Bulgarian Archaeologists Claim Oldest Monastery in Europe

Bulgarian archaeologists have uncovered what they believe is the oldest Christian monastery in Europea near the village of Zlatna Livada in southern Bulgaria.

According to latest archaeological research, the St. Athanasius monastery, still functioning near the village, has been founded in 344 by St. Athanasius himself, reports the BGNES agency.

Until now, the Candida Casa monastery, founded in 371 AD in Galloway, Scotland, was believed to be the oldest Christian monastery in Europe, followed by the St. Martin monastery in the Pyrénées-Orientales, France (373 AD).

Representative of the Russian Orthodox Church takes part in interreligious conference at the Italian Council of Ministers

On 19 March 2012, the conference on Religions, Culture and Integration began at the Palazzo Chigi in Rome (residence of the Council of Ministers of the Italian Republic). Representatives of the majority of religious communities in Italy participated in the conference.

Hieromonk Antoniy (Sevryuk), secretary of the administration of the Moscow Patriarchate parishes in Italy, took part in the conference on behalf of the Russian Orthodox Church. Bishop Siluan of Italy represented the Romanian Orthodox Church; archimandrite Simeon (Katsinas) – the Patriarchate of Constantinople; archpriest Rashko Radovich – the Serbian Orthodox Church. The Roman Catholic Church and the Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, and Sikh communities in Italy, as well as the major Christian denominations of this country, also sent their representatives to the conference.

Hon. Ms Gabrielle Upton On National Day of Serbia in Parliament of NSW

Hon. Ms Gabrielle Upton On National Day of Serbia in Parliament of NSW

Ms GABRIELLE UPTON (Vaucluse—Parliamentary Secretary) [6.36 p.m.]: I wish to inform the House that yesterday, 15 February 2012, was celebrated as the National Day of Serbia, and I ask the House to join with me to send our best wishes to the Serbian community of New South Wales. There are around 35,000 people in the New South Wales community who lay claim to Serbian ancestry, according to the last census undertaken in 2006, and 7,000 of these people were born in Serbia. Serbian national day gives an opportunity for those in the New South Wales community with Serbian background to celebrate significant milestones in the history of Serbia.

Legal status of the Russian Orthodox Church’s diocese of Vienna officially confirmed in Austria

On March 7, 2012, the Federal Bulletin in Austria published an extract from the official document concerning the establishment of the Russian Orthodox Church’s Diocese of Vienna and Austria.

The Diocese of Vienna was established by the Russian Orthodox Church’s Holy Synod decision made in 1945, but it has not been officially recognized by the Republic of Austria until recently.