Thursday, June 20, 2024

A step closer to a new Patriarch of Bulgaria

(Orthodox Times) - Metropolitans Grigory of Vratsa, Daniil of Vidin, and Gavriil of Lovchan have been selected to form the triprosopon, from which the new Patriarch of Bulgaria will be chosen.

The Holy Synod of the Bulgarian Church convened today to elect these three Metropolitans, who will be considered for succession following the late Patriarch Neophytos. During this process, several Metropolitans were not eligible for election due to age and experience requirements outlined in the Charter of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church.

Specifically, Metropolitan Antony of Western and Central Europe, Metropolitan Seraphim of Nevrokop, and Metropolitan Cyprian of Stara Zagora did not meet the age requirement of 50 years, as specified in Article 40, paragraph 2. Additionally, Metropolitan Yakov of Dorostol did not qualify due to the requirement in Article 40, paragraph 3, which mandates five years of service as a Metropolitan. Metropolitan Arsenij of Sliven was also ineligible due to both reasons mentioned.

According to the results of the vote, Metropolitan Grigory of Vratsa received 11 votes, while Metropolitans Daniil of Vidin and Gavriil of Lovchan each received 9 votes. These Metropolitans secured the required two-thirds majority of the synodal bishops’ votes, as stipulated in Articles 45 and 47 of the Charter, thus deeming them worthy candidates for the Patriarchal throne.

The election and enthronement of the new Patriarch of Bulgaria are scheduled to take place on Sunday, June 30, in Sofia, in the presence of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew. “I received a kind letter from our brother and locum tenens, Metropolitan Grigory of Vratsa, inviting me to be present at the election and enthronement of the new Primate of the Bulgarian Church. It is very kind of you to extend this personal invitation to the Ecumenical Patriarch for such a historic moment in your Church’s life,” the Ecumenical Patriarch said on Saturday, May 18, when he welcomed a large delegation from the Holy Church of Bulgaria at the headquarters of the Mother Church.

The Ecumenical Patriarch mentioned that although he had planned to visit the Holy Metropolis of Arta on June 30, the date of the election, he would endeavor to adjust his schedule. “I consider this invitation very important and blessed, and I hope the Metropolitan of Arta will understand and allow us to modify the program.”


  1. For those who are wondering, the three candidates are seen as belonging to the Russophile wing of the Synod, in particularly Met. Daniel and Met. Gabriel. I don't think the BOC will be recognising the UOC any time soon and it will be interesting to see how the latter two deal with the presence of the EP during the election and enthronement.

  2. Glory to God none of the bishops who concelebrated with the OCU were chosen

  3. Well I think the sister church need to condemn Kyril and the Russian Church for their actions but most of them are too cowardly for that. I dont want Daniel or Gabriel to be elected.

  4. The new Patriarch of Bulgaria, Daniel, has taken a very pro-Russian stance. I have to wonder if this foretells the Bulgarian Church being at odds with their government. I wonder what the Bulgarian government's response will be.