Patriarch Neophyte, Renowned Theologian Passes Away at Age 78

20240315 001421

Patriarch Neophyte, a soft-spoken theologian renowned for his endeavors to restore the damaged reputation of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church, passed away at the age of 78, as announced by the church on Wednesday evening.

The church clarified that after a lengthy illness, His Holiness the Bulgarian Patriarch and Sofia Metropolitan Neophyte, the respected archbishop of our beloved Holy Orthodox Church, breathed his last at 10:22 p.m. in the Military Medical Academy (VMA-Sofia), succumbing to multiple organ failure.

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In 2013, Neophyte was appointed as the Patriarch and succeeded Patriarch Maxim, who had led the church from 1971 until his death in 2012. Bulgaria, with a population of 6.8 million, comprises approximately 80% Orthodox Christians. However, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church suffered a blow to its reputation in January 2012 when a historical commission revealed that 11 out of its 15 bishops had collaborated with the secret police during the communist era. Despite these setbacks, Neophyte dedicated himself to restoring the church's integrity and distancing it from associations with businessmen and the communist secret police.

Copyright Greekcitytimes 2024