OCP News Service
Special Courtesy: Angela Petrova
Sofia: Reports from Sofia indicate that the breakaway Alternative Synod of the Bulgarian Church have achieved complete union with the Bulgarian Orthodox Church. It was a long trial and error process for unity.
RINSU (Religious News Service of Ukraine) in April 2015 made the following comments in their report on the UOC-KP and UAOC dialogue for unity.
“Recently, the Ecumenical Patriarchate has been an agent of reunification of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church. Although there were also two branches and very aggressive against each other,” religionist Oleksandr Sagan was reported as saying this by UNIAN.”
The Ecumenical Patriarch His All- Holiness Bartholomew I played an important role in the union. The Bulgarian government also had their stake in the process. Actually the Union took place several years back, but there were a number of alternative synod Bishops who stayed away. The breakaway bishops did not come back at once, but slowly and steady, all of them reunited with the Bulgarian Patriarchate.
Chronology of Events
- In 1992 they announced that the election (1971) of the previous Patriarch (Maxim) was illegal and that they want to leave his circle (the throwing down of the communist regime in Bulgaria happened in 1989, so they pretended to act against all communist remnants).
- Soon after 1992, the then war minister gave them permission to occupy and settle themselves in the official Palace seat of the Bulgarian hierarchs.
- In 1996 they elected their own independent Patriarch.
- In 1998 the Pan-Orthodox Council by the Church of Bulgaria held in Sofia announced that the true legitimate Patriarch is not the breakaway one.
- In 1999, the breakaway Patriarch died. During all these period, both the political powers and government were helping the breakaway wing.
- In 2005-2006 everything was finally settled after long trials and moral devastation.
- In 2010 Metropolitan Inokentii head of the Alternative Synod called for a healing of division between the churches
- In later years (2010- 2015), full union of the Alternative Synod took place with the Bulgarian Orthodox Church.
OCP News Service