On May 17, 2015, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate's Department for External Church Relations (DECR), completed his visit to the People's Republic of China by celebration of the Divine Liturgy at the Church of the Dormition located in the territory of the Russian Embassy in China.
Archpriest Nikolai Balashov, DECR vice-chairman; Rev. Sergy Voronin, rector of the Church of the Dormition: and deacon Alexander Karzan, DECR chairman's secretary, concelebrated.
H.E. Andrei Denisov, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the People's Republic of China (PRC); H.E. Agis Loizou, Ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus to the PRC; diplomats from the Russian Embassy, and members of the international Orthodox community of Beijing attended the service.
Rev. Sergy Voronin greeted the DECR chairman and asked him to convey to His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia filial love of the Orthodox in China and their gratitude for constant care for their needs.
Metropolitan Hilarion addressed the parishioners, saying:
"We are happy to celebrate the Divine Liturgy during Paschal days in the historical Church of the Dormition of the Most Holy Mother of God in Beijing. This church helps you come to God, pray to Him and open the gates of the Heavenly Kingdom through partaking of the Holy Mysteries.'
During Paschal time we confess that our Lord Jesus Christ has conquered death by His death, and now death does not threaten us because we know that our earthly life is but a small part of the way we are destined to pass.
Human beings have been created not for death, but for life, not for time, but for eternity. We have been created to live with God, and this life begins here, in the church, when we partake of the Body and Blood of Christ, and continues in eternity.
I wish us to always remember this eternal dimension of our temporal life. The Church builds holy church all over the world so that people could pray to God and feel His nearness to us.
Christ is Risen!"
Metropolitan Hilarion wished the parishioners God's help and joy over the Resurrection of the Saviour, blessed them and left for Moscow.