Mission Bulgaria Week 23
NEWS – Week 23 – January 21-27, 2002 – Sofia, BULGARIA
The pope will also visit Bulgaria in May, a week after he turns 82. That trip will be part of his efforts to improve relations with Orthodox Christians, a visit the Vatican hopes will pave the way for a hoped-for trip to Russia. Church officials are also discussing possible trips this year to Belarus and Croatia and a possible stop in the summer in John Paul’s native Poland. Italian press reports suggested that the pope has expressed a desire to visit Ground Zero, the site of the September 11 terrorist attack against the World Trade Center in New York. The Vatican, however, said such a stop was not under consideration.
On Sunday, the Bulgarian Church of God called its ordained ministers in Sofia city and the area. More than 30 churches were represented by their pastors and deacons. Seven of them are newly started. A total membership of 4, 594 was reported for the churches from the denomination in the Sofia area which has an approximate population of 1,5 million people. Compared to the past 5 years, the membership in the Sofia area has doubled and it now represents almost 27% of the membership of the Bulgarian Church of God nationwide. Only 4 of these churches have their own building, while the rest are renting auditoriums in all regions of the city. A decision was taken to begin crusade meetings on Saturday afternoon for evangelization purposes.