Serbian Orthodox Church welcomes relations with Ohrid Bishopric

NEWS 16.05.2022 15:05
Source: Tanjug/ Sava Radovanović

The Serbian Orthodox Church (SPC) welcomed the autonomy and independence of the Archbishopric of Ohrid in North Macedonia as recognized by the Ecumenical Patriach Bartholomew.

A statement said that the top church body, the Holy Synod approved “the canonical unity of the SPC with the so-called Macedonian Orthodox Church, that is the Archbishopric of Ohrid … and welcomed the accepting of the canonic status, widest possible autonomy and full independence of the Macedonian Orthodox Church – Archbishopric of Ohrid granted in 1959”. The SPC and the Orthodox Church in what is now North Macedonia have been at odds over jurisdiction with both claiming the Ohrid Bishopric as their own.

“This has removed the reasons for the break in canonic relations, caused by the unilateral declaration of autocephaly in 1967, and full liturgical and canonic relations are established,” the statement said.

It said that canonical unity makes a dialogue on the final status of bishopics in North Macedonia possible and justified, legitimate and realistic. The statement said that dialogue will be conducted with no regard for real politics, geo-politics or church politics without any pressure or influence from others.

The Holy Synod has no intention of setting limitations for the new kindred Church in terms of its jurisdiction at home and abroad but recommends that a solution for its final name be found in a dialogue with other Orthodox Churches.

The Ecumenical Patriarch recognized the Orthodox church in North Macedonia under the name Ohrid Bishopric in a statement which said that the name Macedonia will not be used for the church in North Macedonia.