Moscow, January 7, Interfax - Russian President Vladimir Putin has congratulated Orthodox Christians, all Russian citizens who are celebrating Christmas today, the Kremlin press office said on Sunday.
The president's congratulatory message says in particular:
"My cordial congratulations on Christmas, this bright festival that gives millions of believers the joy and hope, bringing them closer to spiritual sources and home traditions. It unites around the timeless Christian values and centuries-long historical and cultural legacy of our people.
"I am deeply satisfied to note the fruitful, truly selfless work of the Russian Orthodox Church and other Christian denominations in helping maintain civil peace and harmony in our country and developing the inter-religious and inter-ethnic dialogue. And theirs is certainly a significant contribution in strengthening our society with high moral and ethical ideals, educating the young generation, resolving quotidian social issues.
"I wish health, success and prosperity to Orthodox Christians, to everyone celebrating Christmas," Putin said.