Friday, December 5, 2008

Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Alexy II dies

MOSCOW (AP) — The Russian Orthodox Church says its Patriarch Alexy II has died.

The church says the 79-year-old died at his residence outside Moscow on Friday. It did not give the cause of death, but the patriarch had long suffered from a heart ailment.

The outspoken patriarch had led the world's biggest Orthodox church since 1990, presiding over a flock that by most estimates numbers two-thirds of Russia's population of 142 million.

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