Monday, August 29, 2011

68th Anniversary of Tsar Boris III's Repose Commemorated in Sofia

The 68th anniversary of the repose of Tsar Boris III of Bulgaria was commemorated yesterday in the patriarchal Monastery of St. John in Rila, Bulgaria, with a memorial served by the Rila Monastery's abbot, Bishop Evlogiy of Adrianople. When the tsar died in 1943 he was initially buried in the Rila Monastery's catholicon before being disinterred by the Bulgarian Communist regime. The location of his remains are unknown, though his heart was discovered and returned for reburial at the Rila Monastery following the collapse of the Bulgarian Communist government in 1991. More (in Bulgarian) here.

Although responsible for allying Bulgaria with Germany during World War II, Tsar Boris worked first and foremost to unify the Bulgarian nation, making the alliance with Germany in the hopes of regaining historically Bulgarian territories lost to neighboring Yugoslavia and Greece and refusing to hand over Bulgaria's Jews to the Nazis or to send Bulgarian troops to fight the Soviet Union due to the close bonds formed with Russia during Bulgaria's liberation from the Ottoman Turks.

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