VATICAN CITY, JAN 22, 2004 (VIS) - Joaquin Navarro-Valls, Holy See Press Office director, in a statement released this afternoon, said that "Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, welcoming the invitation of the Conference of Catholic Bishops of the Russian Federation, will go to Moscow on February 16.
"During his visit, which will end February 20, Cardinal Kasper will meet with the Catholic bishops present in the Russian Federation and the Catholic community in Moscow. During this visit, motivated by feelings of esteem for the Russian Orthodox Church, Cardinal Kasper will be received in audience by His Holiness Alexei II, patriarch of Moscow and all the Russias, and will have talks with Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad, and with the president of the department for foreign ecclesiastical relations of the Patriarchate of Moscow, in view of the ecumenical dialogue between the two Churches.
"Cardinal Kasper will be accompanied by Bishop Brian Farrell, secretary of the pontifical council, and by Fr. Jozef M. Maj, an official in this council's Oriental Section."
OP/VISIT MOSCOW KASPER/NAVARRO-VALLS VIS 20040122 (190)