In a message sent to the Romanian Orthodox Church, the Bulgarian Patriarchate expressed their absolute support regarding the organization of the 6-7 October referendum aiming to define marriage in the Romanian Constitution as union between a man and a woman only.
Bulgarian Patriarchate supports Romania marriage referendum: full text
As member of Christ’s One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church – Bulgarian Patriarchate is closely connected to the divine teaching sent to us by our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and directly handed over to us over the ages by His disciples and apostles, and by the Holy and God-inspired Fathers and Teachers of the Church, including on the topic which is currently the subject of debate and of the referendum to be held this year on October 6-7 in the neighbouring country, Romania.
In this regard, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church’s point of view and stance in family matters and issues will not be and are no different from the Christian Orthodox teaching on this topic.
Being faithful to Christ’s teaching, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church defends and preaches the teaching that the only marriage bond blessed by and pleasing to God is that between a man and a woman, which received the approval of the Holy Church for its fulfillment and the divine grace poured out upon in the Sacrament of Marriage.
Praying for all its sons and daughters, as well as for those who have not yet stepped into the courtyard of the Holy Church by the washing of Holy Baptism, the governing body of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church – Bulgarian Patriarchate is categorical in its persistence that as God’s blessing in Christ’s Church family is the only one capable to fulfil God’s will, expressed even from the beginning of humankind through the commandment given to our ancestors, ‘Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it’ (Genesis 1:28).
Only this family, likened by St Paul the Apostle to the union between Christ and the Church (Ephesians 2:22-27), may grow by God’s help as a true micro-Church at home and give birth and spiritually and morally take care of its spiritual sons and daughters, the worthy members of Christ’s Body.
Given the above, the Holy Bulgarian Orthodox Church – Bulgarian Patriarchate has always had a pastoral and social stance related to the contemporary family’s matters and issues, especially regarding the ever more insisting and aggressive attempts to re-define marriage, putting on a same level all types of cohabitation between same-sex persons or cohabitations contrary to human nature to gain social recognition and legalization.
In this regard, an indisputable success of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church constituted the rejection by the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Bulgaria of the Istanbul Convention of sad reputation, which attempted to introduce, through an international agreement, notions and ideologies incompatible with the traditional Christian morality of the Bulgarian people.
According to general opinion, the basis of this well-made decision of the Constitutional Court was the very refusal to ratify this Convention clearly and categorically expressed by the Bulgarian Orthodox Church.
As a faithful sister of the neighbouring Romanian Orthodox Church, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church – Bulgarian Patriarchate expresses its categorical support regarding the referendum, prayerfully wishing to the fraternal Romanian Orthodox people and its Orthodox Church steadfastness and strength in defending the only and holy Orthodox faith entrusted to us by the Lord and His divine Apostles, by our Holy Fathers and Teachers and by all our ancestors from whom we were born in the Lord, and whom we are called to follow and attain to their example, including the Orthodox Christian stance on the essence and the true sense of Christian family.