Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople

Istanbul, Turkey

Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople

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The Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople (Greek: Οἰκουμενικὸν Πατριαρχεῖον Κωνσταντινουπόλεως, romanized: Oikoumenikón Patriarkhíon Konstantinoupóleos, IPA: [ikumeniˈkon patriarˈçion konstandinuˈpoleos]; Latin: Patriarchatus Oecumenicus Constantinopolitanus; Turkish: Rum Ortodoks Patrikhanesi, İstanbul Ekümenik Patrikhanesi, "Roman Orthodox Patriarchate, Ecumenical Patriarchate") is one of the fourteen to sixteen autocephalous churches (or "jurisdictions") that together compose the Eastern Orthodox Church. It is headed by the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, currently Bartholomew I, Archbishop of Constantinople.

Because of its historical location as the capital of the former Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire and its role as the mother church of most modern Orthodox churches, Constantinople holds a special place of honor within Orthodoxy and serves as the seat for the Ecumenical Patriarch, who enjoys the status of primus inter pares (first among equals) among the world's Eastern Orthodox prelates and is regarded as the representative and spiritual leader of Eastern Orthodox Christians.




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