In Beijing, on the territory of the Embassy of the Russian Federation, Paschal services brought together several hundred compatriots living in Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, as well as believers from Greece, Cyprus, Ukraine, Belarus, Romania, Moldavia, Bulgaria, France, USA and other countries.
Orthodox compatriots currently residing in Beijing, who now pray in the former temple of St. Innocent of Irkutsk and the residence of the head of the Russian Spiritual Mission in China, are expecting prompt restoration of the Church of the Dormition, which is also located on the territory of Russia's Embassy.
For the first time in 48 years, with the consent of PRC's state authority on religious affairs, a Paschal divine service was conducted for the community of Chinese Orthodox. On May 2, lay-led Paschal matins were conducted in one of Beijing's [Roman] Catholic temples. Our compatriots, as well as foreigners living in Beijing, came to share the Paschal joy and to greet the Chinese Orthodox on the day of the Bright Resurrection of Christ.
Orthodox residents of Beijing to this day have not had an opportunity to pray in their own temple. No Orthodox priests remain in China. However, the PRC's Orthodox saw in the joyful event of the Paschal divine service in the temple on
Dongsishitiao a good sign, giving hope for the revival of church life for the Orthodox community in the Chinese capital.
For the first time since 1957, the Chinese capital's Orthodox community had a festive Paschal service today, reports "ITAR-TASS". Albazinians - descendants of Russian cossacks from the Albazin fortress of the Amur -- adhere to Orthodox traditions. At the end of the XVII century, the Albazinians served in the Manchurian imperial guards.
In the absence of an Orthodox priest who is Chinese, the service was led by a layman in one of Beijing's [Roman] Catholic temples.
"Today's event needs to be considered as a sign of the Chinese authorities' attention to this problem", stated ROC/MP priest Dionisy Pozdnyaev, who arrived in Beijing from Xianggang/Hong Kong. Beijing's Orthodox now have hope that the question of ordaining a priest will be resolved, especially since candidates are available."