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On 27 February 2019, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations (DECR), met with Archbishop Tapio Luoma, head of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland (ELCF). The meeting took place at the DECR premises.

Archbishop Luoma arrived in Russia on official visit after his election as head of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland The delegation accompanying him consists of Dr. Seppo Häkinen, Bishop of the Diocese of Mikkeli; Rev. Jari Huokuna, the ELCF chancellor; Rev. Tomi Karttunen, secretary of the ELCF Department for International Relations; Rev. Dr. Juha Meriläinen, secretary of the Archbishop; Rev. Timo Rosqvist, secretary of the Diocese of Mikkeli; and Rev. Vladimir Dorotniy, Church of Ingria. Also attending the meeting at the DECR were H.E. Mikko Hautala, Ambassador of the Republic of Finland to the Russian Federation; Archimandrite Philaret (Bulekov), DECR vice-chairman; Archpriest Viktor Lioutik, rector of the Patriarchal parishes in Finland; Mr. Toivo Martikainen, second secretary of the Embassy of Finland in Moscow; Rev. Alexei Dikarev, Ms. Yelena Speranskaya and Mr. Ruslan Akhmatkhanov, staff members of the DECR secretariat for inter-Christian relations.

Discussed were topics pertaining to the development of bilateral relations, including academic contacts and diakonia. Metropolitan Hilarion underscored urgency of the situation of Christians in the Middle East and called on the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland to render joint assistance to Christians in the region.

Talks over, the sides exchanged memorable gifts.