Abuna Basilios, 79-year-old Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, died on Monday (October 12). His?
Abuna Basilios, 79-year-old Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, died on Monday (October 12). His body was moved to the Holy Trinity Cathedral, Addis Ababa, where it lay in state until the funeral on Wednesday (October 14).
The Patriarch died after a long illness and the country is now observing twelve day so mourning. Emperor Haile Selassie, cabinet ministers and church dignitaries paid homage to the Patriarch at a service in the Cathedral.
The Emperor led the mourners in the funeral procession after the special service.
The burial took place at the Debre Libanos Monastry, 90 miles (150 kilometres) north-west of Addis Ababa, where the Patriarch had received his initial church education.
The Rev. Basilios became the first Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church when it obtained autonomy from the Alexandria-based Egyptian Coptic Church 20 years ago, in 1949. His successor will be chosen in due course by an electoral college composed of archbishops, bishops, laymen and representatives of churches and monasteries.