|Patriarch Pavle of Serbia
(Photo by J. Mindala)
It is with profound regret that we learned today of the repose in the Lord of our brother Patriarch Pavle of Serbia. After holding a memorial service at the conclusion of this evening's Vespers on the occasion of the feast of St. Matthew the Apostle and Evangelist, we entreated the Lord with all our heart and soul to grant rest to his blessed soul in the land of the living. Therefore, we convey our sincere condolences to the venerable Hierarchy, the pious clergy and faithful people of our sister Church in Serbia, where everyone is mourning the loss of their beloved Primate. Only Patriarch Pavle is today rejoicing for his heavenly journey.
We repeat the timely words of the Serb poet M. Betskovic about the late Patriarch: "None in this noisy era spoke so softly and yet was heard so widely as he. None spoke less and yet said more. None in our delusional age confronted truth with such calmness as he."
May his memory be eternal!
May the Lord and Founder of the Church reveal a worthy successor to lead the most holy Church of Serbia and father to the glorious Serb People in order to continue his exemplary ministry and preserve the traditions and ideals of his people.
At the Phanar, November 15, 2009
Archbishop of Constantinople
New Rome, and Ecumenical Patriarch