Patriarch consecrates Jerusalem church

Nov. 12, 2012 at 4:07 PM

JERUSALEM, Nov. 12 (UPI) -- The Russian Orthodox Church patriarch consecrated a church in Jerusalem a century after its construction began, calling it "a special day for the convent."

Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia traveled to the Jerusalem suburb of Ein Karem Monday to formally open the Church of All Russian Saints in the Gornensky Convent, whose foundations were laid in 1911. Construction was halted in 1914 and only resumed in 2003, the Russian news agency RIA-Novosti reported Monday.

"Today is a special day for the convent, for the entire Russian Orthodox Church and personally for me," the patriarch said at the consecration ceremony, noting he had visited the site in 1969 when the building had only four walls and no roof or floor.

Hundreds of pilgrims attended the ceremony, the news agency said.

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