who guard our homeland's peace and security. Largely at their requests, houses and rooms of worship are being created within military units, fleet bases, and law enforcement offices and ties with the Orthodox Church are being strengthened."

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