The members of the Diocesan Assembly from the Archdiocese of Vad, Feleac and Cluj met on Saturday, February 3, 2024, in the annual working session, presided over by His Eminence Father Andrei, the Archbishop of Vad, Feleac and Cluj and the Metropolitan of Cluj, Maramureș and Sălaj.
During the meeting, the balance sheet of the Diocese’s activities from the year 2023 was made, under spiritual, administrative, economic, cultural and missionary-social aspects. Currently, the Archdiocese of Cluj has 62 social projects and programs, which provide shelter, food, clothing, medicines, medical and palliative care, education for children and young people, ease the suffering of the sick and give hope where there is no more. Thus, last year, through the cult units, associations and diocesan foundations, the total amount of 28,130,305 lei was spent for philanthropic purposes, benefiting 18,396 people.
The meeting of the Diocesan Assembly was preceded by a Te Deum. The service was officiated by the Most Reverend Father Benedict Bistrițeanul, the Vicar Bishop of the Archdiocese of Vad, Feleac and Cluj, starting at 10:00, in the Chapel of the Faculty of Orthodox Theology in Cluj-Napoca, in the presence of Metropolitan Andrei, members of the Assembly and other guests , among which were civil and military officials, representatives of the academic environment and people of culture from the two counties of the diocese: Cluj and Bistrița-Năsăud.
The work of the Diocesan Assembly took place in the faculty hall, where, at the opening, Father Metropolitan Andrei gave a word of instruction, during which he spoke about the importance of the Church’s activity in the life of the community. At the same time, he appreciated the activities and achievements carried out in the Archdiocese during 2023.
Then, in an interactive way, the reports for the year 2023 of the four sectors within the Archdiocese were presented, represented as follows: Fr. Cristian Baciu – administrative-ecclesiastical sector, ec. Sorin Câlea – economic sector, Fr. Cornel Coprean – the cultural sector and Liciniu Câmpean – the social-missionary sector.
After the presentation of the reports, the Most Reverend Father Benedict Bistrițeanul spoke a spiritual word and highlighted the quantitative, but also the qualitative side of the social-philanthropic activities carried out in the Diocese. At the same time, the hierarch emphasized the importance of building the “Saint Hristofor” Pediatric Palliative Care Center for the Cluj community and beyond.
Addresses were given by several members of the Assembly and other guests, including the prefect of Cluj county – Irina Munteanu, the prefect of Bistrița-Năsăud county – Teofil Cioarbă, university professor dr. Vasile Pușcaș – corresponding member of the Romanian Academy and member of the National Church Assembly, prof. dr. Ioan Bolovan – corresponding member of the Romanian Academy, director of the “George Baritiu” Institute of History of the Romanian Academy – Cluj-Napoca Branch and member of the National Church Assembly, prof. Dr. Adrian Papahagi – academic staff at the Faculty of Letters from Cluj-Napoca, Fr. lect. university Dr. Liviu Vidican-Manci – the director of the Orthodox College “Metropolitan Nicolae Colan” from Cluj-Napoca and the mayor of Bistrița Municipality – Ioan Turc.
In addition to the titular members, the meeting was attended by honorary members, civil and military officials, representatives of the academic environment, people of culture and other guests from the two counties of the diocese: Cluj and Bistrița-Năsăud.
At the end of the meeting, the presented reports, the draft budget and the proposals for activities and projects for the current year, 2024, were put to a vote and approved.
Projects for the year 2024
Among the projects of the Archdiocese for the year 2024 are: the implementation of the project “Rehabilitation, restoration and introduction to the tourist circuit of the Metropolitan Cathedral of Cluj-Napoca”, which also includes the mosaic works; the continuation of work at the Social Missionary Center “Sfântul Apostol Andrei” in Cluj-Napoca and at the “Sfântul Hristofor” Pediatric Palliative Care Center, as well as at other centers under construction or in the process of completion. We also recall the series of religious-cultural and editorial events proposed to mark the Centenary of the Orthodox theological education at the Cluj university, according to the press release.
More details on 2023 achievements, as well as ongoing ones: The balance sheet of the Archdiocese of Cluj in 2023
The dialogue between clergy and laity in the Orthodox Church
According to the Organizational Statute of the Romanian Orthodox Church, the Diocesan Assembly is the deliberative body for all administrative, economic, cultural, social-charitable and missionary issues of the Diocese. It is made up of representatives of the clergy and the faithful, in the ratio of one-third clerics and two-thirds laymen, elected for a period of 4 years. The total number of members is 30, of which 10 are clerics and 20 are laymen. The president of the Diocesan Assembly is the tenant of the place, and the bishop-vicar is a member of the Assembly by right, with a deliberative vote.
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Author: Darius Echim / Metropolis of Cluj
Photo credit: Ionuț Chifa / Metropolis of Cluj