Belgrade based daily Danas writes about the meeting of Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic with the SPC Assembly and Patriarch Irinej. Patriarch’s praise for President Vucic and his “heroic fight for Serbia, Kosovo and Metohija and all that is related to the Serbian name” are not the position of the Holy Archbishop’s Assembly, as stated by the SPC leader, Danas was told by SPC Assembly’s circles.
“Church Assembly” did not declare on the Vucic’s policy, and a good part of the Assembly was against Vucic’s reception, say the sources of Danas daily.
According to unofficial information, there should be a communiqué on Kosovo from the SPC Assembly.
Danas writes that in high ecclesiastical circles, it was speculated that Vucic’s coming to the Patriarchy was more like an attempt to “discipline” the bishops who are critical of his politics, than talking to the highest representatives of the Church about the state’s and national burning issues. Danas recalls that although Vucic claimed from Skopje that “the bishops were delighted with his arrival”, the president of Serbia allegedly came to the reception with “papers” of state services, among which, it was speculated, were reports of intelligence agencies, with which he “waved” in front of the bishops.
Danas reports that Church sources claimed that Vucic responded with anger and insults on critics and questions by the Metropolitan Amfilohije (Radovic), the bishop of Raska-Prizren Teodosije (Sibalic), Slavonic Jovan (Culibrk), Düsseldorf and German Grigorije (Duric), as well as the bishops of Budimlje and Niksic Joanikije (Micevic).
Danas reports that allegedly Vucic had a dispute with Metropolitan Amfilohije, over the ruling on a “coup” in Podgorica, the position of the SPC in Montenegro and the metropolitan’s attitude towards the president of Montenegro, Milo Djukanovic.
Danas also reports that Vucic allegedly accused Bishop Teodosije of a sabotage of his politics in Kosovo.
In church sources, the daily reports, unofficially is claimed that in addition to the discussion with “disobedient” bishops, in which Vucic was joined by some archbishops close to Bishop Irinej (Bulovic), who allegedly gave him a “green light” to solve the Kosovo problem, the president of Serbia said nothing concrete about his strategy of fighting for Kosovo, or eventual inclusion of SPC in negotiations, nor property of church and state in Kosovo.
Also, the same Danas’s sources speculate, that Vucic pleaded against UNSC Resolution 1244 as an obsolete document. Although some bishops tried to open the topic of the relationship between the Church and the state, as well as the position of their dioceses, Vucic did not even want to talk about it, as the reception did not even indicate the importance of the upcoming ecclesiastical celebration of the eight centuries of autonomy of the SPC.
In the high church circles, Danas reports, was claimed that since the beginning of the May session in the Zica monastery, Assembly was under pressure of the Patriarch to accept Vucic, which was opposed by most bishops, but that the SPC head refused to vote on it.
The fact that almost all the archbishops came to the conversation with Vucic, at the top of the SPC explain that part of the bishop supported his regime, that many loosen under the pressure and lobbying of the authorities and a part of the Church favouring the SNS leader or because of fear, and that there were those who wanted to ask important questions about Kosovo and relations between the Church and the state.
Sources of Danas at the top of the SPC believe that such Vucic’s pressure on the Church has never been seen in the last few decades.
Danas unofficially reports that that there was a meeting held in ”narrow circle” after the reception of Vucic and Dodik.
Allegedly, as Danas daily reports unofficially, at the meeting were present the SPC head, president of Serbia, Metropolitan Porfirije, and bishop Irinej Backi. The topic of this meeting is unknown, and as Danas daily adds, there was no place for Dodik at that meeting.
The Government of Serbia has allocated additional RSD 30 million for the SPC
Belgrade based portal Insajder reported yesterday about new donations to the SPC.
– Not even after two months from the donation to the SPC in the amount of 10 million euros for the construction of the St. Sava Temple in Belgrade, the Government of Serbia has decided to donate another 30 million dinars or about 254,000 euros for the construction of a monastery, Serbian center and museum within the SPC in Sweden and Hungary.
The portal reported that at the session of the Government held on May 9th, it was decided to allocate money from the budget funds to help the SPC; and as announced in the Official Gazette, in the name of the grant to the Diocese of the British – Scandinavian SPC, and for the purpose of helping to build the Monastery of the Holy Mother of God and the Serbian Center in Voxtorp, Sweden, the government approved the help of 12 million dinars. Also, it was decided to pay 18 million dinars for the donation to the Serbian Orthodox Diocese of Budim, and to help finish the works at the Museum of the Diocese of Budim in Szentendre, Hungary. In addition to being exempt from tax for its core business and assets, the SPC is “favoured as the most convincing individual single user of 481 budget funds allocated to non-governmental organizations,” Insajder said.