On Jan 9, 2004, Somdej Phra Buddhacharn was appointed by the Sangha Supreme Council, the clergy's governing body in Thailand, to act on behalf of the Supreme Patriarch, who became ill and was admitted to Chulalongkorn Hospital in 2002. On July 20, 2004, the council agreed to appoint a monastic panel working on behalf of the Supreme Patriarch. Somdej Phra Buddhacharn, as the most senior monk at the time, was appointed chairman of the panel.
The most senior monk tipped to succeed Somdej Phra Buddhacharn as the next chairman of the monastic panel is Somdej Phra Maha Ratchamangalacharn, the 86-year-old abbot of Wat Pak Nam Phasi Charoen on the Thon Buri side of Bangkok, according to a source close to the matter. http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/local/3 ... es-aged-85