New Antiochian Orthodox Patriarch Elected

From MEI Editor's Blog Tue Dec 18 2012, 15:36:00

I only just posted about Eastern Christianity when there's major news. Archbishop John Yazigi, Antiochian Orthodox Archbishop of Western and Central Europe, based in Paris, was elected yesterday at the Balamand Seminary in Lebanon as the new Patriarch of Antioch and All the East for the Orthodox churches. He will be known as John X Yazigi. His predecessor, Ignatius IV Hazim, died recently.

Ignatius was 92 when he died and had been on the Patriarchal throne for 33 years. By contrast, John X is only 57, born in 1955. The Economist offers comments on his election.

The new Patriarch's biography can be found here. Like his predecessor, he is Syrian born, in Latakia, and on his election pledged that Christianity must survive in Syria. He is surely aware of the challenges: his younger brother Paul is Metropolitan of Aleppo.

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