Voices from Russia

Monday, 17 December 2012

First Connecticut Funerals of Shooting Victims Begin

00 Newtown CT massacre. 17.12.12


The first funerals are being held for victims of Friday’s shootings at a school in the state of Connecticut in the USA. Noah Pozner and Jack Pinto, both aged six, were the first of those killed at Sandy Hook School to be buried. A fir tree opposite the funeral home was strung with paper angels carrying the names of everyone who died, including the teachers. Twenty children and six adults died in the assault by a lone gunman, named as Adam Lanza, who then took his own life. Earlier, he’d killed his mother. On Sunday, President Barack Obama told residents at a vigil in Newtown that the USA must do more to protect its children. He said he’d use the powers of his office to prevent a repeat of the tragedy, adding that the nation shared the townspeople’s grief. Classes were cancelled Monday, and Newtown‘s other schools were to reopen Tuesday. The district made plans to send surviving Sandy Hook students to a former middle school in the neighbouring town of Monroe.

17 December 2012

Voice of Russia World Service


Editor’s Note:

Now isn’t the time for politicking… it’s a time for grief and comforting the grieving. However, I’ll say this, we have to silence the gun nutters, or, this will happen time and again. There’s been enough tears, hasn’t there?



Youhanna Yazigi Elected New Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and all the East

00 Patriarch Youhanna Yazigi of Antioch. 17.12.12


Syria’s state-run news agency says Youhanna Yazigi was elected as the First Hierarch of the Damascus-based Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch and all the East. He replaces Patriarch Ignatius Hazim, who died earlier this month. Youhanna, 57, is from the Syrian city of Latakia, where he established the city’s first Christian music school. He has training as a civil engineer. It’s estimated that the Church has over a million adherents in Syria and neighbouring Lebanon. Youhanna’s predecessor split his time between the two countries.

17 December 2012

Associated Press

As quoted in the Seattle Times



On Monday, Patriarch Youhanna Yazigi was elected as successor to the late Greek Orthodox Patriarch Ignatius Hazim, who died earlier this month. The election came during a closed meeting of 18 bishops at Balamand Monastery, some 85 kilometres (53 miles) north of Beirut. Speaking following his appointment, Youhanna said that he’d do his best to keep on serving the Church and asked the Lord to give him strength in doing so.

Ignatius, who was born in the Syrian town of Mhardeh, in Hama Governorate, passed away 5 December at the age of 92 in a Beirut hospital, a day after suffering a stroke. Youhanna, 57, hails from Latakia in Syria, where he pursued studies in civil engineering. Throughout his studies, John had a pivotal role in establishing several spiritual programmes and trained choirs in Byzantine music. In 1978, Youhanna earned a bachelor’s degree in theology from the Institute of St John Damascus Faculty of Theology at the University of Balamand. Then, he earned a doctorate in theology in 1983 from the University of Thessaloniki in Greece. Youhanna became a deacon in 1979 and a priest in 1983. In 1981, he took up teaching liturgy at the St John Damascus Faculty of Theology at Balamand University where he had previously studied, assuming the position of dean of the faculty from 1988-1991 and 2001-2005. He became the superior of the Balamand Monastery from 2001 to 2005. In 2008, he became the Antiochian Metropolitan of Western and Central Europe.

17 December 2012

The Daily Star: Lebanon News


Icons Restored After Fire at St Clair Shores MI Church

00a Greek Orthodox icons. 17.12.12

Interior of Assumption Greek Orthodox Church in St Clair Shores (Macomb County) MI USA


00b Greek Orthodox icons. 17.12.12

Iconographer Vlasis Tsotsonis


Colourful icons painted by world-renowned artists were unveiled with a reception Sunday at Assumption Greek Orthodox Church in St Clair Shores MI. Church officials said iconographer Vlasis Tsotsonis, assistant Niko Gaitanidis, and apprentice Ilia Brako spent months painting icons of the Lord, the Virgin Mary and other religious figures. Their work… Phase 1 of the project… replaces the iconography that was lost when a fire tore through the church in December 2002. The fire did more than 3.5 million USD (108 million Roubles. 2.7 million  Euros. 2.16 million UK Pounds) worth of damage.

17 December 2012

Detroit Free Press


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