J o a n i k i j e

Our brother Joanikije thrown into a dungeon
Made of concrete,
so cramped that it’s impossible to straighten up.
Still, he has stood straight
in front of those who have imprisoned him,
those who have dug their own tomb.

The cross procession of St Basil of Ostrog
Has made them disturbed,
The cross procession - for St Basil veneration
And the freedom for Montenegro annunciation.
Behold, Joanikije and his people in the cross procession
Walking meekly for
unearthly liberation.

The whole Montenegro is too small
To be Joanikije’s dungeon, so little,
Since he’s been counted into God’s people;
And those not counted are nameless,
Pilatus - they all could be called
Although they haven’t hands of their guilt washed.

May the Lord God and St Basil
Help brother Joanikije
To be liberated and back to his people.
We Serbs won’t stop
calling upon unbaptized
to return the peace and freedom
to Montenegro
just as in the time when it was blessed
with the cross sign of the ancestors.

written by His Grace Fotije
(For Info Service of SOC translated into English by Sanja Simic de Graaf)