His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, has congratulated the newly elected Patriarch of Constantinople, Bishop Sahak Mashalian.
“With the joy of the Spirit, we welcome and congratulate you on your election from Holy Etchmiadzin, bringing our fraternal love and support to Your Excellency. We are glad that after a long break the Armenian Patriarchate of Constantinople has a new leader,” His Holiness wrote.
“Born and raised in the Armenian community of Constantinople, from early childhood you have been taught to love the God, the church and the nation, qualities that are characteristic of the faithful people of Constantinople,” the Catholicos continued.
His Holiness Karekin II said he will be looking forward to welcome Bishop Sahak Mashalian in the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin in his capacity as Patriarch of Constantinople.
Sahak Mashalian became the 85th Patriarch of Turkey’s Armenians on December 11 after winning the election held in Armenian churches across the country.
Mashalian won the election after receiving 102 votes out of 119 against his rival Aram Ateshian, who served as acting patriarch during the absence of Mesrob II.
The elections came after a long period of uncertainty and mourning following the death of Mesrob II, the revered head of the patriarchate of who passed away on March 8 after an 11-year fight against dementia.