Ruse Metropolitan Neofit was elected Patriarch of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church by the Holy Synod's national church council on 24th of February.
Bulgarian Orthodox Church has new Patriarch
The news about Neofit's election was announced by interim Patriarch and Sofia Metropolitan, Kiril.
The announcement was accompanied by solemn church bells in downtown Sofia.
The enthronement ceremony for Patriarch Neofit was held at Sofia's Alexander Nevski Cathedral Church. It was attended by church elders, state officials - Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev, National Assembly Speaker Tsetska Tsacheva, the Mayer of Sofia Jordanka Fandakova, and of representatives of other religious groups and dozens of believers.
At the end of the enthronization ceremony, the new Patriarch stepped to the throne, when two Bishops promulgated three times "Worthy" for him, followed by the clergy and then the laity.
“Heavy is the cross that God and our Holy Church are giving me today, but in God's words I trust and ask him for strength for when I am weak, then am I strong”, Bulgaria's new patriarch said in his first address.
Neofit was born on October 15, 1945 in Sofia.
He is a graduate of the Theology Academy in Sofia, and has specialized in Moscow.
Neofit is a former lecturer and conductor of the Theology Academy choir, coadjutor at Sofia Bishopric, President of the Theology Academy, first Dean of the restored Faculty of Theology at Sofia University, and was Chief Secretary of the Holy Synod.
Photo: Atanas Dimitrov (timothey)