Neophyte (Dimitrov) of Bulgaria

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[[Category: Patriarchs of Bulgaria]]
 
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[[ro:Neofit (Dimitrov) al Bulgariei]]

Latest revision as of 12:35, March 20, 2013

His Holiness Neophyte or Neofit (Dimitrov) is the Patriarch of Bulgaria, Metropolitan of Sofia, and primate of the Church of Bulgaria. He was enthroned on February 24, 2013.

Life

Simeon Nikolov Dimitrov (Симеон Николов Димитров) was born in Sofia, Bulgaria on October 15, 1945. After completing his secondary education, Simeon began his theological studies at the Sofia Seminary in Cherepish Station, graduating in 1965. Then, in September 1967, he entered the St. Clement of Ochrid Theological Academy in Sofia, graduating in 1971. He then continued his post-graduate theological education at the Moscow Theological Academy for two years, where he specialized in liturgical music and earned a doctoral degree.

Returning to Sofia, he was appointed lecturer of liturgical music and conductor of the Theological Seminary Choir on September 1, 1973. On August 3, 1975, Simeon was tonsured a monk, with the name Neofit, at the Troyan Monastery by Patr. Maxim. On August 15, 1975, he was ordained to the diaconate followed by his ordination to the priesthood on March 23, 1976, both by Patr. Maxim at the Cathedral of "Sveta Nedelya" (St. Kyriaki) in Sofia.

On September 30, 1975, Father Neofit was appointed the conductor of the Sofia Priests' Choir, serving until March 17, 1986. On July 15, 1977, he was appointed senior lecturer in Eastern church chant and liturgical practice at the Theological Academy in Sofia, a position he retained until January 1980. On November 21, 1977, Fr. Neofit was raised to the dignity of archimandrite. On January 1, 1981, Archim. Neofit was named chancellor of the Sofia Eparchy.

While remaining chancellor, Archim. Neofit was consecrated the titular bishop of Levkas on December 8, 1985 and served as the second vicar of the Sofia eparchy. On December 1, 1989, Bp. Neofit was appointed rector of the St. Clement of Ochrid Theological Academy in Sofia. On July 26, 1991, he was chosen the first dean of the reestablished Theological Faculty at Sofia University. On January 27, 1992, he was named Secretary of the Holy Synod of the Church of Bulgaria and chairman of the Board of Trustees of the St. Alexander Nevsky Patriarchal Cathedral.

On March 27, 1994, Bp. Neofit was elected Metropolitan of the Eparchy of Dorostol and Cherven and in 2001, after the eparchy had been divided into two eparchies, he was appointed Metropolitan of the Eparchy of Rousse on December 17, 2001. Following the death of Patr. Maxim on November 6, 2012, Metr. Neofit was elected Patriarch of Bulgaria on February 24, 2013 and enthroned later that day.

Succession box:
Neophyte (Dimitrov) of Bulgaria
Preceded by:
?
Bishop of Levkas
Vicar of Sofia Eparchy

1985-1994
Succeeded by:
?
Preceded by:
Sophronius (Stoychev)
Metropolitan of Dorostol and Cherven
1994-2001
Succeeded by:
Hilarion (Tsonev)
Preceded by:
Metropolitan of Rousse
2001-2013
Succeeded by:
?
Preceded by:
Maxim (Minkov)
Patriarch of Bulgaria
2013-Present
Succeeded by:
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