ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH MET PM SAXE-COBURG
Politics | September 8, 2001, Saturday // 00:00
The world spiritual leader of Orthodox Christians said he strongly supports efforts of Bulgaria`s patriarch to mend a rift in the country`s main Orthodox church, AP reported. Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew joined Bulgaria`s Patriarch Maxim in serving a mass for the Holy Mother`s birth Saturday in Sofia`s Sveta Nedelya cathedral. Prime Minister Simeon Saxe-Coburg attended the mass and conferred with both patriarchs behind the altar after the service. `The presence of the prime minister, his attitude to the Bulgarian Orthodox Church and to Patriarch Maxim gives us hope that the schism in the Bulgarian Orthodox Church will end soon,` Bartholomew told the hundreds who had gathered in the cathedral. The attitude of Saxe-Coburg, the former king who was elected prime minister in June, signals a turnaround in government policy toward Maxim. Bartholomew arrived in Bulgaria Wednesday for a weeklong visit.
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