President of Poland Andrzej Duda, who is on an official visit to Turkey, visited the Greek Patriarchate of Istanbul.
Duda was welcomed by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew at the Greek Patriarchate of Istanbul on the second day of his visit. Stating that he was very honored to be invited to the Patriarchate during his meeting with Patriarch Bartholomew, President Duda expressed his happiness to be in Istanbul.
Duda said, ”Istanbul is also an ancient city for the Christian world. I see the Istanbul Patriarchate as a lamp shining in the dark. “My wife and I are Catholics, but visiting this sister church has been an important symbol of friendship for both of us.” Patriarch Bartholomew also expressed his satisfaction with Duda’s visit to the Patriarchate.
Patriarch Bartholomew stated that he was invited to Warsaw by Duda in 2015 and that he was not a stranger to Poland, and said, “The relations of the Istanbul Fener Greek Patriarchate with Poland have a long history. Our Patriarchate made a great contribution to the spread of Christianity in Europe. I greatly appreciate the President’s view that “religion and belief are the foundations of cultures and the value he places on family ties.”
Patriarch Bartholomew emphasized that Duda is an important leader that unites the Christian world and churches and said that he continues to work on this issue.
Within the scope of his contacts in Istanbul, President Duda also inaugurated the monument built in Feriköy Catholic Cemetery in memory of Wojciech Rychlewicz, who served as the Istanbul Consul General of his country between 1937-1941.
Duda also laid a wreath at the monument erected in memory of the Polish immigrants who came to Turkey from Poland, which was divided into three by Russia, Prussia, Poland and Austria, and on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of Poland’s regaining its independence. While Archbishop Lorenzo Piretto blessed the monument, Turkish Chief Rabbi Isak Haleva also prayed.
President Duda also visited the Saint Antoine Church and Catholic Cemetery in Polonezköy.