Русский | DECR Communication Service of the Russian Orthodox Church | July 29, 2008

Russian Olympic team sent off to Beijing with prayer at Kremlin Dormition Cathedral

A prayer service was conducted on July, 29 at the Moscow Kremlin Cathedral of the Dormition to see off Russian sportsmen to Beijing for the 29th Summer Olympic Games. Present in the church were also leaders of the Russian Olympic Committee.

With the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Alexy of Moscow and All Russia, the prayer service was celebrated by Bishop Ambrose of Bronnitsy with the assistance of several clergy including the spiritual guide of the Russian Olympic team, Archpriest Nikolay Sokolov.

Special petitions were lifted up for the sportsmen "willing to compete for their country" for their safe journey, "deliverance from injuries", and safe return to the homeland.

Addressing the team, Bishop Ambrose said that their road to remote Beijing began from the old Cathedral of the Dormition, in which Russian emperors were enthroned and the relics of the first patriarchs of the Russian Church lie in rest.

The bishop also spoke about the history of Orthodoxy in China and the work of the Russian Orthodox Mission which was established in 1712. Thanks to the work of Russian missionaries, deep spiritual ties were established between Russia and China. In 1956 the Holy Synod granted autonomy to the Chinese Church. For all the difficulties that the Chinese Autonomous Orthodox Church is facing today, the bishop said, Russian sportsmen will have an opportunity to attend divine services in the Olympic Village in Beijing.