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Patriarch Pavle of Serbia

Condolence message by WCC general secretary Samuel Kobia

16 November 2009

His Eminence Metropolitan Anfilohije of Montenegro and Littoral
Locum Tenens,
Serbian Orthodox Church

Geneva, 16 November 2009

Your Eminence,

It is with profound sorrow that we were informed of the passing away of Patriarch Pavle of Serbia, the spiritual leader of the Serbian Orthodox Church, one of the most respected Orthodox Primates, a Church leader appreciated worldwide for his deep and genuine spirituality, his commitment to peace and reconciliation, his readiness to defend the fundamental Christian values at all costs.

Patriarch Pavle will be remembered as the humble monk who strived all his life for the integrity of life in Christ, who struggled for the up-building of the church and society following the changes in Eastern Europe, who became the messenger of peace and reconciliation during the painful times of war. He has been a real gift to the Serbian Orthodox Church and has inspired many Christians in the world.

On behalf of the fellowship of the member churches of the WCC across the world and on behalf of my colleagues here in Geneva, I convey our most sincere condolences to the Hierarchy, the clergy and the faithful of the Serbian Orthodox Church. We do participate in our sisters’ and brothers’ mourning for the loss of their beloved Primate and spiritual father.

May our common Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of life and resurrection, give rest to his faithful and beloved servant Patriarch Pavle.

May his memory be eternal!

We pray our Triune God, Father, Son and Holy, Spirit, to guide the steps of the Serbian Orthodox Church in their task of electing a successor to Patriarch Pavle, a Primate to lead the Church of Serbia, becoming a spiritual guide and leader of the Serbian people in the midst of our contemporary world, full of challenges and thirsty to receive a word of assurance and a word of hope.

Yours in Christ,

Rev. Dr Samuel Kobia
WCC general secretary