In a telegram addressed to the Patriarchal Synod of the Patriarchate of Cilicia of the Armenians in Beirut (Lebanon), Pope Francis expressed his condolences for the death of their Patriarch, His Beatitude Nerses Bedros XIX. 

Patriarch Bedros XIX passed away today at the age of 75 from a sudden heart attack. Born in Egypt, the Catholic Patriarch was elected to lead the Patriarchate of Cilicia of the Armenians  in 1999.

In his telegram, the Holy Father recalled his recent close collaboration with the Egyptian prelate, particularly in the recent declaration of St. Gregory of Narek as a Doctor of the Church.

He remembered him as a “devoted pastor who, as a priest dedicated himself tirelessly to the service of the communities for whom he was responsible.” He also recalled his zealous ministry as a bishop, first in Alexandria and then as Patriarch of Cilicia of the Armenians.

“I join in prayer with all those who are affected by his sudden passing and convey my apostolic blessing, in particular to the bishops of the Patriarchate of Cilicia of the Armenians, the family of the deceased and all those who are to attend his funeral,” Pope Francis concluded.