Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to Deliver Notre Dame’s 2020 Commencement Address

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I. File photo

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, the Archbishop of Constantinople and New Rome, will deliver the principal address and receive an honorary degree at the University of Notre Dame in Indiana on May 17, 2020.

Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C, the President of Notre Dame University, praised Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew for being ”a champion for understanding and encounter among the world’s religions, as well as for environmental initiatives, religious freedom and human rights” in his announcement.

This will not be the first time Bartholomew has traveled to the United States to receive an honorary award. In 1997, the head of the Greek Orthodox Church was honored with the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest civilian award that can be bestowed by the United States Congress.

The 80-year old leader of the Greek Orthodox world serves as the spiritual father to more than 300 million Orthodox Christians worldwide.

For decades now, Bartholomew has also been known as the ”Green Patriarch,” because of his constant efforts to spread the message of environmental awareness.

The University of Notre Dame du Lac, which will honor the Patriarch at its commencement ceremonies, is a private Catholic research university outside the city of South Bend, Indiana.