Bulgarian Orthodox Church

Bulgarian Orthodox Church
Българска православна църква
Patriarchate of Bulgaria
Coat of arms of BPC.png
Founder Saint Andrew,
Boris I of Bulgaria
Independence 870–1018
1185–1393
1018–1767
1870–present
Recognition 870 (Autocephaly)
927 (Patriarchate)
1945 (Patriarchate)
Primate Neophyte, Patriarch of All Bulgaria
Headquarters Sofia, Bulgaria
Territory Bulgaria
Possessions United States, Canada, Australia, European Union, Argentina, Russia, Greece, Turkey
Language Bulgarian and Old Church Slavonic
Members 8 to 10 million
Bishops 15
Priests 1,500
Parishes 2,600
Monasteries 120
Website Bulgarian Orthodox Church

The Bulgarian Orthodox Church ( Bulgarian: Българска православна църква, Balgarska pravoslavna tsarkva) is the oldest Slavic Orthodox Church with some 6.5 million members in the Republic of Bulgaria and between 1.5 and 2.0 million members in a number of European countries, the Americas and Australia. It was recognized as an independent Church by the Patriarchate of Constantinople in 927 AD.

Canonical status and organization

The Bulgarian Orthodox Church considers itself an inseparable member of the one, holy, synodal and apostolic church and is organized as a self-governing body under the name of Patriarchate. It is divided into thirteen dioceses within the boundaries of the Republic of Bulgaria and has jurisdiction over additional two dioceses for Bulgarians in Western and Central Europe, the Americas, Canada and Australia. The dioceses of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church are divided into 58 church counties, which, in turn, are subdivided into some 2,600 parishes.

The supreme clerical, judicial and administrative power for the whole domain of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church is exercised by the Holy Synod, which includes the Patriarch and the diocesan prelates, who are called metropolitans. Church life in the parishes is guided by the parish priests, numbering some 1,500. The Bulgarian Orthodox Church also has some 120 monasteries in Bulgaria, with about 2,000 monks and nearly as many nuns.

Other Languages
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Бугарска православна црква