Archbishop Mark (Golovkov) of Egorevsk, Deputy Chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department of External Church Relations, visited South Africa last week for the first time to interact with Russian-speaking Orthodox communities in Johannesburg and Cape Town.
During his short but very busy stay in Cape Town, His Grace, Archbishop Mark, accompanied by Father Danil Logovoy, who is the priest of the Russian-speaking parish at the Church of St Sergius of Radonzeh, in the Orthodox Archdiocese of Gauteng.
Archbishop Mark was invited to spend Friday morning, 4 October, with His Eminence, Archbishop Sergios, at the Holy Archbishopric in Rondebosch. He was welcomed to the Metropolitan Church of Saints Raphael, Nicholas and Irene by Archbishop Sergios, Father Nikolaos Giamouridis, Deacon Michael Simos and theology student, Petros Khaya.
After a short ceremony, Archbishop Mark venerated the holy relic of Saint Raphael which was specially displayed for his visit.
Afterwards the group of clergy sat down to a relaxed breakfast and His Grace, Archbishop Mark, surprised everyone present with his expert command of Greek and very soon the conversation was flowing. Archbishop Sergios and Archbishop Mark got to know each other and exchanged thoughts on several subjects including the importance of true religion and the fact that one always finds answers in the clear words of Christ.
Before their departure, Archbishop Sergios presented his guests with beautiful ecclesiastical gifts as a keepsake of this momentous meeting that highlighted the unbreakable bond that is Orthodoxy.
By Pepe Sofianos