January 11, 2013
Serbian Orthodox Church Patriarch Irinej and interim leader of Bulgarian Orthodox Church Metropolitan Cyril of Varna and Veliki Preslav are also in Georgia.
President Saakashvili received leaders of Orthodox Churches on January 10. He said that Patriarch Ilia II’s jubilee was a “celebration” for whole Georgia.
Parliamentary Chairman Davit Usupashvili was also present whom President Saakashvili thanked for “his contribution to organize all these events with all of us.”
Patriarch Bartholomew I is expected to meet PM Bidzina Ivanishvili on January 11, according to the Georgian Patriarchate.
Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople is viewed as spiritual leader of the world’s Orthodox Christians, but he has no jurisdiction over other autocephalous (independent) Orthodox Churches, including the one in Georgian.