Your Eminences and Graces, your Very Reverend, Reverences, honorable Fathers, Brothers and Sisters!
With humility and complete understanding of the responsibility I accept the fate of God through which I am given over to the Patriarchal ministry. It is great. It is a responsibility. But in the center of this service is the Cross of the Lord, the Cross of such a size which can be known and felt only by the one which carries it.
I remember the words of His Holiness Patriarch Alexey who often spoke of the great cross of Patriarchal ministry. But this cross is carried by the Heads of the Churches although this is beyond the strength of one man. They carry it because together the bishops, priests, and people of God carry it also. They carry this cross because they very Church carries it together with the Patriarch. And as the carrying of the cross is distributed so is responsibility as well as glory. When good words are addressed to the Heads of the Churches they are also addressed to the people of God, priests, and bishops: all of those who together with the Heads carry the heavy cross and great responsibility before God and before history.
Accepting from you the manifestation of the will of God, I ask forgiveness for my weaknesses, for you to help me with your advice, and to be by my side in the carrying of the Patriarchal ministry. But most of all I ask for your prayers; such prayers which, I know, were given by people participating in the decision of our Local Council as well as many others from their loving and believing hearts.
May the Lord bless our Church, our people, our land in which our Russian Orthodox Church carries out its service, and all those who with their prayers and deeds have approached this hour. Again and again I ask you to remember me in your holy prayers.
Press Service of the Moscow Patriarchate