Rev. George Maximov, chair of the Missionary Department of the Patriarchal Exarchate of Africa, arrived in the Republic of Burundi.
On 14th January 2023, the feast of the Circumcision of our Lord, commemoration day of St Basil the Great the Archbishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia, the Divine Liturgy was celebrated in the city of Bujumbura by Priest George Maximov and two clerics of the Exarchate, Rev. Petros Bicamumpaka, dean of the Rwanda parishes, and Rev. Klement Mastaki from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Church Slavonic and French were the languages used in the Liturgy.
Among those who attended the divine service were Mr. ValeryMikhaylov, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Republic of Burundi, staff members of the Embassy, and Russian people living in Burundi.
The Liturgy was followed by the blessing of water molieben. Then the worshippers received from Fr George educational literature in the Russian and French languages.
Priests Petros and Klement greeted all those present, sharing their joy of abiding in the bosom of the Russian Orthodox Church.
During a meeting that followed, Russian compatriots asked for a parish of the Moscow Patriarchate to be opened in Burundi.
That same day Rev. George Maximov held a pastoral seminar with priests from Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, outlining plans for advancing Orthodox mission. Later, Fr George met with the Burundians who expressed a wish to join the Russian Orthodox Church.
During his visit, Rev. George Maximov met with ValeryMikhaylov, Russia’s Ambassador to Burundi, to discuss various issues pertaining to the presence of the Russian Orthodox Church in the country, above all, further steps towards obtaining official registration.
“I thank Valery Mikhaylov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to the Republic of Burundi, for his active and all-round assistance,” Metropolitan Leonid wrote on his Telegram channel.