Holy Archangels' Monastery near Prizren, Serbia

"You showed me the church of Yours as the source of health", Dusan's gift charter. -Full reconstruction was interrupted... -In June 1999 a monk from the monastery, Fr. Chariton, was abducted. -Now - a spiritual center gathering the remaining Orthodox people from Prizren and around. The young monastic brotherhood is full of religious enthusiasm and remains confident that one day Holy Archangels will be completely reconstructed.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Ceku’s request denied | 09:58 April 20 | B92





Agim Ceku


PRISTINA -- Bishop Artemije has denied Agim Ceku’s request to attend Easter church services in Gracanica.

The Rasko-Prizren Bishop reminded the Kosovo Prime Minister that he has been living himself as a refugee for the past seven years and that his residence and cathedral were burned to the ground in March 2004, along with many other landmarks of the Orthodox Church.

“We told him that, considering that we have been living with the status of refugees for nearly a full seven years, outside our residence in Prizren, which was burned in the March 17, 2004 riots, along with our cathedral and many other holy places, we are not able to welcome Mr. Ceku before we have returned to our restored residence, and our people have return to their homes.” Bishop Artemije said.

Ceku sent a letter yesterday to Bishop Artemije asking whether he could attend the Easter liturgy in Gracanica and wish all Orthodox Christians a happy Easter.

Kosovo President Fatmir Sejdiju wrote and sent a similar request to the monastery in Visoki Decani.

The U.S.-NATO Military Intervention in Kosovo,GlobalResearch.ca
Interestingly, KLA commander Agim Ceku had previous ties with the U.S. military. The Nation reported,
Ceku refined his brutality as a general in the US-backed Croatian Army during the Balkans war and was trained by Military Professional Resources Inc., a private paramilitary firm founded in 1987 and based in Alexandria, Virginia, with former high-ranking US generals and NATO officials on its board.
Canadian soldiers have also witnessed the results of Ceku's prior actions in Croatia, which included the rape and murder of civilians, and attacks on refugee columns.After the war, Ceku was placed in command of the UN-backed "Kosovo Protection Force," where he escalated attacks against the Serbian population.



More news: Cries for an Autonomous Roma Community in Kosovo, 21. 4. 2006
Mass of conflicting property claims since war leads many Kosovars to try solving disputes with guns.
By Krenar Gashi in Pristina (Balkan Insight, 26 Apr 06)
Boris Mitik UNMIK TITANIk wins Balkan Black Box film fest
Apr 30, 2006, 11:05 GMT

Wednesday, May 03, 2006,Religious leaders issue rare joint appeal for unity in rebuilding Kosovo

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Could it be that left hates America?


Stephen Brown, SUN-SENTINEL, South Florida
greenacres
Posted April 13 2006

During the Clinton administration, American warplanes annihilated the Serbs, killing thousands of innocents. The supposed reason was to stop Serbian aggression against the supposedly peaceful Muslims. It is a fact that al-Qaida was helping us to kill Serbs. It is documented that two of the 9-11 hijackers were veterans of the Bosnian war.

Why was it OK for the U.S. military to help al-Qaida attack the Serbs? Where are the anti-war protests on behalf of the innocent slaughtered Serbs? Did the Serbs ever threaten anyone outside their own country? Did they ever threaten the United States? They didn't. In contrast, Saddam Hussein threatened the U.S. repeatedly and tried to assassinate an American president. Hussein menaced the United States for decades. His speeches were fraught with visions of destroying America. He openly applauded the attacks of 9-11.

Saddam Hussein's blatant hostility toward the United States and his documented atrocities do not matter. Any death or crippling of any innocent Serb is meaningless in the eyes of the left when compared to any innocent Iraqi, even though the latter was for the sake of removing a vicious tyrant whose stated goal was the destruction of America.

It seems to me that U.S. military action is only acceptable to the left when it is directed at white Christians and done to help people who hate Americans and want to destroy America by the killing of as many innocents as possible. Could it be that the left hates America as much as the Islamofascists do?

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

7 YEARS OF INDEPENDENT KOSOVO - O, LORD, IT IS ENOUGH !!!



Kosovo & Metohija is by all documents part of Republic of Serbia, de jure.
Kosovo & Metohija is by all meaning part of Albanian narco-prostitution mafia, de facto.
After 500 years of pain during Ottoman Islamistic administration, after 60 years of pain during communist administration, 7 years of pain during UN administration are beginning of END of Christian civilization. GOD SAVE THE PEOPLE!

DAILY TIMES, Pakistan, Tuesday, April 18, 2006: ‘Al Qaeda men have been transiting Balkans for years’

In Kosovo and Metohija, Suffering of Eastern Orthodox Serbs Continues

Author: His Eminence Metropolitan Josif (Bulgarian Orthodox Church)
Source: PRAVOSLAVIE BG

An official delegation of the Serbian Orthodox Church (SOC) that is visiting the United States had a meeting with the representatives of The Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA) in New York City on March 21, 2006. SCOBA’s guests from the Serbian Orthodox Church were His Eminence Bishop Jovan of the Diocese of Sumadija (Central Serbia) and His Eminence Bishop Teodosije of the Decani Monastery (Diocese of Raska and Prizren, Kosovo & Metohija), together with hieromonk Fr. Irinej Dobrijevic who is in charge of the SOC’s Holy Synod’s Committee for Kosovo and Metohija. The testimonies by these three representatives of the Serbian Orthodox Church about the recent and ongoing events, and especially the suffering of the Eastern Orthodox Christian inhabitants of the southern Serbian province of Kosovo and Metohija, were deeply moving. Most of us, their American hosts, were brought to the verge of tears while listening to the accounts of terrible sufferings of the Serbian Orthodox Church and its faithful in Kosovo and Metohija.

With warmth as well as a deep Christian concern for their faithful in Kosovo and Metohija, our guests from the Serbian Orthodox Church testified about the troubles and suffering in Kosovo and Metohija, and asked us for our moral support and especially for our prayers on their behalf. With truly bleeding hearts they told us about the ongoing systematic destruction of the Eastern Orthodox churches and monasteries, as well as about the continued vandalizing and destruction of the Orthodox Christian cemeteries throughout the province of Kosovo and Metohija. The statistics about these gruesome incidents speak for themselves:

250,000 Orthodox Christian Serb residents of Kosovo and Metohija still cannot safely return to their homes in the province;
140 Eastern Orthodox Christian churches have been destroyed throughout Kosovo and Metohija [since the summer of 1999];
some 40 monasteries have been dynamited;
some 70 Orthodox Christian cemeteries have been vandalized, severely damaged, and/or destroyed;
[as an example of ``freedom of movement’’ in today’s Kosovo, the guests told us that] the monks of the Decani Monastery in western Kosovo & Metohija can safely go out of the monastery property to get the drinking water only if accompanied by the armed peacekeepers from KFOR.

It should be stressed that The Holy Synod of the Serbian Orthodox Church, in cooperation with the Serbian government, is trying to do everything within its power to make American and other Western leaders (as well as the general public) more aware of what has been going on in Kosovo and Metohija. These efforts to alert the world to the situation in the southern Serbian province were one of the primary reasons for sending an official delegation of SOC to Washington, DC, as well as to the United Nations’ headquarter in New York City. With the blessing from His Holiness, [Serbian] Patriarch Pavle, the delegation informed both the political leaders in Washington, DC and New York City, and us in SCOBA about the ongoing suffering of the Serbian Orthodox Christian people in Kosovo and Metohija. [His Eminence] Archbishop Dimitry from the Greek Archdiocese [of North America], [His Eminence] Metropolitan German from The Orthodox Church of America (OCA), and Yours Humbly did our best to provide the spiritual comfort to our brothers in Christ from the Serbian Orthodox Church. We told them, that their unjust suffering is not in vain, but serves the higher purpose of defending the Holy Orthodoxy that, as we are all well aware, is experiencing rather testing times.

We also encouraged our brothers and promised them that at the next general assembly of SCOBA we shall carefully consider the Serbian Orthodox Church’s ten-point document* [about the ongoing negotiations on the final political status of Kosovo and Metohija]. His Eminence Archbishop Dimitry [of the Greek Orthodox Church] will ask President Bush for concrete measures regarding Kosovo and Metohija when he meets with him in early April for the occasion of celebrating Holy Annunciation and Greek Independence Day. In my humble opinion, concrete assistance by the US government and its allies is quite realistic and feasible in a number of domains, including:

- stabilizing the volatile political situation in the province;
- allowing all refugees and people expelled from Kosovo and Metohija [over the past
seven years] to safely return to their homes;
- providing security guarantees and protection of life, liberty and property of all
inhabitants of the province;
- guaranteeing human rights of all inhabitants of the province;
- securing religious freedom, including the right to safely worship, for all inhabitants;
- protecting the right to normal life and freedom of movement throughout the province;
- reconstruction and rebuilding of all destroyed Orthodox Christian churches,
monasteries, and graveyards throughout Kosovo and Metohija;
- introducing laws that would explicitly protect all historical monuments and places of
worship throughout Kosovo and Metohija.

At the end of the meeting with our guests from the Serbian Orthodox Church, we prayed to the Lord Almighty to bless the province of Kosovo and Metohija which, after greatly suffering from war and destruction, now truly needs peace, reconciliation, mutual tolerance and understanding, as well as spiritual, economic, and every other form of recovery.

Josif [Joseph], Metropolitan of America and Australia [Bulgarian Orthodox Church]

*We need to point out that the Serbian National Committee (SNC) of Kosovo & Metohija, which includes His Eminence Bishop Artemije of the Diocese of Raska and Prizren, opposes this ten-point document on the grounds that the document unintentionally and implicitly supports what the SNC refers to as “The Jihad Republic of Kosovo”. We quote SNC’s public announcement on March 4, 2006: “Serbian National Committee is deeply worried about the positions presented in the document `The Basic Principles of The Holy Synod of the Serbian Orthodox Church Regarding the Upcoming Negotiations on the Future Status of Kosovo and Metohija’, which was recently made public. This document was accepted with a great deal of approval by the so-called International Crisis Group (ICG), which in its report from February 17, 2006, titled “The Challenges of Transition”, openly supports the concept of an independent Kosovo. The Serbian National Committee firmly believes that the primary problem to be addressed in the upcoming negotiations is the status of the Kosovo Albanians, as an ethnic minority in Republic of Serbia, and not the status of the Kosovo Serbs in the province of Kosovo and Metohija, which is an integral part of Serbia. The ethnic Albanians already enjoy individual, ethnic and religious freedoms regardless of what part of Serbia they reside in, as well as a considerable self-rule in Kosovo and Metohija. However, by framing the problem of the final status of Kosovo and Metohija chiefly as the problem of minority rights for the Kosovo Serbs, we would implicitly accept that Kosovo is de facto separate from Serbia, and that all that the Serbian negotiation team and the Serbian government can do in the negotiation process is to represent interests of and offer some limited protection to its citizens who live in a foreign country.”

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Plan for assasination on bishop Artemy of Kosovo/Metohija

"The victory of jihad in Kosovo would be a local triumph pointing the way to
further victories to come, eventually to a worldwide victory. They would
point and say: "Where is their God?" As Christians, our hope of victory is
not an earthly one. "Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will
remember the name of the Lord our God." I remind you that in our part of the
world, we suffered centuries under shari'a rule, and no man knows the
numbers and names of all the martyrs from those times. We do not prefer to
repeat that nightmare, but we are prepared for it if it comes. But my plea
to you, as American citizens, is that your country would not help hasten
that day for the Christian Orthodox people of Kosovo."
, bishop Artemije

http://www.danas.co.yu/20060408/hronika1.html#2



Grachanica, Belgrade - Head of UNMIK office in Grachanica Tomas Kontogeorgos confirmed for newspaper "Danas" that in Thursday afternoon received a letter of Rada Trajkovic, deputy of Serbian National Concil of K/M. In letter is said that from international sources from Kosovo she received information of attempts of terroristic group in Podujevo region. "They are preparing assasination on bishop of Ras and Prizren Artemy". Kontogeorgos said that he imediately informed responsible ones in seat of UNMIK in Prishtina.
Nirage Sing, Unmik envoy, doesn't want to answer on our question if headquarters in Prishtina received information from Grachanica, and what are next actions. "In such situation we don't give comments for medias".
Unofficial information is that SNC of K/M informed Government of Serbia, and look for cooperation between Govermant and International community to prevent posible attempt. J.T.

MORE NEWS: Inquiry faults Kosovo's UN governor on corruption
Reuters.uk - UK
UNMIK gets ultimatum for protecting Visoki Decani Monastery

Thursday, April 06, 2006

His Grace Bishop of Raska and Prizren Artemije (III part)


All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad. (Matthew 26:31)
Many of them scattered from Kosovo/Metohija and many abandon their shepherd. Bishop Artemy with remains of his flock is still on the Christ path:

His Grace Bishop of Raska and Prizren Artemije (Radosavljevic) estimated that the representatives of the International community in Kosovo were only efficient in protecting Albanian minority in Serbia.
• Your Grace, you have initiated the action "LET THE PRAYER HELP US IN
RENOVATION OF THE SHRINES". It started, albeit with many complications,
with the Zociste monastery, without any support provided by the international
community. In the mean time, Banjska monastery was reconstructed;
and similar action is underway in Socanica, again without any support from
the international community. Could you, please, tell us about the renovation
of the shrines in Kosovo and Metohija? Do you expect any assistance from the
international community during future activities?

You see, since last year, when His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Pavle
in the name and on behalf of the Serbian Orthodox Church signed the
MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING FOR RECONSTRUCTION OF
SERBIAN ORTHODOX RELIGIOUS SITES with the Ministry of Culture
Youth and Sports of the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government in
Kosovo ("PISG") then the international community, according to a particular
project and through its own funding took part in the renovation which
includes only the churches destroyed during March pogrom. However,
the renovation is in progress, according to the information available. First
phase was already completed - it covered the activities of cleaning up the
debris from certain sites where the churches used to be and some less
serious repairs were performed. But, if continued in such a way, as far as
I am concerned, this will not be the real renovation. You know, a church,
which was not brought to its original function, cannot be considered as
renovated. And it cannot be brought to its function without the return of
exiled.
According to need we build new churches. Last year we have consecrated
three newly built churches in our diocese. Two of them are in the
vicinity of Novi Pazar, and one, dedicated to Saint Demetrios was built in Kosovska Mitrovica. Several churches are in the phase of construction
in Supnje near Raska, in Socanica a parish hall will be built, in many
monasteries the building is ongoing, many monasteries were renovated,
like Banjska monastery, Konculj, Djurdjevi Stupovi, Duboki Potok, Saint
Archangels…
Now we have planned the renovation of three nother monasteries -
Svetih Vraca (Saint Healers) near Lesak, Sveta Petka (Saint Paraskeva)
monastery near Leposavic and Presvete Bogorodice (Saint Virgin) monastery
- Devine Vode near Zvecan. The construction already started last
autumn, and as soon as winter is over and when the conditions become
convenient it will be continued.
This is the construction and renovation of monasteries, not of those
destroyed in this period, but those that were demolished during history.
Now the time has come to renovate them, and several monasteries were renovated until now, bringing new life into them and chanting.
• These days, Your Grace, there is plenty of talk about the future status of Kosovo and Metohija. Looking through the old issues of the Herald, one may find that as early as 2000 Richard Goldstone and his commission suggested the conditional independence for Kosovo and Metohija. Some eighteen months later the International
Crisis Group also made a list of possible solutions for the Kosovo and Metohija issue. Soon after, the USIP published a similar list. What is your opinion about such
trial balloons that are now getting the outlines of real solutions?
What do you think about the final status of Kosovo and Metohija?

With such a huge problem, it is natural that for its solution
many different viewpoints and suggestions are being circulated. This
applies to every opinion launched from time to time by the international
community - Crisis Group, Washington, Brussels or whomever - this is in
fact an attempt to resolve the problem in a certain way. More or less all
those attempts boil down to one alternative - to grant independence to
Kosovo and Metohija, which would mean to satisfy the requests and the
historic dream of Kosovo Albanians to create, in the first stage, a second
Albanian state in the Balkans with the next step leading to unification of
Kosovo with Albania and the creation of a Greater Albania.
What will be the outcome, what will be the final status of Kosovo
and Metohija - it is difficult to talk about that right now - the negotiations
should start soon. It is inadmissible and incomprehensible position of the
international community, which itself insists so much upon the negotiations
to start as soon as possible, and to include both the representatives
of the authorities from Belgrade as well as the representatives of Kosovo
PISG, at the same time many are giving the proposals which in advance
indicate the result and talk about an independent Kosovo. In this way
they prejudice the results of the negotiations that are yet to take place.
Recently Doris Pak said that Serbia should pay more attention of its birth
rate rather then take care about its "lost” territories. In this way she gives
in advance, before the negotiations even started, the opinion that Kosovo
is lost territory for Serbia and the Serbs. From where did she get that right
? Only from the position of power, sole power.
If this is so, why negotiate at all? If the international community has
the opinion that Kosovo should be independent, let them do it, let them
grant independence to Kosovo, but without our consent.
However, the international community has that in view in any case,
but its intention is to talk Serbia and representatives of Serbian negotiation
team to agree or to force them to accept the independence in order
to give the legitimacy to the independence of Kosovo and by that consent
the validity of this act.
In my opinion Serbia cannot and must never accept that act. International
community can do whatever it likes, it can force upon us any solution
it wants, but with clear knowledge that what was forced upon by raw power cannot last for long. What was grabbed by force, it would be taken
back by force. Whenever.
• What would be your comment, Your Grace concerning three events in January-
Declaration by Presevo, Bujanovac and Medvedja, death of Bishop Mark Sopi,
and death of Mr. Rugova?

Unfortunately, it is an obvious intention of those three municipalities
from Southeast Serbia to use the negotiation period about Kosovo and
Metohija and achieve some of their political goals. In my opinion, they will
garner the sympathies and support for their intentions by the international
community. Because this is also to the detriment of Serbia, too.
How far they will succeed is still to be seen.
Concerning other events, the death of Mr. Sopi and of Mr. Rugova
which happened within ten days, they for sure represent large changes
in Kosovo and Metohija and one can expect certain turbulences. That
might happen, most of all, in the Albanian community, as there will be
the struggle for the prestige of Mr. Rugova's position. During that struggle
Serbs could become the collateral damage. It is to be seen whether the
international community will allow something like that to happen. According
to my sense, it seems to me that the international community will not
allow the struggle to burst into flames in Kosovo and Metohija, as this will
jeopardize the negotiations. Since the international community cares deeply about the negotiations, I believe it will find the ways and means to solve the issue of Mr.
Rugova's inheritance in a peaceful manner. We shall see.
• It seems like there exist a certain cyclic manner not only in the repetition of and in leaving the promises unfulfilled, but also in the crimes over Serbs, especially children. Do you think that the quote from the beginning could be applied today, too?
Completely. As I said, there is difference in quantity, but not in quality. As I already said, there are, in number, by far less crimes at the moment. The reason for this situation is in much lower number of Serbs that remained in Kosovo and Metohija, and on the other hand, the circumstances under which Serbs live has stabilized in a certain way, and they also learned to take a bit more care of themselves in the meantime. Anyhow, such attacks still do occur. You see that the children were beaten in Mogila, hand grenades were thrown at the house of Mr.
Todorovic in Cernica, and many and many other incidents which happened until today. Especially now, after the death of Mr. Rugova, we do not know what else may happen in
Kosovo and Metohija. The International community promised and foreswore that it will not allow the violence or pogrom on the scale as it was on March 2004, or any
violence in Kosovo and Metohija at all. However even after March there
were numerous different assaults or murders, and they certainly meant
they would not allow such massive outbursts of violence. We will see what
will come out of it. Our hope is in our Lord, our God, we are devoted to
Him, we live and we try to survive in Kosovo and Metohija. Our intention
is to help the exiled Serbs to return to Kosovo and Metohija in as many a
number as possible and as fast as possible. We rely upon the assistance
of our state, the representatives of our authorities, as well as upon the
international community. Only through joint efforts, I hope, the return of
the exiled to Kosovo and Metohija could become more stable and could
expect a better outcome. This problem cannot be resolved by forced
solution, and the issue of Kosovo and Metohija will not be and cannot be solved by any self proclamation of independence.


to be continued

New sites of supporting Christian survival in Kosovo and Metohija:
Russians for justice
Polish for justice
Italians for justice

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Farce over restoration of Monastery


Elder of the monastery Holy Archangels unhappy with restoration.
PRIZREN, April 1, 2006 (Beta) - Hieromonk Benedict, elder of the Prizren Monastery Holy Archangels, whose night-quarters were burned in the March unrest and disorder of 2004, expressed pessimism in the outlook of restoring the burnt or ostracized Orthodox churches in Prizren."Restoration of the monastery Holy Archangels has not started because restoration has not begun for any church in the area of Prizren. It is mentioned that restoration has begun on the churches of St. George, the episcopal house, Theotokos Ljevissk but this is not correct" he said on Beta communications agency.According to his words the church of St. George has only been cleaned but it is not covered, and the same has been done in the episcopal house. Hieromonk Benedict estimated that the reason for such a situation is because of the beginings of discussion about the future status of Kosovo, so the restoration was thrown into a second or third plan. Except for the sleaping quarters of the monastery of Holy Archangels, which is a few kilometers from Prizren, on the road to Brezovitza, which was burned in the March disruptions and unrest two years ago, five other damaged Orthodox churches including Theotokos Ljevissk have been put on hold. In the monastery a new workshop has been built where, for years already, the six-member brotherhood lives.

Contact to Monastery: svarhangeli@hotmail.com

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

The West vs. Christianity?


MOSCOW. (RIA Novosti commentator Pyotr Romanov.) - While recognizing the universal and appropriate appeals for tolerance for Muslims, I'd like to draw your attention to the strange attitude of the Western political elite, which has recently become so acute. I do not know what stands behind the lack of foresight, but too many of the political elite's actions have dealt a devastating blow to Christianity.
I read the latest report: Andreas Abuna, Auxiliary Bishop of the Chaldean Catholic Church in Iraq, said the strength of the Christian communities of Iraq was diminishing at a shocking rate. Despair, constant fear and lack of hope are compelling more and more Christians to leave Iraq. People do not want to leave their country, but they have to go because of the situation, he said. Christian rights and the status of believers went from bad to worse after the parliamentary elections last December. Iraq is flooded with police, their number is constantly growing, especially in the suburbs of Baghdad, but the protection they offer is very mediocre, said the bishop.
U.S. President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair say Iraq is becoming more democratic and the situation is improving, but eyewitnesses of what is happening there are not rejoicing over the democratic parliamentary elections or the growing number of the local police. Under the plan of the founders of Iraqi democracy, the latter should replace occupational troops.
The blood of many of our brethren has been spilled and many of our children have become orphans. Although there are still many believers in churches, if you go out into the street, you'll understand that Christians in Iraq have been done away with, the bishop said. The latest statistics put the number of Christians in Iraq at around 750,000, as compared to about a million before the U.S. invasion, according to The Universe Catholic Newspaper.
Thus, the U.S. invasion of Iraq has put an end to Christianity there. Those Christians who have not yet run away from U.S. bombings, will flee from the U.S.-trained new Iraqi police, which is less enthusiastic about defending Christians leaving church on Sundays.
After the Western coalition intervened in Afghanistan and the Taliban was defeated, the Afghans "liberated" by the West were ready to pass a death sentence on a compatriot for converting to Christianity. When the man was eventually freed after international pressure, crowds of local people vehemently protested his release. Experience shows that even if there are positive changes in Afghanistan, they have nothing to do with Sharia, or Islamic law, and have little effect on the mentality of most of its citizens. Much time will have to pass in Afghanistan before its residents understand that Christians are also human. This will not happen under President Karzai or Bush. It's doubtful that we'll see another Afghan convert to Christianity anytime soon. It is easy to see that after this saga the attitude of Afghans to Christianity has not become any better.
I could cite Europe as an example. The European Union has deleted any mention of Christianity from its constitution, as if it has not shaped European civilization. European bureaucrats think that they have been politically correct to appease "new Europeans," but in fact they have distorted the historical truth and offended many "old Europeans." Such omissions are far from harmless - they are changing the image of Europe, and I'm not sure this change is for the better.
Here's an abstract from an article written by one of my readers: "Imagine, new mosques are mushrooming up here, in Scandinavia, a country where people have not heard of anybody but Thor and Christ for millennia." He goes on to say that the police squelch the discontent of the local Protestants - a Protestant is liable for a fine of 4,000 euros and a suspended term in prison of two to three months. At the same time, dozens of mullahs in mosques are urging the destruction of Jews and Christians, but in this case the law is silent.
If this is not an exaggeration, it appears that a Christian cannot feel safe even in the center of Europe. Who is to blame for this situation then besides the Europeans?
Or take one more example: Slobodan Milosevic, who recently died in the Hague Tribunal prison, might have been a true dictator, but this fact is no excuse for ousting all Christians, this time Orthodox ones, from Kosovo. Christian churches are desecrated and burnt down by Albanian Muslims with the connivance of the "peacemakers." Meanwhile, we are in the 21st century, and Kosovo is an ancient center of Christian culture. Perhaps these are not the right "peacemakers" and this is not the right policy?
It is high time to understand that selective political correctness is not political correctness, but a hypocritical imitation. If you pity Muslims, pity Christians as well. If you pity Catholics, pity Orthodox Christians, too. If you pity the Blacks, pity also the Whites. If you pity Palestinians, pity Israelis, too.
Finally, in walking into the fire that is Iraq or Kosovo, the West has no right to forget about their residents - common civilians. They have nothing to do with political disputes. A total of 250,000 Christians had to flee Kosovo during the U.S. intervention. Basically, all those wearing a cross had to leave.
I don't agree with the many critics who think Canadian film producer Paul Haggis did not quite deserve his recent Oscar (for his film Clash). I'm convinced that he has exposed the main headache of our time - the clash of people belonging to different civilizations, but having to live under one roof.
The world is approaching a point where everyone needs protection. Black racism is in no way better than white and religious fanaticism is awful no matter what its origin. The Western political elite and human rights champions should adjust their compass. The time has come, or rather has come again, for Christians to be protected in real earnest.

Monday, April 03, 2006

His Grace Bishop of Raska and Prizren Artemije (II part)


All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad. (Matthew 26:31)
Many of them scattered from Kosovo/Metohija and many abandon their shepherd. Bishop Artemy with remains of his flock is still on the Christ path:

His Grace Bishop of Raska and Prizren Artemije (Radosavljevic) estimated that the representatives of the International community in Kosovo were only efficient in protecting Albanian minority in Serbia.

• What has happened to the Committee for the return of Serbs - the members
were Mr. Kouchner, you as president of SNC, representatives of KFOR,
UNHCR, and OSCE? What is your standpoint today concerning the return of
Serbs to Kosovo? Should one insist on return and then on reconstruction, or vice versa?
Such a Committee does not exist any more. It was established during
the time of Kouchner, but it did not bring any positive results. It simply
extinguished itself, we did not meet any longer nor did we even talk any
more about it.
I would not know when it exactly stopped working, but in any case it
did not last long. According to the results it achieved, its effect was equal
to zero.
My standpoint is that the living church should return first, this means
that the people should return. After that, the people themselves, through
the assistance of our state, of course, and the international community
will rebuild their holy objects. It seems to me that this is the only proper
approach and the only way to implement the return and to rebuild what
was destroyed.
However, the houses are being repaired, especially those damaged after March 17, from the funds of different international organizations or the Council of Europe, by the Albanian companies. This repair and rehabilitation was never brought to the end nor fully completed, despite the fact that this activity was highly praised and manipulated with. The fact is
that no Serbs persecuted and exiled on March 17 ever returned to these so called renewed houses or renewed villages. The houses would be covered with something, the doors and windows would be installed, but the houses remain empty. Nobody could return to them, especially in such an environment where one feels unsafe and many dangers threaten. Then
somebody uses this opportunity and suggests to an owner: ?Since you do
not intend to return, come and sell it. ? In this way the ethnic cleansing of
Serbs from Kosovo will be completed and legalized.
• After many promises of the international community, which were given but
were never fulfilled, as early as year 2001 you had very serious objections
concerning the appeal to the Serbs to participate in the Parliamentary elections
in Kosovo. Just after the Haekerup-Covic agreement was signed you
appealed to the people to participate in the elections. But even this agreement
remained without results, and Haekerup's successors did not care about it. Is
it known whether the international community ever completely honored even
one agreement?
I cannot say decidedly either positive or negative. Those agreements
which were, mainly, signed by the international community and
by either representatives of Serbs from Kosovo or by representatives of
Coordination Center from Belgrade, but it seems to me that none was
ever honored.
Even I have signed, with Kuchner, the first agreement, sometime during year 2000, and nothing ever came out of it. All promises remained only promises.
• After October 5, 2000, there were great hopes in a new approach by the international
community towards new, democratic authorities. The same expectations arose
concerning Kosovo. It was said that there would not be any more talks about Kosovo without participation of democratic Serbia. Were those expectations fulfilled? Was there any joint meeting of the representatives of Serbian government and Serbian politicians from Kosovo concerning political unity?
There were several meetings since October 5, 2000. The representatives of Serbs from Kosovo met with the representatives of the Serbian government. Several meetings were held, there were talks and agreements, but without any concrete results ever concerning the topic in
question.
• In September 1999, the first edition of the brochure CRUCIFIED KOSOVO was
published and 52 destroyed churches were recounted within that publication.
In the second edition, published in November of the same year, this number
increased to 75, and in the third edition, published in 2002 that number
reached 102. That list does not contain the churches destroyed in March
pogrom from 2004, as well as those destroyed up to the March violence. One
may calculate with the figure of about 150 destroyed churches. As early as
year 2000 you gave your blessing concerning the activities geared towards the
protection of the cultural heritage. What is the present status of the agreements
for their protection?
CRUCIFIED KOSOVO was published three times. Even after the third edition, until March 17, the number of destroyed churches had increased to 115, and during March Pogrom another 34 churches were destroyed, thus the total number of destroyed churches and monasteries reached the figure of approximately 150.
Some time ago there were initiatives, even by the representatives of the Albanian authorities,
to rebuild certain churches in the places where no Serbs resided. I did not agree with that, saying that first of all my exiled faithful people should return. Then they would rebuild their churches themselves supported by those authorities who are responsible and those who must participate in their rebuilding, because they have been responsible for the destruction of the churches. Primarily, I mean the international community. I have never accepted the principle that those who destroyed them should rebuild our destroyed holy objects and cultural heritage.

to be continued

New sites of supporting Christian survival in Kosovo and Metohija:
Russians for justice
Polish for justice
Italians for justice

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Christian haritage of Kosovo - common responsibility


Last month Polish members of Europian parliament visited our monastery and Kosovo/Metohija. After this trip they set up an exhibition of today's reality of Kosovo in Polish parliament. You can see their pictures here. Last 11 pictures are from our monastery, except very last.