Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Alexei II, 79, died Dec. 5.
A world ecumenical leader, Alexei II guided his church through a long post-communism process of reconstructing parishes and seminaries.
“In the years following the collapse of the Soviet Union, his leadership was crucial for both his church and his nation, said Lutheran World Federation General Secretary Ishmael Noko.
“As Lutherans, we have particularly appreciated the tone of his relations with us.”
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