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Patriarch: All depends on Artemije and his attitude

23. November 2010. | 06:41

Source: Tanjug

The SPC said that there are two possible paths for former bishop Artemije,  he can either obey and find peace as a monk in a monastery, if a bishop agrees to take him in, or he can be deflected from the church.

The main decision which the Holy Synod of Bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church (SPC) adopted at its autumn session referred to the demoting of retired Bishop of Ras-Prizren Artemije to the rank of simple monk, and everything from that point on will depend on Artemije himself, his desires and attitude, Serbian Patriarch Irinej told Tanjug.

The decision to demote Artemije was adopted by the Holy Synod, which comprises all archbishops and represents the highest church body which, if necessary, can stage a trial against any member of the clergy, the patriarch said and added that the course of future developments will depend on Artemije's attitude.

The SPC said that there are two possible paths for former bishop Artemije, who claims that he does not recognise the decisions of the Holy Synod because they are not based upon the canon - he can either obey and find peace as a monk in a monastery, if a bishop agrees to take him in, or he can be deflected from the church.

Newly-appointed Bishop of the Diocese of Ras-Prizren and Kosovo-Metohija Teodosije stated on Sunday that the SPC is not in schism and that church unity has been restored after the attempt of former bishop Artemije to usurp church property in northern Kosovo.

Representatives of SPC claim that the demoted bishop cannot lead the church to schism, since he no longer has the right to communicate with the Synod, and his case can only be placed under the charge of a bishop.

The SPC said that the speculation as to whether Artemije will found a new church is not realistic, because such a move requires support from the state, in addition to funds and facilities.


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