His Holiness Bartholomew I celebrated on Tuesday 30 years from his enthronement as Archbishop of Constantinople – the New Rome and as Ecumenical Patriarch.
The 270th Patriarch of Constantinople was enthroned on November 2, 1991, at St. George Cathedral at the Phanar.
Patriarch Bartholomew was born in 1940, on Imbros Island (Gökçeada, in today’s Turkey).
He studied at the Halki Seminary in Istanbul, at the Gregorian University in Rome, at the Ecumenical Institute in Bossey, Switzerland, and at München University, Germany.
Metropolitan Meliton of Chalcedon ordained him a deacon in 1961 and Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras ordained him a priest in 1969.
His Holiness became the Metropolitan of Philadelphia in 1973, then the Metropolitan of Chalcedon in 1990.
In 1991, after Ecumenical Patriarch Demetrios I reposed in the Lord, His Holiness was unanimously elected as Ecumenical Patriarch. He was 51 at the time.
11 visits to Romania
In his capacity as Ecumenical Patriarch, His Holiness first visited our country between August 12 and 18, 1993.
He came to Romania in 1995, at an important moment for the Romanian Orthodox Church: the 110th anniversary of Romanian autocephaly and the 70th anniversary of the Romanian Patriarchate.
Two years later, in 1997, His Holiness visited twice our country, between September 20 and 28 and between October 11 and 15.
In September he participated in the International Symposium for the Protection of the Environment, which had the theme “The Black Sea in Crisis”. In October, he participated in the 500th anniversary of the Neamţ Monastery church consecration and in the feast of St Paraskeva of Iaşi.
In 1999 the Ecumenical Patriarch took part in the “Danube – River of Life” Symposium, organized under the auspices of His Holiness and the Duke of Edinburgh.
On October 26, patriarchs Bartholomew and Teoctist consecrated the “St. Gregory Palamas” Church at the Politehnica University in Bucharest and concelebrated the patronal feast of the Patriarchal Cathedral in Bucharest.
The next visit made by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to our country was between October 10 and 14, 2000. His Holiness was awarded the Honoris Causa Diploma by the Romanian Academy, participated in the consecration of the Diocesan Cathedral in the city of Galaţi and travelled to Iaşi for the feast of St. Paraskeva.
Four years later, Patriarch Bartholomew came to Romania between October 15 and 21, 2004, to participate in the festivities occasioned by the 500th commemoration of the Holy Prince Stephen the Great.
On that occasion, he received the title of Honorary Member of the Romanian Academy and became a Doctor Honoris Causa of the “Babeş-Bolyai” University in Cluj-Napoca and of the Ovidius University in Constanţa.
His Holiness was present, between March 4 and 7, 2005, at the festivities organized to mark 120 years of autocephaly for the Romanian Orthodox Church and 80 years of Romanian Patriarchate.
In 2007, His Holiness officiated the funerals of Patriarch Teoctist.
His Holiness’ first visit during the patriarchate of His Beatitude Daniel was in 2010. The visit started on October 26 and ended on October 29.
During the visit, His Sanctity officiated, with the Patriarch of Romania, the Divine Liturgy for the patronal feast of the Patriarchal Cathedral and participated in the Solemn Meeting of the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church, held on October 28.
Also, the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew visited Romania in the autumn of 2018, when he consecrated, with Patriarch Daniel, Romania’s National Cathedral. The consecration service was followed by the first Divine Liturgy ever celebrated inside the National Cathedral, presided by His Holiness.
Photo credit: Basilica.ro