More than a million people venerated St Andrew's Cross over 3 weeks of its stay in Russia, the Ukraine and Belarus

Moscow, August 5, 2013

Over the time of the stay of the Cross of Apostle Andrew within the jurisdiction of the Russian Orthodox Church over a million people venerated the relic, reported on Monday the Foundation of St Andrew the First-Called, that had organized bringing of this Relic, to a spokesman of Interfax.


"In different towns, depending on the time of day, time of stay in the queue varied from half an hour to 9 hours. When necessary the Churches were open 24 hours a day so that all those willing might have an opportunity to venerate the Relic," said the agency's spokesman.

The Cross on which St Andrew the Apostle once had been crucified, was brought from the Greek town of Patras with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia and Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and All Greece.

The organizers thanked the local authority bodies for the high level of organization of access to the relic that allowed to avoid jams, disorders and accidents.

On July 11, St Andrew's Cross arrived in St Petersburg, "the seaside capital of Russia". From the moment of the foundation of the city on the Neva River the Holy Apostle has been considered as one of its Patron-Saints. St Andrew was brother of Holy Apostle Peter after whom the city was named. It is considered that the emperor Peter I at the laying of the foundation of St Peter and St Paul's fortress placed at its foundation a golden reliquary with a small portion of the Apostle's relics. The arrival of the Holy Apostle's relics coincided with the 310th anniversary of the Russian fleet and St Petersburg.

"Then the Cross was brought to Moscow, Kiev and Minsk - the capitals of three states where the majority of the flock of the Russian Orthodox Church live, in whose spiritual and cultural life the heritage of Holy Rus is continuing and developing in its multiple perspective," noted the foundation's representatives.

In the view of the organizers of the action, the bringing of St Andrew's Cross "demonstrates the true attitude of our fellow countrymen to the Orthodox faith, to the traditions of our multinational people".


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