Conference in Moscow on Metropolitan Anthony, 28-30 September 2007 (Dn Peter)

By Dn Peter Scorer

Deacon Peter and Irina Scorer were among a small group of representatives from our Vicariate attending this conference held during the last three days of September. Over 150 people gathered in the Library-Foundation Russkoye Zarubezh’e (recently established by Alexander Solzhenitsyn in Moscow), to hear some 25 talks on the life and work of Metropolitan Anthony.

There was also an exhibition of photos and publications on show during the conference, as well as the first showing of the third film from the series Apostle of Love (by Valentina Matveyeva).

This was indeed a most remarkable gathering, which showed clearly the depth of Metropolitan Anthony’s influence on the life of the Church, both in this country, in Russia and elsewhere. At the same time it must be noted, that there was no official representation from the Moscow Patriarchate apart from very warm messages from Metropolitan Philaret of Minsk and a somewhat formal message of good will from Patriarch Alexis.

Those who had gathered to honour Metropolitan Anthony tended on the whole to be people who were concerned with many unsettling aspects of contemporary life in the Russian Orthodox Church and who regarded him as an example of what a true bishop should be.

Among the more memorable papers were ‘Life of the orthodox Christian in the contemporary world’ by Abbott Peter Meshcherinov; ‘To be here and now..’ by Fr Sergei Ovsiannikov; ‘On the statutes of the diocese of Sourozh’ by Elena Belyakova; ‘Christianity in Life’ by Gillian Crow; ‘The place of the Church in the secular world’ by Irina von Schlippe; ‘Bishop Anthony’s heritage - work with the dying, on hospice work in Moscow’ by Freke de Graaf and Fr Christopher Hill; ‘A study of Metroplitan Anthony’s attitudes to literature’ by Avril Pyman.

A fuller account of the conference will be appearing on this website in due course, and there are plans to publish all the papers in Russia.