|(Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I (R) leads a special Sunday mass after the Synaxis at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul March 9, 2014. REUTERS/Murad Sezer)|
Patriarchs of the world’s 250 million Orthodox Christians ended a rare summit in Istanbul on Sunday calling for a peaceful end to the crisis in Ukraine and denouncing violence driving Christians out of the Middle East. Twelve heads of autonomous Orthodox churches, the second-largest family of Christian churches, also agreed to hold an ecumenical council of bishops in 2016, the first in over 1,200 years.
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