Bulgarian Iron Church in Istanbul Marks 130th Anniversary
Sunday marked 130 years since the laying of the foundation stone for the Bulgarian St Stephen Church in Istanbul.
To celebrate the occasion a two-hour long liturgy was celebrated by Archimandrite Charalampy Nichev, organized by the Foundation of Bulgarian Exarchate Churches, chaired by Vasil Liyaze.
Attending were Patriarch Bartholomew, Culture Minister Velisav Minekov, Bulgarian Ambassador to Ankara Angel Cholakov, Vasil Liyaze, leader of the Bulgarian community in Istanbul, Bulgarian officials, representatives of the Bulgarian community in Istanbul. .
In a short but emotional address Vice President Iliana Iotova said that the 130th anniversary of the St Sthepen Chrich is a very important occasion and that the Iron Church is a symbol of the unity and the Bulgarian nationality.
Culture Minister Minekov thanked Türkiye for taking on the bulk of the work on the restoration of the Iron Church, the Culture Ministry reported.
The Church reopened after a thorough restoration in 2018.
Later on Sunday, the Bulgarian delegation led by Vice President Iotova opened the new school year at the Sts Cyril and Methodius Sunday School, which is housed at the Bulgarian Exarchate in the Sisli area in Istanbul and was founded six years ago.