Happy Birthday!

The clergy and flock of the Philippine-Vietnamese Diocese cordially congratulate our dear Bishop Metropolitan Pavel on his 67th birthday. We sincerely wish him good health, providential help from above in everything, and look forward to his visit soon. Many years!

Christmas Message from Patriarch KIRILL of Moscow and All Russia to the Archpastors, Pastors, Deacons, Monastics and All the Faithful Children of the Russian Orthodox Church

Beloved in the Lord archpastors, all-honourable presbyters and deacons, God-loving monks and nuns, dear brothers and sisters!

Today, as the Heavenly and earthly Church in conciliar unity glorifies God Incarnate, I extend my heartfelt greetings to all of you on the great and radiant feast of the Nativity of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Once again we look back at the events that occurred in Bethlehem over two thousand years ago, beholding the meek Infant lying in the manger, surrounded by His Most Pure Mother, the righteous Joseph and the shepherds who were the first to hear the good news of the Saviour coming into the world. We join the heavenly hosts in praising the Most High Creator Who through His Begotten Son granted unto people peace and good will. St. Gregory the Theologian reveals the very essence of this feast, saying: we are triumphant today because God has come to mankind… for we might go back to God (Oration 38). Truly, the Kingdom of heaven is at hand (Mt 3:2); the long-expected Reconciler (Gen 49:10) has come to earth to fulfil the ancient prophecies; unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given… and His name shall be called… The mighty God, The Father of eternity, The Prince of Peace (Is 9:6). Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you (Jn 14:27), Christ says to us. What kind of peace is it, which the Lord granted unto man and which the angels were singing of at the time of the Saviour’s birth? Has there been less enmity or conflicts in the world since then? We hear all around: peace, peace; but there is no peace, as Jeremiah the prophet writes (Jer 8:11). Yet, the true peace of God that came down to earth with the Nativity of Christ surpasses all understanding (Phil 4:7) and is unaffected by external circumstances or afflictions and hardships of this transient life. This invincible inner peace is in God Himself Who, having become a man like us in all things but sin, is not only active, but visibly present in the human history. The Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth (Jn 1:14). The Lord is at hand, let us never forget that and be of good cheer! In Him is our strength, our firm hope and spiritual comfort in all troubles of life. Venerating the miracle of the Divine Incarnation in its humble greatness and magnifying the Saviour Who came into the world, we at the same time cannot but be troubled by the ongoing hostilities overshadowing the holy Christmas festivities, for, as St. Paul notes, whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it (1 Cor 12:26). In the midst of all the hardships that have befallen the peoples of the historical Rus’ it is of utmost importance for us to demonstrate in deeds our dedication to our Christian vocation and show love for one another. Sometimes it may seem that good is weak and helpless and that the little things we do cannot make a difference. But it is not true. There is an indisputable principle of spiritual life: love is multiplied when we devote ourselves to others, offering our time, financial help or just attention. Thus not only do we transform the world around us, but also find something precious within ourselves. In this simple but effective principle there lies a secret of genuine peace and real happiness that every person strives to achieve. This happiness is not to be found in far-distant lands, as some people think, chasing after illusions of material welfare and a life without sorrows. The true happiness is in sharing love and joy with those around and by good works glorifying God, Who became incarnate that we might have life, and that we might have it more abundantly (Jn 10:10). When we let Christ in and allow Him to act in us, the blessed peace and rest come to reign in our soul (Mt 11:29), and we become partakers of the kingdom of God which is within us (Lk 17:21). Do we want to embrace the Born Lord? If so, let us embrace the afflicted and comfort the suffering. Do we want to touch Christ and be like the wise men from the East bringing the gifts pleasing unto the Divine Infant? If so, let us give our love and care to our fellow human beings, show mercy and help the needy and support those who have lost heart. “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these My brethren, ye have done it unto Me” (Mt 25:40), the Saviour says. St. Ephraim the Syrian calls Christmas the night of reconcilement that stills all. Daringly, he exclaims: this night belongs to the Meek One, let high or haughty be in it none! In this day of pardoning let us not remember sins against us! In this day of gladnesses let us not spread sadnesses! (Hymns on the Nativity, 1). Let us take heed of these amazing words of the “Syrian desert prophet” and open our hearts towards the Lord Who became incarnate for our sake. Let us rejoice, for the King and Lord of the universe Himself came meekly down to earth in order to grant unto us salvation and eternal life. So, responding with gratitude to the great love of the Creator, let us sanctify our souls by patiently enduring ordeals, as well as by heartfelt prayer and good works to the glory of God. Once again I extend my felicitations to all of you, my dears, on the radiant feast of the Nativity of Christ, wishing you strength in body and spirit and generous help from the Divine Infant Jesus, and wishing unceasing joy and welfare to your families. May the Creator, Lover of mankind, the True Lord of history, show His mercy on His peoples and bless us all with peace so that with one mouth and one heart we give praise to the Incarnate Saviour, bearing an earnest witness that God is with us!



Christmas 2022/2023


Nativity Epistle of the Metropolitan of Singapore and South-East Asia SERGIY to the Most reverend bishops, clergy, monastics and all orthodox flock of the Patriarchal Exarchate of South-East Asia

Most reverend archpastors, all-honorable fathers,
beloved brothers and sisters!

On this radiant day, I cordially greet all of you on the feast of the Nativity of Christ!
Today, people joyfully sing praises to the Lord, who for the sake of our salvation humbled Himself, became one of us, and thereby united all those who awaited His advent. In the present time the true unity of believers in Christ is especially important for each of us. The Lord asked His Father specifically for this unity, the entire fullness of the Church prays for it fervently, and the hearts of all who suffer from divisions, who love their neighbors and who want to be peacemakers and be called sons of God (Matt. 5, 9) are anguished. It is no coincidence that the word peace is so often found in the Gospel: the Saviour left His peace to the apostles, He met them with the greeting, peace be unto you, after the Resurrection – and it is not for nothing that this blessing sounds in our Church at every divine service.
What is required of us in the present difficult time, what contribution can we make to the establishment of peace and unity? Firstly, it is important not to give in to despondency and keep the strength of faith – the foundation without which it is impossible to build a life full of true meaning and spiritual joy. Secondly, it is necessary to devote your time not to endless reading and discussion of the news, escalating the situation, but to visit the temple of God and not lessen in prayer, working in good faith at the place of service where the Lord has set us. Thirdly, we need to perform deeds of mercy, treat our neighbors with patience and love, encourage the disheartened and support the weak, showing sympathy, benevolence and tenderness, in all of which may the Saviour who came into the world strengthen us.
Greeting you again and again on the feast of the Nativity of Christ, I wish all of you spiritual and bodily strength, peace and joy, prosperity and the generous help of the Merciful Lord, in Whom the whole visible and invisible world today spiritually rejoices.


Metropolitan of Singapore and South-East Asia, Patriarchal Exarch of South-East Asia


“…When the fullness of time came,
God sent His (Only Begotten) Son,
Who was born of a woman, obeyed the law
in order to redeem those under the law,
so that we might receive adoption.”
(Gal. 4.:4-5)

Beloved fathers, brothers and sisters in Christ! I cordially greet you with a great and joyful celebration — the feast of the Nativity of Christ! The Nativity of Christ was an event that confirmed the inviolability of God’s promises, but also a testimony of God’s incomparable trust in people. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16). More than two thousand years separate us from that holy night when the angels sang: “Glory to God in the highest and peace on earth, good will among men.” During this time, much has changed in human life, but one eternal truth remains – the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. Now each of us hears the angelic voice again: “Glory to God in the highest, and peace on earth, good will among men” (Luke 2:14). As we enter the new year 2023 and reflect on what it will be, let us offer our prayers for fraternal unity and mutual understanding, for patience and mutual respect in society, for peace between peoples. In our turbulent days, when the Gospel precepts of patience, humility and brotherly love sound so shrill, we are witnessing fraternal internecine strife, cruel persecution of Christians, all kinds of political passions and social disagreements. The heart of every man shudders at the thought of these great calamities. Involuntarily, at the sight of all this, we wonder: Is this how the world should honor its God, Creator and Savior? Therefore, celebrating this sacred event, let us unite these days in the temple, let us leave, at least for a while, our earthly worries and sorrows, bring the Holy Child a fervent faith, saving hope and fill our lives with Christian virtues. I would like to thank the clergy and laity from the bottom of my heart for their hard work for the glory of God, for the benefit of the Holy Church and the Orthodox people. I believe that the Lord will help us pass all the tests and grant us a prosperous and peaceful life. I sincerely hope that in the coming year the Lord will deign us to meet and share the joy of joint Divine Services together. When we celebrate the holy day of the Nativity of Christ with great joy, we often call it the light-bearing one, as the words of the festive prayer hymns teach us. Truly, the whole world shone with the unearthly light of the star of Bethlehem. This star not only brought the wise men from the east to worship the incarnate Son of God together with the shepherds, but since then, for more than two thousand years, it has been lighting the way for millions of believers. After all, the words of the Angel are addressed to us: “I declare to you great joy, which will be to all people: for today the Savior has been born to you in the city of David, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:10-11). Let this bright holiday fill our souls with joy and move us to deeds of faith and love, lifting our minds and hearts to Heaven. For from there the joyful angelic singing is heard: “Glory to God in the highest, and peace on earth, good will among men” (Luke 2:14).

With love for Christ Who is born,

By the Grace of God,



CHRISTMAS 2022/2023. Manila

Metropolitan Pavel met with the Ambassador of the Philippines to Russia

On December 23, 2022, Metropolitan Pavel of Manila and Hanoi met with Igor G. Bailen, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of the Philippines to the Russian Federation. The meeting was attended by: On the part of the Embassy of the Philippines — Deputy Head of Mission Robert O. Ferrer, Vice Consul Catherine Alpay. On the part of the Khanty-Mansi Diocese — Secretary of the Khanty-Mansi Diocese Abbot Anthony (Kirpichev). During the conversation, the parties discussed the presence of the Russian Orthodox Church in the Philippine land and further cooperation

Blessing for podryasnik

Students from Indonesia and the Philippines studying at the St. Petersburg Theological Academy received a blessing to wear a podryasnik (cassock).

On December 9, on the eve of the day the Icon of the Mother of God “Tsarskoye Selo”, All-Night Vigil was held in the church of the Apostle and Evangelist John the Theologian at the St. Petersburg Theological Academy. Before the beginning of the service, the rector of the St. Petersburg Theological Academy, Bishop Siluan of Peterhof blessed the students of the 1st year of bachelor’s degree to wear podryasnik (clerical under-vestment). Among the first-year students there are also students of the Patriarchal Exarchate of Southeast Asia from Indonesia and the Philippines.

Consecration of the foundation stone on Tubabao island

On December 1, events dedicated to the beginning of the construction of the church in honor of St. John of Shanghai were held on Tubabao Island. With the blessing of Metropolitan Pavel of Manila and Hanoi, the Secretary of the Philippine-Vietnamese Diocese, Hieromonk Korniliy (Molev), performed the rite of consecration of the foundation stone in the concelebration of the clergy of the diocese, Hieromonk Alexei (Lapshin), priests Moses Kahilig and Ambrose Sumagaysay.
Then, in the center of the island, at the monument in honor of the Russian-Philippine friendship, a ceremony was held to raise state flags and lay a wreath in memory of the Russian refugees who found refuge on the island.
The events were attended by the Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Philippines Marat Pavlov and his wife, Senior Consul Yaroslav Pavlov, 1st Secretary of the Embassy Nikolai Ovsyannikov, Mayor of the municipality of Guiuan Annalisa Gonzalez Kwan, Vice-Mayor Veronica Kabakaba-Ramirez and employees of the Mayor’s office, President of the organization “Philippine Combat Systems – Russia” Alexander Pisarkin and Adviser Anton Seredkin, residents and guests of Tubabao Island.
In 1949-1951, six thousand Russian refugees from among those who emigrated from Russia to Shanghai after the Civil War found temporary shelter on this island. The spiritual leader of the community was St. John of Shanghai. Filipinos gave a warm welcome and support to the refugees and Russians have made a great cultural contribution to the life of the local people who still honor their memory. In her welcoming speech, Mayor Annalisa G. Kwan, in particular, said that she was taught ballet by a disciple of a Russian emigrant.
Saint John of Shanghai is also very revered by the locals, because miracles happen through prayers to him. In particular, people miraculously escaped during typhoons, and even typhoons themselves often bypassed the island, as it was in 1949-1951. The same miracle happened in Manila on Sunday, November 1, 2020, when the strongest super typhoon Goni, which was approaching Metro Manila, suddenly lost its strength and went south from the city immediately after the prayer service to St. John at the Iveron Parish in Manila (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Typhoon_Goni ).

Metropolitan Pavel awarded the honorary title

On November 24, 2022, by a resolution of the Duma of the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous District – Yugra, at the suggestion of the Governor of the District N.V. Komarova, the title “Honorary Citizen of the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous District – Yugra” was awarded to the Head of the Philippines and Vietnamese diocese metropolitan Pavel, “for active public and charitable activities, significant contribution to the preservation and development of Orthodox culture and strengthening spiritual and moral traditions in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug – Yugra”.  

Christmas readings

On November 16, 2022, with the blessing of His Eminence Pavel, the Metropolitan of Manila and Hanoi, the Philippines and Vietnamese diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church conducted seminar for the clergy on “Christmas Readings” in Makalangot, Arakan. The seminar was organized by the secretary of the diocese — hieromonk Kornily (Molev) and priest George Maximov, PhD in Theology, invited to be the guest speaker.

The seminar was held after the Divine Liturgy in the church in honor of Saint Seraphim of Sarov in Makalangot which was celebrated by: hieromonk Kornily (Molev), priests George Maximov, Moses Cahilig, Romanus Buniel, Joachim Gonzales, Nicholas Salgado, Ambrose Sumagaysay, deacons Matthew Sale, and Alexey Bergado.

The book of Metropolitan Pavel of Manila and Hanoi

The book of Metropolitan Pavel of Manila and Hanoi “RUSSIAN Golgotha” was published in the publishing house “Siberian Blagozvonnitsa”.

This book is about the terrible events in our history – about repressions, about the innocently murdered, about how this bitter memory is kept in Ugra.

The author of the book was prompted to take up the pen by the unacceptable oblivion of the holy memory of the innocently injured and murdered in the Yugra Region, who are currently rehabilitated. Only in the district capital, in the city of Khanty–Mansiysk, about 600 such people were shot.

Khanty-Mansi autonomous region — Yugra is a special territory of Russia. Its establishment coincided with the great extradition to exiles of hundreds of thousands of people who were considered as not loyal and were forced to leave their native places for unfamiliar harsh lands. The 1930s were a terrible time in the history of our Russia. In the literature, it is called the period of genocide of its own people and the years of terror, which became state policy.

From 1930 to 1933, 32,208 people were exiled to the Khanty-Mansi autonomous region, and in 1937 there were already 158,708 special settlers living here. These figures alone help to understand the anti-national essence of the totalitarian state machine and the incredible hardships of the people’s life.

The book contains both well-known and unique information about the times of political repression in Russia and Yugra, with an assessment of this period.

We must remember our history, and especially its tragic pages, no matter how bitter this memory may be. Remember and also teach our younger generation.