The Holy Monastery of St John the Baptist on the banks of the Jordan River/Qasr-el-Yahud (PART I)
By Dr Theodosios Mitropoulos, architect
Topography of the area of the Monastery and of the baptismal site (In Arab: El – Maghtas), (images 1,2)
The history of this Holy Monastery begins in very ancient times, prior to the 4th c. AD. The present-day monastery, which was built in later times, has a rectangular ground plan measuring 37,74 m. x 36,93 m. and occupies an area of approximately 1.343 m2. The perimeter walls, specifically their uppermost portion, terminate at battlements, which lend the monument the form of a Medieval castle. This is in all likelihood why its Arabian name is Qasr el Yahud [The castle of the Jews] (see image 13).
14th General Assembly of the Conference of European Churches (CEC) started its work in Budapest on 3 July 2013. On this Assembly are present 470 participants of which 220 are delegates with the right to vote and who represent 120 registered Churches and religious communities: Orthodox, Anglicans, Protestants and Old-Catholic. Roman Catholic Church is not an official member of CEC, but actively participate in the work of CEC through the Council of the Bishop’s Conference of Europe.
In the monastery of Decani and in Prizren a conference of a group of Byzantinologists on preserving art and cultural heritage on Kosovo and Metohija took place on May 30 and 31, 2013. Besides issues concerning the protection of cultural and spiritual heritage, improvement of the dialogue among members of various religions and confessions, as well as the dialogue and contacts between Eastern and Western Christians arts was also discussed.
Nis: International Scientific Symposion on the occasion of the 1700th anniversary of the Edict of Milan concluded5. June 2013 - 8:26
Under auspices of His Holiness Irinej, Serbian Patriarch, the International Scientific Symposion was held on the occasion of the 1700th anniversary of the Edict of Milan (31 May – 2 June 2013)
The organizers of this symposion are the Center for religious studies Nis, the Institute for Orthodox Christian Studies of the University of Cambridge, the Center for Religious and Slav Studies „Ivan Dujchev“ from Sofia, the Institute for National and Religious Issues (Thessaloniki), the History Department of the Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade and the Faculty of Philosophy in Nis.
On May 16–18, the international academic conference "Athos and Slavic World" devoted to 1000 years of Russian presence on the Mount Athos took place in Belgrad, reports Sedmitza.ru.
Specialists from Russia, Serbia, Bulgaria, the Ukraine, Greece, Italy, Norway and Lithuania took part in the forum. The conference was organized by the international fund for the restoration and preservation of St. Panteleimon Monastery's cultural and spiritual heritage.