Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad was elected Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia in late January 2009. The enthronement ceremony was held on February 1, 2009, and traditionally this day is marked as a church holiday.
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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Your Holiness, I would like to thank you for the work you have done over the past five years and congratulate you on the fifth anniversary of your enthronement. I know for certain that these five years flew by like one day for you, because you are constantly among people, working, not only doing your purely religious duty, but also being actively involved in social work. I would like to thank you for this and to wish you health and further success.
Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia: Thank you, Mr President, for your kind words. These five years did pass very quickly, but at the same time, I know this was a very special time: things are changing for both the church and the state.
I try to do my utmost to support all the good things that are happening in the life of our people and the church and to assist in the proper development of our Fatherland.
I do not overestimate my capabilities, I have faith in God’s will, but I am confident that our people and our church possess an enormous potential for further development for the common good.
I would like to thank you for your cooperation and kind assistance.
Vladimir Putin: Thank you very much. Congratulations.
Patriarch Kirill: Thank you.