New assistant bishop Teofil ordained to be a support for Romanians in Spain and Portugal

During the first episcopal consecration ever held in the new Presentation of Blessed Mary Orthodox Cathedral in Madrid, the Very Rev. Archimandrite Teofil Roman was ordained Sunday to the Episcopate for the Romanian Orthodox believers living in Spain and Portugal.

Through synodal resolution, His Grace Teofil of Iberia was appointed assistant bishop to the Romanian Orthodox Diocese of Spain and Portugal.

15 hierarchs concelebrated the Divine Liturgy in Madrid

The hierarchal Divine Liturgy was led by His Eminence Metropolitan Andrei of Cluj, Maramures and Satmar, delegate of the Romanian Patriarch Daniel.

Concelebrants for the Liturgy included:

  • His Eminence Polykarpos, Greek Orthodox Metropolitan of Spain and Portugal (Ecumenical Patriarchate);
  • His Eminence Iosif, Romanian Orthodox Metropolitan of Western and Southern Europe,
  • His Eminence Serafim, Romanian Orthodox Metropolitan of Germany, Central and Northern Europe,
  • His Eminence Varsanufie, Archbishop of Ramnic,
  • His Grace Ignatie, Bishop of Husi,
  • His Grace Sofronie, Bishop of Oradea,
  • His Grace Iustin, Bishop of Maramures and Satmar,
  • His Grace Visarion, Bishop of Tulcea,
  • His Grace Gurie, Bishop of Deva and Hunedoara,
  • His Grace Siluan, Romanian Orthodox Bishop of Italy,
  • His Grace Timotei, Romanian Orthodox Bishop of Spain and Portugal,
  • His Grace Paisie of Lugoj, Assistant Bishop to the Timisoara Archdiocese,
  • His Grace Marc of Neamt, Assistant Bishop to the Romanian Orthodox Archdiocese of Western Europe,
  • His Grace Sofian of Brasov, Assistant Bishop to the Romanian Orthodox Archdiocese of Germany, Austria and Luxembourg.

I chose you and appointed you

During his homily, His Eminence Met. Andrei quoted the Gospel of John in which Christ tells his disciples ‘You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit – fruit that will last – and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.’

Metropolitan Andrei stressed the importance of episcopal ministry and pointed to the fruitful activity of the first Romanian Orthodox Bishop of Spain and Portugal Timotei.

He prayed that the Lord would bring home the Romanians living in the diaspora.

His Eminence also noted the ministry carried out by Archimandrite Teofil Roman in the Cluj Metropolis and wished him a fruitful and successful episcopal ministry in Spain and Portugal.

Receive this Staff to shepherd the flock of Christ entrusted to you

At the end of the Divine Liturgy, His Eminence Metropolitan Andrei read out the patriarchal confirmation decree for the appointment of Archimandrite Teofil Roman as Assistant Bishop to the Diocese of Spain and Portugal.

The newly ordained Bishop was presented to the congregation.

Metr. Iosif bestowed upon bp Teofil the final liturgical items associated with episcopacy, the mantle and the pastoral staff.

‘Receive this Staff to shepherd the flock of Christ entrusted to you. To the obedient let it be a help and a support. With it, lead the disobedient and the wayward to admonishment and instruction.’

In his address, the Romanian Orthodox Metropolitan of Western and Southern Europe spoke about the over one million Romanians living in Spain and Portugal.

He said that by the help of clergy and believers there is a dynamic spiritual life.

‘Living in a foreign land, the believers have a deeper sensitivity towards faith and their traditions,’ Met. Iosif noted.

He added that ‘the Church is a spiritual oasis where we can quench our longing for God and for the motherland.’

‘May God bless you, may He strengthen your faith and belief that you carry on your shoulders the yolk received from Christ,’ Met. Iosif said addressing Bp Teofil of Iberia.

Address by Bp Teofil of Iberia

Bishop Teofil offered his remarks saying that the episcopal consecration ‘is not an elevation in rank, but an elevation on the cross,’ since the hierarchal ministry means ‘to follow Christ.’

‘I am convinced that the Lord has chosen me to receive this great and holy mission not for my righteousness, but for the faith and intercession of His Church that is constantly praying Him to bring forth workers to His harvest.’

The event was attended by officials as well as numerous believers from Romania and Spain.

Biography of Bp Teofil

Bishop Teofil of Iberia was born in 1971 in Desesti, Maramures County. He studied Orthodox Theology in Cluj-Napoca. In 1992 he was tonsured a monk. From 1995 to 2008 he was appointed spiritual director of the Life-Giving Spring Monastery in Salva.

In 2002 he was appointed exarch of the monasteries of the Archdiocese of Vad, Feleac and Cluj. In 2008 he was appointed ecclesiarch (sacristan) of the Metropolitan Cathedral in Cluj-Napoca and chairman of the Archdiocesan Monastic Consistory.

In 2013 he was awarded the highest distinction in the Romanian Patriarchate, the Patriarchal Cross. He hosts a weekly radio show called the ABC of Faith at the Cluj Archdiocese’s Renasterea Radio Station.

The Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church elected the Very Rev. Archimandrite Teofil as assistant bishop to the Romanian Diocese of Spain and Portugal in February.

Photography courtesy of the Diocese of Maramureş

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