Macedonian government has jailed Archbishop John of Ohrid and Skopje.
The Court of Appeal in Bitola has Confirmed the Punishment to Eighteen Months of Imprisonment to His Beatitude the Archbishop of Ohrid and the Metropolitan of Skopje kyr kyr John
After long postponings, on 22nd of June, 2005, the Court of Appeals in Bitola has at last maintained a session upon the appeal of His Beatitude, the Archbishop of Ohrid and the Metropolitan of Skopje kyr kyr John, who was sentenced to a punishment of 18 months imprisonment at hard labour by the Court of First Instance in Bitola. The President of the Court of Appeal, Judge Kice Juzevski, published the sentence of the Court of Appeal in Bitola on 23rd of June, 2005, dealing with the appeal in the following panel : Judge Vasko Kuzevski, the Chairman, judge Vladimir Radevski, reporter and judge Nedzat Ajro.
As many times so far, the justice of the Republic of Macedonia has revealed itself as a circus of a very poor, extremely provincial character, with regard to proceedings related to the Bishops, clergy and faithful people of the Orthodox Ohrid Archbishopric. Even if this case was the only one, not to count many others when the sentences were unjust, everyone would understand why the judiciary of the Republic of Macedonia is the most corrupted institution with the lowest reputation and confidence by the citizens.
In the long run, it cannot be expected from an assembly of political poltroons such the majority of the judges in the Courts of Law of the Republic of Macedonia are, that they will lay foundation of a good judiciary being also a foundation of a successful state. The Republic of Macedonia has not raised the head thereof even fifteen years after the fall of the communism, and it remained to be the last communist bastion in Eastern Europe, just due to the corrupted judiciary.
Such a Court of Law, today, in the 21st century tried the orthodox faith of the Archbishop of Ohrid and the Metropolitan of Skopje kyr kyr John, who have been many times tried and even more times witnessed, and has sentenced him to eighteen months of imprisonment because he did not want to bow down before the people from the Government who think of themselves as of gods.
To sentence a Head of a local Orthodox Church for incitement of ethnic and religious hatred means to condemn his confession, for he is not an individual with an autonomous opinion, but a representative of the Church he leads and of the faith confessed by that Church. If the Patriarch of Constantinople or the Patriarch of Russia, or any other Head of any local Church were before the aforesaid Court Panel, it is more than certain that the aforesaid ‘honourable court’ would have sentenced even them.
Today the confession of all the orthodox Christians worldwide has been tried, i.e., all the ones who deem the so called Macedonian Orthodox Church to be a schismatic one and who are not in unity with it. All the Bishops of all the orthodox Churches worldwide who are not in communion neither with the clergy, nor with the laymen of the schismatic organisation in he Republic of ÃƒÆ’Ã‚ÂÃƒâ€¦Ã¢â‚¬Å“ÃƒÆ’Ã‚ÂÃƒâ€šÃ‚Â°cedonia have been tried today, not because they do not want the unity, but because the heresy produced by the schismatic in the Republic of Macedonia is an obstacle for it. Moreover, the history of the Republic of Macedonia and the future thereof has been tried today.
People who defend the history with a sward and not with argumentation is not worthy for the future. People who are not aware that the future cannot be founded on false foundations resemble to the unfortunate man who builds a house on sand as mentioned in the Gospel. A church which has found an ally in the Government aiming to perform an inquisition together with it, has never been a Church and will never be.
Actually, if the case of the Archbishop John is analysed more carefully, it shall be seen that it is not the Archbishop himself, but the very state institutions in the Republic of Macedonia are the ones who instigate ethnic, religious and even international hatred. It is obvious to the whole world that all the neighbouring countries of the Republic of Macedonia are deemed to be enemies for the authorities thereof. How can they accede the European Union or NATO when they would create problems to all as such?
Nevertheless, the grace of God embraces us in this grief. We are sad, by also joyful, for God has granted us a worthy Archpriest to witness the faith. He has granted us a real light enlightening the throne of the Ohrid archbishops as an 84th one. The word martyr is not a literal translation from the Greek "martiras". Martiras means a witness, one who witnesses the faith even with his own blood if necessary. Our archpriest is just like that. As a lamb irreproachable before the ones who fleeces it. He encourages us all with his inspirational prayers and faith. The one who is “taken for slaughtering” finds comfort for every one of us, cheering us and saying : “I did not pray to be deliberated from a sentence to imprisonment, but I prayed : God, let Your will be done, and may You be glorified through this. I advice you also to ask from God that His will be done when praying for me but also when praying for yourselves. That will be the best thing for me, but also for you.”
What else to say to you, our father and Bishop, but : Axios. Bear your cross worthwhile for us who are week, but also for the ones who do not know what they are doing, so that we gain resurrection and eternal life by virtue of your prayers.
From the Editorial Office of the Information Service of the Orthodox Ohrid Archbishoprichttp://www.poa-info.org/index.php?l=en