Prayers and blessings were said for Bulgaria’s new head of state, President Roumen Radev, at a ceremony in Sofia’s landmark Alexander Nevsky cathedral after his inauguration on January 22 2017.
Patriarch Neofit, head of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church’s Holy Synod, presented Radev with an icon and told him: “Good luck, and God be with you”.
The ceremony was attended by Radev’s vice-president, Iliyana Yotova, former president Rossen Plevneliev and former vice-president Margarita Popova, as well as former monarch and former prime minister Simeon Saxe-Coburg, and members of the Holy Synod, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church’s governing body.
In line with Orthodox Christian tradition, Radev lit candles in the cathedral.
The majority of Bulgaria’s population declare themselves to be Orthodox Christians.
(Main photo, of Patriarch Neofit and President Radev: president.bg. Screenshot, of Plovdiv Metropolitan Nikolai, President Roumen Radev and Patriarch Neofit, via BNT)