LAST UPDATE 16:39
The Bishop of Diokleia, Kallistos Ware, is in critical condition.
Earlier today there were rumors of his death, as reported from the Holy Church of the Transfiguration in Coventry and the Cathedral of Apostolos Andreas Birmingham, among others.
Metropolitan Athenagoras of Belgium also wrote in his personal social media account that Bishop Kallistos had rested in the Lord.
However, he deleted it later.
The bishop of Diokleia has been facing health problems for some time and his condition is considered critical.
Kallistos Ware is an English bishop and theologian of the Eastern Orthodox Church. From 1982 he held the titular bishopric of Diokleia in Phrygia, then was appointed titular metropolitan bishopric in 2007, under the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.
He is one of the best-known contemporary Eastern Orthodox hierarchs and theologians. From 1966 to 2001 he was Spalding Lecturer in Eastern Orthodox Studies at Oxford University.
Born Timothy Richard Ware in 1934 to an Anglican family in Bath, Somerset, England, he was educated at Westminster School in London (where he won a King’s Scholarship) and Magdalen College, Oxford, where he got a double first in classics as well as theology reading.
On April 14, 1958, at the age of 24, he embraced the Orthodox Christian faith. He describes his first contact with Orthodoxy and the growing appeal of the Orthodox Church in an autobiographical text entitled “My path to the Orthodox Church”. While still a layman, he spent six months in Canada in a monastery of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad.
Fluent in Modern Greek, Ware became an Orthodox monk at the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian in Patmos, Greece. He also frequented other major centers of Orthodoxy such as Jerusalem and Mount Athos. In 1966 he was ordained a priest within the Ecumenical Patriarchate and was tonsured as a monk, receiving the name “Kállistos”.
In 1966 Ware became Spalding Lecturer at Oxford University in Eastern Orthodox Studies, a position he held for 35 years until his retirement. In 1970 he was appointed to a scholarship at Pembroke College, Oxford.
In 1982 he was consecrated to the episcopate as Auxiliary Bishop with the title of Bishop of Diokleia (in Phrygia) in the Archdiocese of Thyateira and Great Britain of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. After his consecration, Ware continued to teach at Oxford University and served in the Greek Orthodox parish in Oxford.
On March 30, 2007, the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate elevated the diocese of Diokleia in Phrygia to the rank of titular metropolitan diocese and Ware to the rank of metropolitan.
In 2017, Ware was awarded the Lambeth Cross for Ecumenism by the Archbishop of Canterbury “for his outstanding contribution to Anglican-Orthodox theological dialogue”.
Ware is a prolific author and speaker. He has written or edited over a dozen books, numerous articles in a wide range of periodicals, essays in books on many subjects, as well as prefaces, previews or introductions to many other books. . He is perhaps best known as the author of The Orthodox Church, published as a layman in 1963 and revised several times thereafter.
In 1979 he produced a companion volume, The Orthodox Way. He collaborated in the translation and publication of major Orthodox ascetic and liturgical texts. With GEH Palmer and Philip Sherrard, he translated the Philokalia (four out of five volumes published as of 2018); and with Mother Mary he produced Lent Triodion and Festal Menaion.
St Vladimir’s Seminary Press published a Festschrift in his honor in 2003: Abba, The Tradition of Orthodoxy in the West, Festschrift for Bishop Kallistos (Ware) of Diokleia, eds. John Behr, Andrew Louth, Dimitri Conomos (New York: SVS Press, 2003).