Joint Statement of the Serbian and Antiochian Orthodox Patriarchates

Irenic[1]& Official visit of His Beatitude Patriarch JOHN X to the Serbian Orthodox Church
From October 11th to 19th, 2018

BELGRADE – 19th of October 2018 - This historical visit, the first since Antiochian Orthodox Patriarch THEODOSIOS VI (Abou-Rjaili) visited Belgrade, was made in the context of the difficult and painful circumstances that are facing the Antiochian Orthodox Church in Syria, Lebanon and the Middle East. This visit also coincides with the crisis that is currently facing the world-wide Orthodox Church, where developments are evolving rapidly and in a disturbing manner, and could lead to the occurrence of permanent detrimental impacts on the bonds of communion, peace and unity between brothers.

Patriarchs John and Irinej received by the Serbian President Vucic

Patriarchs John and Irinej received by the Serbian President Vucic
Patriarchs John and Irinej received by the Serbian President Vucic
Patriarchs John and Irinej received by the Serbian President Vucic
Patriarchs John and Irinej received by the Serbian President Vucic

His Excellency Aleksandar Vucic, President of the Republic of Serbia, received in audience His Beatitude John, Patriarch of Antioch and all East, and His Holiness Patriarch of the Serbian Irinej in the Presidency of the Republic of Serbia on October 19, 2018.

The reception was attended by dignitaries of the Patriarchate of Antioch: Their Eminences Metropolitan Basil of Accra and Joseph of New York and North America as well as by Very Venerable Archimandrites Prokopius, Parthenius and Alexius. The Serbian delegation consisted of His Eminence Metropolitan Porfirije of Zagreb-Ljubljana and Their Graces Bishops, Irinej  of Backa and Jovan of Sumadija, as well as by the Secretary General of the President of the Republic of Serbia,  Nikola Selakovic.

Patriarch John of Antioch in the Diocese of Nis

Patriarch John of Antioch in the Diocese of Nis
Patriarch John of Antioch in the Diocese of Nis
Patriarch John of Antioch in the Diocese of Nis
Patriarch John of Antioch in the Diocese of Nis

During his historic visit to the Serbian Orthodox Church, His Beatitude Patriarch of Antioch and All East John X, accompanied by His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej, visited the city of Nis on October 18, 2018.

A solemn welcome in the church-yard of the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit was headed by His Grace Arsenije, Bishop of Nis, with participation of clergy and monastics of the Diocese of Nis, faithful people, members of the Army and Gendarmerie, pupils of the local Theological School and a large number of school children, in presence of mayors of the cities of Nis, Pirot and Prokuplje, and  of the Nis Municipalities, commander of the Army of the city, commander of the Gendarmerie, commander of Police, and other regional and city officials.

Patriarchs John of Antioch and Irinej of Serbia on Kosovo and Metochia

Patriarchs John of Antioch and Irinej of Serbia on Kosovo and Metochia
Patriarchs John of Antioch and Irinej of Serbia on Kosovo and Metochia
Patriarchs John of Antioch and Irinej of Serbia on Kosovo and Metochia
Patriarchs John of Antioch and Irinej of Serbia on Kosovo and Metochia

Patriarch of Antioch and all East John and Serbian Patrijarh Irinej payed a visit to the Pec Patriarchate Monastery and the Visoki Decani monastery on October 17, 2018.

His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej and His Beatitude John X, Patriarch of Antioch and All East, visited the ancient See of the Serbian Orthodox Church, the monastery of Pec Patriarchate. In a warm address to the High Guest, His Holiness irinej exposed briefly history of the Patriarchate of Pec and explained in more details the events from Serbian history that had caused exodus of the Serbian people from the southern Serbian province.

Holy, Glorious Apostle Thomas

The Holy and Glorious Apostle Thomas was born in the Galilean city of Pansada and was a fisherman. Hearing the good tidings of Jesus Christ, he left all and followed after Him. The Apostle Thomas is included in the number of the holy Twelve Apostles of the Savior.

According to Holy Scripture, the holy Apostle Thomas did not believe the reports of the other disciples about the Resurrection of Jesus Christ: “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into His side, I will not believe” (John 20:25).

On the eighth day after the Resurrection, the Lord appeared to the Apostle Thomas and showed him His wounds. “My Lord and my God,” the Apostle cried out (John 20:28). “Thomas, being once weaker in faith than the other apostles,” says Saint John Chrysostom, “toiled through the grace of God more bravely, more zealously and tirelessly than them all, so that he went preaching over nearly all the earth, not fearing to proclaim the Word of God to savage nations.”

Protection of the Mother of God in New Gracanica

Protection of the Mother of God in New Gracanica
Protection of the Mother of God in New Gracanica
Protection of the Mother of God in New Gracanica
Protection of the Mother of God in New Gracanica

On Sunday, October 1/14, 2018, New Gracanica Monastery celebrated its Slava (Patronal Feast), the Protection of the Most-Holy Mother of God. His Grace Bishop Longin of New Gracanica and Midwestern America celebrated Hierarchical Divine Liturgy along with His Grace Sava, retired Bishop of Slavonija, and eleven priests and four deacons.

Concelebrating were Archimandrites Thomas (Kazich) and Serafim (Baltic); Archpriest-Stavrophors Milorad Loncar and Marko Pantic; Archpriest Jovan Jovic; Hieromonks Mark (Kerr) and Evstatije (Dragojevic); Protonamesniks Aleksandar Savic and Dragan Goronjic; Priests Nikolaj Kostur and Milos Zivkovic; Protodeacons Milovan Gogic and Pavle Starcevic; and Deacons Nenad Jakovljevic and Milorad Jancic. Responses were beautifully sung by the Episcopal Choir under the direction of Marya Savich-Milicich.

Iveron Icon of Hawai St. Nicholas Church in Elkins Park

On September 20th2018, the Orthodox faithful of Greater Philadelphia were, once again, blessed by the visit of the miraculous myrrh-streaming Iveron Icon of  The Most Holy Mother of God.

That morning, Fr. Milorad Orlic accompanied Deacon Dimitri Kernitsky, the Icon’s escort, to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Neonatal Intensive care Unit, to visit a newborn who has been struggling for his life. Placing the child on the Icon, Father Milorad and Deacon Dimitri prayed a moleban for the child’s health,  anointing him with myrrh from the icon upon conclusion of the moleban.