By Efi Efthimiou
The Patriarchate of Serbia cedes to the Archdiocese of Ohrid, the priests who belonged to the “Orthodox Archdiocese of Ohrid” under its jurisdiction, proceeding to a further settlement of the administrative issues between the two Churches.
As the communiqué of the Holy Synod of the Serbian Patriarchate points out, during its meeting, special attention was paid to the issue of the final solution of the canonical status of the Archdiocese of Ohrid.
To this end, it decided to grant canonical discharge to the hierarchy of the autonomous Archdiocese of Ohrid, and its inclusion in the Synod of the Ohrid Archdiocese headed by Mr. Stefan.
At the end of April, the Holy Synod of the Archdiocese of Ohrid met to decide what was to happen with the Bishops of the Archdiocese that belonged to the Patriarchate of Serbia.
At that time, the Synod had decided to give Metropolitan Ioannis and the Bishops who belong to this ecclesiastical entity, personal dioceses, mainly in small towns or villages.
The Synod of the Archdiocese of Ohrid decided to send its proposal to the Patriarchate of Serbia in order to settle the issue.
For its part, the Synod of the Serbian Church received this proposal and decided to accept it.
It is now time for the meeting of the Holy Synod of the Archdiocese of Ohrid to be held in order to ratify the affiliation of the Bishops and to follow the necessary procedures.
It is recalled that last May, the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate decided to receive Archbishop Stefan in the Eucharistic communion of the Church, entrusting the Church of Serbia with the regulation of administrative matters within the framework of the ecclesiastical tradition.
The Archdiocese of Ohrid, headed by Metropolitan Stefan, has held several meetings with hierarchs of the Serbian Church, stressing that it expects the granting of the Tomos of Autocephaly by the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew.
In June 2022, Patriarch Porfirije of Serbia presented a “Tomos of Autocephaly” to the Archdiocese of Ohrid, in an unhistorical gesture of impressiveness, in which he questioned the exclusive privileges of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
Since then, however, Archbishop Stefan of Ohrid and the political leadership of North Macedonia have reiterated that they expect the Tomos of Autocephaly from the Ecumenical Patriarchate.