Patriarch Pavle of Serbia falls asleep in the Lord

n643068273_1512660_8146This morning (November 15), Patriarch Pavle of Serbia fell asleep in the Lord. May his memory be eternal! Pray for the Church in Serbia as it mourns one of the holiest men to have been a successor to St. Sava. His simplicity and uncompromising commitment to the truth in Christ, resisting every force of politics or worldliness, will always be living examples of what it means to serve the flock of Christ. Memory eternal!

There are many news stories available on the Patriarch’s death, with brief biographies. However, if you are unfamiliar with this wonderful living saint (for he was often called this by many), I would recommend three articles, translated by Fr. Milovan Katanic, by the Patriarch on prayer. They are a blessing. They may be read here, here and here.

About Fr. Stephen Freeman

Fr. Stephen is a retired Archpriest of the Orthodox Church in America, Pastor Emeritus of St. Anne Orthodox Church in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He is also author of Everywhere Present: Christianity in a One-Storey Universe, and Face to Face: Knowing God Beyond Our Shame, as well as the Glory to God podcast series on Ancient Faith Radio.





10 responses to “Patriarch Pavle of Serbia falls asleep in the Lord”

  1. NW Darla Avatar

    May his memory be eternal.

  2. Sean Avatar

    I had the chance to meet Patriarch Pavle once. I remember I was impressed by the fact that he was a very short, small man, a humble man, in the truest sense. He literally emanated tranquility and peace and somehow, pain. I mean, inner pain, pain coming out of love for the fellow human.

    Αιωνία η μνήμη αυτού.

  3. Дејан Avatar

    Dear Father,

    Thank you for these sincere, accurate and profound words about Patriarch Pavle. They resonate deeply in my heart and bring back many memories.

    In light of his explanations, metaphysically complex things instantaneously became charmingly simple and divinely encouraging. The very tone of his voice spontaneously carried tremendous sense of peace, wisdom and holiness – some indescribable unearthly quality. To hear him reading Christmas or Easter encyclicals was joy unparalleled.

    Never to be influenced by the questionable glittering values of the transitory world, but rather to accept the outer world in peace and then inspire and serve it by changing ourselves first, was the essence of his sublime message, as I saw it. No outer circumstances can be too difficult – he lost his parents as a very small child, but his life is bright example that authentic devotion to the Lord transcends every difficulty that a human being may encounter.

    I will never be able to adequately portray the depths of hope he was offering to us in times when living in Serbia was unbearable. He was our living saint, always humble and tolerant, by his own example he was constantly revealing the true meaning of “podvig” (spiritual struggle leading to greater self-control and thus to higher horizons) through little things of everyday life.

    Because of his saintly life he was much respected by people from different religions and confessions. But most touching scene for me was when I saw today how my friend, who does not believe in the afterlife, is crying while watching on TV about Patriarch’s life. Many times I heard that atheists say how Patriarch is holy person. I don’t know how to explain it, except perhaps that he transferred theological truths from mind to heart and practical life, thus making them become universal values for whole mankind. But he did and he is so much more…

    @Sean, thank you for sharing your experience.

    + Вjечнаја Памјат + Memory Eternal + Dearest Patriarch pray to the Lord for аll of us +

  4. fatherstephen Avatar


    Thank you for your most welcome thoughts. When I heard of the Patriarch’s passing, I thought immediately of you and other Serbs who have become friends of this website. I thought as well of the Serbian land. I take comfort in the knowledge that only the mercy of God provides such a saint as a hierarch. The same mercy of God is directed towards the whole Serbian people. May God sustain them in difficult times and restore them by His grace!

  5. Fr Mark in Baton Rouge Avatar
    Fr Mark in Baton Rouge

    My favorite description of His Holiness has been as “the walking saint,” referring to his humility and simplicity – and the often cited quotation concerning how he wouldn’t have an automobile until every Serbian household had one.

    Memory Eternal!

  6. Fr Frank, Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA Avatar

    In ways that will only now be remember the servant of God, Patriarch Pavle of blessed memory was more than Patriarch. He was Christ’s apostle, who witnessed to Christ in a world and in a land gravely wounded and so crippled by hatred. By his own life of service this mild and meek priest of God brought healing to Serbia. May his prayers give strength to us all.

  7. Miha Avatar

    Vječnaja pamjat!

  8. George Patsourakos Avatar

    Patriarch Pavle of Serbia was an extremely humble Patriarch, who did much to enhance the Serbian Orthodox Church.

    May his memory be eternal.

  9. Ben Avatar

    May his memory be eternal. . . I know of people who are already talking about canonization. From what I hear he is a very holy man.

  10. millie jocovic Avatar
    millie jocovic

    Memory eternal to our Saint – a humble person who I met personally
    several years ago in his residence – he truly was a Saint in many ways.
    We have lost a great person who was very religious and dedicated Serbian Orthodox Christian in every sense of the word. He truly will be missed by all.

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