The Bulgarian Church received it for saving Jews during the WWII, after the premiere of a documentary which shows several testimonies of those dramatic events.
The Metropolitan Bishops Stefan and Kiril received an appreciation after the premiere of the film ”The Optimistics”, which tells the story of the Bulgarian Jews who were saved during the Holocaust. The documentary is based on the stories of people who did the impossible to spare thousands of others from the death camps.
The ceremony was co-organized by the International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation, an educative Non-Governmental Organization founded in Argentina, with branches in Buenos Aires, Jerusalem and New York.
The Metropolitan Father Dmitri Dmitroff of the Orthodox Church of Bulgaria, accepted the prize on behalf of the Metropolitan Stephan and Kiril whose solidary and public-spirited courage acts saved about 50 thousands souls from deportation. The prize was presented by David Elcott, Director of inter-religious affairs of the American Jewish Committee.
Among those present were Arye Mekel, General Consul of Israel in New York; Stefan Tafrov, The Permanent Representative of the Republic of Bulgaria to the United Nations; Elena Poptodorova, the Bulgarian Ambassador in the United States; Nikolay Milkov, Consul General of Bulgaria in New York, and Abigail Tenembaum, Vice-president of the Wallenberg Foundation in New York.
Translation: Marcela Marino