Russia's Orthodox Head Pays 1st Visit To Poland

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

WARSAW, Poland (AP) -- The head of Russia's Orthodox Church has arrived in Catholic Poland on a historic visit expected to bring the two churches and nations closer together.

Patriarch Kirill received a state welcome on arriving at Warsaw airport Thursday, noting it was the very first visit by the head of Russia's church to the country, and his first in this capacity to a Western culture.

Kirill said a religious foundation should help both nations overcome any difficult issues between them. Poles and Russians share a long, but largely painful history, including in recent times. They also differ in their interpretation of historic events.

Kirill and the head of Poland's Roman Catholic Church are to sign a joint message asking both nations for mutual forgiveness and reconciliation.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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